Classic Architectural Styles of Los Angeles

Mid-Century Modern

Mid-Century Modern

The mid-century modern house is extremely well-suited to the very temperate climate here in southern California — flat roofs, walls of glass, and simple geometry are not the best choices where cold, rain and heavy snows are common.

Pictured here is the Foster Carling House from 1947-1950, designed by John Lautner. Located in the Hollywood Hills above Mulholland Drive, it is perched sculpturally above a succulent hillside garden. The builder was yacht craftsman John de la Vaux (who went on to collaborate frequently with Lautner), and the extensive use of wood throughout the entire residence is extraordinary. Of particular interest in this house is the indoor-outdoor pool, with retractable glass walls that can be closed with the push of a button. I have been to this house, and I emphasize the word “to,” rather than “in,” because the distinction between inside and outside is completely blurred. For lack of the right words, this is just such an amazingly cool house! Only in L.A.

>> Read more about the architecture of Los Angeles 1940-1970


The indoor/ooutdoor pool of a mid-century modern home in the Hollywood Hills designed by John Lautner

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