Tour a Rare Classical Residence in Southern California

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Croydon House, a rare early-20th-century residence in Montecito, boasts distinguished architectural details and a traditional grandeur that recall an estate in the English countryside.

Santa Barbara, California | Barry Fields & Joe McCorkellSotheby’s International Realty – Sunset Strip Brokerage

Historic Croydon House, an early-20th-century residence in Montecito, has a traditional grandeur that recalls an Old World estate in the English countryside. Its scale is at once impressive and welcoming, and nearly every space is filled with glorious light and eye-catching vintage details, from richly hued ceiling beams and paneling, leaded-glass windows, striking sconces, coffered ceilings, and hardwood floors to seven unique original fireplaces. A home of such distinctive character is truly rare today, particularly in Southern California.

As in many classical estates, a foyer with a vaulted ceiling and a dramatic staircase creates a fittingly regal first impression. Beyond are spaces for effortless elegant entertaining, including a handsome living room anchored by an oversized fireplace, a dining room that feels both relaxed and refined, and a bright, inviting family room. The kitchen combines professional-caliber stainless-steel appliances with delightful details and a welcoming warmth. The oenophile will appreciate the wine cellar, which is located on the lower level and has an impressive 10,000-bottle capacity. The library features a fireplace, a wall of bookshelves, and a whimsical secret passage that leads to the main-level guest quarters.

A serene secluded spot on the upper level, the master suite is an airy aerie with a striking trussed and beamed ceiling and a balcony with views of the ocean through the trees. Adding to the sense of a true retreat are a sitting room, an impressive dressing area with walls of built-ins, and a luxurious bath with a soaking tub that enjoys its own ocean view. Three guest bedrooms are also located on this floor, and an additional bedroom and bath are tucked away on the home’s lower level.

Gated for privacy, the generous 1.8-acre property consists of two legal lots and feels like a lush oasis affording wonderful flexibility and versatility—the estate could be divided, with the existing residence on one parcel and a second or guest home constructed on the other. The picturesque park-like grounds are a wonderland, with ivy-covered walls, fanciful gates, manicured hedges and gardens, towering palms, a lemon arbor, an alluring swimming pool and spa surrounded by warmly hued stone and invitingly lush lawn, and a fire pit with built-in seating. Plentiful covered and open-air spaces for alfresco living, dining, and entertaining are dotted with shade-giving olive trees and include a patio with a fireplace built into a stately stone wall. The location in the desirable Lower Village neighborhood is very private and quiet yet offers proximity to top-tier restaurants, fashionable shops, and Coast Village Road.

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