Lindbergh Slept Here

Winterguide 2013

A glamorous anomaly with a past–a tiled Spanish beachfront villa designed by John Calvin Stevens–maintains her dignity against all odds.

By Colin W. Sargent

It’s a sunny winter day where Old Orchard Beach meets the sky. With fliers in hand, the preview crowd jams into the lush Mediterranean entertaining rooms of “Castillo del Mar,” a Roaring 1920s curiosity in the shadow of Danton Towers.

It’s almost as though the house can hear the sound of parkas unzipping, feel the evaluative thumps against its paneling. Having hosted so many soirees, how now to welcome the impatient, the wistful, the frankly unsympathetic?

“I think this place should be crashed with a bulldozer,” Hank LaBrie of LaBrie Realty Group says of the mansion where Charles Lindbergh was grateful for a night’s sleep in 1927, after landing the Spirit of St. Louis directly in front of the house, right here on the beach.

As for why did Lindbergh stay here and who erected the giant searchlight in front of this house to attract passing aviators at night, these interrogations do not fit neatly into the here-and-now of the Murphy’s Auction & Realty handout.

Because for all things, a time comes when the elaborative and romantic get collapsed into the ‘right now.’ Even a place with soaring architectural detail and this much interiority faces these indignities.

The mortgagee’s foreclosure sale by the Scarborough-based firm outlines terms of “$50,000 deposit in certified funds to bid…closing within 45 days of public auction.”

Outside the tall windows, the white sweep of sand spills light across the terrace into the living room.

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