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The Adamson House

July 27, 2012 — 2 Comments


This classic Malibu home was built in 1930 for Rhoda Rindge Adamson and her husband, Merritt Huntley Adamson. The house and grounds share its location with one of the most beautiful beaches in Southern California. Gorgeous views are afforded to you of the Malibu Lagoon, Malibu Beach, and the Malibu Pier. The Adamson House is a unique property perched on the beach with historic beauty and value.

The Adamsons

Merritt Huntley fell in love with Rhoda Agatha Rindge shortly after they met when he assumed the role of superintendent of the vast Malibu ranch property. His early ranching experience, plus his legal training were appropriate preparation for the position he held. Together they founded the renowned “Adohr Stock Farms” in 1916, one of the largest and finest dairies in existence.

The Exterior

There is a lovely pool with adjoining bathhouse, extensively decorated with Malibu tile. The tile also adorns several sparkling fountains. Flagstone pathways wind through the pristine landscape to provide walkways for you.

The Interior

The family living and dining rooms are delightful areas with views of the ocean to the east and south. The ceiling is supported by decorated mahogany beams and a Moroccan influence is seen here in the pointed arched window.

The lavish use of exquisite ceramic tile, produced by Malibu Potteries, is a hallmark of the house. The use of decorative tile has always been characteristic of Spanish Colonial Revival architecture. Mrs. Rindge wisely decided to utilize the unique red and buff burning clays that existed in the Malibu area, as well as an abundant supply of water from a spring in Sweetwater Canyon, to establish the Malibu Potteries. Beginning in 1926, a profusion of brilliant tiles flowed from this establishment to hundreds of residential and public buildings throughout Southern California.

The Adamson House Tour

The tour is a guided tour through the house which contains its original furnishings and is decorated with the renowned Malibu Potteries tile. Trained volunteer docents relate the history of the house, details of its architecture and furnishings, and the history of the family that lived in and created this distinctive home.

The Malibu Lagoon Museum 

The museum adjoins the Adamson House and contains a collection of artifacts, rare photographs, and documents depicting the colorful history of Malibu. The museum tour takes you from the early Chumash Indian era through the Spanish California culture. Here is an excellent opportunity to relive the genteel and romantic ranching days of the famed Rindge and Adamson families. Learn about dramatic episodes in Malibu’s rich history: the Malibu Railroad; the 50-room Castle on the Hill; the 17-year legal battle over a Malibu highway; the Malibu movie colony; the Malibu Dam, and much, much more.

 The Adamson House Garden Tour

The tour is a docent-led walking tour of the landmark gardens, beautifully preserved in their 1930s appearance. It is offered every Friday of the month at 10:00 a.m. The fee of $7.00 per person includes a house tour; no reservation is required. Reservations are necessary only for groups of 10 or more; please call (310) 456-8432. Group tours are Tuesdays at 10:00 a.m.

A Delightful Gift Shop

The gift shop is also on the premises. In it, you will find a veritable treasure trove of hard-to-find books, memorabilia, and unique gifts. Included in the shop’s wares are: colored reprints of Malibu tiles; hand-painted pastels of the Adamson House, and other items with a Museum motif.

WHAT: The Adamson House
WHERE: 23200 Pacific Coast Highway | Malibu, CA 90265
WHEN: Wednesday – Saturday | 11:o0 am – 3:00 pm

CONTACT INFO: (310) 456-8432


  • Admission: 17 years and older – $7.00, 6 to 16 years – $2.00, and 5 years and under – free (CASH ONLY Accepted for All Tour Fees)
  • Tour Schedule: Wednesday through Saturday 11:00 am – 3:00 pm  (Last tour at 2:00 pm) Tuesdays – Bus Tours Only

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