Cottage #2 – The Shell Shack
COTTAGE #2 – THE SHELL SHACK
FROM A MOVIE SET TO AN OVERNIGHT RENTAL, TRACE THE HISTORY OF THIS FAMILY COTTAGE THROUGH THE DECADES.
Built in 1926 by Huntington Beach-based brothers-in-law Russel Paull and Lowell Bailey, Cottage #2 was first created as a movie set during the golden age of film at Crystal Cove. It changed hands several times over the years, transferring ownership from the Paull and Bailey families to a group of four co-workers from Azusa Valley Savings Bank, who shared it as a vacation home. The women eventually built Cottage #27 next door, selling Cottage #2 to Joseph Sheeder, who worked in Hollywood and first visited the Cove during a film shoot. It remained primarily unchanged until 1961, when tent campers Bob and Peggy Davick took over the lease. CCA founder Laura Davick, the daughter of Bob and Peggy, grew up in the one-room cottage, sharing a Murphy bed with her siblings until her father added two bedrooms and an office. An engineer, Bob also decided to enclose the patio and add a deck and an office, made from a combination of standard construction materials and flotsam found on the beach. Later, Laura crafted rockwork on the front of the house using stones, shells and beach glass—a decorative fixture that remains to this day.
Today, Cottage #2 has been taken back to its original footprint as an overnight rental. It was completely restored in late 2005 as there wasn’t enough of the original to salvage, but through drawings and interviews with Laura, it’s a faithful representation of its 1920s-era condition, with period-appropriate textiles and furnishings, two Murphy beds and a small kitchen.
For more information on cottages and overnight rentals—or to take a tour of the cottages with Laura—visit crystalcovebeachcottages.com.