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This Southern California mansion is modeled after a whale

A truly bizarre and unique piece of Southern California real estate is turning heads online for its luxury amenities and animal-inspired design.

The home, located at 999 Andante Rd. along Santa Barbara’s Mission Creek, is currently listed by Daniel Carpenter of Sotheby’s International Realty with an asking price of $3.25 million.

But its price tag isn’t what the internet is buzzing about, rather it’s the fairytale-esque design that has both charmed and confused the world.

The three-bedroom, four-bathroom house, surrounded by mature oak and sycamore trees, is modeled after a whale. Yes, a whale.

This unique home in Santa Barbara is styled after a whale, with the whale's mouth serving as its entrance. (Sotheby's International Realty)
This unique home in Santa Barbara is styled after a whale, with the whale’s mouth serving as its entrance. (Sotheby’s International Realty)

You enter the home through the mouth of a whale, its cedar shingles aligning the exterior, giving it the appearance of the marine mammal’s skin.

“Three floors of creative genius encompass the head of the whale,” the property’s listing reads. The head of the whale features a spiraling stairwell which opens to the outdoors, massive wood columns and beams and 360-degree views through more than 250 “Belgian leaded and stained glass windows.”

  • The interior of the "Whale House" in Santa Barbara features panoramic views, rock features and wood panels. (Sotheby's International Realty)
  • The interior of the home features curved walls and countertops. (Sotheby's International Realty)
  • The interior courtyard features an outdoor shower, room to entertain and the pool, which leads to the grotto. (Sotheby's International Realty)

The belly of the whale is the home’s spacious interior courtyard, which boasts plenty of room to entertain. But the focal point is a massive 75-foot lap pool that flows in the grotto — the whale’s tail.

The home was built in 1978 and was designed by Michael Carmichael, an adventurous and eccentric architect who is known for taking big swings with his unique home designs. Previous listings identify him as the man behind the “Wave House,” another unique property along the Santa Barbara coast, that features “long, sweeping laminated wood beams, custom crafted to form the underside of a huge wave which curls up and over the living space.”

The courtyard of the "Whale House" serves as the belly of the marine mammal. (Sotheby's International Realty)
The courtyard of the “Whale House” serves as the belly of the marine mammal. (Sotheby’s International Realty)

Images of the Whale House were shared by the popular real estate oddity blog Zillow Gone Wild. Comments on social media were a mixture of curiosity and genuine marvel, with the occasional question about how on earth you keep up with the cleaning with all those many unique surfaces.

In Santa Barbara, one of the most expensive cities in all of California, $3.25 million for a house this size actually isn’t that outrageous — all things considered.

The 75-foot lap pool leads to the home's grotto, aka, the whale's tail. (Sotheby's International Realty)
The 75-foot lap pool leads to the home’s grotto, aka, the whale’s tail. (Sotheby’s International Realty)

So if you’ve wanted to live out your Pinocchio fantasies, and if you have the roughly $650,000 required for a 20% down payment, the home can be yours.

For the rest of us, we’ll just have to keep wishing upon a star.

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