45 Berryessa Way

According to the agent for the iconic ‘Flintstone House,’ by asking $4.2 million for the property they’ve priced it for somebody who really wants the quirky 2,730-square-foot house rather than a developer or individual looking for a lot upon which to build a larger Hillsborough home.  But in fact, the exact opposite could very well be true.

Keep in mind that the Flintstone House, which isn’t an official landmark nor protected, sits on a nearly 2-acre Hillsborough lot at 45 Berryessa Way.  And today, a ‘Mid-Century architectural gem’ at 35 Grevillea Court, which sits on a 3/4-acre Hillsborough parcel even closer to I-280 and with lesser views, has hit the market listed as a “lot” with approved plans for a new 5,340 square foot modern home.  And the smaller “lot” has been priced at $4.2 million as well.

Designed by William Nicholson and built in 1976, the experimental Flintstone House was constructed by spraying shotcrete onto steel rebar and wire mesh frames over inflated balloons.

The original foundation and structure was damaged by water runoff from up the hill behind and the compromised house last traded hands for $800,000 in 1996, after which it was restored, repainted and remodeled inside, including a futuristic kitchen designed by Eugene Tsui.

And while it hasn’t yet been officially listed on the MLS, the listing photos and a 3D tour of the Flintstone House are now online.

Comments from Plugged-In Readers

  1. Posted by Brian

    This is actually a lot cooler inside than I thought it would be.

    • Posted by Hunter

      Right?! I think a new coat of exterior paint in less frightening colors would do wonders though.

  2. Posted by Bay Guy

    I liked it better when it was painted white!

  3. Posted by Morgan Driver

    My family has always called it the Tatooine House. I actually love it.

  4. Posted by John

    we just love bulldozing the character out of our landscape, don’t we?

    ah well, property rights yadda yadda…

  5. Posted by Brian M

    Oh come on, John. A banal 8,000 square foot “Mediterranean” house with a kitchen that is only used by the servants will be an IMPROVEMENT, dontachaknow. Think of the famblies. The millionaire, his or her spouse, and their one child need more space!

  6. Posted by Joel

    Yet if someone tried to build that house in SF today, they’d be shot down by neighbors and the planning department.

    • Posted by Paul

      And why not? It’s location is hardly an urban environment, let alone the idiocy of erecting a single story home.

  7. Posted by sf

    Such a cool house! Love the interior, love the artwork, I would be so inspired to live here. Don’t like the exterior color though, I’d go for something more stone colored.

  8. Posted by zig

    We loved that house so much when we were kids driving by on 280 on the way to my relatives houses. I’ll have to send to my sister

  9. Posted by Dave

    Too bad they could not keep this as a guest house and build a new house for themselves further away from 280 and in a more secluded part of the 2 acre site.

    • Posted by zig

      If it was me I’d keep it as my literal man cave where I’d exercise my rights as a CA citizen to take my medicine

  10. Posted by BobN

    That kitchen is kinda Jetsons.

  11. Posted by Really?

    I live in the area and we are currently looking for homes in this price range. I’ve seen pretty much all there is to see in the last 4 months. I don’t think the Flintstone house is trading on lot value. A 2 acre lot this far up the hill would go for about 2. I saw the other listing when it came out and couldn’t figure out how they priced it except by looking at the Flintstone house. Other than that, it has no foundation in reality.

  12. Posted by Oh Dear

    Warning….do not drop acid in this house.

  13. Posted by Fishchum

    Having now seen the interior for the first time, I have a sudden craving for blue milk.

  14. Posted by MyOddCommentHandle

    I say a techie grabs it for a weekend retreat.

    that place is really well done on the inside. more of a keeper than a tear-down

  15. Posted by jenofla

    Super cute and different. Hope it finds equally super cute and different owner. Or someone who can AirBnb it so I can stay there a weekend and people can have Star Wars-themed weddings there. Wonder if the insulation on that kind of construction is good on days like these.

  16. Posted by Michael

    I think this house is doomed. Small pool of buyers for such a quirky house at $4.2M but it’s a huge lot compared to everything else on the market in Hillsborough near this price. Cheapest house on 2 acres is over $7M.

  17. Posted by Lewdster

    I don’t think its Jetsons or Tatooine, I think Planet of the Apes. My sister and i also drove by as teenagers in the backseat always calling it the Planet of the Apes house!

    • Posted by mkk

      for us it was the barba pappa house 🙂

  18. Posted by Futurist

    Hideous little DIY house. Time for the bullzozers.

    • Posted by Adam

      The irony of your pen name juxtaposed with what comes out your mouth is clearly lost on you.

  19. Posted by The Milkshake of Despair

    Hard to understand that copy #282 of floorplan D with added decorative flourish “Georgetown” is granted indestructible historic landmark status just because it was built 80 years ago. But this inspired floe is worth just dirt value?

    Speaking of which when you do the comps keep in mind that these 2 acres are quite steep and not as valuable. But you can still build, you just have to spend the extra in geotech. Dave is on the money here, preserve and enhance. And Zig figured out how to sell the deal to one side of the power couple.

  20. Posted by confused renter

    Listing came just in time for burning man crowds to return.

  21. Posted by eddy

    Shame this didn’t get built someplace where it would make sense to preserve the property for its quirky and whimsical design, but let’s face it; it’s a novelty home on a super prime lot. It’s days are numbered and all but the hopelessly nostalgic know this to be true. Unless Mr Slate comes along and buys this as a pet project it’s fate is pretty much sealed like a granite counter top. There is a reason that its not on any historic register or a formal landmark.

  22. Posted by SocketSite

    UPDATE: 45 Berryessa Way has just been officially listed for $4.2 million, which is $1,538 per square foot for the existing home above or $2.1 million per acre.

  23. Posted by ostrich

    Not sure who is attracted to a 24/7 freeway view for $4.2. It takes all kinds I guess, but privacy ain’t part of living on this pinnacle …

  24. Posted by JWS

    Until 35 Grevillea Court sells for asking, that’s not a comp. Especially in cities like Hillsborough and Atherton, where properties sometimes sit for a year or more at several million dollars over anything remotely approaching market value. Hillsborough is not my game, so I can’t comment on what 2 acres of land overlooking 280 would really go for (and that’s assuming that all that land is actually usable, and not steep hillside), but we’d need homes that have actually traded that would support that this is land.

    Regardless, if this home is torn down, that means losing literally one of the most iconic (and perhaps the most iconic) homes on the entire Peninsula. It would be a huge loss.

    • Posted by Adam

      I agree. There are more architecturally significant homes and more historic homes on the peninsula, but the location within view of 280 has certainly made this the most iconic.

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