34031 Chula Vista

1929-1930, Pierce (Woodruff era)

Mills Act: Yes

Casa Contenta is one of the Lantern Village historic homes featured on the 2001 Dana Point Historical Home Tour when owned by the Grierson family. Melvyn Pierce remembers moving into the home as a child and has shared his adventures of growing up in the early days of Dana Point when the five Woodruff-era homes on Chula Vista were the street’s only homes. His father, Ralph Pierce, a salesman for developer Sidney H. Woodruff, hired a contractor to build his home and moved there with his family on July 4, 1930, residing there until 1964. The lovely front courtyard of this Spanish Colonial Revival home is enclosed by a tall wall within the L-shaped plan, created by a front gable wing with a large arched window. A red clay barrel tile roof, front second-story balcony, fountains and authentic hand wrought lanterns add to the home’s design. Features of this revival style include the arched entryway, the interior’s wrought iron banister, hardwood floors and the dramatic living room’s original fireplace. The original two-car garage was located beneath what’s was then a smaller front balcony. The Butler family converted the garage into additional living space, authentically extended the front balcony and a detached garage was built behind the home. The concrete curb stamp located in front of the home records C. G. WILLIS & SON, INC, 1928, CONTRACTORS, the date of Woodruff’s street construction. Mel Pierce remembers Woodruff’s ship lantern street lights on Chula Vista and a street lantern base still remains across the street from the home, adjacent to the curb. It is interesting to note that , as a result of the depressed economy of the 1930’s, Ralph Pierce would not be able to continue as a salesman for Woodruff and many of the development’s beautiful homes would remain empty, providing many play areas for Mel Pierce and friends. Casa Contenta is appreciated and treasured by the current owners.