Recent photos of the Italian Villa, Beverly Hills, California

 

The new front gate.

The new fountain. (In Buster's day, this centerpiece was all plantings.)
   

The majority of the original 1926 lighting fixtures
and other fittings were found abandoned in the
basement. They have been beautifully restored.


The new living room, complete with restored baroque fireplace (removed in the 1950s by James Mason.) Just outside the glass doors is one of the three back patios, featuring an outdoor corner fireplace for those chilly California evenings.

 

Part of the original pantry and Buster's stove remain.

The dining room lamp and the hand painted ceiling beams.


Buster's mirror, restored to its original finish. This is all that remains of his dressing set, shown in 1928 MGM publicity photos. Buster designed and built the bedroom furniture at his studio.


The master bedroom. The windows to the right look out over the drive; the windows on the left looked out over the original gardens down to the swimming pool. The room also has its own fireplace (out of shot.)
   

The upstairs hall, facing east.

The playroom. (The built-in cabinets were originally intended for pool cues.)

The new landscaping. (Back garden.)

The new guesthouse (the old one was torn down), and the new pool.
The original pool was on land sold off by James Mason.
That pool still exists but it is no longer part of the property.
 

Credits:
All photos courtesy Patricia Eliot Tobias, c. 2002
Restorations and renovations by John Bersci and Christopher Bedroosian
Decorated by Mary McDonald
Captions by Victoria Sainte-Claire

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