How many of us have wished we could sneak a glimpse into the many charming houses around Coronado? The more than 750 attendees of the 2019 Coronado Historic Home Tour got to do just that on Sunday, May 12. From surf decor to elegant chic and many styles in between, celebrating this event for the Coronado Historical Association’s 50-year Grand Jubilee is my new favorite Mother’s Day activity.
This year’s Historic Home Tour Chairman was Connie Kocherga, who is known for giving back to the community. The leadership team also consisted of Mary Farley, Katy Bell Hendrickson, and Beth Fleming, all from long-time Navy families here. It takes more than 120 volunteers to pull off this tremendous fundraiser, which is the Historical Association’s largest of the year. Ed Gohlich once again generously donated his photography services.
As a nod to the original Home Tour, this year’s event was designed as a walking/biking tour from the Coronado Historical Association centered around Star Park Circle where the original tour took place. For the last five years, they have paired with the Bike Coalition who provide portable bike racks so attendees can arrive in local style.
“The goal this year was to showcase the diversity in Coronado’s historic homes,” says Farley. When I asked her when they start scouting homes for next year, she quickly replied, “I am always on the lookout for homes.” The average age of the homes was 106 years old, built from 1910-1920, with five of the homes connected with Navy family ties and two of the homes claiming the notoriety of having hosted Wallis Simpson, who gained international fame as the Duchess of Windsor.
Now for some behind the scenes facts about the stunning homes which ranged in size from an 800 square foot grandmother’s cottage with fairy gardens and miniature zoos in the backyard to a nearly 4,000 square foot mansion with an ocean view.
Both Melinda and Cassandra, the younger members of our group, selected the Ocean Blvd. home as their favorite for the amazing ocean view from the inviting front sitting room. Designed by famed California architect Irving Gill, this home also featured an original, stunning outdoor Malibu Potteries fountain.
This Victorian home on Loma Avenue was recently renovated to showcase original details and a beautiful garden. “I loved how people incorporated their travel treasures into their design aesthetic,” commented my friend Carolyn, whose favorite home was the one on Loma because “they stayed true to the style for the remodel and decorating.”
The 1910 Craftsman held a treasure trove of items including a replica of Winston Churchill’s desk, a 1910 Louis Vuitton trunk and a late 1800s papier-mâché chair. The house was arranged for entertaining and one docent mentioned that, “Navy wives are known for hostessing great parties.”
The surf themed home was truly welcoming and reflects the style of its owner, a local lifeguard, who spent 20 years in Hawaii. With a sense of humor, he named the post on his front porch “Emily” as a nod to the famous American etiquette author.
Local artist Trisha Ross was creating a picture of the home on Isabella Avenue as guests strolled up the walkway. The Spanish style home featured decor from the family’s world travels and a small log cabin in the back used for storage.
The 1912 Italian Renaissance Revival home was designed by famous San Diego architect William Templeton, who also designed the Francis Parker School, of which his wife was the founder. The cabana by the pool area is the perfect setting for outdoor dining.
I’m already looking forward to seeing which homes the Coronado Historical Association lets us peek into next year.