Architectural dupes, from White House replicas to the playful recreations that line the Las Vegas Strip, are nothing new. So it’s no surprise a homeowner who revered Frank Lloyd Wright aimed to emulate the iconic architect’s signature style while designing his dwelling. But with a price tag several million dollars higher than the most expensive Wright property sold to date—more than double the estimated price of Wright’s famed Fallingwater estate, which is $10 million—what exactly makes this newly listed $25 million dollar California abode, modeled after Fallingwater, worth its eight-figure asking price? According to The Wall Street Journal, the Wright homage boasts a world of amenities that justify its lofty cost.
For starters, the home’s got an enormous footprint: Fallingwater measures in at 9,300 square feet, while this Wright-inspired home, nestled within the grounds of a country club paradise about 40 miles east of San Francisco, spans approximately 27,000 square feet. Built in 1988 for the late developer, philanthropist, and Seattle Seahawks majority owner Ken Behring, who adored Wright, WSJ reports that Behring and his wife paid $200,000 for the property and spent $9 million to imbue it with FLW’s style. AD toured the residence in 1989. Behring enlisted architect Doug Dahlin and interior designer Steve Chase to create a space with a number of breathtaking water features (among them, a multilevel koi pond and an indoor waterfall), nodding to the southwestern Pennsylvania estate Wright designed, with its namesake cascading waterfalls.
Joujou Chawla of Compass, who holds the listing, believes that the home’s California locale and lavish country club surroundings make the abode well worth the asking price. “The hilltop is one of a kind, it has magnificent 360-degree views,” Chawla tells AD. “It’s in a phenomenal, very exclusive golf course gated community that the gentleman who built this house created.” Behring founded the Blackhawk Country Club and situated this seven-bedroom manse within its grounds.
It comes complete with a 10,000-bottle wine cellar, a 7,000-square-foot ballroom outfitted with luxurious black granite floors and crystal chandeliers (originally designed to house Behring’s collection of cars), a tennis court, a lagoon-like plaster pool, and two one-bedroom apartments in a separate structure, among a long list of other amenities.
Behring prioritized the use of premium materials in crafting the abode (according to Chawla, he bought out an entire quarry at the time of construction), including Idaho quartz, Utah flagstone, and Brazilian teak. Wright became known for his use of innovative materials, like glass bricks and concrete blocks, to produce cutting-edge designs.
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“It’s a once-in-a-generation trophy property that you could have access to,” Chawla says of the home. While some might balk at the fact that its price tag eclipses Fallingwater’s own, others seem to see the value in the luxury home; since it listed officially just a day ago, Chawla says that several interested parties have already scheduled tours.