Tour, and Maybe Buy, One of Southern California’s Most Historic, Most Ornate, Most Beautiful Homes This Sunday

Thursday, March 22, 2018 | 6:07 pm

Ever heard of Rand McNally? Of course you have, and now you can take a tour through the Altadena mansion built in 1887 by the publishing company’s co-founder, Andrew McNally, this weekend, savoring the grandeur of this truly historic house. And if you are of a mind to do so, you can even make this magnificent old home, your new home.

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“It’s one of the most iconic houses in Southern California and one of the most ornate as far as the interior goes,” said Matthew Berkley of Deasy/Penner & Partners in Pasadena, who, along with his business partners, Scott Lander and Barbara Lamprecht, represent the owners.

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“Andrew McNally was a Scot-Irish immigrant who immigrated to the United States in the 19th century and found his calling when he formed a business partnership with Mr. [William] Rand,” said Berkley.

The rest, as they say, is history.

The residence, which was added to the National Register of Historic Places in 2007, boasts 9 bedrooms, 5 baths and a whopping 6,938 square feet.


Though it originally sat on 15 acres of land, the property was subdivided after McNally passed away in 1904. Today the property totals a bit less than one acre. The residence actually faces south, away from the street.

As fantastical as the striking exterior is the beguilingly elaborate interior of the mansion, with elaborate screens, tall arches, diamond-shaped paned glass windows, and carved wood paneling.

Shockingly, the home was headed for the wrecking ball when the current owners saved it.

“It was scheduled for demolition. It was in dilapidated condition when they purchased it,” says Berkley. “The house itself has not been publicly offered for sale in more than 100 years. And nearly everything in the house is original except for the kitchen. The craftsmanship is absolutely incredible.”

You can see the house during the this Sunday’s “Better Homes and Gardens”-inspired, Pasadena Heritage-sponsored Spring Garden Tour from 9 a.m. to 4 p.m. Advanced tickets for the tour are $40 for Pasadena Heritage members and $45 for non-members. On the day of the tour, tickets will be $48.

For more information and to purchase tickets in advance, visit

After the tour, when you want to buy the home, call Matthew Berkley or his partners. They may be reached at (626) 665-3699. Or you can email them at

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