Palo Alto: The Laning Chateau

Laning Chateau

When I was nineteen I dated a very ambitious, seemingly self-assured twenty-six year old who lived in an expensive apartment building across the street from the Laning Chateau. His place had beautiful hardwood floors, arched doorways and crown molding. It was built in 1930 as a getaway for rich San Franciscans looking for a little escape from city life. In other words, his building had all the history behind it as the Laning Chateau* pictured above. However, it lacked the unique mix of architectural styles (Spanish Colonial Revival with Moorish details) and my favorite part, the green vines covering the façade. It just screams European Fairytale!

Whenever we left to go out together, I would look over at the chateau and smile, this made him grunt and grumble as he fired up his cherry red Porsche. I didn’t mean to offend him. In fact, I was very shy in our relationship. As time went on, however, I gradually became more assertive and I expressed my opinions on my love affair with the chateau.

These days, when I pass this gorgeous place, I think of two things… How lovely it still is and what it was like finding my voice as a young woman.

*I snapped this photo a few months ago and I am so glad that I did. The Laning Chateau, constructed in 1927, is in need of some repair. It is now covered in scaffolding and the vines have since been torn down.


Add yours +

I love the Laning Chateau! I dated a girl that lived on the 4th floor here. The tiny elevator had a gate that you had to slide across for it to operate. Sadly she moved to less exciting architecture and we stopped dating (though these two facts are not related). I continued to visit with photography clients often for engagement sessions. I still often detour as I drive through downtown just to admire it.

Thank you Robert. I love your sense of humor! xx