Brother, Can You Spare A Cool $24,500,000?



It’s official.  The blog French Kissed recently announced that John Saladino’s gorgeous Montecito estate, Villa de Limma, is for sale. Why?  Why?   The fabulously talented interior designer spent years restoring the stone house – chronicled in the book Saladino Villa.   Built in the 1920s, the restoration took over four years and the budget was double its estimation.    Everything was decrepit and had to be restored.   The stone walls were crumbling which Saladino had to reinforce from the inside.   His crew spent years scrapping offensive paint from the stone and tile floors.   The entire restoration process was backbreaking, hugely expensive, and a true labor of love.  And yet, just a few years later, it’s up for sale.   Perhaps the allure was the challenge.  Once he accomplished it, the upkeep proved too much or the estate is too big for just Betty and John?  Who knows?   But seriously, anyone out there have $24,500,000 they wish to loan me?  

Below, are some of the photographs from the real estate brochure HERE, as well as others from the book and assorted places.  To view the story on French Kissed, go HERE.



imageIf you don’t have it – get it.  It’s a fascinating read, all about the renovation with wonderful photography.



image Aerial view.   The entrance is on the upper right.   The master bedroom overlooks the swimming pool on the left.



s17Entering the estate through these arches.




image The same arches with a view of the motor court and entrance gallery on the right.



s18The open air entrance gallery.   To the right is a courtyard.  To the left is the front door, kept with its exceptionally low door, making tall visitors have to lower their heads to enter. 



Looking at the entrance gallery from the courtyard.



The entry hall.  Saladino is known for hanging antique tapestries, fabrics, and rugs on the walls, then layering mirrors and art works atop them.  



image The entrance hall faces out to the side yard.  To the right past the fireplace is the living room.  To the left of the French doors is the dining room and then the kitchen. 




A  photograph of the stairway leading up to the guest bedrooms.  Notice the antiques on top of the chest.  Saladino surrounds himself with beauty.  Every item in his house is either an antique or specially chosen piece. 


 image The living room – so Saladino!   Every chair, every table, every lamp, every urn is gorgeous. 




Same view from the real estate brochure.  Notice the gorgeous rug.  The master bedroom is reached through the door to the right of the window. 



s9 The opposite view.   The back door way leads to the entry hall, then on to the dining room and kitchen.   Notice the tapestry hanging on the wall, with a mirror layered over it.  His beautiful Cy Twombly is on the wall to the right.   Just too gorgeous for words. 



Close up view of living room. 


image The hall which leads from the living room to the bedrooms downstairs.  Here Saladino’s Robert Courtright artwork hangs in front of a door which leads out to the courtyard, by the front door! 





The dining room is located to the left of the entry hall.   The kitchen is through a hidden door in the wood paneling, to the right of the fireplace.   Saladino loves skirted tables and slipcovers.  His collection of creamware is seen above the fireplace.   Notice his curtains.





A closeup of his chairs, available from his furniture line. 


imageAnd looking the other direction.  Up the steps is the entry hall, then the living room, which can be seen through the wood doors.   Gorgeous chandelier! 




Past the fireplace in the dining room is the kitchen.  The refrigerator to the very left is actually a door to another room.  The breakfast room is to the right of the refrigerator.   The large charger on the left is seen from the entry hall, past the dining room.   Saladino believes the eye should have a resting point at the end of a vista – here the charger provides that.


Another view of the kitchen, showing a small eating area.



Dining spot off kitchen – door leads to entry gallery.

imageThe breakfast room.   All the windows were replaced with these iron beauties that were custom made to fit the arches.  Notice how very thin the window is – you can see this where it meets the thick stone wall.




A night view looking into the breakfast room.



image Saladino’s companion Betty’s room.   He designed the bed to act as a sofa during the day. Those pillows! Those books!




And another view of Betty’s room which overlooks her own courtyard.



Saladino’s bedroom.   The bed floats in the space.  His desk is to the left. 




A closeup view of the hanging curtains layered with mirror on the back wall.  



Opposite Saladino’s bed is his desk placed in front of a Zuber wallpaper screen.




Saladino’s shower – contemporary against the old stone walls.





Saladino’s two story home office.  The desk is a beautiful table called into service.   His famous cylinder lamp sits atop it. 




This room is across the entrance courtyard away from the main house. 





Upstairs there are a row of guest rooms – each is unique and each has its own name.  This is the Primavera Bedroom.  I love the headboard detailing with its Edwardian pelmet. 


 imageThe famous powder room with its ancient bowl used as a sink.  Notice the mirror and the faucet. 



Saladino spent enormous energy and money on getting the landscaping to his satisfaction.   But, first, he had to create an elaborate drainage system to remove rainwater from the estate.







The courtyard to the right of the entrance gallery seen on the left. 



Saladino used lots of succulents for their texture and color. 



The swimming pool off the living room and master bedroom.



The ancient column becomes a focal point in the gardens.




One dining table in the gravel courtyard.




 s2 And another dining table in the olive tree allee.  Notice the balustrades. 






A Bing Map view of the property.  You can see the swimming pool and lone column to the left bottom.  The entrance court is on the right. 


Thank you to French Kissed.  To see more pictures of Villa de Limma on French Kissed, go HERE.  And to see the real estate brochure, go HERE.  The glorious photographs taken for the real estate brochure were done by Jim Bartsch HERE.

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