The original estate grounds were planned ca. 1900 by Frederick Law Olmstead (Central Park NYC-Stanford University etc.). In the early 1930s the one acre rose garden site was subdivided from the larger estate. Famed landscape architect Thomas Church superimposed an overlay plan for the site gardens. In 1978-1979 immediately prior to his death Church returned to design the pool.
Within recent years the grounds have received the Bay Area Best Large Garden Award & an Architectural Heritage Preservation Award.
In the early 30's William Wurster later to become the Dean of the University of California School of Architecture designed the structure. Construction of the 5 story hillside-stacked "Mediterranean Deco villa" was completed in 1936. With an overall floor area in excess of 12,000 sq. ft., it is one of the largest exemplars of Wurster's work in this genre.
The large galleries and spacious rooms are now the venue for The Miottel Museum. In addition to other collections, The museum has one of the world's largest aggregations of luxury ocean liner memorabilia.
Although there is no actual function-design relationship, most observers agree that the structure itself has certain design affinities to and a mood reminiscent of the great ocean liners of the 30's. Coincidentally, 1936 was SS NORMANDIE's first full year in service & the year of RMS Queen Mary's maiden voyage.
Miottel Museum received The Art Deco Society of California's Preservation Award in 2003.