Two Iconic Homes Meet Very Different Fates

A pair of iconic homes, one on the East Coast and one on the West Coast, have met very different fates after their respective owners decided to make changes to where they live.Â

The home on the East Coast was an elegant townhouse on New York City's Upper East Side that served as the exterior location for the 1961 film classic ‘Breakfast at Tiffany's’ starring Audrey Hepburn. According to a report in the New York Observer, the four-story brownstone – which boasts five fireplaces and its own solarium – was sold for $5.97 million to the Cyprus-based Costalea Holdings Ltd. The property's outgoing owner, Peter F. Bacanovic, is a former Merrill Lynch broker who served five months in prison for his role in the Martha Stewart insider trading case.

The home on the West Coast was the Moore House (pictured left), a strikingly modernist work created in 1959 in the city of Palos Verdes Estates, Calif., by architect Lloyd Wright, who was also the son of Frank Lloyd Wright. However, the house was demolished yesterday following a two-year battle to preserve it.

Curbed Los Angeles reports that the Palos Verdes Estates city council turned down an appeal by the Los Angeles Conservancy to preserve the house, which was named after its original owner, the surgeon Dr. Louis Moore. Although the property never received landmark designation, its unusual design – the Los Angeles Times called it a ‘spaceship-looking structure’ – stood out in a community where Mediterranean-style architecture predominated, and the Los Angeles Conservancy led a high-profile campaign to have it preserved.

The house's owner, Mark Paullin, bought the property in 2004 for $2.5 million and was trying for several years to get permission to tear down the house and replace it with a Mediterranean-style residence. Although an environmental impact report considered the Moore House eligible for listing as a historic resource, it was determined that it was impossible to renovate the design to meet Paullin's needs.

(Photo by Stefano Paltera/For The Los Angeles Times)


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