The O’Neill House from "Beverly Hills, 90210"Mar 27th, 2013 | By Lindsay | Category: 90210 & Beverly Hills, 90210 Filming Locations
While perusing the article “The Ultimate Guide to Hidden L.A.” in the February 2013 issue of Los Angeles Magazine, I came across a blurb about the O’Neill House in Beverly Hills – one of Southern California’s most unique residences – and recognized the place immediately. I had seen the property featured in a production a year or so prior, became mesmerized by its whimsical architecture and immediately set about tracking it down, which I did fairly quickly. For the life of me, though, I now cannot remember what production it was. I am only 35 – aren’t I a little young for my memory to be failing? My gut is saying that the house popped up in an episode of Californication because I distinctly remember first searching for it in the Venice area – Californication is filmed almost entirely in and around Venice Beach – but I scanned through the Grim Cheaper’s DVDs of the series yesterday and did not spot the abode anywhere. I also contacted fellow stalker Geoff, who chronicles Californication filming locales on his 90210Locations website, but he did not recognize the home at all. I am now starting to doubt that Californication is the correct show. At this point, who knows? I decided to stalk the O’Neill House, anyway, while visiting L.A. a few weeks back in the hopes that I would eventually remember what production had been filmed there, but I still have yet to do so. Randomly enough, though, while scanning through early episodes of Beverly Hills, 90210 to make screen captures for yesterday’s post on The Peach Pit, I spotted the property in a very brief scene and just about had a heart attack. It always comes back to 90210 for this stalker.
In 1978, an art dealer named Don O’Neill and his wife, Sandy, decided to remodel the guest home of their traditional residence in the Art Nouveau-style of Don’s favorite architect, Antoni Gaudi. That guest house is pictured below and is actually the most famous portion of the property.
As you can see below, the detailing on it is nothing short of spectacular.
No matter what one’s architectural style preferences may be, I can honestly say that the residence is amazing to see in person. I don’t know that I would ever want to live there, but I sure could not get enough of looking at the place’s exterior.
Check out the molded fish sculpture to the right of the doorway that conceals what I believe is either a camera or a light fixture. As I said before, the detailing is spectacular!
After construction of the guest house was complete, Don and Sandy decided to rebuild the main part of the house in the same style. Sadly though, Don passed away before the project was finished, but I believe that Sandy still owns the property to this day.
The dwelling, which was designed by architect Tom Oswalt, boasts five bedrooms, six baths, 5,181 square feet of living space, a 0.34-acre plot of land, a pool, a library, maid’s quarters, and a boatload of ornate tile work. As you can see below, the front of the home is much less adorned than the back. According to the fabulous book Los Angeles Attractions, all of the rooms were built in a round or oval shape. You can check out some fabulous interior photographs of the property here.
The O’Neill house is shown very briefly in the Season 1 episode of Beverly Hills, 90210 titled “The First Time”, in the scene in which Brandon Walsh (Jason Priestley) shows his former girlfriend, Sheryl (Paula Irvine), who is visiting from Minnesota, around Beverly Hills. As they drive through the city, Sheryl takes pictures of various ostentatious residences, one of which is the O’Neill House.
The O’Neill house was also where Jesse Lujack (Richard Gere) stole a baby blue Thunderbird convertible In the 1983 movie Breathless.
In the 1986 thriller 8 Million Ways to Die, the residence was where Angel Moldonado (Andy Garcia) lived. In the movie, Angel talks quite a bit about Antoni Gaudi and how he inspired the unusual home. Areas of the property that were shown in the flick include the guest house;
the breezeway between the guest house and the main house;
the living room of the main house;
and the kitchen.
I am still at a loss as to the other production I saw the O’Neill house featured in, so if any of my fellow stalkers recognize it, please let me know!
Until next time, Happy Stalking!
Stalk It: The O’Neill House, from “The First Time” episode of Beverly Hills, 90210, is located at 507 North Rodeo Drive in Beverly Hills. The guest house is located behind the property and can be viewed from the alley that runs north off of Park Way in between North Rodeo Drive and North Camden Drive.