About Harold’s House

Nestled high upon a 200 foot bluff overlooking the seemingly endless Pacific Ocean, The Laughton Estate, is a magnificent 10,000 square foot French and Spanish Mediterranean estate of exceptional grandeur and historical significance.Built in 1934 by a wealthy copper magnate, the estate was subsequently purchased by the renowned Academy Award winning actor Charles Laughton, best known for his brilliant performances in “The Hunchback of Notre Dame” and “Mutiny on the Bounty”. Charles resided in the Villa from 1941 to 1949 with his wife, Elsa Lancester, the memorable bride from the “Bride of Frankenstein”.In the late 1940’s, Charles taught acting classes in the home’s downstairs theatre room. Among the regular attendees were Shelley Winters and Marilyn Monroe. The interiors of the house were filled with Renoirs , Cezannes and Picassos.

On magical summer nights , Charles and Elsa hosted glorious sunset galas and reveled in the company of such luminaries as Charlie Chaplin, Suzanne Cloutier , Robert Ryan, and playwright Bertolt Brecht, who wrote the English translation of his famous play, “Galileo”, at the house.

Rumor has it that when the setting sun fills the horizon with its luminous glory, the fragrance of the salty sea fills the warm summer night and the sound of the crashing waves softly echoes: one can faintly hear the laughter and toasting of champagne glasses from the illustrious parties of yesteryear!