The iconic D.L. James Seaward House, a lavish property that has attracted the interest of high-profile purchasers and real estate aficionados alike, was recently purchased by Hollywood star Brad Pitt for an astounding $40 million.
Pitt’s real estate portfolio has reached a critical turning point with this magnificent acquisition, and many people are now intrigued to learn more about the history, appeal, and features of this extravagant residence.
Brad Pitt is an American actor and producer. He has received several accolades, which include two Academy Awards, two British Academy Film Awards, two Golden Globe Awards, and one Primetime Emmy Award.
Pitt is renowned for his acclaimed performances, personal relationships, and love of architecture. The American celebrity is a collector of houses and a fan of architecture. He once said, “While acting is my career, architecture is my passion.” Proving his statement, he has acquired residences in both America and Europe throughout the years.
A villa in Los Angeles, the French Quarter in New Orleans, and the renowned Beverly Hills are just a few of the significant Brad Pitt homes, many of which he still owns.
In July 2022, the actor broke all real estate records with the acquisition of a historic home in the Carmel Highlands of California with a magnificent stone building. Records show that this off-market deal was the priciest ever closed in the Carmel area. Pitt is now planning to make it his permanent residence.
About the Actor
Brad Pitt was born on December 18, 1963, in Shawnee, Oklahoma, to a devout Baptist family. He was the eldest of three children. He grew up in Springfield, Missouri, and went to Kickapoo High School.
His father owned a trucking company, and his mother was a family counselor. He was a free-spirited, carefree child who loved riding bicycles with friends and visiting the Ozark mountains.
On the brink of completing his graduation, Pitt left and went to California to fulfill his dream of becoming an actor. Initially, he had to do odd jobs to earn bread before his charming looks and charismatic aura were noted by an agent who helped him get small roles in television and movies.
Pitt had to go by small, unimportant roles in the beginning. But he rose to fame when he played the role of J.D. in the Ridley Scott road film “Thelma and Louise” (1991).
The Location of the House
The historic mansion is located on the cliff side facing the shore in the Carmel Highlands, California.
It is precisely located 146.93 km from San Francisco.
A Concise Past of The Mansion
In 1918, the Mediterranean sandstone castle was constructed on the Carmel Highlands by the eminent architect of that time, Charles Greene, for the businessman D.L. James.
After the demise of James Sr., his son James Jr. subsequently took up residence in the house. Junior is famous as the controversial author who used the alias “Danny Santiago” as his pen name.
He published works based on Mexican-American characters. But later, it was revealed that the pen name was fabricated and that Junior wasn’t really Mexican-American. Hence, controversy ensued.
After the death of James Jr. in 1988, his widow sold the mansion in 1999 to the Chicago businessman Joe Ritchie and his wife Sharon for a cool $4.5 million.
The home was most recently held by him until he passed away earlier in 2022.
Structure of the “Seaward” House
Greene constructed the mansion such that the meandering pattern broke the logic of the conventional front, side, and back elevations, and he raised up the outside walls so that they appeared to be sprouting out of the cliffs.
The property boasts a tiled Mediterranean-style roof, arched bay windows, and gorgeous views of the sea., giving the home a simple yet luxurious feel.
Photos taken long before Pitt’s purchase reveal that the house featured eye-catching archways, long mirrors built into the walls, lightwood doors, beautiful marble fireplaces, and other features to give it a rustic feel.
Greene thought of the home as a whole and never in portions, as seen by the architectural designs, which integrated floor plans with several elevation drawings.
The Greene’s timber design of his previous Pasadena residences was swapped out for locally quarried sandstone and granite in the James mansion.
In the shape of gulls, seaweed, and shells, designs for its interior ornamentation demonstrated sensitivity to the local plants and fauna. The Mediterranean aesthetic was evident in the structure, arched windows, and tiled roof of the home.
Location: Brad Pitt’s House
The American Arts and Crafts Movement
The “Seaward” house is an exemplary artwork of the California architecture firm Greene and Greene Architects (based on Charles Greene’s name), which is one of the most prominent characters in the Arts and Crafts movement.
This movement began in the United Kingdom around the 1860s, almost similar to the time when the Aesthetic Movement began. However, the Arts and Crafts Movement outlived the latter because it was able to reach across the Atlantic around the 1890s. It survived almost to the 1920s.
In the beginning, the Movement was not initiated by the popular name that we know today. Until 1887, it was simply a cause that united two nations to work against the increasing mechanization and revive the natural ways of living.
It inspired various contemporary artistic and political movements across North America and Europe, including Art Nouveau, the Prairie School, the Wiener Werkstatte, and many others.
The belief that art has the potential to change society had a significant impact on the numerous successor movements in every area of the arts.
As is known, Brad Pitt has a particularly special inclination towards the “Arts and Crafts” style, which explains why he purchased the historical mansion at such a hefty price. The mansion itself is considered one of the masterworks of its time.
Key Locations to Visit Around the Area
Here is a list of areas around the Carmel Highlands you can visit on tour:
- Carmel Mission.
- Tor House.
- Ocean Avenue.
- Carmel Beach Boardwalk.
- Point Sur Light Station.
- Fairy tale cottages of Hugh Comstock.
Basic Information About the House
|3793 square feet.
|Carmel Highlands, California.
|Three bedrooms, Four bathrooms.
|Famous spots around
|Carmelite Monastery, D’Jango Hill farm, Rocky Point, etc.
- As Pitt himself said, “Architecture has the ability to lift your soul” he has acted very well upon that which is represented by his impressive list of properties around the world.
- The Carmel “Seaward” is his latest addition to that list.
- Built a century ago by the Arts and Crafts famed architect Charles Sumner Greene, the house gives off Mediterranean vibes with its splendid building constructed from local granite and sandstone.
- The archways, high windows, and tiled roof add to the rustic feel.
- Initially inhabited by D.L. James, the house was passed to his son. After his demise, it was bought by Joe Ritchie, who died in 2022.
- The famous locations around the house include the Carmelite Monastery, Rocky Point, Ocean Avenue, etc.