In California, a 1928 red-tile and stucco house with a Hispano–Deco interior gets a period-perfect kitchen with inspired details. 

By Brian D. Coleman | Photos by William Wright

The 1928 Spanish Revival home was remarkably intact, with its original red tiled roof, balconies, tower, and arched casement windows.

The 1928 Spanish Revival home was remarkably intact, with its original red tiled roof, balconies, tower, and arched casement windows.


There’s nothing Marky and John Morel like better than touring vintage movie theaters, exploring the fantasy architecture and Art Deco details. So when work brought them to southern California, they looked for a house inspired by Twenties movie palaces—something with picturesque Spanish Revival or exuberant Art Deco design. Or both! In the Long Beach and Santa Barbara area, locals call these houses “Span–Deco.”

The Morels were on cloud nine when they found the romantic Spanish house just a block from the ocean. Built in 1928 as a substantial residence, it had all the architectural bells and whistles of the period—fancy iron grilles, deep wall recesses and archways, coved ceilings and balconies, a tiled hall with a Hollywood staircase. Formal rooms inside were a counterpoint to welcoming tiled courtyards and gardens.

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