J-Lo and the Royal Family of Qatar are Fans of L.A. Classical Architecture

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Best of California Classic Architecture Sunset Mansion ExteriorYou know that big lot on the corner of Sunset and Alpine that used to be the site of the infamous sheik’s home with the anatomically correct painted statues? Eyebrows were raised, and eventually the mansion was razed too. The lot was divided in two and a couple of glorious mansions when up in it’s place. The first one finished was a Beaux Arts beauty, inspired by the George V in Paris, from architect Brian Biglin, who counts Gwen Stefani, Simon Cowell and the Royal Family of Qatar among his clients. The one thing they all have in common is a love for classical style architecture.

The middle Eastern royals were such fans, in fact, that they commissioned a 640,000 square foot home (no, that’s not a typo), along those lines. It’s used for public purposes, as well as private, of course. Biglin is currently in the process of building a 55,000 square foot classical-style home in Newport’s Crystal Cove, inspired by the famous Marble House in Road Island, one of America’s greatest manors.Sunset_9364

For the 36,000 square foot mansion you’ve probably passed a hundred times on Sunset, Biglin’s clients requested a slice of old world Parisian opulence, hence the George V inspiration. Designer Remy Garnier, who renovated parts of Versailles, was called in to decorate. 24 karat gold guilded lights, molding and fixtures abound, as do Christian religious references and symbols, such as the hand-cut stone angels at the entry way, to reflect the owners’ faith.

Biglin’s work, as well as the work of many others, was displayed at the recent 10 Year Anniversary Exhibit of the Southern California Chapter of the Institute of Classical Architecture and Art. It was held at the Therien gallery on La Cienega, in the heart of L.A.’s design district. It featured commissions by forty of Southern California’s most admired architects, designers and artists. For more information on the organization and the event, go to www.classicist-socal.org.

Best of California Classic Architecture Sunset Mansion Dining Room

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Lisa Johnson Mandell

Lisa Johnson Mandell

Lisa Johnson Mandell is an award winning journalist, author and film/TV critic. She can be heard regularly on Cumulus radio stations throughout the US, and on BBC Radio.

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