The Sand Section west of Highland Avenue, south of Manhattan Beach Boulevard, presents an incomparable lifestyle opportunity for residents where one can bask in the sun beachside, yet on enough of a hill for more privacy and stupendous views.
Stretching 90 feet north to south along Highland, this property captures heart-stopping scenes from bookend balconies. To the north, one can see to Malibu and beyond, and, from the multiple south facing decks, enchanting vistas of Catalina and Palos Verdes. Couple beach proximity with walkability to village-like downtown Manhattan Beach and all it offers, and 235 4th Street just might have it all.
This brilliant modern home emanates warmth and character from the exterior forward, with vertical wood trimming and a mix of metal and glass details that accent clean lines. Entering the home through its dramatic foyer is as welcoming an experience as if arriving at a luxury resort featuring a soft palette of natural colors and textures.
A mix of concrete, wood, and bronze run steadily through the property yet there are elements of surprise in each space: tiles imitating wood, vertical stacked stone, live edge wood details, and metal counters posing as lacquered wood. Meanwhile, glints of light patterns from custom-designed fixtures, bottom-lit cabinetry, and back-lit mirrors foster an overall relaxing ambiance.
“I wanted everything to have an organic feel that is warm and welcoming,” explains Realtor and interior designer for the property, Cindy Shearin of The Shearin Group.
Well known in the South Bay, Shearin hand-selected each component in the residence. Echoing philosophies of Frank Lloyd Wright, she was steadfast in bringing the outdoors in via Fleetwood doors and calculating locations for glass, mirrors, and windows to reflect light, all while mixing metals, wood, and glass to create something radiant and fresh. Also throughout are wide plank French Oak floors and butterfly-cut walnut cabinets and doors that pop against the monochromatic pale walls and ceilings.
Likewise, are the use of beautifully executed built-ins throughout the home. Shearin feels strongly that a home should be designed with an abundance of storage but that those storage areas must complement, not overwhelm the spaces.
At the entrance of the home, a large flex space that Shearin calls “the beach room” spills out onto the front yard via glass Fleetwood doors. Here, party guests might mingle around the striking wet bar while warming up near the contemporary cement fireplace. Hosting a Super Bowl or Fourth of July party, or simply playing pool with family and friends in this space makes for endless indoor-outdoor fun.
Just under 4,000 square feet, the home features four spacious bedroom suites, two powder rooms, and multiple flex spaces. “We decided to stay with four bedrooms to make them generous in size instead of just cramming in a fifth bedroom,” explains Shearin. The large master suite is incredibly inviting; elongated and both charming and comfortable, the space includes an architectural feature wall that cleverly disguises a built-in changing or grooming area. Masculine touches, like leather drawer-pulls on floating built-ins play well flanked against the vertically stacked rough-cut stone fireplace.
Here and throughout the entire home, floating cabinets appear almost weightless. The luxurious master bath, with stingray textured floor tiles, beckons one to rejuvenate in the soaker tub or steam shower. Layers of texture and light give dimension to the minimalistic design details in the bathrooms, like back-lit mirrors and textured tiles with angulation.
“All of the components we used are top-of-the-line—Dornbracht, Watermark, and Waterstone fixtures and Kallista vanities,” explains Shearin. Contemporary components from the bronze or cement sinks to the painted metal cabinets all yield a subtle yet artistic feel.
A work of art in itself, the home’s dramatic, centrally located stairs float beautifully between its four floors with a massive pendant light commanding the space above. This amazing source of illumination was created by Milan-based Argentinian designer Franco Gomez-Paz. The bulbous, almost theatrical, design inspired the balance of the organically designed fixtures throughout the residence.
The top floor hosts the main living areas including the delightfully modern kitchen, which features bold espresso walnut cabinets accompanied by a mix of black and stainless Miele appliances. Meanwhile, a Cambria quartz kitchen island, featuring waterfall edging, is complemented by a walnut eat-in bar… an inspired layout.
Opposite the kitchen is a large dining area that will comfortably accommodate up to 10 guests. Also on this floor is a relaxed family room, with glass doors opening up to a large north facing balcony. Here, one can dine al fresco on the outdoor dining table with a meal grilled on the built-in barbecue. The dining area flows effortlessly into an oversized living room featuring a fireplace and floating walnut cabinet.
The sophisticated living room opens onto a tremendous balcony that overlooks one of the most desirable walk streets in Manhattan Beach. From this deck, one can enjoy gazing at the Pacific Ocean and much of Palos Verdes. This space includes an abundance of neutral-toned floating cabinets and a stacked marble fireplace, as well as the final stop for the residential elevator. The rooms are surrounded by black metal-framed Fleetwood windows that allow natural light to pour into the home.
The bottom floor possesses a nice flex space, perfect for a workout area or office, while just above, on the entry level, is a three-car garage with a modern metal-framed glass garage door. Discreetly tucked away here is the Lifesource Water Filtration system with descaler, a Beach Cities’ necessity.
Rare it is for a Sand Section home to claim a yard but the topography of this lot allows for a flat grassy front and side yard, supplying added space for kids, or a pet, to run and play. In addition, it results in a unique ground floor main entry and a large flat patio area that is perfect for entertaining or simply relaxing and enjoying the sunset. Top it all off with just what every beach house needs—an outdoor shower to rinse off after a surf—and this home truly has it all: grace, convenience, and stunning views.
CINDY SHEARIN, THE SHEARIN GROUP
OF STRAND HILL | CHRISTIE’S INTERNATIONAL REAL ESTATE
PHOTOGRAPHS BY LINDA COTTER