Sweet Digs

Los Angeles At Your Front Door

Los Angeles At Your Front Door

A home in a quiet enclave celebrates unparalleled views and a sprawling floor plan that put the wonders of Los Angeles at the front door.

Heading north through Laurel Canyon, just as the narrow, leafy boulevard starts to ascend toward Studio City and the Valley, an animated sign that with its stylized lettering and tall columns seems like a remnant from a Vegas casino, heralds the entry to Mount Olympus. Don’t be fooled into thinking its faux-Grecian theatricality is indicative of what lies just beyond it. The sign does its work magnificently, shielding the area from anyone but residents and visitors.

Maneuver up the main drive and one is grateful: Despite its proximity to the busy Sunset Strip, the bustling streets of West Hollywood and beyond, the 300-acre development is a quiet, bucolic, and beautifully maintained hillside retreat of just over 400 single family homes bordering wide, curving streets. The uphill drive is a rare pleasure for the automotive enthusiast; lightly-traveled roads, outlined by slender cypress trees, evoke the Tuscan countryside.

Founded in 1969 by actor and producer turned real estate developer Russ Vincent, this area’s street names are paeans to the mythical gods of ancient Greece. The view from residences, glimpsed from the car en route to the destination, underlines the name Mount Olympus with breathtaking panoramas that, on a clear day and unobstructed by power lines, stretch from Downtown all the way to the ocean. There is plenty of opportunity to enjoy these scenes from the home at 2284 Hercules Drive, which has been designed to bask in their magnificence.

Celebration is top of mind from the moment the door to this house opens and the water feature that flanks the entryway sounds itself. An open entry, lit by a custom light fixture, offers another welcome. It’s not unusual to stand at the doorway in awe. A sprawling open-plan living area unrolls towards walls of glass that frame the stunning scenery that forms the backdrop for almost every moment to occur in this home, including those that happen in the master bedroom suite, which also enjoys this spectacular vista.

Even the elegant luxuries—a walk-in closet by one of Italy’s leading manufacturer’s; a spa tub and capacious steam shower, its walls lined in a exuberantly veined marble made luminous from light that pours in through the bathroom’s generous skylight; an astounding floor paved with flawless, oversized slabs of marble; and another wall of closets that stretches across one of the room’s walls—pale in comparison to the world beyond the windows.

Like suites in other homes of similar size, the bedroom encompasses a sitting area; unlike them, however, the one in this suite will likely find frequent use, positioned to enjoy the outstanding landscape throughout the day. If sleeping with the shades up, one can expect to rise with the dawn, then walk out onto the expansive terrace that sweeps around the house. Sun salutations were designed for this setting: done here, they’re a true spiritual awakening.

Even the kitchen, tucked at the far end of this impressive 6,700-plus square-foot home, basks in the glow of magic views, which are echoed in the home office/guest bedroom just below. Sunlight sparkles across a large waterfall island of snow-white Carrera marble.

This is only one in the long list of sumptuous finishes that support this home’s elegance; others include sleek white marble slabs fanning out to cover the floors; polished wood highlighting the divider separating the three junior bedrooms onto their own corridor just to the left of the front door; a wall of copper studs that punctuate the dining room’s back wall; and a glittering temperature-controlled wine rack that divides the entryway and dining area, storing the vintage one will inevitably need for any number of occasions.

Without a doubt, this home was born to play the consummate host for a whole year of events: from the New Year’s Eve that will find guests crowding onto the terrace that wraps around three-quarters of the house, to a Fourth of July fireworks display; to a romantic Valentine’s Day midnight swim in the suspended infinity pool, the city lights sparkling in the distance; to summer brunches that merge into poolside afternoons and nighttime barbecues. For these times, the sliding doors fully open to the exterior, so that those can wander in and out, finding a favorite spot, morning until night.

Gas fireplaces scattered throughout the rooms ensure comfort, even as the waning sun puts a chill in the air. Later, the sauna waits downstairs. Finally, wrapped in thick terry robes in the media room, before the blackout shades roll down, it’s time to watch the first rays of the sun turn the sky a luminous pink. One doesn’t need rose-colored glasses to see the world—not when one lives above the clouds.



Presented By 

Ari Shram | 310.280.8854
of The Agency

Vlad Gold | 310.403.3969
Natalia Gold | 310.650.6073
Dan Heston | 310.701.4310
of Keller Williams Realty

List Price $8,995,000

Pastoral Vison


Award-winning vineyards and a notable mid-century home with a Mediterranean feel boost a sprawling hilltop property in Rolling Hills.

In the middle of last century, Ernest Hahn saw the future and it was shopping centers. The doors opened on his first project in 1965, and from then on, Hahn rode a cresting wave, designing shopping malls and retail centers in 18 states. When it came to building his personal residence in Rolling Hills, Hahn applied the same creativity and precision that made him a pioneer of the American public square.

His sprawling mid-century home, completed in 1970, still stands as a luxurious perch above the city and ocean. “Hahn picked the greatest lot and built one of the finest homes,” says real estate agent and architecture expert Gerard Bisignano. Before one details its charms, it’s important to note that the residence sits on a seldom-heard-of expanse of land: 5 acres, spanning an agriculturist’s dream of mellow organic gardens and a fruit orchard that includes fig, apricot, peach and persimmon trees.

In addition there’s a bounty of over 2,500 chardonnay and pinot noir vines planted in the mid-2000s that produce about 275 cases a year of excellent wines. There are olive oil trees, too, over 100 of them, diverse in their points of Mediterranean origin and yielding hundreds of liters of olive oil each year.

So fine are the fruits of this land that the wine is award-winning (the chardonnay has been rated 91 points by Wine Enthusiast; the pinot noir 93 points), and snapped up by local buyers, Terranea Resort among them, along with the olive oil and bounty of fruits and vegetables produced each year. The vineyards, et al., are courtesy of the home’s current owners, who originally hail from Greece and reworked the lands anew.

“There was no landscaping, there was absolutely nothing,” says homeowner Dimitri Bizoumis of the state of the property when he and wife Leah purchased it in 2000. “To create something like this, it doesn’t matter how much money you have. It’s a lifetime process that we did in parts.

” These days, the land stands as a scene plucked from their Mediterranean childhoods, and they revel in the maturity of their planting, completed over the last two decades, which yields an Eden-like catalogue of fruits and vegetables throughout the year. “Everything will be ready for the next buyer,” points out Bizoumis.

The home’s architectural heritage has been sagely maintained, starting from its low-lying, angular exterior, decked mostly in glass and softened by a low-pitched roof and vertical white cladding. Stonework, consisting of gray and beige Palos Verdes stone, reinforces the terra firma atmosphere of the property and is used strategically to clad chimneys and beams on the exterior and interior, as well as to introduce the residence, appearing along the driveway and shaped into a sweeping staircase that leads to the front door.

An interesting feature—a dense stone wall that flows from the exterior entrance of the home and into its foyer—signals the home’s connection to the outdoors. “The house actually probably looks better today than when it was brand new,” remarks Bisignano, giving credit to the current homeowners’ for their careful upgrades and upkeep.

The introduction of the home’s interior is a sun-filled great room with, at its center, a sunken living room with a gently angled ceiling of exposed ridge beam and rafters, and tongue-and-groove roof planks painted soft blue. Walnut floors, softly gleaming and rich in character and color, lend a natural elegance to rooms where little ornamentation is needed so intense are the views. One is treated to a panorama of blue skies, verdant natural landscape and endless ocean, a view that’s forever thanks to the property’s high elevation.

“A mid-century modern in Rolling Hills is extremely rare,” says Bisignano, pointing out that homes located here are, nearly exclusively, traditional ranch or Mediterranean in style.

This residence, designed by Hahn and an architect who worked with him on commercial projects, was constructed to offer up the choicest views at strategic points inside and outside of the home, which spans 6,200 square feet and includes six bedrooms and six baths, along with an abundance of fresh-air spaces. Cherished privacy, too. “I would drive by the property over the years before I bought it,” says Bizoumis, who’s lived in the area since the late-1980s. “As you drive by on the street you can see all the land, but not the house.”

The pool deck is one of many secluded escapes: a spacious area neatly landscaped with lavender and other plants, and flanked with mature, overhanging trees for shade. Framed with decorative stone, the swimming pool is home to a spacious built-in spa, and sports a Mediterranean touch in the form of three jets flowing water from the stone and into the water.

Adjacent to the pool is a roomy outdoor kitchen and dining area with a grand wood-burning oven as its centerpiece. In all, this space calls for sun-splashed, afternoon parties where more is the merrier. Bizoumis recounts the many fundraisers he and his wife have hosted over the years, “where we have 100, 150 people and the guests wander around the property.” Then there’s the intimate gatherings, he points out, “where everybody goes out in the garden and picks their favorite vegetable or fruit, and we come back and cook all together.”

Another inspired spot is an al fresco viewing deck accessible from the great room via an oversized sliding glass panel. Step outside and it feels like one might be at a hilltop resort far away—especially at sunset, surveying the brilliant shift of colors across the ocean and sky. Or at night, when backlit by the glitter of city lights below, the blackness of sky creates a stunning canvas.

“It’s an experience, it’s a lifestyle,” Bizoumis describes life at the top of the hill, likening the property to a piece of artwork, exceedingly rare, “like a beautiful Picasso, or Renoir or Matisse.” He says: “You wake up in the morning, you see the surroundings, you have breakfast from your own fruit—and then you get inspired.” Returning at the end of the day one can retreat into one’s private idyll.

“This house is truly one of the absolute best lots in the city of Rolling Hills, maybe in all of Palos Verdes,” says Gerard Bisignano, who himself grew up in the community. “Not only for its spectacular views, but for 5 acres of nearly all usable land.” The current owners have christened the place Villa Oniero, which means “House of Dreams” and is a fitting descriptor for the ethereal maze of vineyards, gardens and grassy spreads, sunlit and situated on the hillside, with the Pacific Ocean not far away.

Nearby is the sophisticated, airy residence that Ernest Hahn, a master of creating pleasing spaces, meticulously fashioned many years ago for the maximum enjoyment of this majestic slice of Earth—a vision that’s been smartly carried on and expanded by its current owners, and is now ready for its next chapter.



Gerard Bisignano


DRE #01116110

Vista Sotheby’s

International Realty

List Price




First-class amenities, elegant and expansive grounds and unparalleled privacy equal an elevated view of Malibu living, with a French twist.

While many properties assume estate status to project a notion of expansiveness and glamour, few truly deserve the moniker. A true estate denotes a home that ticks every crucial box: breathtaking views and expansive acreage with a beautiful house whose design is at once timeless and contemporary, where gracious public rooms and elegant private quarters are perfectly harmonious.

This property also must support a full range of activities, from tennis to horseback riding, swimming to sunbathing. It must be impeccably landscaped with beautiful gardens that are both a visual and gustatory delight. Of course, location, privacy and accessibility must be accounted for too. The final flourish: that the property standout among its perceived equals, offering that je ne sais quoi that makes it truly memorable. So it is that 3250 Serra Road positions itself as the ideally imagined estate.

Overlooking the Pacific, the estate’s French-inspired chateau lords over nearly 5 acres. Located in Malibu’s prestigious Serra Retreat, and nestled within the hills of lower Malibu Canyon, it is as its name suggests: a true respite from the hustle and bustle of city life with two well-guarded entrances (one on Cross Creek Road, the other off Pacific Coast Highway). An exclusive enclave limited to 100 lots, its winding roads, mature sycamore trees and fragrant eucalyptus groves settle a Zen sensibility over the area that is underscored by the Franciscan monastery at the center of the neighborhood.

While well-hidden from the long lens of paparazzi cameras and casual-day trippers, the location nevertheless offers easy accessibility to Malibu’s natural and man-made charms—its high-end boutiques and specialty shops, well-loved restaurants (Malibu Farm at The Pier is mere moments away), pristine beaches, winding hiking paths, profuse of horse trails and weekly farmers’ market. Such centrality means that even the Palisades, Santa Monica and Venice are only a short and pleasant drive south. Straddling residential sophistication and solitude, this estate enjoys the best of both worlds.

But while location is pivotal to the real estate picture, a home of its echelon demands more. This home exceeds expectations before one arrives at the front door, with the soft golden glow, variegated landscaping, wrought-iron touches, stone fencing and warm wooden window and door frames all exterior elements that speak to southern France. This initial impression is only reinforced inside the main residence, which, despite its palatial 7,814 square feet, is immediately inviting. Rooms here manage that European trick of being at once grand and architecturally well proportioned, never crossing the fine line separating generous from cavernous.

One will be quite keen to welcome a professional chef into the home’s kitchen, which works well for casual cooking and grand entertaining. Designed by master chef Wolfgang Puck, the space is equal parts form and function, working as beautifully as it looks. From carved custom wood cabinetry to the views, the splendor of this behind-the-scenes room matches that which is also seen throughout the rest of the home. A long preparation counter, tasting island, and separate cooking station, along with plenty of square footage for a battery of waiters and prep cooks, will impress even the most veteran catering crew.

Certainly this home is beautifully suited for entertaining, if not the ideal vision of the word, when the wrought-iron gates swing open to usher guests past the home’s security outpost and into a fairytale land of ornate fountains, cascading water features, winding paths, rose gardens, and Monet-inspired lily ponds that conjure up the palaces of French nobility. This is underlined by a 17th century architectural folly, a whimsical feature of only the grandest homes, and the two-story ballroom, punctuated by a sparkling crystal chandelier. Glass pivot doors line the living spaces, capturing awe-inspiring mountain and ocean vistas.

Dazzle guests with a plethora of activities: there’s a six-stall equestrian facility and a riding ring; lighted tennis court with view terrace; Crestron-engineered cinema; resort-style pool with bathhouse; wood-paneled library; and barbecue area, where winding down the day means soaking in the warm glow emanating from the fireplace. No need for a jaunt to the farmers’ market, other than as an excursion—this home’s organic vegetable garden and fruit orchard ensure that the delights of fresh produce are always on the menu. Separate staff quarters, meanwhile, guarantee that every occupant of this home is well pampered.

While this home encourages creating occasion as a frequent exercise, whether hosting the memorable event to a simple get-together, this house was made for whatever the moment. With a glass filled with the last drops of a premium vintage plucked from the climate-controlled wine cellar, and indulged with a view from the master suite’s terrace, it’s clear: amid all this bliss is the sine qua non of luxurious estate living.




Sandro Dazzan 424.249.7040
 and  Cooper Mount 310.351.9002

The Agency

List Price $19,950,000

Palos Verdes Estates Traditional and Au Courant

Palos Verdes Estates
Traditional and
Au Courant

Traditional and au courant design elements are skillfully merged in a welcoming, beautifully finished family home.

With an eye-catching exterior of pale taupe clapboard and speckled brick, the house sports a traditional facade, though abundant midnight-blue trim hints at its modern pedigree. Once inside, one is met with the current-day staples of upmarket home design—from a sunny open floorplan to a thoughtful menagerie of exclusive finishes.

“We talked through the design being something that would be East Coast and elegant, but at the same time, be a bit more California and fresh,” says Erin Zajac of ET2Design, who designed the interior.

Working as a team, along with developer and builder Larry Johnson, architect Buchmann and Edoardo Taroni, also of ET2 Design, who designed the exterior, Zajac planned the finishes while the home was in the process of being built. “Materials are a very important part of how we experience architecture,” says Buchmann, “but often, the materials are applied to the space after it is designed—as an afterthought.”

To that end, there is an outdoor shower, fire pit and built-in barbecue paired with a salt-water pool and spa, making for a space that is equally well-equipped to cope with weekend parties, late-night cocktails, or quieter Sunday mornings. The office, which overlooks the pool, makes work here more appealing, as well. Poised high above neighboring homes, this space enjoys privacy from prying eyes. Go ahead, enjoy an evening swim or a stolen moment before slipping off to bed, which is integral to what continues this sweetest of dreams.

Cloistered behind the northern end of the second floor, and cleverly secluded behind a living room wall, the master bedroom is a secret retreat. Fling open the walnut door to find a true sanctuary, anchored by book-matched stone. Sliding glass doors open the room to the deck and exterior, embracing a picture-perfect view of the landscape that outshines any art. Skylights illuminate a marble and walnut bathroom, whose visual elegance is supported by its luxuries: a steam shower, a soaking tub and double basin sinks. A walk-in closet and a fireplace, meanwhile, complete a picture of sensuousness and rejuvenation.

The execution of the home is a study in meticulous planning. “I bought the previous home and lived in it for three years before I built the new home,” says Johnson, “so I could learn about the neighborhood, and see what house would work and be a beautiful addition to it.

Also, I was able to take my time choosing the people I wanted to collaborate with.” The harmony of the team is evidenced in the successful integration of the home’s modern design aspects with its classic framework. Zajac often uses bold choices, like the glossy, midnight black designer tile in the master bathroom that commingles with pale, oversized floor tiles and veiny gray stone counters.

Or in the kitchen, where a hefty walnut island—a sculpture-like centerpiece topped with glossy stone—complements the room’s light gray cabinetry. There is rustic brick along the walls and framing the fireplace, but done in a clean antique white, versus traditional red. “There’s always this play on classic and traditional that’s balanced by keeping it contemporary,” notes Zajac.

“From the beginning,” says Buchmann, “we were thinking about the materials. Their natural ability and what you can touch and feel as you experience the space.” In the great room, for instance, the home’s central gathering space, there are decorative rafter beams, designed by the architect, and grainy, white-oak floors that bring down-to-earth notes to the room’s soaring white ceilings and elegant wall moulding. “I always want a home that flows extremely well,” points out Johnson. “Which means when you’re living there, it’s very easy to get anywhere you want to go, and there’s a lot of light from every direction.”

Spanning five bedrooms and five-and-a-half bathrooms, the home has a grand scale that is warmed by a near-constant influx of natural light—enabled by Buchmann’s strategic placement of windows, glass doors and skylights.

A nice touch on the second floor is a sunlit catwalk that neatly separates the master suite from the rest of the home. On the main floor, a sliding wall of glass (Kolbe) connects the great room to a spacious, user-friendly outdoor living area. “It’s an incredible house for entertaining because it has this indoor-outdoor feel that takes full advantage of Southern California weather,” says real estate broker Carl Henkel.

On the pool deck, an orange-hued pergola extends the indoors, providing a shaded spot ideal for reading or dining. The rectangular pool is neighbor to a stone-topped bar and a fire pit lounge that’s a perfect place to congregate after dark. Atop a nearby platformed area is a bubbly spa and a sunbathing deck, nicely separated from other areas by its height.

The private, fresh-air living area, meanwhile, is flanked with trees and designed to be accessed from several points in the home. “The design of the home was used to wrap the backyard,” explains Buchmann, who intended it to grant the area maximum seclusion while also strengthening the home’s relationship to the outdoors.

Like the rest of the home, landscaping was meticulously planned. “The goal,” says Taroni, “was to complement the architecture with the combination of an aesthetic value, and the California native landscape palette.” Eager to keep the property consistent with the landscape of Palos Verdes, Taroni planted ornamental grass, a native meadow and fruit trees in the yard, and designed an earthy bluestone pathway that reaches the front door.

A thoughtful touch are the many outdoor vignettes created to be seen and enjoyed from the indoors. “We created viewpoints throughout the house that allow you to look outside at something beautiful,” he explains.

So tailor-made is the home for the local market that it was sold while still under construction. “When the home was put into escrow, it was just sticks, and concrete, and dirt,” points out Henkel, who was sought out by developer Larry Johnson, a friend from high school, to help from the project’s start.

“I found the lot,” he says, “and Larry Johnson did a fantastic job of finding the right people to surround himself with.” Henkel drummed up early support for the home via the MLS and hosted private showings. There was a lot of early interest in the home, and it was on Henkel to convey the rewards of a house that did not yet exist.

In the end, amidst multiple offers the home was purchased by a young family who brought home a new baby two days after moving in, and are excited to entertain and barbecue throughout the year, not to mention be able to take that short jaunt from the kitchen and into the pool. “It’s a remarkable place to raise a family,” points out Henkel, “and that’s what they’ll be doing there.”


Carl Henkel | 310.210.1625 | DRE 01427998

of California Real Estate Alliance

Sold for $3,500,000


pacific palisades home - listed by Amalfi Estates

Architecturally Vibrant Pacific Palisades Home

Architecturally Vibrant
Pacific Palisades Home

Combining proximity to the Westside’s best and mesmerizing ocean views,
this architecturally vibrant Pacific Palisades home is truly divine

Los Angeles is unparalleled when it comes to forging a life that entwines proximity to nature with accessibility to finer pursuits. Perfect weather? Check. Stunning produce? Check. Gorgeous beaches? Check. World-class museums, exquisite shopping and restaurants? Obviously. It stands to reason, then, that the ideal home is one sequestered enough to feel like a private retreat yet within easy driving and walking distance of the desired amenities. Throw in stunning views of the fabled Pacific Coast, and a space created to take advantage of quintessential Southern California indoor-outdoor living designed by an award-winning architect, and this description of a dream becomes reality: This is 234 Monte Grigio.

Tucked into the enclave just south of the Getty Villa and located just up Porto Marina Way, this home is accessible from both the Pacific Coast Highway and Sunset, a boon in these traffic-dense times. Despite its proximity to the casual-cool of Malibu, sophistication of Santa Monica, and small-town feel of the Pacific Palisades, step inside and the outside world disappears.

Seen from the street is an exterior stairway that zig-zags up the façade of the open glass structure’s central portion, grounding the home’s two wings, which appear poised for flight (the northern end, which lifts slightly, practically confirms this initial impression). The sculptural nature of the design reveals architect Colby Mayes’s time working with the iconic Frank Gehry: wood and glass, steel and concrete are perfectly proportionate for a modern house that exudes warmth and welcome.

Once inside and through the home’s main second floor entryway, one enters the central living space. Polished light oak floors and large expanses of sliding glass doors and delicately framed windows work in tandem, bouncing light about. Mayes has untangled the confusion of the great room that has dominated most homes designed in recent years, cleverly assembling a floor plan for the main level that encompasses the benefits of a great room while hurdling past its challenges. The interplay of public and private spaces, light and shadow, create a rhythm that harnesses modern architecture in service of the messy, chaotic realities of life.

For formal entertaining, the living room, dining room and kitchen are primed to be called into action: the trio work together to provide the ideal backdrop for a number of occasions. Before dinner, cocktails in the living room features an atmosphere warmed by a crackling fire, treetop views of the water and the lush central atrium. Pass the chef-prepped hors d’oeuvres then adjourn to the dining room, which is hidden from direct view of the kitchen where discreet culinary orchestrations are accompanied by a 270-degree view of the sun’s farewell, which blares a rainbow of colors into the sky.

Throughout the home glass railings ensure unimpeded views. Open the sliding glass panes and let in cooling ocean breezes while guests, mesmerized by the visual spectacle, are drawn to the balcony. There are few homes to mar a view that spans from the Queen’s Necklace to Point Dume with Catalina visible in the distance.

Beyond the elegant affair, this home is just as suited to handle the informal activities of day-to-day living. Take the large kitchen: playing peekaboo with the home’s more formal rooms and open to the comfortable family room and the lush backyard, it forms a nucleus for togetherness.

This generous space is anchored by an expansive marble-topped island with a long breakfast bar and inset with a microwave, convenient for young kids mastering their independence; a smaller breakfast bar creates a subtle divide between the kitchen and the family room, while Wolf and Sub-Zero appliances and double dishwashers equip the space to manage a crowd. Surely this home should expect one.

To that end, there is an outdoor shower, fire pit and built-in barbecue paired with a salt-water pool and spa, making for a space that is equally well-equipped to cope with weekend parties, late-night cocktails, or quieter Sunday mornings. The office, which overlooks the pool, makes work here more appealing, as well. Poised high above neighboring homes, this space enjoys privacy from prying eyes. Go ahead, enjoy an evening swim or a stolen moment before slipping off to bed, which is integral to what continues this sweetest of dreams.

Cloistered behind the northern end of the second floor, and cleverly secluded behind a living room wall, the master bedroom is a secret retreat. Fling open the walnut door to find a true sanctuary, anchored by book-matched stone. Sliding glass doors open the room to the deck and exterior, embracing a picture-perfect view of the landscape that outshines any art. Skylights illuminate a marble and walnut bathroom, whose visual elegance is supported by its luxuries: a steam shower, a soaking tub and double basin sinks. A walk-in closet and a fireplace, meanwhile, complete a picture of sensuousness and rejuvenation.

pacific palisades home - listed by Amalfi Estates

That peacefulness is also a facet of the serene lower level, which radiates a diffused glow from sunbeams filtered through the home’s central landscaped atrium—koi pond included—that tucks three large en-suite bedroom into its expanse. There’s also a second family room here, as well as a theater, gym, and oversized laundry room complete with a laundry chute and pet spa. Teenaged children and their parents will love the anonymity this level offers.

On clear nights, with stars visible through the thick blanket of the night sky, one envisions ascending the exterior stairs to the third level deck. While marveling at the vista seen from the dining room and magnifying it with a bird’s eye view, one is reminded why Los Angeles is called the City of Angels. Heavenly, indeed


Anthony Marguleas | 310.293.9280

DRE 01173073

of Amalfi Estates

List Price $9,200,000

Monterey-Style Abode for An Easy-Going Seaside Lifestyle

The soulful property at 2960 Via Alvarado in Palos Verdes Estates richly embodies fun-loving character and elegant design. Designed in Monterey style, the playful hilltop abode along lower Lunada Bay is suitable for both entertaining and kicking life into a slower gear, if only for a bit.

Owner and designer of this custom home, Tim Watts embraced the old adage of slowing down and enjoying the journey when he conceptualized this estate. With a multitude of charming outdoor spaces, cozy spots for conversation, and a one of a kind built-in wet bar, Watts put together a social pad with laid-back charisma where at every turn one finds a quaint spot to relax, meditate or just take in the delightful smells of flowers and the sea air.

“I have different spots I spend time in around the house and yard each day,” shares Watts, an artist and builder, as well. Among the myriad leisure locations ideal for contemplation are a gravel-topped garden area with built-in seating and firepit and exotic garden filled with artichokes and grapes.

“What I really like about this home, aside from the incredible character and style of living it evokes, is [that] the view is as panoramic as the houses directly below it on Paseo Del Mar,” shares Realtor Charlie Raine of Ruth and Raine, “but with the slightly higher elevation, you get a depth of view that is unattainable from the ocean front homes.”

Overlooking a quintessential cove high above the Pacific, the five-bedroom, four-bath, 3,714-square-foot home owns protected whitewater ocean vistas of Catalina and all along the coastline. Sunset is especially inviting from this perspective, with views from balconies on both the first and second floors and even from the terraced backyard. Watts even built a turquoise, Tiki-style picnic bench around a stone column on the front patio for dining al fresco or enjoying a “sundowner” when in vacation mode.

Inside, the home is light and bright with tons of wooden casement windows and smoothly plastered walls that reflect light all around the spaces. Particularly well cared for Bori hardwood floors from Africa offer a particular shine while custom wrought iron, designed by Watts, wraps the staircase and dramatic front doors in the entry. Curved archways and gallery alcoves add hacienda-style charm to the home.

Recently renovated, the kitchen features new cabinets in a soft, antiqued blue with a backsplash of shimmering penny tiles reflective of the ocean just outside the windows. A large kitchen island and adjacent oversized breakfast room make morning socializing a delight. Connecting the breakfast room to the game room is a handmade glass sliding door for easy access. The game room includes a built-in bar and an outdoor patio. Of this labor of love, Watt shares, “I hand laid each individual tile in the cloistered ceiling in the bar while my kids sat there . . . doing homework.”

A formal dining room with French doors opening onto a large patio with a fireplace and built-in stone seating, two living areas with outstanding views and a hand-carved fireplace, and a guest bedroom and bathroom, complete the first level of the home. To reach the second floor, which hosts the balance of the bedrooms, one must ascend ergonomically built stairs with skylights above. Of these spaces, the incredible master bedroom suite soars above the ocean with views as far as the eye can see.

The open floor plan seamlessly blends the sleeping area, full-size living area and en-suite bath. This stunning space features architecturally designed vaulted ceilings, a fireplace, and a custom-made shoji-style sliding door with a sheer scrim to slightly shield the oversize tub. The master bath also includes richly designed dual vanities, custom wrought iron sconces and chandeliers hanging from vaulted ceilings with skylights and a large walk-in closet.

Watts made the remaining bedrooms just as special. The two ocean-view bedrooms, which have vaulted ceilings with play lofts for kids (perfect for a reading space, dollhouse or fort), share a large balcony and dual vanity bath. The final bedroom is en-suite, and features a private balcony with outlooks of the beautifully landscaped backyard.

Outside are meandering paths and seating areas trimmed in lush greenery and canopies of trees. Picnic benches and a rope swing add playfulness. Adjacent, a three-car garage partially converted to a large studio with sliding barn doors is a great spot for a home gym or a dining table for entertaining a large group after a fun day at the beach, which is just a 10-minute drive down the hill.

Set in a tranquil setting, this delightful home, which embodies a poignant yet relaxing appeal, whisks one away from the rushes of life. The upscale-cool vibe paired with incredible quality and craftsmanship built into the hilltop haven, make it a treasure with a value of the truest, richest kind.



Bill Ruth | 310.621.2885 | DRE 01047519

Charlie Raine | 310.377.4932 | DRE00982925

and Carissa Wright | 310.987.1829 | DRE 01984832

of Ruth & Raine

List Price $3,895,000

Kauai Estate With Open Air Design

To live at this estate on the North Shore of Kauai would leave a person with just one problem: Where to go when seeking a relaxing vacation? Given that this property is home to an open-air island residence, just over 7,500 square feet in size, and situated on more than 3 acres of manicured land, it’s a thoughtful question—one that becomes even more real after lounging at the vacationland pool area.

Poised on a bluff overlooking sparkling Kahili Bay, on land that is sprinkled with wafting palms and colorful flowers—the picture of Eden on Earth—the home is a thoughtful custom residence created by Kauai big-home builder Rohn Boyd, who’s since transitioned to selling luxury homes full-time on the Garden Island, as Kauai is called for its vivid and unspoiled natural landscape.

“It’s a self-contained resort,” explains Boyd. “I wanted to create a property that you can come and stay at—and not leave if you didn’t want to. You have every amenity here that you could want.”

The pool here is one of the largest residential ones on the island, and a central focus of the property. Snaking along the perimeter of the home, the elegant rock pool, over 100-feet in length, features a swim-up bar where one can lounge over cocktails under the Bali-style thatched roof. Tucked behind one of the waterfalls—there are two—is a peaceful grotto, and nearby is a 45-foot water slide that’s certain to make a child’s eyes widen.

Other thrills come by jumping into the pool from the rocky heights of the highest waterfall, or watching the sunset’s vivid pink, orange and blue hues while soaking in the spa tub. A regal touch to the scene is a reddish bridge, made of ipe wood and with carved railings, that stretches across the pool and links the front entrance gate to the residence itself.

The home’s style, which Boyd describes as “contemporary Hawaiiana,” sports a colorful slate roof and copper gutters, as well as a series of Dickey roofs—a style of double-pitched roof with overhanging eaves that is common to Hawaiian-style properties.

The silhouette of this estate’s roofs, more mildly angled than typical Dickey ones, lends a pleasingly angular look to the residence, and helps delineate different sections of the five-bedroom and six-bathroom home.

The home’s interior lobby is instantly peaceful, and housed in a two-story tower room where one can watch colorful fish glide in and out of the home via a koi pond that extends under the floor and along the home’s exterior.

From the grassy yard, this tower room makes a handsome sight: decked in native coral stone, with the top built in wood and lined with awning windows. Another interesting feature on the home’s exterior is Kauai beach sand, which has been secured across its surface, creating a pale-colored, textured patina that’s also low maintenance.

Throughout the home, a generous number of oversize windows and pocket doors create a direct link to outdoor leisure areas. “Living without walls,” is what Boyd calls it, adding: “It can be pouring rain and you can be sitting inside, loving life.” The finishes Boyd selected for the interior further accentuate the earthy atmosphere of the home.

Floors are laid in either hand-cut quartzite (easy to maintain and incredibly strong) or gleaming Cumaru, an exotic hardwood. Many of the rooms feature vaulted ceilings fashioned from Cambara wood, another tropical hardwood, and in the master closet, closet and drawer windows are lined with semi-opaque shoji (Japanese rice paper).

The property is located in Kauai’s only gated community, Seacliff Plantation, creating additional peace of mind when one is frolicking in the gated estate. Each owner, points out Boyd, also has exclusive rights to a private area called Crater Hill.

“It’s a mesmerizing place to walk up to,” he says. “It has 360-degree views of the ocean and mountains, and leads to Crater Beach, which you can only get to by boat or kayak.” For Boyd’s clients, Kauai is the place to come and escape one’s day to day life. “It’s very peaceful,” he says, and compared to other Hawaiian islands, is relatively undeveloped and uncrowded.

Located on the outskirts of Kilauea, a charming town built around the now-defunct Kilauea sugar plantation, which closed its doors in the early 1970s, the property is less than five minutes by car to the local markets and shops. To reach the exceptional nearby beaches, either Kahili Beach, called Rock Quarry by locals, or Secret Beach, one can cruise to them in minutes via ATV, a common way of getting around.

With the home’s open-air design and abundance of resort-like features, it’s not hard to imagine a family with young kids, or a couple with grandkids, taking over the place, and enjoying countless days of rollicking fun. Nights too.

“At night the house is amazing,” points out Boyd. Nearly 30 tiki torches light up the place, and a menu of custom lighting themes, from party time to romantic, were designed by a lighting pro and available at a button’s press. It’s a dramatic scene, yes, but even without such aids, day or night the island property remains a jasmine-scented natural wonder, one that’s been painstakingly engineered to experience the utmost pleasure in paradise.


Rohn Boyd

eXp Realty

List Price


An Address To Envy In Los Angeles

Located in prime Brentwood, just north of Sunset and west of the 405, this area is considered one of the most prestigious neighborhoods in Los Angeles—and for good reason. It’s at the junction of all that is great and animated in Los Angeles, an exhaustive list that includes Brentwood Village, the Brentwood Country Mart, Montana Avenue, the Getty Center, Brentwood and Riviera Country Clubs, Will Rogers State Park, plus many of the city’s best schools.


Certainly there are many homes that enjoy the prestige of this location. But even the immensely successful desire a home that stands out from the crowd. More than just a place to sleep, one wishes for a home offering privacy and solitude with the ability to frame burgeoning collections of art, wine and furniture, support entertaining and promote the pleasures of individual achievement.

The vision, then, is clear: a beautiful yet completely livable setting that is a constant reminder of just how great accomplishment can be. It’s precisely this discernment that draws one to 12002 Benmore Terrace. Nestled behind lush hedges and secure gates, the home’s wood exterior and clean modern lines immediately make it a star among its neighbors.


Its balanced beauty is welcoming, and its low profile perfectly proportioned to the size of the lot. At once elegant and inviting, the home is the perfect illustration of a home built in the vernacular made famous by the likes of Rudolf Schindler, Charles and Ray Eames and John Lautner, and why Los Angeles was fertile ground for these architectural giants to flourish. A two-car garage and a driveway that can be entered from either side of the home is the first indication that this residence expresses evenness of beauty and function with élan.


The first glimpse of the interior is breathtaking, with its voluminous open floor plan and multi-levels including an uppermost bedroom level, a central main living area, an intimate area perfect for a piano or a drum set, a reading or hobby nook, and a sprawling lower level with generous pool that sparkles in the sunlight.

Sight lines that look out toward the sea, floating staircases, an abundance of natural light streaming through generous door and window openings, and double height rooms that support a dramatic light fixture magnify this impression. Taken as a whole, one senses understated luxury and livable elegance.

A closer inspection of the home confirms that idea. As on the exterior, the wood on the ceilings and built-ins telegraph intimacy and ease while in the kitchen, a large waterfall island with plenty of storage space, dark gray-green Italian cabinetry with soft close hinges, a book-matched Ceasarstone backsplash to the ceiling, and integrated Miele appliances (including its built-in coffee machine) make it sleek and functional.

In the breakfast area, wrap-around floor-to-ceiling windows are spectacular and the view of treetops and canyons, along with outlooks of Catalina and the Pacific Ocean mesmerizes. Surrounded by greenery, with nearby homes deftly hidden from sight, an aura of complete and welcoming solitude infuses this space with a zen-like calm. Just behind the kitchen, perched just outside the entryway from the garage, a temperature-controlled wine cellar and tasting room offers space for over a dozen cases of wine.


But it’s the lush foliage and uncompromising view that’s always at the heart of this home. Upstairs in the master bedroom, a wall of floor-to-ceiling windows puts the kitchen’s vista at the foot of the bed, well positioned to greet one in the morning and lull one to sleep at night.

It’s there in the master bathroom, whose double vanities are framed in dramatic Italian marble, setting the stage for bathing in the freestanding spa tub or indulging a refreshing rinse in the glass-enclosed steam shower. Meanwhile, four additional en-suite bedrooms—one on the upper floor to commandeer as a home office with a bird’s-eye view overlooking the street and the driveway to note various comings and goings—ensure plenty of space for family and friends alike



But of course, it’s against this home’s spectacular entertaining areas that the magnificent backdrop performs its true magic. Inside it is the calm for an evening of cocktails in the living room or the coaxing one needs for a cozy evening in the media room. Outside it is many areas, including the expansive terrace with a zero-edge pool, outdoor marble bar, dining area, and projector-enabled movie screening area that forms the home’s nucleus.

These exterior spaces, which also mean a sweeping rooftop that features an additional bar area, barbecue and outdoor screening area, and lower-level basketball court, settle an air of privacy and seclusion over any festivities. A state-of-the-art home automation system only underscores this peace of mind.

Whether hosting several hundred at a gracious gala, simultaneous parties (one on the downstairs terrace, the other on the roof deck), or enjoying the isolation that this well-designed house bestows, this impeccable address is a movie set for a life of romance and adventure. Perhaps that life is yours—exactly as envisioned.



Ari Shram | 310.280.8854

DRE 01863613

of The Agency

List Price $8,995,000

Hermosa Beach Home Exemplifies Modernist Design

“It’s been fun putting the project together because it’s such a nice piece of architecture,” says tradesman and developer Kent McKeown. “This is the quality of a house you would see on the Strand or a walk street.” He’s talking about a new, view-packed Modernist home he erected along a hillside of 7th Street in Hermosa Beach, just east of Pacific Coast Highway. The home is the aesthetic partner to another home he’s built directly behind it on the double lot, with a separate entrance on 8th Street.

For the project McKeown, a South Bay native and shoring contractor (he owns KLM Engineering), enlisted home designer Daryl Olesinski, whose striking residences are increasingly popping up throughout the Beach Cities and Palos Verdes. Olesinski designed both homes in tandem with Martina Linden, his wife and partner at their design-build firm, O+ L Building Projects.

“We work together on everything,” Olesinski explains. “There isn’t a decision that’s made that I don’t bounce off her, and there’s not a decision she makes that’s not bounced off me.”

“It just had to be right,” says McKeown of the project. It’s the true tradesman’s reflex to execute every detail at the highest level, and his was strong on this undertaking. McKeown acted as general contractor and, in addition to O+ L, for interiors, he brought in West Hollywood’s Paul L’Esperance, whose work can be seen in a slew of high-profile commercial projects, from Greystone Mansion to the Egyptian Theatre, as well as a portfolio of showcase homes throughout the Beach Cities and Los Angeles. A nice touch to the home’s staging are works by local artists that have been curated by McKeown’s stepdaughter, Christine Harris, an art consultant affiliated with the South Bay Artists Collective.

The 7th Street home embodies a central O+ L design principle: To create a residence that naturally corresponds to its land. “We spend a great time on the site, just trying to really learn about it and what it wants . . . on it,” says Olesinski of his and Linder’s process. “To maximize what, where and why it is.” To that end, Olesinski explains, the home was designed to “have a conversation” with the view to the Southwest—a dreamy expanse that covers the perpetually blue-lit Pacific Ocean, along with the curves of Palos Verdes Peninsula.

The home’s uppermost level features everyday gathering spaces (kitchen, dining room and fireplaced living room), designed in an open floor plan. Lots of structural steel was utilized to frame the home, McKeown points out, supporting its high ceilings, large-scale windows and open spaces.

On the top floor, for instance, a wall opens, meshing the indoors with an ocean-air deck—an abundant space not formally figured into the home’s official square footage. Along with the home’s plentiful views, such an outdoor space makes the home live larger than its approximately 3,100 square feet, and host its four bedrooms, four bathrooms and three stories—linked together with an eye-catching horizontal rail system—with ease.

Speaking of views, one would be hard-pressed to find such scenery west of Pacific Coast Highway, McKeown notes. So special was the panorama, when L’Esperance designed the interiors, he took care to make sure it was not compromised. “We watched closely to not have a lot of hanging lights because of the view,” he says. A dining room chandelier was nixed as well.

Contemporary and sleek were design keywords for L’Esperance on this project. “We wanted to have a wow factor but also extremely clean,” he explains. In the kitchen, he utilized a light-hued grainy material, man-made and designed for longevity alongside good looks. “It will really stand the test of time,” offers L’Esperance. Setting the stage in the master bathroom is a mosaic of tile, a glossy Ann Sacks mosaic among them.

“It’s a real show-stopper,” he says of the room. “It’s more like a spa because you can walk in and out of this huge shower. It’s an open but private experience.” The master bathroom continues Olesinski’s dialogue with the view. Situated on the home’s southwest corner, a strategic placement of windows—most of them spanning floor to ceiling—let in a kaleidoscope of natural hues and skyscapes throughout the day and evening.

“We favor a very warm and welcoming Modernism,” says Olesinski of he and Linden’s overall aesthetic. It’s an approach this project displays to the max. On the exterior, crisp geometric shapes, such as a flat overhanging roof that gives the appearance of a concrete slab, are wrapped in glass and softened with earthy materials: in this case, exterior siding made of engineered cedar, preferred to keep the soft wood locked in place, and topped with an Enviro stain to protect the wood and enhance its tones.

Desert landscaping and a palm tree along the curbside are additional welcome notes, as is a wide staircase that leads to the front door. “It’s definitely something that you can be proud of,” says McKeown of the finished product.

Having worked for famed South Bay Modernist Pat Killen at his firm, Studio 9one2, for a few years earlier in his career, Olesinski is more than adept at putting together the elements to make a standout California beachside home, one that is striking while utterly livable, with this residence yet another example.

“We truly and firmly believe that a good building will improve peoples’ lives,” Olesinski says of his and Linden’s design mission. “Our goal is that when we finish a building, the owners can’t possibly fathom living anywhere else.”



Brett Zebrowski


DRE 01313739

Palm Realty Boutique

List Price $2,800,000


A Home That Hits Every High Note

Montana Avenue is justifiably thought one of the most enticing commercial streets in Santa Monica—and indeed, in the city of Los Angeles. Stretching from Brentwood toward the beach, just behind the Brentwood Country Club, it offers a pleasing mix of coffee shops and fast-casual eateries, banks and pharmacies, clothing stores and yoga spots, beauty salons and more.

For this, Montana Avenue is recognized as offering a small-town feel in the big city. Little wonder, then, that the homes within walking distance of this street are high on the list of the most coveted in Los Angeles. If the realtor’s mantra is location, location, location, then the home at 734 18th Street is already a dream, one designed by Ken Ungar, who is listed on Luxe Magazine’s 2019 Gold List, recently designed a home for actress Jennifer Garner and is well-versed in the art of creating luxury residences. Solar-powered, a bonus in increasingly energy-conscious California, the home is surrounded by mature trees and located on the sunny, west side of the street, with a wide apron that welcomes four cars (two inside, two outside).

Even before stepping through the large glass front door one is intrigued—a curiosity that the interior more than satisfies. White oak plank floors highlight the easy flow of the floor plan, from the front door to the back of the house. High ceilings, skylights and plenty of windows flood the interior with natural light. Fleetwood doors fully open the family room to the exterior, seamlessly merging indoors and out, in celebration of a lifestyle that makes Southern California the envy of the world. Yet despite its decidedly modern architecture, the home has the scale and intimacy more characteristic of a traditional home.

Perhaps it is the wood accents carried over from the exterior. From the walnut accent wall in the family room, to the custom-crafted dark wood cabinetry in the large gourmet kitchen, to the wall inset with a temperature-controlled Sub-Zero wine fridge that deftly divides the kitchen from the dining room, these features suffuse the home with immediate warmth. The dividing wall also serves another purpose: to bestow a home’s oft-overlooked ability to conform to the many needs of a modern family’s busy and successful life.

Most days will likely center around the rear of the house: children can commandeer the backyard (there’s plans and renderings—and plenty of room—for a pool just outside the kitchen’s generous windows) while their parents relax in the family room. As meal time nears, the children could drift inside, watching television or playing video games while dinner is prepared in a kitchen whose elegance is elevated by a pair of Tom Dixon light fixtures hanging over countertops made from white matte Dekton, a durable porcelain material usually used outdoors that resists staining and chipping. A coordinating, book-matched backsplash, top-of-the-line Miele appliances, including a convection oven and built-in coffee station, and a large butler’s pantry make even the simplest tasks a pleasure.

Casual meals can take place around the table in the breakfast nook or at the spacious island. On warmer evenings, the backyard is a particularly pleasing option: with a covered living space and kitchen with a 48-inch DCS barbecue, a rotisserie and a substantial island designate this space as the home’s outdoor entertaining area. For more formal occasions—a business dinner or cocktail party—the proper living room pairs with the dining room to offer the perfect setting while the mess of food preparation—or the balletic movements of a private chef—are hidden away. An additional wine display and storage tucked under the nearby stairs capture the remainder of one’s wine collection behind glass, ensuring that when dinner demands another bottle be opened, the conversation will continue without interruption.

While the staircase that ascends to the second floor suggests a floating design, its glass railing provides the safety that parents with younger children will appreciate. In addition to the four en-suite bedrooms upstairs, a den that orchestrates the three junior rooms into a unified whole, offering the children their own living area that can morph from playroom to homework area and hangout spot as they mature.

With its building plans approved prior to the change in the ordinance that reduced the ratio of home size to lot size by 20 percent, these rooms are generous with well-appointed bathrooms, walk-in closets and floor-to-ceiling windows. A window seat in one room, a balcony in another, a private hallway leading to a third—each space has a unique character sure to suit that of each occupant.

The master suite, overlooking the backyard, is certainly deserving of the term. Sparkling Tom Dixon fixtures that hang on either side of the bed are jewelry to the sumptuous trio of spaces—the bedroom, bathroom, and balcony—that make up a luxurious retreat designed for rejuvenation, relaxation and the reconnection for a couple’s harmonious existence. Functionally, two custom closets, with plenty of storage, two toilet rooms, two sinks and a well-lit makeup area, provide copious space to accommodate the chaos of busy early mornings.

The home is “…just the right blend of hard and soft,” concludes real estate agent John Hathorn, “with thoughtful attention to details that give it a layer of luxury that you can sense. And then there’s the scale and the walkability. I could go on. It’s just a really livable, wonderful home.”



John Hathorn | 310.924.4014
DRE 00960182 | Pence Hathorn Silver | Compass

List Price $6,895,000

A Jewel-Like Retreat From A Bustling World

It was Le Corbusier who said: “Light creates ambiance and feel of a place, as well as the expression of structure.” Set along a coveted Manhattan Beach walk street, a minute’s walk to the ocean and under 10 minutes from downtown, this inviting Modernist home—a bounty of cheerful living spaces spread among two structures—is a well-executed example of this idea.

A standout feature of the property is a majestic rooftop deck spanning nearly 1,000 square feet. “I can’t remember when I’ve seen a rooftop deck this large,” says real estate agent John Corrales, whose firm specializes in Beach Cities coastal properties.

The home’s introduction is an inviting one: an impeccable front yard with a tidy green lawn and desert landscaping. This, along with rustic wood planters and a lounge area provide earthy contrast to the home’s angular, largely glass front exterior. Designed to maximize the exterior environment from the inside, the ground floor conjoins with the outdoors via a sliding glass wall, turning the place into an ideal spot to while away an afternoon or host a neighborhood party.

Indoors, the home’s sunny, clean lines are ornamented with high-end finishes. Floors throughout are French white oak hardwood, adding texture to unfussy white rooms. Baseboard and molding are used sparingly and with purpose, mainly to delineate distinct living areas in an otherwise open floor plan. Hard to miss on the first floor is the staircase, a sculptural centerpiece made of chunky wood steps and subtly tinted glass railings, held in place with a single white beam support.

Special care has been taken in the kitchen, which features a waterfall-design island made of Quartzforms (a non-toxic quartz material lauded for its resiliency). The island’s veined design—which includes black, gray and white tones—visually brings together the room’s glossy white cabinetry, oversized Ann Sacks backsplash tile and an 8-burner Miele range outfitted in stainless steel and black. Neatly tucked behind custom cabinetry, giving the kitchen a sleek, gallery-like look, are appliances such as a built-in Thermador refrigerator, Bosch dishwasher and U-Line wine cooler.

Per the homeowner, both outdoor space and capitalizing on the beachside environment were central to the design of the property. A large skylight in the midst of the home brings in additional natural light, and a fresh-air courtyard at the rear of the home, adjacent to the living room and kitchen, is a unique touch that allows one to reach the secondary structure with ease, a place that houses the garage as well as sun-filled guest quarters.

To have a separate space for guests—complete with a balcony and a living room—is an unexpected luxury one might expect in a larger home. However, Corrales says, “There are people who don’t want a 4,500-square-foot home. A lot of times we get people who walk into our office and say, ‘We don’t want one of those mansions. We just want a beach home, but it would be nice to have guest quarters, too.’”

With four bedrooms and four bathrooms in total, the home’s thoughtful design spans 2,709 square feet, yet feels more spacious due to the scale of rooms and a near-constant connection to the outdoors. The second floor is home to the master suite—an uplifting space decked with awning windows and ocean views—that includes a gleaming white bathroom and a walk-in closet. Nearby is an additional bedroom, as well as a spacious family room with enough room to double as a play space for kids or a quiet study.

The home’s abundance of blue-sky views and ocean air is attributed to the skillful floor plan and the placement of windows, both of which make the most of the home’s great location. “Finding a home on the 100 block that’s on the north side, and south facing, is so difficult,” points out Corrales. Inventory is rare, and the allure has much to do with the area’s proximity to the ocean, optimum Pacific views and natural light. “You could take out all of the lights in the home,” notes Corrales, “and live in the sunlight and moonlight.”

Stepping onto the rooftop deck, one enters a jewel-like retreat from a bustling world. A place with 180-degree ocean views and possibilities galore, from watching the sunset and gazing at stars to enjoying nightly dinners and hosting bashes for over a hundred year-round.

“There are nine layers of protection on the deck—it’s bulletproof,” Corrales says of the construction, which features floors of glossy Brazilian ipe wood, chosen for its beauty and resiliency. Engineering includes heating, a kitchen and two different lighting systems to dial in the ambiance of one’s choosing.

There is a well-designed collection of distinct spaces, from a shaded sitting area and a fire-pit lounge to a bar area and a kitchen-side dining area. Not to miss is a bubbling spa tub, smartly equipped with an ozone system to purify and reduce maintenance.

“It’s almost like there are two living areas,” concludes Corrales. “Inside the house—and up on the deck.” It’s the success of this property’s design that, within a manageable footprint, the most desired beach house items have been incorporated: a light-filled floor plan promoting easy and elegant living; separate quarters for the comfort of guests; and perhaps best of all, a well-crafted sprawl atop the rooftop, expressed in sky and ocean, and designed solely for luxurious enjoyment.


John Corrales 310.346.3332 DRE# 01263687
and  Lauren Forbes 310.901.8512 DRE# 01295248


List Price $7,985,000


Picture-Perfect Moments In The Santa Monica Mountains

It’s true that Los Angeles County offers many beautiful homes within its vast expanse. But for the discerning buyer, the home with an ideal location and top-notch amenities is the ultimate luxury—and increasingly rare. More than just having opulent materials, the perfect home embodies beauty, flexibility, convenience and ease.

It must be within driving distance of work and the best that the city has to offer, from its multi-star restaurants and world-class museums to its beautiful beaches and wild hills. For frequent travelers, a swift commute to the airport is a necessity too.

It should work for entertaining on a grand scale yet not be overwhelming as a setting for daily life. Perks, such as a butler’s pantry, a pool and spa, a tennis court, housekeeper’s quarters, and parking for at least three cars, are a given; and, it must be private and secluded.

If security is a prime concern, a gated community joins the list of non-negotiables. Weighed against this list of criteria, the inventory of available properties dwindles to a small trickle. Throw in the desire for a stunning view and only a handful of homes remain. Of these, 1458 Bienveneda Avenue is a standout.

“We’ve been here for 25 years,” says the home’s current owner who has watched her children grow from toddlers into adulthood within its walls, “and I couldn’t have imagined any place more perfect.” Located in the desirable Ridgeview Country Estates in Pacific Palisades, just west and north of the new Palisades Village, the home is situated close to the top of a winding road whose every swooping turn renders the stress of daily living a distant memory.

Passing a row of tall cypress trees to the west and a vineyard on the right, the vista conjures up memories of the Italian countryside. Finally comes the exclusive gated community, one of a few in the area, including only 40 homes, each custom built, with an entryway to community staffed, round-the-clock guards.

With the criteria of location met, attention turns to the home itself. The three-story estate does not disappoint. Reminiscent of a Georgian manor, with its multiple columns and a white clapboard exterior punctuated by jet-black shutters, its classic proportions exude both beauty and majesty.

Lush landscaping and a curved driveway soften its grandeur, rendering it welcoming and gracious, qualities that are mirrored in the home’s well-designed interior. Here’s the background for the full spectrum of life’s events. From the casual and intimate to the formal and public, the residence morphs to host them all.

It begins with the generous entryway, underscored by the first floor’s 14-foot-high ceilings. The large foyer and hallway embrace the home’s formal rooms—a living room, spacious dining room, family room and bar—orchestrating them in a dance between unity and autonomy.

The built-in bar is the natural gathering place for get-togethers with close friends; for larger events, designate this space as a drink station, where hired bartenders shake up a bevy of cocktails starring fruit, including apples, oranges and grapefruits, plucked from the estate’s trees. Choose the dining room for a formal sit-down business dinner for a baker’s dozen; for a casual lunch, steer them to the patio’s built-in island.

Scatter large round tables across the back lawn for a charity event or a wedding; set it up with a bouncy house for a children’s birthday. The large kitchen, which corrals both a breakfast nook and a casual seating area, puts a chef and team within earshot of both indoor and outdoor guests, while its large windows offer discrete vantage points from which to monitor the backyard’s activities while a door here enables direct access.

A back staircase, a suite for live-in assistance and a laundry area aid in the smooth and discrete running of a busy household. An additional full-bath, with access to the backyard (the home’s alarm system can be programmed to restrict entry to only this area), enables guests a private place to change and shower.

Large glass-paned doors ensure an easy flow to the home’s expansive backyard. With its surfeit of country club-quality facilities, this is the spot that, taking full advantage of Southern California’s idyllic weather, is destined to become the centerpiece of everyday life.

There’s the plush built-in seating area around the fire pit; a pool sited to rival that of any five-star hotel; and an oversized tennis court that’s been vetted by the some of the state’s top players. (It’s been used as the home court for many of The Riviera Country Club’s most lauded coaches and a junior Maria Sharapova spent time training here.)

Fitted with basketball hoops, it can easily double as the location for weekly pick-up game, as well. With high hedges on two sides and the majestic backdrop of the Santa Monica mountain range as the dramatic scenery to the sprawling 2-acre lot, the treasured and yet often unobtainable gift of privacy is a given here.


From the solitude of morning laps in the pool to afternoon tennis lessons to late nights that end around the fire pit, enjoying bottles brought back from France (a cool room keeps them at their peak, though oenophiles can easily outfit it with a temperature-controlled system), the luxury of solitude underscores the peace and quiet that permeates this home. For indoor activities, look to the immense top floor.

In addition to 1,700-square-feet of storage, which might easily accommodate plenty of sports equipment and holiday decorations, the open plan space also can support a home theater, gaming area, playroom, or a home gym, with a staircase near the master encouraging frequent use.

Seek solitude on the home’s quiet second floor whose en-suite bedrooms enjoy that view described above from the quartet of private balconies that extend along the entire back of the house. Large closets, generous bathrooms and plenty of well-designed built-ins render each room a self-contained sanctuary.

This idea is magnified in the master suite. Waking to hilltop views with nary another home within sight, it’s not hard to imagine oneself in some faraway retreat. This is a Los Angeles few experience. They call it living the dream.


Anthony Marguleas

Amalfi Estates


List Price $9,125,000

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