Catch a Glimpse of the Flintstone House in California

Since 1976, motorists on I-280 passing through the Bay Area town of Hillsborough have been captivated by an unusual house with a rounded design that is perched atop a hill. The Flintstone House—as the eccentric structure is known—has been perceived as a beloved roadside attraction by travelers and a garish eyesore by residents of Hillsborough who object to the property’s fantastical lawn sculptures and vibrant paint.

Flintstone House

Photo by Flickr

Originally designed by visionary architect William Nicholson, the first incarnation of the Bubble House—which was the original nickname for the Flintstone House—was off-white. Nicholson used a construction method known as “monolithic dome construction” that involved spraying a material known as shotcrete into a frame with balloons underneath. Every surface in the Bubble House is rounded—including windows, doorways, and a spiral staircase. The rounded construction seemed to mimic the abode of Fred Flintstone in the 1960s Hanna-Barbera cartoon The Flintstones.

By the mid-1980s, the Flintstone House was noticeably falling apart. Several residents of Hillsborough who were not fans of the unconventional design of the abode hoped that the structure would be demolished. Instead, the Flintstone House was refurbished and painted bright orange.

In 2017, media mogul Florence Fang purchased the Flintstone House and leaned into the property’s quirkiness. Fang added numerous statues including dinosaurs, a giraffe, and a jolly Fred Flintstone positioned near the front door. There is even a giant likeness of Bigfoot.

Fang’s ever-expanding collection of lawn sculptures irritated some of her neighbors so much that they attempted to take her to court in order to force her to tone down the exterior of the Flintstone House. The court ruled in Fang’s favor and she was able to keep her jubilant home completely intact. Fang’s angry neighbors were even ordered to pay her legal fees.

Visitors can catch a glimpse of the Flintstone House by driving north on I-280 just past the Bunker Hill Drive exit. The vibrant exterior of the Flintstone House—with its synthetic rainbow, oversized mushrooms, and giant smiley face—is certainly worth pulling over for. Florence Fang occasionally offers tours of her whimsical 3-bedroom home. The dinosaur-themed interior of the Flintstone House is certainly Fred Flintstone approved.

Florence Fang stated that the theme of her home decor is “Over the Rainbow.” Much like Dorothy in The Wizard of Oz, you will certainly feel that you have traveled into a magical realm as soon as you spot the Flintstone House in all of its colorful cartoonish glory.

45 Berryessa Way
Hillsborough, California, 94010
United States

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