No one understood why it took Priscilla so long to fix up the house at 144 Monovale in Hollywood. When Elvis bought it, she said it had to be fixed up a lot before they could move in. She tried to turn every house Elvis bought into a real home. The house on Monovale once belonged to the English actor, Robert Montgomery. His daughter, Elizabeth starred as the pretty young witch in the television series, “Bewitched.” It seemed strange. Priscilla spent a year working on it. She would be gone for long periods, meeting with workers and designers and so on. “How about taking me along the next time you go,” Elvis often said. She would smile and shake her head. The mystery went on for a quite a while. Then she finally announced that the place was ready to look at.
She was nervous. She watched Elvis like a hawk when he stepped inside and looked around for the first time. Elvis said nothing but began slowly moving through the house, room by room. You could tell Priscilla was edgy. From the foyer, you stepped down a couple of steps into an elegant living room in a beautiful green motif. Elvis’ piano was in the same shade of green. The room seemed to invite you to sing.
You climbed a couple of steps to enter Elvis’ private office. Priscilla had put a big television set in it with a big library shelf that you could push back into the wall and turn into a wet bar.
Another door off the foyer led into a formal dining room. There was a master chair for Elvis. There was a special chair for Priscilla who always sat at his left hand.
A stairway curved up to the balcony. My bedroom was at the top of the staircase. Elvis’ and Priscilla’s bedroom with a big fireplace was down to the right. Elvis’ bath had huge closets and a barber chair. Hers had a marble bath tub, big closets and a wall mirror and bar for her ballet exercises.
Turning right, when you left my bedroom, took you to Lisa Marie’s room with a window that overlooked the driveway and a greenhouse. The street was beyond.
Robert Montgomery’s old gymnasium upstairs had been turned into a bedroom for Sony West, one of Elvis’ personal bodyguards, and his wife, Judy.
The maid’s quarters were off the kitchen.
The large grounds surrounding the house were private domain of Priscilla’s beautiful pair of Great Danes, Brutus, and his female companion, Snoop. Brutus could easily intimidate you when he jumped up and leaned his front paws down on your shoulders. Snoopy, on the other hand, was sweet.
When Elvis completed the tour, he turned to Priscilla. He smiled. “I like it.” She grabbed him and hugged him. They held onto each other for a long time.