DIGS Blog - Luxury Real Estate Info for Home Enthusiasts

Travel Options Maui & Utah

Second Act

Seeking a second home in Hawaii? Maui’s newest oceanfront development Luana Garden Villas is a collection of 72 three-bedroom residences on a 10-acre parcel within the Honua Kai Resort & Spa, along Ka’anapali Beach.

The fully furnished, 2,000-plus-square-foot homes are situated in multiple two-story buildings found in three separate garden-inspired enclaves, with each boasting a pool, hot tub, fire pit and lava rock waterfall.

Also featured are gourmet kitchens with quartz countertops and high-end appliances; dual master suites; a spacious great room that opens via retractable glass walls to a lanai sporting a full open-air kitchen; a single-car garage; and secure owner storage.

An added bonus? Convenient access to the wide range of resort amenities, including an Aquatic Playground with waterslides, waterfalls, caves and a sandy beach pool, as well as Dukes Beach House Restaurant and Whalers General Store. Prices start at around $2 million, with the property currently about 80 percent sold.

130 Kai Malina Parkway Lahaina, Maui, HI

Mountain Hideaway

If the beach is not exactly your thing, no worries. Utah’s Park City is a hot destination for Angelenos seeking second homes on the slopes. “Park City offers world-class resort amenities, yet has a small-town feel where you can shift it down a few gears and relax,” says Charlie Taylor, managing partner of The Agency’s Park City office.


“The quality of life is what has brought many people who start off as vacationers from various parts of the country and make Park City their primary or second-home community.” Among the current offerings: a contemporary residence resting on a south-facing hillside facing a stunning mountain and valley view listed for $6.195 million.

Situated at 1495 Red Fox, in the Ranches at the Preserve community, the four-bedroom home offers more than 8,000 square feet of living space with all of the bells and whistles—including a full audio-visual system with a 4K theater projector and 168-bottle wine cellar—while the 15-acre grounds sport patios with fire pits, an outdoor kitchen and in-ground spa.


-Charlie Taylor,  managing partner  of The Agency’s Park City office

1495 Red Fox Park City, UT


coral Pantone’s 2019 Color of the Year in digs magazine

Pantone’s Color of the Year —Eye-Catching Coral

With the announcement of Pantone’s 2019 The color of the Year, forgo fear and apply this optimistic, playful and eye-catching tone at home











Jonathan Adler-decorated—and redecorated—Parker Palm Springs

Jonathan Adler: Decorated & Redecorated Parker Palm Springs

“Groovy modern meets Hollywood glamour with a touch of hedonism” is how Jonathan Adler describes the look of Parker Palm Springs, a hotel he worked on for its 2004 opening, then again for its makeover in 2017. Characterized by the use of bright colors and diverse textures, the hotel’s vibrancy reflects Adler’s own style and pervades its spaces.

Formerly Gene Autry’s Melody Ranch and Merv Griffin’s Givenchy Resort and Spa, the property—which was built on 13 acres—is surrounded by a variety of gardens with the desert and mountains providing a pleasing backdrop.

Jonathan Adler Parker Palm Springs in digs.net

Throughout the latest renovation, Adler was careful to preserve the hotel’s historic soul, but he complemented the midcentury modern architecture influences with more contemporary touches. A 7-foot tall, 900-pound bronze banana lawn sculpture is just one of the new elements, an addition that allowed Adler to put eccentricity and color center stage.

Parker Palm Springs comprises 144 rooms organized in several categories: the 600-square-foot Junior Suites are described as having “decadent, divine decor”; Poolside Rooms are “the nest you never need to leave”; with gorgeous outdoor sitting areas, Hammock Rooms are “crisp, happy, modern”; spacious Deluxe rooms feature an “easy-going essence and laid-back luxury”; and Estate Rooms are where “excess meets value.”

Finally are the property’s 12 one-bedroom Villas, each with a large living room, dining area, and private enclosed patio. In a category, all it’s own is the Gene Autry two-bedroom house, which presents as such with a living room, dining room, full kitchen, two bathrooms, closet, treatment room with sauna, screening room and lawn, immediately fostering the feeling of being at home in an atmosphere of luxury and intimacy.

Perfectly expressing the spirit of Hollywood, the place is appointed with several pieces of furniture from Jonathan Adler’s collection; architecturally, it epitomizes the midcentury modern architectural vernacular that defines Palm Springs.

Jonathan Adler Parker Palm Springs in digs.netIn addition to the 5,500-square-foot building dedicated to meetings and private events, the hotel also is home to various points of recreation, from European red clay tennis courts and two outdoor heated pools to the Palm Springs Yacht Club spa offering body treatments, steam and sauna rooms, an indoor pool, an open-air yoga studio and a gym.

Finding five restaurants and bars on the property is a particular feast for the eyes. With its fresh look, the open-all-day Norma’s—which hosts both an indoor and outdoor space for dining—contrasts with the dark-toned Mister Parker’s that has that Old Hollywood/Palm Springs style; Counter-Reformation, with its brass details, stylish mirrors and cement tiles is a hidden wine bar just waiting to be discovered; while the jewel box-like Mini Bar is an intimate yet grand establishment in the lobby. Outside, Lemonade Stand is a relaxed poolside venue with picnic tables and a bar.

Eye-catching for its bold interior design, Parker Palm Springs has started the new chapter of its fantastically interesting story, keeping its soul while setting new trends. Thank you, Mr. Adler. parkerpalmsprings.com


Minimalism & Maximalism By Black Lacquer Design

“Nothing is as creatively exhilarating (and challenging) than starting from scratch,” says interior designer Caitlin Murray, founder of Black Lacquer Design. “What began as a sandy lot soon became a daring yet refined marriage of modern minimalism and maximalism.”

The owners of this home—a family of four living in Manhattan Beach—wanted a colorful, modern and inspired dwelling. They were immediately receptive to the bold ideas suggested by Murray, who worked on this project. The house, which is new construction, features clean, contemporary lines and white walls.

“This blank canvas allowed for a lot of creative freedom,” Murray says. “At the same time, it was a very collaborative process as the homeowners were so interested and involved in the design process; in fact, the shower tile layout in the main bath was client-designed.”

One small piece of decoration was the starting point for everything. “Very early in the project, the homeowners sent me a piece of multicolored, geometric wallpaper, which can be found in the downstairs bathroom, that became the inspiration for the whole project,” Murray explains. “It really encouraged the combination of vibrant and desaturated hues.”

Paints by Benjamin Moore, geometric wallpapers by Farrow & Ball and Astek, oversized abstract paintings, rich wooden credenzas, sculptural accessories, and wool rugs create textures and visual dynamism throughout all the areas.

When asked about her favorite element in the house, Murray answers without hesitation: “The paint-splattered Encrusted Spectrum wallpaper by Astek in the bedroom makes a fearless statement that I find so special.”

Lighting fixtures by France & Son, Leucos Lighting, Flos and Moooi—among others—combined with pieces by brands and designers such as Lawson-Fenning, Tom Dixon, RH Modern, ABC Carpet & Home, Kartell and Calligaris showcase different design styles and eras.

“Since the space is inhabited by a young family, form and function are equally important,” Murray says. “We juxtaposed very organic textures with metallics, acrylics and bright pops of color to bring soul, depth, and comfort to a very contemporary aesthetic. I think the variance makes the modern bones of the home feel kid-friendly and lived-in.” Touches of bold hues complement tonal grays, creating a playful and energetic look. “Adventurous color choices was definitely the theme for the home,” Murray confesses.

“I wanted to see a lot of variation in tones throughout the space, and I balanced it and made it pop by making softer, more subdued choices around those bursts of color.”

Thanks to a great dose of imagination and audacity, Murray has created a home with a strong personality like no other. blacklacquerdesign.com


DIGS Magazine celebrates our 200th issue | South Bay DIGS & Westside DiGS

Reflecting Back on DIGS 200th Issue

Life Before DIGS

I started my career in media in 1992 as an account executive at BAM magazine.  BAM was a free bi-weekly music magazine founded in 1976 by Dennis Erokan in San Francisco and covered musicians, the music scene and its culture.   As a musician myself, this was an exciting time for me as I was able to work on something that I was truly passionate about.

The media landscape was much different back then, as the internet was in its infancy and marketers still relied on and leveraged traditional media channels like (print, TV, radio.)

BAM was a case study in the niche publishing model and was able to capture the attention of an audience around a topic that they were passionate about, (music) and thus created a lot of value for both consumers and advertisers along the way.

My time at BAM was invaluable – I was immersed into the world of guerilla marketing and I learned how to create ad campaigns from scratch for local music retailers that ultimately would have to deliver results.  And best of all, I was part of a community who had shared interests, passions, and dreams.


Start The Press

In 1995 my media career took a 180˙ turn when I joined a commercial printing company, (where DIGS magazine prints today!)  With aspirations to become a Publisher at some point in my future, this was a logical  progression as I became an expert in the printing process, which is typically the highest cost center for a magazine business.

The best part, my clients were publishers of prestigious magazines and newspapers – I was in good company, to say the least.

FUN FACT: The Daily Breeze, Beach Reporter & Easy Reader were all personal clients of mine back in the day and I helped the Breeze outsource the printing of the daily paper to our company to print alongside the National edition of the
New York Times.


The Digital Revolution

I spent the next 14 years in commercial printing, working my way up from sales to eventually becoming the President & CEO of a $250 million company.  It was during this period of time that I was fortunate to be immersed in the media world, having a “front row seat” to the transformative and disruptive change that the internet would bring.  I got to see firsthand, how the largest media companies of the day were doing to adapt (or not) with the changing landscape – it was a crazy time, to say the least, and highly educational.


“You Must Be Crazy!”

In 2008, I decided to leave the printing industry, do some soul searching and explore the possibilities of “reinventing myself.” 

With a keen understanding of the perilous future of print in the new digital age, I decided to go against the grain and do something that made little sense to any rational person at the time – start a magazine!  My friends, peers, and family all thought I had lost my mind, but my ignorance was truly bliss.


Finding My Place

It was 2010, the economy was bad, and the real estate industry was worse.  I started to imagine what it would be like to be a local real estate agent during this time – how the old rules were changing and how hard it was going to be sustain and grow their business. 

It didn’t take long before I was convicted to the mission – I wanted to try and solve this problem, or at least add some value along the way.

But not from some high-minded “top-down” media owner or publishers’ perspective, rather from a “bottoms up” guerilla marketing perspective.  It was about challenging the status quo – align with the disruption in the market and harness it to elevate across the board.

With a marketing approach and mindset, it was all about helping agents and local real estate consumers “find your place” in the community.   And with that tag line, DIGS was started in the summer of 2010.


DIGS is Born

Going to market with a marketing company mindset meant I could break all the rules in publishing.  Everything about DIGS, from the size of the magazine to the frequency, was engineered to maximize marketing results for our agent partners.

In the summer of 2010, I began to reach out to as many top agents and brokers as I could and tried to set up a meeting.  The local real estate community was still reeling from the effects of the great recession, which was fortuitous for both
of us as it allowed for an open dialog and open-mindedness.

As I look back and reflect on these first meetings, I’m reminded how grateful I am to those first few agents that took a leap
into the void and decided to take a chance on a total unknown. We would have never existed without them!

Fast forward a few months – the first DIGS magazine was published on October 8, 2010 – 28 pages of hope, sweat, and inspiration.

In my very first Publisher’s Muse, I wrote:

‘Our mission is to build the market-leading communications platform for the South Bay community “real estate experience” – a 360˙ real estate marketplace that connects the local real estate consumer to real estate professionals who live and work in the community.’


Reality Bites

With no investors and a substantial personal investment to get this going, the money clock was ticking fast. 

I’ll never forget this moment – it was a cold and cloudy mid-December day, DIGS had just released its 5th publication and I went to the bank to get a current account balance.

It was $354.00.

Okay, maybe this is going to be harder than I thought. 

It might have been a happy coincidence, but it was at this time I first heard the phrase, “fake it till you make it,” and the timing was poetic.

South Bay DIGS celebrates our 200th issue


Patience. Perseverance. Progress.

The rest, as they say, is history. 

I could probably write a novel on my personal journey on how DIGS came to be and the process of building a brand from the ground up.

The reward and success is in the journey – the ups and downs and the twists and turns along the way.

The one thing that has stuck with me since the early days is how welcoming and encouraging the brokers and agents were to me day one, inviting me to the office meetings and introducing me to other agents. 

The South Bay real estate community is special and unique.

I’m still in awe and humbled that this community has allowed us to exist for what will be nine years this October, and the fact that this edition marks the 200th publication is truly remarkable.  (Did you know…our Westside DIGS magazine celebrates our 4-year anniversary this month? No wonder my hair has turned grey!)

Today, DIGS distributes over 100,000 magazines per month in the most affluent communities in the South Bay and Westside of Los Angeles.  Each combined edition has $1 billion worth of properties that are advertised for sale – an indispensable resource and marketplace for agents and consumers to connect.


It’s A Privilege And Honor To Serve You

A sincere thank you.

To the local community, for embracing us and allowing us to lead the real estate conversation. 

To our marketing partners, who continue to support and grow with us. 

To our readers, who keep us relevant and accountable to our mission.

In your service,

Warren Dow
Founder & CEO

Modern Home Screams L.A. Nature, Architecture & Privacy

Certain elements characterize a great home in Los Angeles. First and foremost is the proximity to nature. Privacy is a marker too, and architecture that harmonizes with the environment another.

A midcentury modern-style home with a pool, low-slung profile, flat roof and large expanses of glass that blur the boundaries between indoors and out is ideal. Unfortunately, this elusive triptych is increasingly difficult to find within the city’s boundaries. But this combination of privacy, nature, and architecture finds an eloquent expression at 14400 Villa Woods Place.

First, the accessibility to nature here is a feature at the heart of the homes located in the Will Rogers State Park neighborhood—a fact that’s immediately clear when winding up Will Rogers State Park Road. The softly curving drive quickly erases the memory of busy Sunset Boulevard in favor of lush, rolling hills and cavorting wildlife: parades of waddling ducks, leaping deer, and clusters of curious rabbits are a common occurrence here.

The destination, one of the first houses built in this community with two bedroom wings that stretch out from a central living space, has been cited to embrace both the pool and the unbroken vista of the Park’s 168 acres.

A private gate in the property’s fence offers direct access to its numerous hiking paths and horse trails, breathtaking lookout points, elegant lawns, and polo fields, with additional trails that connect the home to Topanga and Temescal Canyon State Parks. There’s no need for a weekend place. With the countryside your backyard, escape is always within reach.


The home’s setting offers the twin attributes of solitude and privacy. While situated within a few minutes of the sophisticated dining, shopping and cultural pleasures of Brentwood, Pacific Palisades and Santa Monica, including the Getty Museum and Rick Caruso’s vibrant Palisades Village, and within moments of PCH, this hidden enclave is a world unto itself.

Located at the end of a quiet cul-de-sac, this area, which sees infrequent traffic, is unique in its ability to provide children with a protected space in which to ride bikes and skateboards (witness the skateboard ramp at the end of the block). Parents who remember the blissful anonymity of their childhood explorations will appreciate this rare gift; they’ll also enjoy the peace of mind afforded by the safety of their secluded enclave.

Last but certainly not least is the home itself. Building on the foundation of solid construction and beautiful craftsmanship that are the hallmarks of midcentury modern style, the single level home, ideally positioned on a generous lot, has been remodeled and updated, with an eye for both beauty and modern conveniences as its driving factors and a solar-heated pool and fire pit.

Expansive walls of glass flood the large central living room and book-lined dining area with light and overlook the pool, creating the perfect space for entertaining friends and family, whether for a casual weekend brunch with a few friends—with plenty of space for outdoor lounging, entertaining and dining, such a day will fly by—or an elegant cocktail soirée for a hundred or more guests. A fire pit is a natural place to gather.

Inside the home, wood-burning fireplaces, cathedral ceilings, and wood floors suffuse the interior with inviting warmth. The balanced proportions of these rooms, which also hooks the family room, bar, and 3/4 bath, as well as a spacious eat-in kitchen into the rhythm of daily life, allow each member of the family to find their own space while still enjoying the feeling of comfort that comes from visual contact.

This interconnectedness allows for the natural ebb and flow between privacy and togetherness. The beautifully landscaped grounds, flush with citrus trees that are plump with fruit, include a large rear yard complete with a soccer pitch lit for nighttime play, a zip line, and a tree house.

Five bedrooms—a pair with a shared bath on either wing, plus a master suite with generous French doors opening on to the pool—ensure a space for everyone to dream. Guests will especially enjoy the anonymity of coming and going at their leisure, content not to disturb the rest of the house when tiptoeing in after midnight or enjoying a late-night snack.

For those who work at home, an office designed with built-in storage is directly accessible from the carport. Its dual work stations discretely overlook the pool, allowing parents to catch up on work while keeping an eye on their children. When it’s time for a break, grab the dog and call the kids to join you on the half-mile trek up to Inspiration Point.

From here you can see from Santa Monica Bay all the way to downtown. If a home is all about location, you couldn’t have picked a more perfect spot. Top of the world, indeed.


Ellen McCormick
Berkshire Hathaway HomeServices California

List Price


Santa Monica Contemporary Home on 526 23rd St - Westside DIGS Magazine

Santa Monica Contemporary Family Home

No expense was spared in the design of this warm contemporary home nestled in the tree-lined streets of Santa Monica. Think a true piece of art bathed in comfort and luxury, complete with high-end details including floor-to-ceiling Movi doors; Italian-made bathroom cabinetry by Rexa Design and Novello Bagno; a chef-caliber kitchen boasting the highest-tier of Blum hardware, as well as and Miele and Zephyr appliances; and engineered European white oak flooring throughout. Not to mention a swoon-worthy yard showcasing a sparkling pool and spa.

“In town, there are so many similar builds that are all interchangeable, but there isn’t anything like this on the market,” says Cindy Ambuehl of The Agency, who is listing the property for $8.25 million. “It is current to the demands and desires of today’s buyers, designed to appeal to both family and entertaining, and the location…oh, the location!”

Found at 526 23rd St.—North of Montana Avenue, just minutes from the Brentwood Country Mart, and a bevy of shops and restaurants—the six-bedroom abode was custom built this year by GAIA Construction, along with Desai Architects and Italian interior designer DI Group.

Expect almost 7,000 square feet of open living space on three levels featuring sophisticated design elements such as soaring ceilings, plentiful natural light, an elevator, and a showpiece of a striking floating wood-and-glass staircase.

Among the highlights: the previously mentioned kitchen boasting a center island with waterfall edges, Binova cabinetry from Italy and a porcelain backsplash stretching from the countertops to the ceiling, along with a spacious master retreat showcasing an expansive closet and luxe bath.

Adding to the home’s glam factor is a lower-level entertainment area featuring a theater, wine cellar, wet bar and game room, as well as delightful grounds sporting an outdoor dining area with barbecue, and a pool house with bar, bath and outdoor shower. Finally is a Control4 smart home automation, top-of-the-line security and camera system, and solar energy setup.


Cindy Ambuehl of The Agency

List Price
$8.25 million


Jodie Fosters Beverly Hills home goes on the market for 15.9M in Westside DIGS

Jodie Foster Lists Coldwater Canyon Home for $15.9M

Academy Award-winning actress Jodie Foster has listed her 7,500-square-foot Coldwater Canyon home in Beverly Hills home for $15.9 million. According to the Observer, Foster spent $11.75 million for the secluded walled and gated property in June 2012, and she and her wife Alexandra Hedison have made it their primary residence, according to Yolanda’s Little Black Book, which first spotted the listing.

The five-bedroom, 5.5-bath house, which is situated on a 0.65-acre parcel, originally was built in 1952 and has since been expanded and remodeled. A private walkway leads to a two-story formal entry, which has a dangling light fixture and a staircase with a dark wood railing. The formal living room, which contains a grand fireplace and floor-to-ceiling windows, is found between a media room and a formal dining room. The listing is held by David Kramer of Hilton & Hyland.


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