Monday, May 12, 2008

The Fairytales Of Carmel Cottages

Once upon a time a young woman asked her beloved husband to build her a small cottage by the sea. The husband dreamed up and built a teeny-tiny house with a sloping roof of hand-cut shingles and a stone chimney that wasn't quite straight. He named the house "Hansel" and his fairy tale began . . . .

Gretel House

This whimiscal and fantasy world homes located in Carmel, California is the work of the late Hugh Comstock. He built his first house for his wife in 1924-1925. It was interesting to know that Comstock had no previous building/architechural experience and used no regualr tools while building the cottage. Soon after, locals began to ask Comstock to build their homes and he obliged. The lots sold for $100- a piece and now to this present day are selling for millions.He built dozens of charming houses around Carmel that created a magic that people from around the world come to see.

The idea was to build a little village in a forest kinda feel. To this day there are no stoplights and no fast-food chains in the location. The magic still remains down the narrow, sidewalk-less streets covered in pines and low cypresses that hide tiny cottages. The fairytale lives on, happily ever after!

Rapenzuel House

The Mushroom Home

The original "Hansel" house built in 1924-1925 and now has been restored.

Via: Linda Hartong flickr Fairytale cottages by the sea set
I visited Carmel when I was about 18-19 years old and did not really appreciate the cottage and the town. I just thought thats cool, I mean I still do think that but now I look at the little cottages completely different- I have interest in them. They are so beautiful and unique. I would love to go back oneday! The place really is an enchanting storybook fairytale come true!

Also here are some interesting books to check out if you are interested in more unique homes:

Storybook Stlye by Arrol Gellner

Cottage by the sea by Linda Leigh Paul

Cottages on the coast by Linda Leigh Paul

500 Cottage by Doug Keister


  1. OH MY - LOVE these houses...I have always wanted to live in one!

  2. Such a charming place filled with such enchanting little houses!

  3. Absolutely delightful. I never imagined houses like this existed!

  4. I love these houses and have seen some of them on TV. I just did a thing on my favorite houses in New England in a post. There are so many that I love - wish I could have a collection!

  5. What an enchanting post on storybook cottages! And in Carmel of all places, such a beautiful place. Great post!


  6. great minds think a like... I had a post all set up for these cottages... I will change it a bit and send everyone your way... great cottages!

  7. I love visiting Carmel precisely because of how quaint the town is with these storybook cottages, not to mention it has the loveliest landscapes and scenery!

  8. Hi!

    Thanks a lot! I own the little Hansel and Gretel cottages in Carmel and am glad you appreciate them. I love my little doll houses too!


  9. P.S.
    The first photo is not Gretel House, it is Hansel. To see Gretel you can go to for a virtual tour.


  10. Oh how charming!! Thanks for sharing; I've just added visiting the Carmel community to my 'to see' list!

  11. I just returned from spending the weekend at the "Hansel cottage" in Carmel. It is wonderful. I have some very nice pictures of the inside of the cottage.

    1. Hi,
      I would like to spend a vacation and perhaps have my wedding reception in Gretel House. I am desperately looking for the name of the owner and/or the agent who manages the property, but I haven't been successful. Can you help me?
      I have seen that there is the Rapunzel House in the pictures above: is that in Carmel as well and is it possible to rent it?
      Any advice would be greatly appreciated!
      Thanks in advance!

  12. wonderful houses! thanks for this sharing! I think that the original "Hansel" house is actually The Witch's House from Beverly Hills. The house is undergoing renovations because the owner, Michael Libow wants to preserve it for the historical society.

  13. What a gorgeous little place, so beautiful.

  14. They are absolutely enchanting!!

  15. My family has been in Carmel since the 1920's. I have spent my life growing up there. I am glad to see that others appreciate its beauity and sensibility. Those of us that love it are appreciative that it is unique in its beauty. I am lucky to have family there and know Carmel for most of my life. I go often, about twice a month. I am heading there this week for high tea with friends and shopping. Glad you appreciate Carmel for what it truly is.


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