Experience Midcentury Summers at Malibu's Sole Robert Skinner-Designed Home
In 1960, a brilliant woman named Elsa Garmire relocated to California with her husband, Charles Townes, who was a co-developer of the Raman laser, and they were looking for a home in Los Angeles.
Elsa had made significant contributions to the development of the Raman laser, which earned her international recognition. As a result, the couple was searching for a home that would complement their accomplishments.
During their search, Elsa fell in love with a house designed by the modernist architect Robert Skinner in the Trousdale Estates neighborhood of Beverly Hills.
The house was later built for Elsa by Robert Skinner, and it became a symbol of her successful career. However, she also desired a home in Malibu, which led Skinner to design a ranch-style home for her in the area above Big Rock Beach.
It's worth noting that the Eckhardt House was built in 1966 and was sold to Eric S., a real estate developer, for $4 million after Elsa passed away in 2020. The home has been extensively restored and is now listed for sale for approximately $11.5 million.
Although it may seem like a steep price for a restored house, Choi, the current owner, has pledged to preserve the house's historical value by keeping it in the same style as Skinner's original design.
The midcentury gem is Skinner's only creation in Malibu, appropriately named the "Eckhardt House." It boasts four bedrooms, three bathrooms, an open-concept living space, a whitewashed interior, block walls, natural oak accents, and new terrazzo floors throughout.
Large expanses of glass adorn almost every room, providing sweeping views of the city and ocean from almost every angle.
According to Rich Report, the building is situated on a three-acre parcel of land, flanked by a motorcourt and a two-car garage attached to the front entrance. The motorcourt gives the building an air of sophistication. Upon entering the home, visitors are greeted by an incredible atrium that leads directly into a sunken living room with a decorative floating fireplace.
The adjacent dining room features a large mural, and the eat-in kitchen is equipped with custom cabinetry, Corian countertops, and Miele and Fisher & Paykel appliances of the highest quality. The master retreat features a glass-lined spa-inspired bathroom with dual vanities, a waterfall shower, a sauna, and a walk-in closet.
The terraced backyard of this beautiful home contains a large swimming pool with white bottoms, a fire pit, strolling gardens, and a number of patios that are perfect for relaxing and entertaining al fresco. Elizabeth Donovan, of Coldwell Banker Realty, is the listing agent for the seller.
In conclusion, the Eckhardt House is a piece of architectural history that showcases Robert Skinner's unique midcentury design. It was built for Elsa Garmire, a talented scientist and laser pioneer, and now it awaits a new owner who will appreciate its history and beauty.
Although the price may seem steep, the home's exceptional design, breathtaking views, and its historical significance make it a worthwhile investment.