USC Architect’s Personal Residence In Montecito Stands The Test Of Time

Astounding Montecito home basking in the sun

The clean-lined contemporary in Montecito is listed for close to $7 million. (VILLAGE PROPERTIES)

Renowned architect John F. Kelsey left his mark throughout Southern California.

Perhaps most famously, he partnered with USC classmate Thornton Ladd to create what is now known as Pasadena’s Norton Simon Museum. Their shared belief was that space can be art too.

Front view of the Montecito residence

The curving lines of the walkway, the landscaping and an old oak provide a visual contrast to the straight lines of the modern home. (VILLAGE PROPERTIES)

Ladd & Kelsey are also credited with USC’s Student Activities Complex, the CalArts Complex and the Herrick Chapel of Occidental College, among others.

This gated Montecito residence, where he lived for part of his life, is representative of the contemporary homes he designed throughout Santa Barbara.

Built in 1982, the home has a timeless quality. Long clean lines define the two-story structure. Expanses of windows and glass doors bring the surrounding setting into the nearly 4,300 square feet of living space.

Rooms open to terraces, gardens, gnarled oak trees, boulders and lawn.

The extra-tall ceilings in the living room heighten the sense of spaciousness. (VILLAGE PROPERTIES)

Rooms open to terraces, gardens, gnarled oak trees, boulders and lawn. Mountains loom on one side of the house.

A simple, almost industrial-looking double door opens to the foyer. Lofty ceilings draw the eye upward in the living room, which features wood floors and a fireplace with a low stone hearth.

Wood floors continue in the formal dining room where views take in the yard and trees.

The recently remodeled kitchen opens to a breakfast area. (VILLAGE PROPERTIES)

Wood floors continue in the formal dining room where views take in the yard and trees.

A breakfast area opens to the recently remodeled kitchen outfitted with stainless steel appliances and topped by a pop-up ceiling. A family room with a fireplace, a skylight and built-in shelving sits off the kitchen. A wall of glass brings in garden views.

The primary suite contains an office area, an ocean-view deck and dual closets.

The light-filled family room features a fireplace and built-in shelving. (VILLAGE PROPERTIES)

The primary suite contains an office area, an ocean-view deck and dual closets. There are three additional en-suite bedrooms.

The Riskin Partners Estate Group of Village Properties has the listing for 812 Romero Canyon Road, Montecito, California. The asking price is $6.995 million.

Santa Barbara Airport is about 14 miles away.