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Debate about homes of iconic stars facing demolition

In a contentious trend sweeping high-end real estate, iconic homes like Marilyn Monroe's final abode are facing demolition despite public outcry and preservation efforts. For instance, the Los Angeles home where Monroe passed away became a battleground when new owners sought to raze it, prompting city officials to intervene with historic monument designation. Similar controversies arose when actor Chris Pratt demolished a Craig Ellwood-designed house, inciting debate over architectural significance versus property development.

Photo: Dreamstime

Despite backlash, some buyers view these demolitions as a practical step to modernise properties, even if it means disregarding historical and cultural value. Figures like Kanye West have also been involved, with his Tadao Ando-designed Malibu home possibly facing demolition due to its current condition. However, preservation advocates argue that these homes represent more than just real estate—they embody cultural heritage and connections to iconic figures like Monroe, highlighting the complexities of balancing personal property rights with community sentiment.

Amidst these debates, realtors and preservationists alike navigate a landscape where social media amplifies public opinion and affects property values, influencing decisions on whether to preserve or demolish significant architectural landmarks.

'These sellers believe these homes are pieces of art and should be treated as such. So when it comes to selling them, they're really looking for what we call the next ambassador for the home,' says agent Aaron Kirman in an article in Town&Country.


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