A Historic Gem in SoCal: The Armstrong Estate by Roland E. Coate

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Armstrong Estate

In the picturesque city of Arcadia, Southern California, stands a magnificent piece of history – the Armstrong Estate. Designed by the renowned architect Roland E. Coate, this stunning home captures the essence of SoCal’s rich architectural heritage. As an expert real estate appraiser with a passion for history, I’m thrilled to share the fascinating story behind this iconic property.

The Armstrong House was originally built for Lionel M. Armstrong, an executive at the Chandler Car Company. Known for their production of six-seater cars in the 19th and early 20th centuries, the Chandler Car Company’s connection to Armstrong adds a layer of intrigue to the history of this home. What makes it even more intriguing is that Armstrong was also involved in a partnership with Catherine Van Dyke, the same individual behind the iconic Edward C. Kent home in Pasadena, which was modeled after a Tuscan winery.

It seems that connections and relationships were a common thread among the historical homes of the time. This observation highlights the interconnectedness of these influential individuals and their impact on the architectural landscape of Southern California.

Originally situated on a nine-acre plot, the Armstrong House faced some changes when the neighboring freeway expansion cut off three acres. Subsequently, the remaining six acres were subdivided. The original address of the house was on Foothill Boulevard in Arcadia, which was also listed as the address for the Don Pablo Estates, indicating a sense of prestige associated with this location.

As we step inside the Armstrong House, it becomes evident that Roland E. Coate’s signature style is on full display. Known for his ability to create a seamless flow between spaces, Coate’s asymmetrical wing design can be seen in the background of the house. This design element adds a touch of uniqueness and elegance to the overall aesthetic.

Privacy and comfort were key principles behind Coate’s designs, and the Armstrong House is no exception. The living room, with its grand ceilings, stunning fireplace, and secluded location in the house, exemplifies this aspect of Coate’s style. Adjacent to the living room is a library or office space, further emphasizing the importance of privacy within the home. Additionally, the house features a sunroom, once a covered patio, which seamlessly connects the indoor and outdoor spaces.

Coate’s extensive portfolio includes a variety of architectural styles, but he is most renowned for his large-scale Spanish Colonial homes. These homes perfectly blend the surrounding landscape, architecture, and site design, resulting in an elegant and livable space. The Armstrong House’s rear yard and patio exemplify this approach, with its accessibility from multiple parts of the home, a fireplace, open areas, and bench seating. Although the rear yard may have seen some changes over the years, it still maintains Coate’s design integrity, featuring beautiful plants and an attractive water feature.

Exploring further, we discover more intriguing elements that showcase the home’s historical significance. Fire hoses built into the wall in the butler wing and upstairs hallway, balconies on both the front and rear of the house, and a deck off one of the bedrooms all serve as reminders of the home’s bygone era. Another unique feature is the large California basement, providing ample space for wine storage, as well as an incinerator with shoots from both the first and second floors, serving as a reminder of the practicality and functionality of homes of that period.

Moving into the master bedroom, we enter a space that exudes both luxury and comfort. With its accessibility to balconies and a private master balcony on the west side of the home, Coate’s design philosophy of seamlessly integrating indoor and outdoor spaces is evident. Additionally, the size and grandeur of the master bedroom closet, adorned with intricate crown moldings, further exemplify the attention to detail and opulence that Coate was known for.

What sets the Armstrong House apart is its exceptional value in the current market. Typically, homes designed by Roland E. Coate command prices well above the $6-8 million range. However, this particular property presents a unique opportunity to own a piece of Coate’s legacy for under $2 million. This price point makes it an attractive option for those who desire a home with historical significance and architectural splendor.

In conclusion, the Armstrong Estate by Roland E. Coate is a treasure trove of Southern California’s rich architectural heritage. It embodies the principles and design philosophies that made Coate a revered figure in the world of architecture. From its connection to Lionel M. Armstrong and Catherine Van Dyke to its seamless integration of indoor and outdoor spaces, every aspect of this home tells a compelling story. As I continue my journey through the world of historical homes, I invite you to join me in exploring the captivating history of real estate in Southern California.

To stay updated on the fascinating world of architecture, real estate, and history, be sure to subscribe to my YouTube channel and hit the notification bell. If you are an agent with a historical home listing or an upcoming listing, I would be delighted to feature it in one of my vlogs. Feel free to contact me at GA Appraisals, Inc. via phone at 626-264-4345 or email at [email protected]. Visit my website www.garappraisalsync.com for more information, and don’t forget to connect with me on social media.

In this article, we delved deep into the fascinating history and architectural significance of the Armstrong Estate by Roland E. Coate. From its connections to prominent figures in the architectural community to its seamless design and unique features, this home exemplifies the best of Southern California’s architectural heritage. Whether you’re a history enthusiast, an architecture lover, or a potential homebuyer, the Armstrong Estate is a must-see for those seeking a piece of SoCal history.

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