'The Witch's House' resurrected in Beverly Hills

BEVERLY HILLS, Calif. (KABC) -- The house at 516 Walden Drive in Beverly Hills is a popular stop during Halloween. Known as "The Witch's House," it is the quintessential haunted house, with a distinctive medieval look unlike any other home in the 90210 zip code.

It was built back in 1921 as a set for the movie "Hansel and Gretel." It soon became a livable 3,500-square-foot home. But years ago, it fell into disrepair, and the Halloween night visitors were not as welcome as they once were.

Then came real estate agent Michael J. Libow. Libow purchased the home and began transforming the Witch's House back to its original glory. It has taken Libow seven years to restore the home's whimsy and charm from the ground up.

"The concept in the home was to make it as organic as possible to the ground," Libow said, "everything looks as if it just sprung out of the ground, almost like a volcanic eruption."

Libow's passion is rooted in Spain and the modernist Antoni Gaudi, who found inspiration from nature. No attention to detail has been spared to make the Witch's House look like storybook home. Libow lives in the home and says he plans to stay forever. He is also making Halloween a day to remember on Walden Drive again.

"I plan to carry on the tradition," Libow said, "but because I don't do well in drag, I do not dress up as a witch on Halloween."
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