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Legendary Director’s Bel-Air Estate Available for the First Time in Over 60 Years

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German-American director Ernst Lubitsch worked with—and hosted—some of the greatest actors of the 20th century, including Maurice Chevalier, Greta Garbo, and Jimmy Stewart.

Lubitsch, who helmed classics such as “To Be or Not To Be,” “Ninotchka,” and “The Shop Around the Corner,” was also known for the palatial estate he built in Bel-Air in 1934. It’s a mansion where top actors and industry leaders reportedly danced many nights away.

For the first time in over 60 years, the glamorous property with its Hollywood pedigree is now on the market for $19,995,000.

While the estate is nearly a century old, tasteful updates have been made over the decades. The results have been featured in Architectural Digest and other publications.

Ernst Lubitsch’s estate in Bel-Air neighborhood

Living room

On an acre lot, the home sits behind stately gates and up a tree-lined driveway.

Distinctive and delightful, the five-bedroom mansion’s exterior was uniquely inspired by the “whitewashed brickworks of Mexico.”

The front exterior of whitewashed brick shows Mexican design influence.

The terra-cotta roof, interior woodwork, plaster arches, wrought-iron railings, and carved wood balconies all show Mexican design influence.

The main residence features a number of large-scale, elegant rooms. One of the most intriguing spaces is a wood-paneled bar lined with built-in bookcases.


Wood-paneled bar with built-in bookcases

The estate includes a light-filled cantina, reminiscent of the clubby watering holes on the old studio lots, complete with a bar, tables, brick walls, and tile flooring.


Lubitsch fully embraced the Southern California obsession with outdoor living. His cozy outdoor living room was decades ahead of its time.

Outdoor living room

There’s also a courtyard for grand gatherings under the stars.


The lush grounds are marked by green lawns, mature vegetation, a large pool, multiple patios and loggias, and even vegetable gardens.



Vegetable gardens

Back inside the 9,292-square-foot main residence, the elegant primary suite features a canopied bed, walk-in closet, ornate dressing room, and an oversized terrace overlooking the grounds.

Primary suite

Dressing room

The charming and spacious blue and white kitchen has high-end appliances and colorful tilework.


There are eight fireplaces throughout the house and grounds, including one in the guest casita.

One of eight fireplacesand

Lubitsch, who died at age 55 in 1947, was born in Berlin and emigrated to the U.S. in 1922. He was a successful filmmaker in Germany and, once in the U.S., he became known for “the Lubitsch touch” on urbane comedies of manners.

“Million Dollar Listing Los Angeles” star Josh Flagg with Douglas Elliman is representing the seller.

The post Legendary Director’s Bel-Air Estate Available for the First Time in Over 60 Years appeared first on Real Estate News & Insights |®.

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