PSYCHITECTURE Focus: Hollywood Regency ARCHITECTURE

Featuring The Pasadena Showcase House of Design’s Boddy House

I headed out east to the nature-inspiring Descanso Gardens to explore the Pasadena Showcase of Design’s featured Showcase House, the Boddy House.  Knowing the healing effects of nature on our psyche and well-being, meandering towards the house, through Japanese maples reminiscent of the groundedness of east coast forestry, the landscaping is an obvious set up to ground and heal.  READ MORE  (Of note: I just returned from Coachella where i was whisked around on golf carts. I was quite happy with my slower golf cart ride up to the Boddy House). I further felt the PSYCHITECTURE, calling to travel back in time to the “Hollywood Regency” architectural style of the Boddy House (although the House felt more Georgian mixed with modernism, as Hollywood Regency is typically more L-shaped), as a reverie back to a carefree past of glamour and sophistication —  save for a single garish object in the house, much to my surprise (I'm a Midcentury Modern lover). Feeling a connection to the lineage of my own grandfather, who was a journalist and a captain of the Navy in WWII, the original owner of the house, Mr. Boddy, was the publisher of the Los Angeles Illustrated Daily News and served in the US Army during WWII. The architect of the Boddy House is James Edward Dolena. Known as the “architect of the stars”, he originally came to Los Angeles to help a muralist with an installation on a public building. He remained in LA and throughout his lifetime, built 800 mansions, worldwide.


This particular Showcase House features immaculate attention to detail in each room, curated by a carefully select few interior designers, delegated to specific rooms.  To explore how each designer used their expertise in each space made for a PSYCHITECTURE-rich experience of exploring how design and space affect our psychology, and how we can view different styles separately and collectively under one giant roof.  The Boddy House, which is now referred to as the Hospitality House, has a lay out of a spoken wheel with each room revolving around a central foyer and solarium. Two staircases ascend from opposite wings of the house, and lead to a grand bedroom with french doors. The doors spill onto a balcony with stellar views of the San Gabriel Mountains —  breathtaking.

My favorite rooms include: the lady’s hideaway, a writer’s haven, teen atelier, cigar retreat (especially after so many trips to Havana) and the library.   “The Lady’s Hideaway” inclusive of Chic Lounge, Luxe Lounge, Tranquil Hideaway, is an inviting lady’s home office where business and comfort coexist.  Interior designer Maria Videla- Juniel stated “the goal was to create a lady’s office reflecting her interests and world travels that was also an inviting escape for some “me time'.” I experienced the lady’s hideaway as Videla had described where work meets comfort and exploration.  In our Me-Too era, this hideaway creates comfort while accessing means of discovery, all in the luxury of comfortable materials, and a palette which was inspired by the central rug of global hues of eggplant, gold and aqua.

The library, designed by husband and wife team, Laura & Cliff Muller of Four Point Design Build, used all sensory elements to engage both adults and children alike, ranging from tactile wood block sculptures to textures in pillows and rugs that create a sensori-motor experience in an interior environment.  As stated by the PSDS: “Today’s family craves a healthy lifestyle that centers on togetherness, longevity and meaning while maintaining a sense of tradition and quality in a home that is built and furnished to last, with real living in mind, where generations of family, friends, kids and pets will gather for parallel play and multi-functional activities” By integrating a thoroughly functional design, they created the perfect salon for entertaining, game and movie nights, and cozy night in by the fire.  

Proceeds from the house help support local arts organizations throughout Southern California.

Running from April 21 through May, 19th 2019

For more information or to purchase tickets, visit www.pasadenashowcase.org

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PSYCHITECTURE Interior Design Picks as featured by Four Point Design:

Rachel Melvald