Emoji House

The Hot Pink Controversial ‘Emoji House' in Manhattan Beach Sells for Over $1.5 Million

The property manager for the pink house originally said the house was a piece of art, but neighbors believe the reason behind the painting of the house is vindictive.

Char'Nese Turner

The hot pink “emoji house” that stirred up controversy last year in a ritzy area of Manhattan Beach was sold for $1.56 million.

The house was sold March 31 for less than the nearly $1.75 million originally asked for. The house was put on the market in August.

Built in 1931 and located at 39th Street in the El Porto neighborhood, the house became infamous for its hot pink exterior, large emoji murals and the wacky origin story.

The drama began when property owner Kathryn Kidd said several residents reported her home to the city after she tried to list the home as a short-term rental on Airbnb. Airbnb is illegal in the city of Manhattan Beach.

Kidd said she simply made a mistake and paid the $4,000 fine for renting out the then sandy colored home. She turned the home into a long term rental.

Kidd said she then hired a painter known as "Z The Art" on Instagram to brighten up the home.

Some neighbors spoke out against the building after it went on the market in August 2019, saying the structure was an eyesore. One resident even believed one of the murals, depicted with long lashes and a zipped-up mouth, was a direct attack on her.

"I don’t think of it as artwork. I think of it as an F-U!" an anonymous neighbor said in August.

The neighbor who decided to remain anonymous said she felt the emoji house was painted to make fun of her and was a personal attack on her.

Kidd insisted then that she was simply an art collector who loves emojis.

The zipper emoji, she said, was meant as a message to her daughter and other young women about protecting themselves by wearing modest clothing. Despite the controversy and drama over the house, Kidd stood by her decision.

"It is my building and I choose to paint it the colors that I want," Kidd said.

Though Kidd made a profit selling the "emoji house," the property went for a lower price than many in Manhattan Beach. According to real estate website Zillow, the median sale price for homes has been over $2.3 million since December.

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