A few details emerged about the unfinished house in Point Loma I wrote about yesterday.

It looks like the project on Plum Street is in the first stages of foreclosure. The owner, Francisco Mendiola, was hit with a notice of default Feb. 19, according to public property records.

I tried calling Mendiola on Tuesday but none of the numbers I could find for him were in service.

It doesn’t appear to be the first major project that’s run into trouble for Mendiola. He and another architect, Jess Gonzales, led a development team that built a lavish manor called “Essencia” on La Jolla’s Hillside Drive, listing it in 2006 for $21.5 million.

San Diego Magazine gushed over the six-bedroom, seven-bath, spec house — meaning the developers built it with no particular buyer in mind — in a spread in 2007.

That wasn’t the only time the house made headlines. In a 2008 article, the Union-Tribune’s Roger Showley revealed that the home — by then a “beautiful white elephant” — had fallen into foreclosure.

[T]he ultramodern house has … a wine cellar, home theater, saltwater vanishing-edge pool, high-tech wiring and the curvilinear architectural form that Concepto Design Group specializes in. … Proud of their work, the partners rejected several offers they considered too low and held out for the gold.

That turned out to be a major blunder.

I called Lisa Kent McNulty, who used to sell homes for Mendiola’s group, Concepto Design Group International.

She said she is not contracted to sell the Point Loma property and couldn’t comment. She said the details surrounding the property are “very confidential.”

“It’s someone’s personal project that they’re doing, and I don’t even know why it would be of interest to anyone,” she said. “I’m sure that the people involved are going to feel like that’s none of your business.”

Here’s a bit more about Mendiola, from that San Diego Magazine piece.

Mendiola learned patience working in his father’s architectural firm in his native Mexico City before coming to the United States to attend the University of Notre Dame and the NewSchool of Architecture in San Diego. U.S.-born Gonzales met Mendiola at the NewSchool of Architecture, and after graduation in 1989, they formed CDGI.

Their distinctive curvilinear residential designs can be found in La Jolla, Coronado, Coronado Cays, Steele Canyon, Jamul and Alpine. More-current work includes a two-story boardwalk house on the ocean side of Mission Beach and the San Diego home of Major League Baseball’s Ryan Klesko.

(Thanks for sharing your tidbits on other projects, too. I’ll post those soon.)


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