One of the amazing things about Montecito real estate is that, as fancy as it gets—and keeps getting—you can still come upon a gorgeous relic like 630 Hot Springs Road. The property, named Stonehedge because it’s said to have had the first stone walls in town, is on the market for the first time in nearly a century. The listing agents invited me over for a sneak peek….
Bedrooms: Five in the main house; one in one cottage and two in the other cottage.
Bathrooms: Five in the main house and one in each cottage.
Size/Acreage: 5,788 square feet (main house) / 6.7 acres.
Price: $14.5 million.
Last sold: 1925.
Listing agents: Tim Walsh and Riskin Partners of Village Properties.
According to a 2019 mention in the Montecito Journal, “famous Hudson River boat pilot” Absalom Anderson built the house 1877, with help from an unknown architect. Fanny Stevenson, widow of Robert Louis, bought the property in 1906, and it was sold 19 years later to the current owner’s family, who has owned it ever since. The main house started out as a Victorian, then got transformed first into a Spanish style and eventually into the villa it is today.
The compound comprises five buildings: the 5,788-square-foot main house; two cottages (each with its own street access, at 622 and 652 Hot Springs, respectively); a barn; and the original ice house. The main house last had a major overhaul in 1925, and most of the public spaces feel as if little has changed since.
And there are details you simply don’t see anymore—such as the elevator operated by pulley and a dumbwaiter said to have been used for moving hooch during Prohibition. (These next two photos are mine.)
Could you move into Stonehedge as it stands now? Sure. Could you renovate the main house and make it fabulous? Absolutely. But I suspect that’s unlikely. People at this price point have different priorities these days: they want a master bath you can park a Porsche in, a media room, a five-car garage, and so on. So as remarkable as the house is, and as delightful as it is to explore, this is probably a redevelopment situation. You just don’t see 6.77 acres in Montecito’s Golden Quadrangle without a relatively new mansion already built on it. And the area around house is flat and oakless, meaning a new structure could be sited to better capture the views to the east and the south. A dead-on ocean view is swell, but the view toward Ventura is more interesting.
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