City, Peninsula meet in home

When well-known San Francisco Attorney Robert Barbagelata and his wife Doris bought 819 Holly Road in 1965, they knew that it had a welcoming feel to it. But it also had a little local history, and they added to that.

The 1941 property was first owned by a prominent Peninsula newspaperman, and his wife wanted part of the home to look like the Ann Hathaway cottage in England. The living room and copper fireplace of the English Tudor home were designed to reference the famous Warwickshire dwelling, Doris Barbagelata said.

One of its later owners was Nancy Ann Abbott, the maker of Nancy Ann’s Storybook Dolls, a popular brand of the 1930s and 1940s. Abbott lived there with her good friend, Hollywood actress Liz Scott, Doris Barbagelata said.

The Barbagelatas moved into the home to raise their three children in Belmont’s semi-rural environment, away from the city where their name is well-known for Robert’s reputation as a trial lawyer, the family’s own real estate company and for Robert’s brother John, who ran against George Moscone for mayor in 1975. While there, they became involved in municipal politics, throwing parties and hosting local politicians Dave Warden and Coralin Feierbach, both sitting City Council members. They also held gatherings for Art in Public Places, tree-planting efforts and other groups.

“We always had it open,” Doris Barbagelata said.

They did renovations, adding the 75-foot deck early on. In the early 1990s, they renovated the Italianate kitchen, the dining room and the office.

In the past few years, they renovated the bathrooms, Doris Barbagelata said, traveling to France on a shopping trip for fixtures. But the living room “is what everyone likes,” she said.

“It has this huge cathedral ceiling,heart-redwood interior and the copper fireplace. It has views all the way down to Stanford and … the East Bay,” she said.

The home has three greenhouses and sits on two-thirds of an acre.

Hot Property

WHERE: Belmont

ASKING PRICE: $2.375 million

PROPERTY TAX: $30,875*

WHAT: 4 bedroom, 3 bath, 2,440 square feet

AMENITIES: Living room with redwood walls and copper fireplace, Peninsula views, professionally landscaped yard and gardens

AGENT: John Shroyer, Re/Max today, (650) 598-8146

* Estimate based on 1.3 percent of asking price

kwilliamson@examiner.combusinessBusiness & Real Estate

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