Mediterranean style homes became popular in coastal areas of the United States in the 1920s. This architectural style was inspired by the grand architecture of Italian Renaissance, with sweeping symmetrical facades that inspired onlookers. In Pasadena, California, Mediterranean style homes were popularized by such architects as Paul Williams, Bertram Goodhue, and Sumner Spaulding. Much of the public architecture in Pasadena is in the Mediterranean style, including the famous Pasadena City Hall.
Besides the cosmetic beauty of Mediterranean style homes, there was also a very practical reason to build homes in this style in Pasadena and surrounding cities. The climate in the area is very similar to the climate along the Mediterranean, and the architectural style was designed to keep the house cool in a hot, arid climate. The stucco walls help to insulate the houses against the hot summer sun, and features such as porticos and tile roofs with eaves serve to provide more shade. The interior walls of the houses are generally a light shade, and these homes in California also often have swimming pools. One of the most famous architects who worked in the Mediterranean style was Paul Williams. Williams was an American architect who worked out of Los Angeles for much of the twentieth century. He designed homes for many movie stars, including Lucille Ball, Frank Sinatra and Tyrone Power. His Mediterranean style homes feature such classic details as stuccoed walls, tile roofs, arches and window grilles.
Pasadena City Hall, originally built in 1927 for $1.3 million, is a great example of the California Mediterranean architecture. The City Hall that we see today has been seismically reinforced and renovated in 2007 (a three year project!) and should be on everyone's "things to do list" when visiting Pasadena. The interior courtyard is as stunning as the outside architecture. Historical and architectural elements can be seen at every turn. It's also a great photo pic opportunity for visitors and residents alike.
The Mediterranean style lends itself to eclectic designs, and it includes everything from ornate Italianate villas to small farmhouses. One feature that is common to most Mediterranean style homes is a sense of privacy for the family who lives within. Mediterranean style homes are both practical as well as elegant, and they look perfect in beautiful California surroundings. There are a great many of these beautiful homes to be seen all over San Gabriel Valley.
Pasadena has many Mediterranean style homes. Take a look at a few houses for sale below. To see a complete list, sign up for a home search account.