Rachel Bilson has moved on from her recent split from longtime boyfriend Hayden Christensen with the multimillion-dollar, over-asking-price purchase of a carefully maintained and mostly original mid-century modern residence in the ruggedly ritzy hills above the Rose Bowl in Pasadena. The $3.25 million sale price was notably above the just shy of $3 million asking price. Sequestered down a discreet, private lane in one of Pasadena’s wealthiest and most coveted neighborhoods, the almost 3,700-square-foot house was designed by master architect Gregory Ain and custom built in 1950 for Walter W. Ralphs Jr., scion of of the Ralphs grocery store chain.
Sprawling across a flat promontory of just under an acre, the retro-chic residence boasts a lattice-accented courtyard entry, six bedrooms, four bathrooms and scads of quirky original built-ins. The light-filled combination living and dining room features refinished parquet wood floors, a fireplace, floor-to-ceiling windows and smooth-paneled walls that cleverly conceal a stereo system and wet bar. The eat-in, galley-style kitchen has been renovated in a manner that integrates up-to-date appliances and preserves the original cabinetry. The house was designated a local landmark in 2014, and the gardens, originally conceived by acclaimed landscape architect Garrett Eckbo, include an abstract-shaped swimming pool surrounded by flagstone terracing, mature landscaping shaded by old-growth trees, a rolling lawn crossed by a dry rock stream, and a deck cantilevered out over the hillside with panoramic mountain and city lights views.
Bilson, who popped up on “Nashville” this year after her series “Hart of Dixie” was canceled a couple of years ago, and Christensen, Canadian-born star of the “Star Wars” franchise, previously shared a custom-renovated and stylishly decorated four-bedroom and four-and-a-half bathroom ranch-style residence in the hills above Sherman Oaks, Calif., purchased in late 2012 for a bit less than $2.7 million. The property was sold earlier this year in an off-market deal to Lucky Brand clothing label co-founder Barry Perlman for $3.8 million.
listing photos: Sotheby’s International Realty