Remember when I thought that I recognized the house in the 1959 film The House on Haunted Hill? It turns out that the house is famous for a few reasons. Although it has appeared in a ton of films, including Bladerunner and L.A. Confidential to name but two, I “recognized” it because it looks like the Hollyhock House, which I toured with Sarah and my mom in May 2010. The Hollyhock House and Ennis House, the house from Haunted Hill, were both designed by Frank Lloyd Wright are both sited in Hollywood.
Since seeing House on Haunted Hill, I made visiting Ennis House one of my priorities when visiting Los Angeles. On the day after Christmas, my parents, Sarah, and I drove to the Hollywood Hills to see the house. Regrettably, one cannot tour the house. It was sold to a private owner in July 2011. The house needs a lot of work, but it’s not clear when the house will be open to the public once the new owner takes possession.
Visiting the house is easy with a car. Take Vermont Avenue north past Los Feliz Boulevard. Turn left on Cromwell Ave, then a quick right onto Glendower Ave. Follow the winding road up, up, and up, and then after about a quarter mile you will see the house. Mind the parking signs and take a walk around the house and, obviously, don’t disturb the adjacent properties.
After gawking at Ennis House, we drove back down the hill and stopped at Barnsdall Park to show my dad Hollyhock House because he had not seen it.
A day after we visited the Ennis and Hollyhock Houses, we stumbled on another Frank Lloyd Wright property. This was the Kundert Medical Clinic in San Luis Obispo. Unlike the other two properties, this was still in full operation. It sits along a creek on Santa Rosa Avenue, which was a main road connecting some important towns in San Luis Obispo County. After running around Hollywood looking at two (of many, many) Frank Lloyd Wright homes in Los Angeles, it was nice to find one by accident en route to our next destination.