California trip pt. 2 - Movie Star Homes

After a rocky start, the next three days were smooth sailing. The weather was perfect - clear blue skies and temperatures in the 70s. After we had breakfast, we booked two tours, the Movie Star Tour of Homes and the Dearly Departed tour. We hiked down to Hollywood Blvd. and gazed about the Hollywood Walk of Fame before catching the tour van at Grauman's Chinese Theater.


The tour was great and we all enjoyed it very much. We were in an open-air van which made it even more fun. Our driver and guide, Danny, was very entertaining and he knew a lot about celebrities and Hollywood. Our first stop was the Hollywood Sign which looked smaller than I expected. I suppose it all depends on where you are standing. Here are the three happy travelers, Cindy, myself and Vickie, with the sign in the background.

We headed up into the Hollywood Hills to see the homes. (Please note that I cannot verify the accuracy of these homes, I'm only going by what the tour guide told us.)

Danny stopped along the way so we could get out and take photos. We were standing on a bluff (with no guard railing!) when I took this photo. The houses in the canyon belong to Heidi Klum and Seal (the dark one on the right) and the terra-cotta tiled roof below is Jennifer Aniston's.

Keifer Sutherland


Doris Day

Oprah's house is at the bottom and Jack Nicholson's right behind hers. The houses on the hill are within a gated community and some of the priciest.

Drew Barrymore (couldn't help but wonder if she tends those roses. I doubt it!)

The former home of Humphrey Bogart and Lauren Bacall

Sylvester Stallone


Miley Cyrus bought this house for her parents

The Beverly Hills Hotel
Eddie Murphy
Cameron Diaz
The former home of Lucille Ball
This is the former home of Ozzy Osbourne, now owned by Christina Aguilera.
Simon Cowell (most expensive house in Beverly Hills, we were told)
This interesting house is knows as the "Witches House". It was built in 1921 for a movie studio and used in silent films. Since 1926, it has been a private home. A woman who used to live there would sweep the sidewalk dressed as a witch.
Reese Witherspoon
Betty White
Halle Berry (right next door to Betty White)
On our way out of Beverly Hills, we rode by Rodeo Drive
After the tour, we had dinner at Miceli's, the oldest restaurant in Hollywood.
A scene from "The Godfather" was filmed here
Then, we did some shopping in downtown Hollywood.
Hollywood Highlands was a great outdoor mall with beautiful lighting and lots to see.
Walking back to our hotel, we passed this beautiful church

It was a great day. In my next post, I'll show some photos from the Dearly Departed Tour, an off-beat tour that visits sites from the seamy side of Hollywood.

Text and photos by Phillip Oliver, Dirt Therapy


  1. Very interesting tour...thanks!

  2. Granna took the words right out of my mouth... lol It was interesting to see the spacing of the houses in the gated community -- land must be so astronomically expensive there! My very favorite was the Witch's House. Very charming and whimsical.

  3. How much fun. Some of these houses do not match the actors to me. Simon Cowell's does, a little too black and white...Reese and Betty's look the most comfortable to me. Great post.

  4. I found myself trying to see if the house matched the actor. Betty White was spot on.

  5. I really liked Reese's house. Very cool tour! :D

  6. It looks like a fun tour. I am surprised that you can get so close to some of the houses. Can't wait to see the "other" side.

  7. What a fun trip Phillip. Well that's an interesting witch house. Built that way. That would weird out these people down here in the south - namely Mobile. I like Betty Whites house - looks like home. Simon Cowell is probably trying to make a statement.

  8. Phillip! I'm so happy you got to go on this trip! Thanks for the great pictures and commentary.

  9. The witches house is my favorite! Thank you! It was fun!

  10. I liked the tour in part I better, but this one was definitely more interesting. Clearly, money does not equal taste. The best ones were the Bogart/Bacall house and Betty White's house. Some of those others are just nausea-inducing.

  11. My favorite is the Witch's House!

  12. I just loved the cemetery tours at Savannah and Charleston. The tour you took reminds me of the Lucy Show where she lands up crawling over Richard Wickmark's fence thrying to get some of his oranges.

    Oh I stopped at your home on the garden tour a few years back. Wonderful I hope to be on a future one.

  13. Another vote for the Humphrey Bogart/Lauren Bacall house, Phillip - loved them as actors, too, and their home looks so unpretentious considering their fame.
    This is a wonderful armchair tour!

    Annie at the Transplantable Rose

  14. You had lots of fun! We have acquaintances (a partnered pair -- Garrett and his girlfriend go out to visit them once a year) who live in the Hollywood Hills --- Brangelina lives across the street and buy up homes that come up for sale to expand their estate. Interesting place. We didn't go on the star tours, but drove around up there. Richard also has a nephew who is an actor living in Hollywood.

  15. Ohhh...My God!!! these houses are wonderful but I think they cost a fortune!!! However, my favorite is the Witch's House. It looks like the house of Hansel and Gretal. Its owner, Michael Libow, plans to preserve this historic house. So cool!

  16. Hollywood is not just the place of stars and celebrities, but also their fantastically designed houses! There is so much to see, so much to experience. The Witch’s House is a funny and still beautiful home. Thank you for sharing your trip with us! The photos are beautiful.


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