Palm Springs Residence Sells for $7.7 Million—the Metropolis’s Greatest Deal So Far This 12 months


A Palm Springs, California, residence whose architect has been nominated for six Academy Awards sold last week for $7.7 million—the highest sales price in the city in 2023 thus far.

The Spanish-revival villa is located in Old Las Palmas, a neighborhood developed in the mid-1920s that has been a celebrity haven over the years. This particular house was built for the wife of the then-president of the American Locomotive company and, in 1997, bought by the Singing Cowboy himself, late actor and musician Gene Autry. 

Although he died in 1998 at the age of 91, his wife, Jackie Ellam Autry, lived in the home until 2020 and “made it her goal to restore it,” Mansion Global reported when it was last listed February 2020. It sold that spring for $7 million, according to records with PropertyShark. 

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A year and a half later, in November 2021, the home was put back on the market for $11.75 million, listing records show. Despite the hot pandemic market, the property failed to fetch that price and was most recently listed for $9.75 million.

Mansion Global could not determine the buyer, as public records were not yet available. The seller was not available for comment. 

Known by some as “El Kantara” and by others simply as the Autry estate, the 13,461-square-foot mansion was designed by Santa Monica-based architect, Leland F. Fuller, who was later nominated for six Academy Awards as a Hollywood art director, according to the listing. It is thought to have been inspired by the former Samarkand Persian Hotel in Santa Barbara, and was one of the first estate lots ever in the city.

The home “embodies all that makes real estate in Palm Springs such a special pursuit,” listing agent James Gault of Compass said in an email. “It is elegant, it is grand, it is historically prominent and rich in folklore. If the walls of this home could talk, they would have so much to say about the story of this incredible city.”

Built around a central courtyard with a glass-tiled pool and views of the surrounding mountains, there are walls of French doors to capture the classic indoor-outdoor California lifestyle, the listing said. In addition, two of the home’s five en-suite bedrooms open to the courtyard, including the primary.

There are carved and painted ceilings in the dining room and kitchen, which also boasts a full butler’s pantry, a breakfast lounge and a tennis viewing area (yes, there is also a tennis court). 

Other amenities include two offices adjacent to the main bedroom, a library, two guest apartments, and a bar and piano lounge fit for the likes of a country crooner. The house was sold furnished. 

The home is also fueled by solar panels, and the grounds “are fully drought tolerant and have been crafted for eco-efficiency and low-maintenance requirements,” the listing said. 


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