Carmelo 2 SW of 7th Avenue
The jury is out on the architect/builder of Hob Nob, a Tudor Revival
style built for $4,500 in 1924 for Garfield D. Mermer.
The original thought was that this home was the product of Ernest Bixler who was not only an early contributor to Carmel architecture; he also served as postmaster from 1939 to 1942 and on the Carmel Planning Commission from 1946 to 1952.
Or maybe it was a Murphy. In 2003, Kent L. Seavey, Preservation Consultant wrote in the report for the State of California, Department of Parks and Recreation, Building, Structure, and Object Record, “The “ell” plan is unusual for the romantic revival Tudor style, but similar to the rambling layout of architect George McCrea’s 1922 design for Dr. Hermann Spohr’s House on Crespi, contracted by M. J. Murphy.”
Another thought is that this house may have been the first home Hugh Comstock built in the “Golden Rectangle.” A few of his signatures are seen on the outside, the steeply pitched roof line, with door hood, pierced flatwork banister, and
decorative arched openings.
Inside there are a few more Comstock signatures, pierced flatwork railings accented by an original 1920’s era outdoor light fixture,
and another pierced flatwork balcony off the upstairs master. And yes a sweet ocean view through the French doors.
Finally, a rounded inverse arch open beam ceiling
incorporating the exterior roof line.
the largest Red Leaf Japanese Maple in Carmel. Whoever built her, Hob Nob is
an exceptional Carmel cottage.
The current owners purchased this home in 1977 and have added an upstairs master and first floor dining room off the kitchen, that I’m sure is perfect for multi-generational family get-togethers.
But there is still more to see on our
Carmel House and Garden Tour
Carmel Cottage Inn
San Antonio Street and Eighth Avenue
“Florence Crittenden Maternity and the Lying-in Hospital and Foundling Asylum, [are] two of the sweetest, cleanest and prettiest place in San Francisco; both are under the medical care and supervision of Dr. Lucia M. Lane and Dr. Virginia W. Smiley, two able, careful and scientific obstetricians. “ (1)
Between 1906 and 1915, Dr. Lucia M. Lane and Dr. Virginia W. Smiley purchased 8 lots on the eastern side of Block T in “a town in a pine forest alongside Carmel Mission. Facing a mile of white sand beach. Three miles from the Monterey railroad station.” (2)
Sleeps up to 10
Between 1907 and 1910, they built an 800 square foot log cabin on their property. The undated picture below shows this log cabin (Log Haven)
with possibly one of the doctors standing by the fence.
Photographs like those above, show how different Carmel’s shoreline looked in the early 20th century. When Log Haven was first built, the area was covered with low native scrub plants and very few trees. Plants that survived would have to tolerate exposure to salt, burial by shifting sands and blasting sand-laden winds. Today, there are only a few of these areas left in Carmel, mostly in the North Dunes by Ocean Avenue and San Antonio.
In 1912, using shiplap siding, the doctor’s added a two story addition to the north side of the log cabin.
The exterior wall of the log cabin
became the interior wall
of the dining room addition.
The picture below shows the dining area
shortly after construction in 1912.
Thanks to the attentiveness to detail of the current owner, Log Haven remains remarkable unchanged and in exceptional condition, as seen below.
To reach the second floor of this new addition, a narrow staircase appears to have been “carved” into the log wall.
Originally the upstairs area consisted of a bedroom
with an open air sleeping porch attached.
At some point the openings in the walls
were enclosed with windows.
Cary de Angulo Baynes
In 1916, Drs. Lucia and Smiley sold their eight lots along with the log cabin to Cary de Angulo who lived part time in the log cabin along with her husband Jaime and their daughter until the early 1920’s when Cary divorced Jaime and went to Switzerland to attend a lecture by Swiss psychiatrist Carl Jung
. Cary became Jung’s translator and transcriber. Knowing that her ex-husband, who was described as “a linguist, ethnologist, ethnomusicologist, writer, and patron saint of the beat generation,” (3)
would be interested in meeting Jung, she arranged for an introduction. Jaime then invited Jung to the pueblo of Mable Luhan in Taos, New Mexico, the very same Mable Luhan who was also a good friend of Robinson and Una Jeffers
. Carmelite history can be so entwined.
Cary eventually re-married, this time to, Carl Jung’s apprentice, HG “Peter” Baynes. In 1928 Cary, her daughter, and Peter spent about a year living in the log cabin on 8th Street between Carmelo and San Antonio, what Peter lovingly referred to as “Cary’s Shack.” Finally in 1937, Cary Baynes sold her “shack” along with the eight lots to Adolf Lafrenz, who in 1941 sold four of the lots – leaving the property as it exists today.
Adolf Lafrenz placed the property in joint tenancy with Hallie Samson, whom he eventually married, and in 1940 and 1941, Hallie applied for building permits to construct the other four cottages on the property, which she subsequently offered as vacation rentals called “Cottages by the Sea.” She named them, Tradewinds, Home Port, Moon Gate and Sky Way. The current owner is convinced that the reason these cottages are so well laid out is because a women created the design.
The picture below is an undated design created by Hallie Samson for the units, with paths connecting each unit, allowing them to be separate and private, yet joined together as one, if desired.
I fell in love with this Inn when I toured it last December during the Carmel Heritage Society’s Inns of Distinction 2012
. The current owners purchased the property in November of 2011 from Nob Hill Properties (affiliated with the La Playa Hotel) who purchased the cottages from the Lafrenz Living Trust in 1989.
Much of Hallie Samson’s paths still flow throughout the property. The current owners have truly embraced Samson’s vision and in a labor of love restored cottages and the grounds with a classic 1940’s feel.
Sleeps up to 8
The picture* above was taken of Tradewinds in 1962 from San Antonio Street, showing the garage and back door to the kitchen.
Above is the same elevation, taken in 2011 just prior to the latest renovations. Below is the same elevation taken after renovations.
The front entrance is
reached off 8th Avenue
Surrounded by lush gardens and a private side patio, Tradewinds is the largest, at 1626 square feet, of the four cottages built in the 1940’s. The living area features an open beam ceiling
and unique brick fireplace
an H. Wetter wood stove
and balcony terrace.
Home Port, Moon Gate and Sky Way
Sleeps up to 4, 4, and 2
Home Port and Sky Way can be seen from San Antonio. The picture* below was taken in 1962, Home Port to the right with the circular window, Sky Way to the left.
The same view today is shown below; the lush garden has grown a bit, adding privacy to the western elevation.
In between Home Port and Sky Way stands a moon gate that was built during the 1940s. The current owners have enhanced this by adding a layer of wood to the back of the gate and inside placing lights that show through the bubble glass when lit after dusk.
Behind this gate you will find Moon Gate.
I love the view from the front door.
Moon Gate measures 922 square feet. The living room features an open beam ceiling,
original wood floors, hand stenciled
and accented with vintage braided rugs
and brick fireplace.
Home Port is 756 square feet of quaint 1940’s retro
– below shows the front door
as viewed from Sky Way’s deck.
But we are entering the kitchen
via the rose garden
and back door.
Off the kitchen is the living area
with that unusual round window embedded in brick from the 1962 picture.
Another vintage feature are the “Z” style doors.
Next is the smallest of the four cottages
built by Hallie Samson 630 square foot Sky Way.
Sky Way may be small, but it boasts
a peek at the ocean from the front patio balcony.
The open beam ceiling slopes steeply over the living,
and kitchen area,
over the cozy bedroom.
Finally our tour of Carmel Cottage Inn would not be complete without a wander through the meticulously cared for gardens.
Many thanks to all of the home owners who graciously opened their homes for the 2013 Carmel House and Garden Tour, the sponsors Sotheby’s International Realty and Village Corner Restaurant, and to the Carmel Heritage Society. Save the date for, the not to be missed, Heritage Society Inns of Distinction Tour December 8th. Local restaurants serve finger food and local wineries their varietals as we tour 8 festively decorated village inns.
House and Garden Tour Part 1 – First Murphy House, Hugh W. Comstock Residence, A Storybook Cottage
House and Garden Tour Part 2 – Forest Cottage, All the Way, Holly Oak Cottage
(1) Nursing World, (Lakeside Publishing Co., 1898), Volumes 21-22, page 315.
(2) Sales Brochure J. F. Devendorf, Carmel Development, Co. Undated.
(3) Sonu Shamdasani, Jung and the Making of Modern Psychology the Dream of A Science (University Press, Cambridge, 2003), p. 381.
Undated black and white photographs of Log Haven courtesy of Pat Hathoway.
The black and white close up of the woman courtesy of Pat Hathoway through Carmel Cottage Inn.
Black and white photograph of Cary Baynes courtesy of Diana Baynes Jansen.
*Pictures of Tradewinds and Home Port taken in 1962 and 2011 are courtesy of the Carmel-by-the-Sea Planning Department files.
All other photos by L. A. Momboisse http://www.carmelbytheseaca.blogspot.com
Special thanks to Greta Bell, Connie Bell, and Cheryl Assemi for providing the comprehensive history on Carmel Cottage Inn.