Pyne Castle in North Laguna, once considered for President Richard Nixon's Western White House, is on the market for the first time in four decades.
Built by millionaire — in the days when that meant real money — Walter E. Pyne, and originally called Broadview Villa, Pyne Castle is considered the foremost example of Norman-style architecture in Laguna. Construction began in 1927 after oil was discovered on land owned by Pyne in Olive.
While the exterior of the building has remained relatively unchanged, the interior was cut up into 12 rentals in the 1960s that ranged from studios to the three-bedroom, three-bath penthouse, and four non-conforming units. It has been rumored that the castle actually had been divided in half by Pyne to separate his quarters from his mother's.
The castle was rezoned from R-1, single family, to R-3 in December of 2009 when the City Council approved changes to the city's land use element, amending the city's Local Coastal Program, which requires certification by the California Coastal Commission.