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per Thrillist, Los Angeles Marilyn Monroe’s Brentwood Home Narrowly Avoids Demolition, History Wins for Now.

 

Marilyn Monroe’s LA Home Narrowly Avoids Demolition

The house achieved landmark status this month as part of an ongoing fight to save it from being torn down.

Marilyn monroe house landmark
Marilyn Monroe in front of a rental home in 1956. | Photo by Gene Lester/Getty Images

After being under threat of demolition for the past year, Marilyn Monroe’s Los Angeles home isn’t going anywhere. Joining the ranks of famous residences like Frank Lloyd Wright’s Ennis House and the Gamble House from Back to the Future, the Hollywood icon’s former home has been declared a Historic-Cultural Monument.

The decision comes after owners Brinah Milstein and Roy Bank purchased the home in 2023 for $8.35 million, with plans to tear it down and add on to their neighboring property. The Los Angeles City Council immediately objected to the plans and halted the demolition, citing the home as an essential keystone of Hollywood history; this objection was supported by groups such as the LA Conservancy and The Marilyn Monroe Collection. Milstein and Bank ended up suing the city, and the trial-setting conference is planned for August 13.

The property, located at 12305 Fifth Helena Drive in Brentwood, was built in 1929 and features adobe walls, wood-beamed ceilings, and a notable mosaic tiled fireplace. Monroe purchased the Spanish Colonial Revival home for $75,000 in 1962 and decorated it with art and furniture she collected on her travels in Mexico. It was the only property Monroe owned in her lifetime; six months after buying it, she died of a barbiturate overdose in the master bedroom.

While the house is officially protected from demolition, it remains a private residence (one of just a few hundred on the landmark list), so you can’t pay it a visit. If you’re an architecture nerd planning a trip to LA, however, don't fret: you can still tour historic homes like the TOM House and Frank Lloyd Wright’s Hollyhock House.

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Kelsey Allen is an associate editor on the local team at Thrillist.

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