Mulholland Drive Modern

Design by 'Case Study' designer Rodney Walker boasts choice update and location
Fridays on the Homefront
A Case Study House designer meets perhaps the most celebrated panorama of Los Angeles for a new mid-century modern for sale. It's 15154 Mulholland Drive pictured above. Photos courtesy Gary Gold / Hylton & Hyland

In a city that thrives on hype, there aren't too many more buzzworthy real estate combinations for a modest-sized home than the intersection of a Case Study House designer and the road with the most celebrated panoramas of Los Angeles, Mulholland Drive.

"It just perfectly typifies a mid-century modern home," commented Gary Gold, the wildly successful realtor who listed 15154 Mulholland Drive in early March for $2,299,000. Built in 1950, when desigjer/builder Rodney Walker was in his MCM prime, the realtor added, "It's got a great flow."

An art graduate from University of California at Los Angeles, Walker worked initially for Rudolph Schindler and by 1948 had built his third home in Art and Architecture magazine's Case Study Houses program. The Ely, Nevada native is one of only three to do that in the groundbreaking program's 21-year history.

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On the south side of Mulholland, between Stone Canyon Reservoir and Sepulveda Pass, Walker built and lived in a sparkling modernist gem with three beds and two baths over 1,826 square feet of largely open floor plan. With Walker's trademark use of wood and glass along with steel, the property has been lovingly restored by the most recent owners whom, Gold said, "brought it back to its former glory."

"They're just a couple who bought it as a passion project," the realtor explained of the owners. Still, from its construction, Gold said, "That house had a lot of style, and a lot of great design elements that work really well."

Such elements include the open floor plan, Fleetwood sliders, a wood-burning fireplace, and a northwest-facing orientation that provides nighttime views of the San Fernando Valley lights below.

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"The architecture and the setting—those two things are unbeatable," said Gold, who listed the home for Hilton & Hyland in Beverly Hills.

In updating the house, the owners left such enviable elements intact; and added a few 21st century touches, such as a Tesla charger in the double carport, a Ring doorbell system, and a small pool with equipment to make it 'endless' for lap swimming.

Still, Gold concedes, like many MCM homes, "These houses are very simple. In terms of amenities, they're not that great—not many bells and whistles."

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