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3800 Washington: Le Petit Trianon in Presidio Heights

Posted On June 6th, 2012 by Michael Rycroft | No Comments

Le Petit Trianon in Presidio Heights
A property that I have long admired has come to the San Francisco market. In an area of San Francisco where there are many very impressive properties this one has always stood out to me. On the corner of Washington and Maple Streets in Presidio Heights stands Le Petit Trianon. I have always been intrigued by the history behind grand properties such as this.

Le Petit Trianon was built in 1904 as a replica of a Versailles Mansion built for French King Louis XV which was itself built in 1768. It was built for Marcus Koshland who made his fortune from wool. They owned the property until 1955 when it was sold to Walter and Elizabeth Buck who lived in the property for 22 years. The property changed hands several times during the next five years until it was bought by Charles Pankow and his business partner Heide Van Doren Betz. It has been noted that Charles Pankow housed an extensive art collection at the property.

The estate comprises a main home of around 18,000 square feet, an adjoining guest home of 2,618 square feet and a vacant lot at 125 Maple Street. Original fixtures included Bruce Porter stained-glass windows, nine stone and wood carved fireplaces, four cloth lined elevators, Baccarat crystal chandeliers and a ballroom with mirrored panels and minstrel balconies. It is not known what remains of these fixtures.

Sadly the home has fallen into disrepair over the years and the new owner will need to inject a substantial amount of money into the property to bring it back to its rightful condition. It was purchased in 2007 by Halsey Minor, a founder of CNet. He had planned a $15 million restoration of the property. However, due to financial problems the restoration was never carried out and the property fell further into disrepair.

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