Victor Himmelwright’s Hollywood Hills-style fireproof ’70s Bayview home listed: Title Tattle
The 1970s Bayview home of the late American psychoanalyst and sailing enthusiast Victor Himmelwright has been listed for sale. It’s a Hollywood Hills-style home on sprawling hilltop bushland on Sydney’s northern beaches.
It was Himmelwright’s Australian summer pad since he split his time between the US and Australia. It’s not been touched since built, so it comes with the original shagpile carpets, wallpaper and colour scheme. The 14-bedroom, 13-bathroom Captain Hunter Road house comes with eight living rooms cross three levels.
It’s set on a 17,000-square-metre block with a pool and parking for 12 cars. Cunninghams Property agent James Haywood expects more than $3 million.
“It’s a classic playboy mansion, which would make the perfect set for a 1970s movie,” he says, adding it was also suit a medical facility, a holistic wellness centre, a rehabilitation clinic, educational institution or even the headquarters of a religious group.
Himmelwright’s father was the famed pioneering engineer Abraham Lincoln Artman Himmelwright, with the house design modelled on his famous fireproof house concept in the US. His first and second names were given to him by his parents to honour the slain president, assassinated the year Himmelwright was born in 1865. In most of the works he authored he went by the name "ALA Himmelwright". Wikipedia noted as an expert on the danger of fire, he published one of the many books on fireproof construction including, The San Francisco Earthquake and Fire : A Brief History of the Disaster ; A Presentation of Facts and Resulting Phenomena, With Special Reference to the Efficiency of Building Materials, Lessons of the Disaster.
Himmelwright set out to test the merits of fireproof construction, adding to his thinking a philosophy of environmental engineering, sustainable building and permaculture by purchased 47 acres (19 hectares) outside New York, where he completed the construction of what he called a "Model Fireproof Farm House". It included a state-of-the-art wood-fired water system, which pumped spring water to a third-floor holding tank and a coal-fired furnace with radiators in each room for heat. With walls of granite, and floors and ceilings of poured concrete with steel reinforcement, and its roof lined with copper, Himmelwright estimated its lifespan at 400 to 500 years.
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