Bing Crosby's onetime Bay Area home hits the market for $13.75 million

In the San Francisco Bay Area, the onetime home of Bing Crosby is listing for $13.75 million.

The late crooner bought the Tudor-style home in Hillsborough, a tree-lined suburb about 20 miles south of San Francisco, in 1963 for $175,000, according to press reports from the time, moving with his then-wife Kathryn Crosby and their three young children from Beverly Hills.

The Crosbys moved to Hillsborough because they didn't want to raise their children in Hollywood, said their son, Nathaniel Crosby, 59. But he said they only lived in the house for about 18 months before buying a larger estate across town, where his mother still lives.

Host Bing Crosby in 1941 (Photo by NBCU Photo Bank/NBCUniversal via Getty Images via Getty Images)


Built around 1930, the Tudor-style home is about 10,000 square feet and has 10 bedrooms and two wood-burning fireplaces, according to listing agent Charles Griffith of Golden Gate Sotheby's International Realty. The house also has a large ballroom, a dining room that opens to a terrace and a library paneled in English pickled pine. The roughly 3 acres of grounds include a heated swimming pool and a three-car garage with an apartment above it.

The home's current owners are Paul and Suzanne Roche, who bought the property in 2014 for around $8 million, according to property records. Mr. Roche is senior partner at McKinsey. Ms. Roche said they are selling because they are getting divorced.

Ms. Roche said one of the reasons she fell in love with the house was its association with Mr. Crosby. "I loved the idea of it being Bing Crosby's house, because I'm so into old Hollywood and the American Songbook," she said.


The Roches extensively remodeled the house, maintaining original details like leaded-glass windows but revamping the kitchen and bathrooms, Ms. Roche said. When they moved in, they found labels in the linen closets detailing where Mr. Crosby's wash cloths and sheets should be stored, she said.

Ms. Roche started hosting jazz concerts in the home's ballroom, eventually founding a nonprofit known as Jazz at the Ballroom. The organization, which supports music education, now holds concerts up and down the West Coast. Kathryn Crosby, Mr. Crosby's widow, has performed in some of the organization's concerts, said Ms. Roche. When Ms. Crosby visited the house she said that the Crosbys had a large staff on site, Ms. Roche said, and was "astounded that I did not have a house manager."

Ms. Roche said now that she is getting divorced, managing the house feels too daunting. "It's not a place that you just live in," she said. "It is a piece of artwork that you need to take care of."