“Privacy, Harmony and Simplicity” describe this historic Piedmont listing

65 Wildwood Gardens | Piedmont

View Lot with Historic Cottage / $985,000

In 1908, Frank C. Havens acquired a 7.5 acre oak-covered parcel of land, located south of Highland Avenue in Piedmont. The famed architect, Bernard Maybeck, was hired to design a house that would reflect Frank and Lila Havens’ deep interest in Oriental arts and philosophies… Lila named the estate Wildwood Gardens in reverence to the numerous live-oak trees on the land, and in anticipation, to the landscaping projects she was planning for the sides of the canyon. In 1918, the original property, with its expansive views and mature oaks, began being divided to create one of the most exclusive communities in the Bay Area.

Today, the local folklore believes the Havens stables hide on this secluded piece of land at 65 Wildwood Gardens. One can easily imagine back 100 years or so, a horse-drawn carriage winding its way up the road through the canyon… Once the passengers had disembarked, the carriage unhitched and stowed away, the horses would return here, to their peaceful stables under the oaks, overlooking Oakland and the Bay, with San Francisco on the horizon beyond.

Over the years, the quiet serenity and intimate framed view made this spot a treasured place. The stables were converted into a clubhouse for barbeques, and eventually were expanded into a charming cottage. Still, the trees, the view, and the bucolic legacy of contented horses remain, making this property a unique and even magical place in the midst of one of the Bay Area’s most coveted neighborhoods.

The cottage feels like a tree house, a bird observatory in a lush garden. The antique Spanish tiles, the original door latches and the patina of the old floorboards exude a sense of history. New work in an old house should abide by the original text… but one can also imagine taking advantage of the perfect orientation of the site, to harvest sun and rainwater along the slope, and create a 21st century green home that preserves the indigenous trees and relays this peaceful simplicity to the next generation. The kids will walk to one of our state’s best public schools and downtown San Francisco will always be at a stone’s throw…

Click here for more photos of this unique property!

If you wish to see the property, call Christophe Rat directly at 415.283.8894 (or chris@caldecott.com) to set an appointment.


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