Philanthropist Ann Lurie Seeks $12.8 Million for Magical Santa Barbara Estate

Ann Lurie has hoisted her longtime midcentury residence in Santa Barbara’s posh seaside Montecito enclave onto the market with a nearly $12.9 million price tag. Records show the prominent philanthropist—widow of the late Chicago entrepreneur Robert H. Lurie, a partner of real estate magnate Sam Zell, as well as part owner of the Chicago White Sox and Bulls sports teams—acquired the sprawling estate for $8.3 million a little more than 18 years ago, back in summer 2005.

Originally designed and built in the late 1940s by landscape architect Lockwood de Forest Jr., and subsequently updated and expanded through the years, the property is sited on over 3 acres, amid a walled and gated cul-de-sac lot brimming with mature oak, redwood and fruit trees, and is showcased by a sprawling five-bedroom, five-bath main house adorned throughout with rustic wood accents and expansive walls of glass providing seamless indoor/outdoor environs.

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A vintage fireplace serves as a centerpiece of the windowed media room.
A vintage fireplace serves as a centerpiece of the windowed media room.

Highlights include an entry foyer topped by a wood-trimmed skylight, as well as an office sporting a built-in desk, a media room and cozy living room warmed by an eye-catching fireplace. The kitchen is outfitted with a central island, stainless appliances and an accompanying breakfast nook, and elsewhere is a fireside master retreat boasting a bath equipped with a steel-encased soaking tub and sauna.

Especially standing out are the grassy grounds, which host an elaborate kitchen and barbecue setup resting next to an al fresco dining area, along with a sunken fire-pit, and massive infinity-edge pool and spa flanked by a wood sundeck overlooking the breathtaking scenery. There’s also a separate one-bedroom, one-bath guesthouse with its own living area and kitchen, plus a detached three-car garage.

A sail-shaped pool overlooks the ocean.
A sail-shaped pool overlooks the ocean.

Lurie inherited her husband’s substantial wealth after his 1990 death from colon cancer at age 48. As president of the Ann and Robert H. Lurie Foundation, she’s since made it her full-time mission to fund various causes, including cancer research and children’s health care. Among her largest gifts to date: a $100 million contribution in 2007 to the Children’s Memorial Hospital to help build a new pediatric research hospital; completed in 2012, it was named the Ann & Robert H. Lurie Children’s Hospital of Chicago.

She previously sold a historic 18,000-square-foot home in Chicago’s Gold Coast neighborhood to the Latin School of Chicago for $12 million in 2017—the highest-priced sale in the Chicago area at the time.

The listing is by the Randy Solakian Estates Group, a team affiliated with the Montecito office of Coldwell Banker Realty.

Click here for more photos of Ann Lurie’s Santa Barbara house.

Ann Lurie House Montecito
Ann Lurie House Montecito

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