Step Back into Time


By Diane Skwarek

A neighborhood shot of the home on Mariota.

A neighborhood shot of the home on Mariota.

Built in 1926 during the Roaring Twenties, a two-story Country English Tutor is nestled in the heart of Toluca Lake Park. Flash forward to 2013 in the heart of “Celebrity Row,” country style. This picturesque home is located on a tree-lined street with a ninety-foot frontage. Located at 4339 Mariota Ave., this single-family home is looking for the right owner to restore it to its original luster.

Along with Jon Molin, Real Estate Agent Shirley Duenckel is thrilled to represent this gem. She has lived in Toluca Lake for 30 years, and has been a part of Ramsey-Shilling Associates for thirty-five. Ramsey-Shilling has been a Toluca Lake staple since the 1950s. The Duenckels – Shirley’s in-laws – purchased their home here in 1946.

“This was the very first house to be built on Mariota,” Duenckel says. “Did you know it snowed in Toluca Lake in 1948?” Her client shares an old photo with her of a snowman he built in front of the home.

A drawing from a Christmas card.

A drawing from a Christmas card.

The house has four bedrooms and three full baths with hardwood floors throughout. As with many older homes, there are nooks and crannies for a private “get-away.” The house features a wood-beam ceiling, too. For those romantic and cozy nights, there is a fireplace in the living room, a spacious master bedroom, and an ensuite bath with a balcony for private viewing of the fireworks from Lakeside Golf Club. You’ll have the enjoyment of a private-walled backyard with room for entertaining. Additional rooms include a den and formal dining room that features a built-in corner hutch. Also, there is a detached two-car garage.

You’ll enjoy the quiet, village-like part of Los Angeles here. Toluca Lake is a mixed community with prime real estate of single-family homes along with condo and apartment buildings. The businesses alone, spanning a 1.4 mile stretch along Riverside Drive from Vineland to Pass Avenue, are diverse with all your gift-giving, beauty, medical, mailing, and auto needs taken care of here. And don’t forget the television and movie studios, post-production facilities, live theatres, and a full range of eating establishments all within walking distance. If you do desire to venture outside The Village, major freeways (134, 101, and the 170) are within five minutes’ drive-time plus with three canyon roads.

In 1923, General Charles Forman purchased ranchland, consisting of the North Hollywood area. He called it Forman Toluca Ranch. The General stated he chose Toluca from a Paiute word meaning “fertile” or “beautiful” valley. Shortly thereafter, he sold off a track of land to developers. Centrally located in this tract, a manmade lake was built to entice people to settle in this country-like setting. Eventually the area was renamed Toluca Lake.

This charming property is listed at $1,299,000. Please call Agents Shirley Duenckel (818-317-1006) or Jon Molin (818-481-8643) for showings.


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