California

Sophisticated Masterpiece

A luxurious home, located on one of Brentwood’s premier streets and balancing state-of-the-art technology with Old-World quality craftsmanship, offers elegant, inviting and comfortable living

Written by Abigail Stone | Photography Courtesy of Paul Jonason

Presented by: Santiago Arana, The Agency

List Price: $30,000,000

Brentwood, which runs as far south as Wilshire Boulevard, is ideally situated to enjoy the creme de la creme of Los Angeles. Here, you’ll find some of the city’s best public and private schools, the popular Brentwood Country Club, dozens of fine restaurants (where regulars quickly become family) and plenty of trendy boutiques. With the 405 on its eastern border and the 10 on its southern border, the entire city is within easy driving distance of almost everything.

In fact, for many, Brentwood is the very definition of living well in Los Angeles. Within this enclave, the streets north of Sunset that wind up through the Santa Monica Mountains are the setting for many of the area’s most coveted properties. Of these is a lower Tigertail address considered among the most prestigious. It’s here that Santiago Arana and David Herskowitz of Cutting Edge Development, Inc. created one of the most vibrant homes currently on the market.

Pooling their combined experience in the luxury home market, Arana (who has the distinction of being named the premier agent west of the 405, fourth in California, and 11th in the country by The Wall Street Journal, as well as an elite top agent five years in a row by both The Hollywood Reporter and Variety) and Herskowitz (who has built homes all over the area, including that of E! host Giuliana Rancic and her husband Bill) incorporated everything one might wish for in a new build.

From quality materials and craftsmanship to five-star amenities, like a 10-car garage, pool, roof deck, elevator, front and back staircase, and service entrance, this eight-bedroom and 11-bath house easily tips over the line from outright beautiful to downright breathtaking.

Of course, a great home begins with a great location. Perched above nearby houses and accessible via a long majestic driveway, the home offers stunning, unobstructed views from each of its three levels.

Here, sight lines to the ocean and Catalina. There, an outlook of Downtown L.A. and Century City’s glittering towers. Every space—from the expansive roof deck, to the lushly landscaped backyard, to the bedrooms, to the courtyard at the top of the driveway— seems to frame a view tailor-made for sharing on Instagram.

“From quality materials and craftsmanship to five-star amenities … this eight-bedroom and 11-bath house easily tips over the line from outright beautiful to downright breathtaking.”

A home of this magnitude is often the setting for lavish parties, so Arana and Herskowitz have designed it with grand and frequent entertaining in mind, from casual parties to black-tie events. You might welcome guests at the front door and send them upstairs to the roof deck via the home’s elevator to enjoy aperitifs while the sun struts its daily drama; then, when its descent into the Pacific is complete, direct them down to the dining room for a sophisticated, chef-prepared supper.

The kitchen is outfitted with everything a professional might need to serve up a sumptuous feast, including two Sub-Zero refrigerators, multiple dishwashers and a capacious marble island, ideal for rolling out pastries. No worries if guests linger over a course. Warming ovens and an entire walk-in refrigerator area in the pantry ensure that every morsel is maintained at the ideal temperature. A wine cellar holds over 140 bottles and a butler’s pantry keeps behind-the-scenes preparations hidden from view.

If informal entertaining is on the calendar, consider an afternoon barbecue by the pool. There’s plenty of room for lounging on the large lawn and enjoying the afternoon rays. Sun-shy guests can escape the heat and still feel a part of the party, hanging out in the den that abuts the exterior. Later, when most of the guests have said their good-byes and only the inner circle remains, invite them downstairs for a cocktail.

A full bar is the centerpiece of the lower entertainment level. The moniker “game room” seems too diminutive for this expansive space, while “recreation room” seems too archaic a term to christen an area that boasts not only a state-of-the-art gaming system with a larger-than-life monitor, but also a ventilated cigar room; screening room; sauna, steam and massage room; gym; and more than enough TVs for watching multiple games at once.

Thoughtfully, Arana and Herskowitz have even provided a full-size regulation pool table. A laundry room, complete with two washers, two dryers and a pet bath, as well as two fully finished suites, ideal for live-in assistance, makes up the rest of this floor.

The third floor houses the bedrooms, including the spectacular master suite. There are few luxury hotel rooms in the world that can rival its amenities.

A fireplace, sitting area and vast deck that mimics the sweeping view of the ocean and downtown seen from the main floor are expected. What’s not: his and her dressing and powder room areas. His, which includes a spacious steam shower, also features abundant room for an extensive sneaker collection and sports equipment, as well as a full year’s worth of both casual and formal clothing.

Her quarters are even more generous. A freestanding spa tub sets the tone, harkening back to a time when getting dressed was a lesson in self-care. Smart glass windows, which frost at the touch of a button, offer an extra note of privacy during morning ministrations while a built-in vanity and a closet rivaling the finest boutique in Beverly Hills astounds. Created by Häfele, the foremost name in closet design, it includes sophisticated details from cold storage for furs to soft close drawers and closet lifts.

In a house of this caliber, where even the most mundane details have been created with meticulous care, such luxury is a given. You expect the best in life. Why should you expect anything less in your home?

Builder confidence is up, home prices continue to rise, U.S. hits record levels

According to the most recent Case-Shiller Home Price Index, home prices hit another all time high in June, increasing 5.8% year-over-year. The index, which covers all nine U.S. census divisions, established a new peak for the seventh consecutive month. Although home prices were generally expected to begin cooling by now, don’t bet on a home price reversal just yet. The National Index reached a new high of 192.60, up from last month’s peak high of 190.61 and Los Angeles had the highest index reading at 263.57.

“The trend of increasing home prices is continuing,” says David M. Blitzer, Managing Director and Chairman of the Index Committee at S&P Dow Jones Indices. “Price increases are supported by a tight housing market. Both the number of homes for sale and the number of days a house is on the market have declined for four to five years. Currently the months supply of existing homes for sale is low, at 4.2 months. In addition, housing starts remain below their pre-financial crisis peak, as new home sales have not recovered as fast as existing home sales. Given current economic conditions and the tight housing market, an immediate reversal in home price trends appears unlikely.”

In other housing related news, U.S. consumer confidence surged to a five-month high in August as households grew increasingly optimistic about the labor market and continued home price appreciation. The conference board said its consumer confidence index increased to a 122.9 this month from 120.0 in July. That was the strongest reading since March when the index hit a 16-year high of 124.9, (August was also the second highest reading since 2000.)

“Despite a daily dose of worrying headlines, consumers still have plenty to be confident about right now. Home prices are rising, stocks are just off record highs and the labor market is churning out jobs,” said Robert Kavcic, a senior economist at BMO Capital Markets in Toronto. “That should continue to support solid consumer spending growth through the rest of the year.”

Finally, sales of existing homes which include single-family, townhouses, condos, and cooperative apartments slipped 1.3% from their June level to a seasonally adjusted annual rate of 5.44 million units, the lowest sales rate thus far in 2017, according to a report released by the National Association of Realtors, (NAR.) Single-family home sales decreased 0.8% in June and were 1.7% above June 2016, while the median existing home price for all housing types was $258,300, up 6.2% from $243,200 in July 2016.

Lawrence Yun, NAR chief economist stated, “Home prices are still rising above incomes and way too fast in many markets. Realtors continue to say prospective buyers are frustrated by how quickly prices are rising for the minimal selection of homes that fit buyers’ budget and wish list. Contract activity has mostly trended downward since February and ultimately put a large dent on closings last month.”

Crafted, by Hand

Founder of the California-based heritage brand that bears her name, legendary ceramist Edith Heath helped reinvent the wheel

Written by Jenn Thornton

Edith Heath was nothing if not exceedingly true to form. A native Midwesterner raised during the Great Depression, she was much shaped by the era. Tough, frugal, creative, resourceful—all are truths that describe the pioneering industrial artist. Edith enrolled in her first ceramics course at the Art Institute of Chicago a trained art teacher. Taken by the clay, she fell seriously for ceramics upon seeing the work of acclaimed Native American potter Maria Martinez in the early 1940s. Admired of the Bauhaus school, Edith studied with some formidable modernist artists, including Laszlo Moholy-Nagy, whom she worked alongside at a Federal Art Project-sponsored summer camp. There she met her future husband, Brian Heath.

Running with a broad-minded crowd, “The Heaths enjoyed a creative, bohemian lifestyle,” says Tung Chiang, San Francisco studio director at Heath Ceramics. “Edith soaked up progressive social ideals from artists and intellectuals of her time, and she loved being surrounded by creativity.”

The artistically inclined Edith was, however, adamantly practical, approaching her work with a prudent and composed economy. Early on, Chiang says, “Edith hand-threw all her first pieces, developing her own minimalist aesthetic that focused on simplicity of form.” Predisposed to efficiency, Edith abhorred waste; her work, which displayed sympathy for human scale and environmental sensitivity, may have appeared spartan, but her imagination was acutely fertile. She was a prolific thinker whose wheels were always turning.

In using design to solve problems, Edith was equally a scientist, and when she pushed the UC Berkeley School to create a yearlong course on ceramics chemistry, they did. Among the Heaths’ quick, studied, economical solutions was a jerry-rigged potter’s wheel that used an old treadle-powered sewing machine in their San Francisco home—something of a laboratory in those years. Edith had, after all, converted the abode’s basement laundry room into a studio with two kilns.

In 1944, Edith’s one-woman ceramic exhibition in San Francisco’s Legion of Honor garnered the attention of a buyer from Gump’s department store. Commissioned to make the retailer’s hand-thrown dinnerware, she moved into a Gump’s-sponsored studio with all the equipment she needed, rock-bottom rent and carte blanche to make whatever she wanted.

In 1948, foreseeing expansion, the Heaths founded Heath Ceramics in Sausalito, where they eventually opened a factory. Processes advanced, becoming mechanized with time, but the product continued to reflect Edith’s artisan ethos. “Edith wanted the materials to speak for themselves, to show off their natural properties,” explains Chiang. “She believed that the materials should tell the story. You have to accept the character of the clay/glaze and yield to that.” Her use of single kiln firing at a lower, atypical temperature was transformative, conserving energy and ensuring durability.

One assumes that Edith’s gift with utility, the sheer democracy of her product, is what attracted one of her first important collaborators, Frank Lloyd Wright. The great architect “had a preference for Heath dinnerware in his projects,” says Chiang. General Electric was another significant client. Many of Edith’s own original pieces are a part of the permanent collections of MoMA and LACMA. And, the exterior of the Norton Simon Museum of Art in Pasadena is clad in Heath tile, which earned Edith the prestigious AIA Industrial Arts Medal, the first non-architect to be so honored.

Today, with 200 employees, two factories and four showrooms, including one in L.A, Heath Ceramics is still family-owned (only by a different family, Robin Petravic and Catherine Bailey) and run with the Heaths’ original values. “As a business owner, a form giver, and a scientist, she made it look easy when it wasn’t,” says Chiang. “Edith became a defining voice of twentieth-century American design and left us with a gift that’s enjoyed by generations past, present, and future.” One made to endure.

HeathCeramics.com

Private Paradise

Located in one of the most exclusive gated communities in Beverly Hills, this elegant, secure estate defines the pinnacle of privilege

Written by Abigail Stone | Photography Courtesy of Lucas Cichon and Nick Springett

Presented by Timothy Di Prizito and Joyce Rey, Coldwell Banker Global Luxury and Mauricio Umansky, The Agency

72beverlyparkbh.com 

List Price: $35,555,000

Unlike other cities, Los Angeles does not reveal its secrets to the casual visitor. The best parts of the city—marquee restaurants, top shops—are hidden from easy view. The same is true of the best homes. This is certainly true of Beverly Hills. The city that tourists know about, the one at which they gawk and visit, is only the tip of the iceberg. The creme de la creme of the city’s properties are a well-kept secret. Long winding roads and gates keep all but invited guests at bay, with one of the best addresses in Beverly Hills only known to a few.

Beverly Park, well-concealed in the hills above Beverly Hills, although an easy drive from the center of town, is not only a world unto itself, it’s a world unlike any other, exclusive as they come. Created to evoke the legendary properties of the past, the 100-acre neighborhood boasts a rarefied group of famous residents, including Sumner Redstone, Mike Medavoy, Denzel Washington and Mark Wahlberg.

It’s here that you’ll find 72 Beverly Park. Located in the northern part of the gated and secure community, behind tall, mature hedges, the house is well-hidden, with little gleaned from the road. The house truly stuns. Designed by Richard Landry, who has created homes for Gisele Bundchen and Tom Brady, Wayne Gretzky, Eddie Murphy, Rod Stewart and Michael Jackson, among others, and appears regularly on Architectural Digest’s annual list of top designers and architects, the flawless 20,000-square-foot contemporary is the centerpiece of an astoundingly large, flat and beautifully landscaped 6.78 acre parcel.

Commanding astonishing views across green hillsides and the bustling city below, the sprawling property seems to extend forever, neighbors veiled by distance and lush topography. Mature palms and towering pines surround a perfectly manicured lawn dotted by all the amenities that define a world-class resort. All for the enjoyment of you, your family and your guests. A sunken tennis court, pool and spa, waterfalls, walking trails and a plunge pool create a secluded world, protected from prying eyes and nosy paparazzi. State-of-the-art safety features include a security pavilion, surveillance cameras and a safe room. In addition, the community’s diligent patrol and stringent safety measures ensure protection.

A formal dining room, a living room with a fireplace and French doors

that open onto a multi-tiered waterfall, and spacious family room

that seamlessly connects to the large grassy pool area

form the nexus of daily life.

The unassuming front gate and intimate motor court belie the majesty of the house, a sinuous amalgamation of glass and stone, brightly punctuating the verdant terrain. Really two residences in one, the 6,100-square-foot multi-level guest residence and entertainment pavilion is connected to the 14,600-square-foot main house via a futuristic steel-columned bridge and canopy with circular cut-outs that play hide-and-seek with the sun.

Only once you step inside the main home is the full impact of its grandeur apparent. The clever interplay of light and space creates an ideal flow that supports both daily living and sophisticated entertaining. The soaring entryway, a dramatic welcome, is an ideal vantage point from which to admire the generously proportioned rooms and sprawling property seen through the home’s expansive windows. Any visitor or guest greeted here is immediately awed. High walls of glass frame the exterior and flood every inch of the space with natural light, which sparkles off the interior’s lustrous pale finishes. A formal dining room, a living room with a fireplace and French doors that open onto a multi-tiered waterfall, and spacious family room that seamlessly connects to the large grassy pool area form the nexus of daily life. Gracefully melding into each other, it’s easy to imagine this scene as the setting for a black-tie museum gala for a few hundred guests, effortlessly gliding from indoors to out, one room to another, as waiters sashay among them, proferring canapes prepared in a kitchen suite that’s artfully positioned to one side. Shimmering stainless steel Viking appliances, a sub-zero refrigerator, a huge walk-in pantry and separate butler’s area offer a grand space that would put any chef immediately at home.

Yet, while the home would serve as the ideal backdrop to myriad occasions—a formal luncheon with flower-strewn tables scattered across the lawn, an afternoon charity auction, evening cocktails, pool parties—its harmonious dimensions are scaled so as to also support the intimacy of day-to-day living. A private office with direct access to the master bedroom can easily open to the family room; an outdoor kitchen near the pool area suggests casual weekend barbecues. For families whose jet-setting lifestyle reveals relatives and friends across the globe, guest quarters—wholly self-sufficient with five bedrooms, a full kitchen and its own living room—accommodates extended visits. And, despite plenty of space in the main residence, it also can house a full support staff.

With numerous amenities—elevators, parking for a party’s worth of vehicles, sumptuous bedroom suites, capacious walk-in closets, dressing pavilions for both the tennis court and the pool—the home represents five-star living at its finest, rivaling the most exclusive hotels in the world and pampering those who’ve earned it. This estate compound, a hallmark of opulence, evokes the ultimate in luxury, relaxation and peace of mind. Truly, a club for those living at the pinnacle.

Picture Perfect

With modern architecture and Nantucket touches, a Pacific Palisades home has the makings of a star

Written by Abigail Stone | Photography Courtesy of Andrew Bramasco

Presented by Adam & Ally Jaret, Teles Properties

List Price: $12,750,000

There’s an idea of California living that draws its portrait of a beautiful home from the movies. It’s a world of gleaming white marble-topped kitchens, shimmering pools, stunning views and linen sofas. Oversized sliding pocket doors integrate the outdoors. There are spacious garages, master baths for two and walk-in closets with center islands.

But these are not just fictions dreamed up by a set decorator. They exist in the Pacific Palisades, with its quiet curving streets, walkable village full of cafes and intimate restaurants, striking views of the Santa Monica Mountains, and proximity to the beach all inspiring an idyllic backdrop. In fact, two of the authors of this dream, Steven Spielberg and Tom Hanks, live here, with 1545 Amalfi Drive sitting between their homes. (Coincidentally, director Nancy Meyers’ home is also located within this enclave.)

“When you walk into this new home, you feel a certain warmth and charm that is typically reserved for an older home. You can see all the future family dinners and celebrations that will take place throughout this home,” offers Ally Jaret, listing agent for the property. Newly constructed under the eagle eye of Metro Capital Builders, 1545 Amalfi Drive is the sum of attention paid to beautiful details that may not be obvious to casual observers. What they will notice is that the home somehow feels more solidly built than most.

Panes in the windows are a bit larger, the front door a little thicker, and the quartz slightly more glittering. The impression is of a space that is at once light and solid, casual and elegant. There is the interplay of matte and shiny in the richly colored wall tiles in the downstairs bathroom, the intricacy of the unique hexagon marble tile pattern in each of the showers, the 33-foot-long zero edge pool, and the Tuuci umbrella that presides over the outdoor kitchen with its polished barbecue, shading a grill master from the sun during an afternoon cookout, or a trio of bartenders hired for an evening event.

It’s a home designed to easily morph from an intimate family space to an inviting party setting: the kitchen is separated from the formal dining room and there’s a full butler’s pantry for nights that call for a private chef; there’s direct access from the front door, past a coat closet and a guest powder room; and the fully-finished lower level, where the acoustically-built screening room and chilled wine room are located, is accessible from the backyard.

Yet the home also has been architected to handle the needs of day-to-day living: the open plan kitchen merges with a breakfast area that overlooks that stunning pool; large sliding doors connect the family room with the backyard, and there’s even a shaded area that encourages the easy mingling of those who prefer spending afternoons outdoors opposed to staying inside with a good book.

Downstairs wraps a luxurious mother-in-law suite into the floor plan along with the aforementioned screening room. In fact, with a bedroom downstairs and one tucked into a corner of the main floor, overlooking the pool, two sets of visiting relatives can enjoy equally sumptuous accommodations and autonomy, with the ability to come and go without disturbing the family’s regular routine.

Underscoring it all is a constant feeling of durability. The home can handle the wear and tear of family life, retaining its beauty for years to come, to survive children racing up and down the stairs, splashing pool parties and birthday barbecues; teenagers congregating in the downstairs lounge after school; even an assortment of vehicles in the six-car showroom garage, from the family SUV to a weekend sports car. Marble tiles in the bathrooms, Cosentino Dekton countertops in the kitchen, Pennsylvania natural bluestone on the exterior patio—every material finish in this home was specially selected with beauty and longevity in mind.

“Every design decision adheres to the Metro Capital Builders’ signature of smart, functional craftsmanship,” says Reza Akef, principal of Metro Capital Builders. “We are not building just another home; we are creating a future family’s lifestyle.” Quite beautifully, in fact. One is especially grateful that the master suite echoes a five-star hotel, with its sitting area and bathroom built for two, rich with expensive Italian Calacatta Marble. The space presents the privacy a couple needs  to support their relationship within the whirlwind of an active family. There’s a full wet room with a tub and then a separate steam shower; a wet bar with filtered water, plus plenty of closet space to accommodate two different wardrobes, one with an ever-growing sneaker collection and sentimental t-shirts, the other a pile of multicolored cashmere sweater and fanciful heels. Sometimes, while enjoying a few stolen moments here, sitting in front of the fireplace after dressing for a party and looking over the balcony at the kids and their friends cannonballing into the pool, you toast to good fortune.

You’re living the life that others only see in the movies.

Savory Seafood

The tasting menu at Kato, an understated seafood restaurant in a Santa Monica mini-mall, explodes with innovative and ever-changing takes on California, Taiwanese, and Japanese cuisines

Written by Virginia Fay

Born of serendipity and a straightforward mission to serve stellar food in an unpretentious environment, chef Jonathan Yao launched Kato, a new seafood tasting-menu-only restaurant in Santa Monica. A departure from the often aesthetically arresting restaurants in the area, Kato is tucked into a strip mall, announced only by pink cursive writing on the glass entrance. The location came about simply because of a lease Yao’s parents obtained that he took over to develop Kato. Though the décor is austere, it offers an understated appeal that allows the food to take center stage. 

The food itself is anything but austere. Having opened barely a year ago, Kato has already gained a substantial buzz, and for good reason. Serving a tasting menu for just $55, Kato does away with the idea that chef’s menus must be a splurge while sacrificing nothing in quality and inventiveness. Just what this menu will hold on a given night is anybody’s guess.

“We tend to leave our dishes a mystery until the diner comes in to eat,” says Yao. A recent June menu featured mouth-watering Hamachi, octopus, and quail dishes. Menus change seasonally, and Yao tweaks the offerings at his discretion. Substantial changes come every two or three weeks, with the most popular items including smoked Hamachi and Dungeness crab porridge.

Prior to Kato, Yao (who grew up watching his mom and grandmother cook) spent his career staging at acclaimed restaurants from Northern to Southern California: Coi, Alma, and Benu. He applied this varied experience to develop Kato’s tasting menu, which is not easily categorized.

Mostly seafood (one of Yao’s favorite foods to cook), patrons will also often find one or two meat dishes in front of them. The cooking style shows influences from California, Taiwan, and  Japan; Yao’s own tastes are similarly diverse—Szechuan, Vietnamese, Thai and Taiwanese are his favorite food types. With these varying cuisines informing the menu, eating at Kato feels like an ultra-fresh taste exploration led by an expert guide. 

Yao’s decision to offer a tasting menu only originated from pragmatism: he wanted to provide “an upscale menu with a casual vibe” while streamlining ordering and inventory. That emphasis on marrying a luxury menu with a comfortable atmosphere persists.

“I want [diners to] experience a creative meal without having any formalities or pretense of a fine dining restaurant,” Yao says. “Our front staff is really good at making everyone feel comfortable.” With Yao’s explosion of flavors parading one after the other on your plate, a meal at Kato is sure to be both comfortable and memorable, without breaking the bank.

KATO

11925 SANTA MONICA BLVD.

LOS ANGELES, CA 90025

KATORESTAURANT.COM

Beach Cities Cosmopolitan

A duo of downtown Hermosa Beach homes showcases the best of today’s South Bay Modernism

Written by Constance Dunn | Photography by Paul Jonason | Presented by Brett Zebrowski, Palm Realty Boutique

When Pat Killen set up shop in the South Bay in the 1980s, he was one of a handful of architects designing serious Modernist homes in the Beach Cities. Though this pivotal figure in local architecture has passed, the firm he founded, Studio 9one2 lived on in the trusted hands of architect Howard Crabtree, with whom Killen worked for decades.

It’s a smart new contemporary residence, a pair of them, actually, that Crabtree has designed along Hermosa Avenue (with the second home located immediately behind the first on Palm Avenue). Both, approximately 3,100 square feet, are situated ideally for those who love having proximity to both sand and show—a couple of blocks from the hub of restaurants, nightspots and boutiques along Pier Avenue, and steps from a pleasant beach walk street that leads to the sand.

“This home was one of the last buildings to be designed by the Studio 9one2 architectural firm,” notes Crabtree, who has since formed his solo firm, 912 Architecture. The residence that faces Hermosa Avenue (four bedrooms, three and a half bathrooms) is a study in current-day Beach Modernism—from its strikingly angular silhouette, where a mingling of blue glass, steel and slatted wood create an eye-catching juxtaposition of form, space and light.

The upward slope of the lot has been maximized to achieve two distinct panoramas: one of a charmed beach town, with homes and palm trees and passersby; the other a commanding, wide-angle view of the Pacific Ocean. In order to capture the best views, the floor plan is like many in the South Bay; inverted, with open-plan everyday living spaces—kitchen, living and dining room—on the top level.

CAPTURING THE VISTAS

It’s here that the architect has used the home’s natural flow of light to achieve a place of sanctuary no matter the hour. The flat roofline has a modest overhang to mellow the sunlight that pours into the ocean-facing interior lounge, a contemplative space with floor-to-ceiling windows and, on one side, sliding glass panels. Located off this lounge is a fresh-air patio with great downtown and beach views, which can be instantly conjoined with the interior space or left on its own.

“In an area with such beautiful views, either of the ocean or the tremendous cityscape, capturing those vistas is extremely important,” remarks Crabtree. “Large open plans with walls of operable glass partitions aid in ensuring that the view can be seen from deep within the building, not just standing at a window. Modern design is best suited to provide for this desire while maintaining the beauty of proportion and material variation.”

After optimizing the space for the dynamic California views, the central focus of the open floor is the kitchen. It’s a chic, contemporary space made up of contrasts in wood, steel and marble, which, like the rest of the home, is almost sculptural in its simplicity, while still offering the everyday comforts of living.

This combination, of efficiency and aesthetics, is reflected not just in the well-organized floor plan, but in the materials used throughout the home too. Clean white walls meet earthy wood floors and stone wall details throughout. Minimalist metal touches and sculptural light features are used to amplify the home’s sophisticated atmosphere, formed by Crabtree’s Modernist design strokes, from the its geometric shape, unadorned by decorative detailing, to a generous use of glass, untraditional-but-pragmatic window shapes and exposed supporting beams.

COSMOPOLITAN SANCTUARY

Notable is the home’s central staircase. Given the practical need to use the stair system often, to reach the uppermost floor with the kitchen and everyday living spaces, it’s a space that’s been smartly designed as the spine of the home. Staircases are also a hallmark of Studio 9one2 homes, and in this case, a series of floating stairs, airy floor landings and striking lighting fixtures serve to unify the home’s three floors. The stair system has also been carefully built around managing natural light, with windows strategically placed to shuttle light into the lower levels.

Note that from the top floor, one can also find a discreet staircase that leads from the kitchen area to a residential gem in the Beach Cities: a spacious rooftop deck, where sunbathing or sunset cocktail hours can be spent over views of the ocean and, in the foreground, the bustle of the surrounding beach town.

The middle floor hosts three of the home’s bedrooms. The master suite offers charmed beach and street views, along with a marble-trimmed bathroom, and keen sliding doors to separate the two. Two additional bedrooms are joined by a bathroom, making the floor ideal for a family with children, or for a homeowner wishing for more studio space or guest quarters. Speaking of, the ground-level floor has a bathroom suite that can neatly serve as a guest bedroom, office or nanny’s quarters.

WITHOUT LEAVING THE LIVING ROOM

As mentioned, a second property is located directly behind this home, with its main entrance found along Palm Avenue, a quiet Hermosa backstreet. Neatly separated by a peaceful garden, adorned with greenery and a stone water feature, the homes are aesthetic twins, down to their finish materials. “With the help of Talia Frederick, of Talia Interior Design,” says Crabtree, “We were able to marry a beautiful palette of richly colored wood, concrete, bronze anodized aluminum, tinted glass and porcelain tile to create a pair of buildings that while visually similar, offer enough differences to feel as two distinct and separate homes.”

Where the two deviate is the floor plan. The Palm Avenue home, also four bedrooms and three and a half bathrooms, has 60 feet of ocean-facing frontage. It’s a feature that Crabtree exploits with an east-west orientation that includes a top floor of panoramic views that stretch across the kitchen and bar area to the dining room and lounge areas. In the midst of this space is a leisured, open-air lounge where Crabtree has used sliding glass panels to cleverly merge it with the indoors.

“We have long sought to take the maximum advantage of the incredible climate of the area we are so fortunate to call home. On any given day, and for most of the year, the weather outside is so desirable that it makes us want to be outdoors,” notes Crabtree. For this desire, Modernist design is ideal for creating a home that allows one to soak up the landscape and weather from the moment one wakes up, and within the ease of home. “By creating homes that communicate both visually and climactically with the outside, it is possible to be outside without leaving the comforts of the living room.”

California Pastoral

A large country estate in Malibu is a magical, tranquil world unto itself

Written by Abigail Stone | Photography Courtesy of Paul Jonason

Presented by Ellen Francisco – Coldwell Banker, Malibu West and Barbara Tenenbaum, Hilton & Hyland

List Price: $14,450,000

Around the turn of the last century, cowboys roamed and herded cattle along the coastline of Southern California’s Rindge Ranch. Now considered one of Malibu’s most prestigious streets, Bonsall Canyon Road was a grazing place favored for both the shade its leafy oak and giant sycamore trees provided and fresh water from a stream.

Driving through the gates of 6133 Bonsall Drive, it’s easy to imagine that unsullied time. A long private brick lane winds past towering pines and redwoods. The only sounds are the birds singing overhead and the rustle of the leaves. Los Angeles, less than an hour away, seems a distant memory. Here is a magical world, plush with nature’s beauty and magnificence. It’s hard to believe this is Malibu. The lush grounds, flush with flowers, seem drawn from the verdant beauty of the East Coast. Sturdy branches of a centuries-old sycamore tree shade a capacious rolling lawn that extends from the main home to the far end of Zuma Canyon creek. Traversing the private bridge leads to a custom barn with room to comfortably stable eight horses plus a large riding ring. Equestrians will relish both the winding trails that crisscross the tail end of the property and the easy access to the stunning canyon trails of nearby national parklands.

Located within a short distance of the beach, the home is practically self-sufficient. A chicken coop promises fresh eggs every morning. A vegetable, herb and flower-cutting garden offers fresh produce. And, of course, there are fruit trees in abundance. Composed of three parcels totaling more than four acres, this property, proudly monikered Silver Raven Farms, truly encompasses the grandeur and bounty of a storied country estate.

Perfectly positioned amid this lush landscape is the house. Sprawling over 6,000 square feet and rebuilt by the current owners, it pulls classic farmhouse details through a luxurious modern lens. The deft balancing act of casual and elegant is pure Malibu. Although rambling and spread out, the home feels intimate and comfortable, warm, and livable. A flowing floor plan subtly separates the house into distinct sections.

The inviting front entry area leads to the entertaining rooms. The living room, flooded with light through parallel walls of French doors and a skylight cut into the vaulted, hand-carved, wood-beamed ceiling beckons.

The statement fireplace wall, built with gray and cream stone brought in from Pennsylvania’s Schuylkill Valley, promises long evenings with friends and family. Nearby, the generous dining room, with hand-crafted walnut floors, a stacked stone fireplace, and a cozy window seat is the ideal setting for Thanksgiving dinner. A stone countertop that runs down one side of the room calls for a buffet plush with mouth-watering holiday treats.

Completing the formal entertaining spaces is the kitchen, its generous octagonal shape created with a professional chef’s needs in mind. If everyone always ends up in the kitchen, here’s a space designed to make guests comfortable. Each window in this room, as in the rest of the house, was created to frame the landscape with Instagram-worthy perfection. Along with professional-grade appliances, custom cabinetry and two large pantry closets is plenty of prep
space, including a center island that echoes the room’s unique shape. For guests who will inevitably want to relax here while a meal is being prepared, bar stools anticipate their arrival.

An upholstered bay window seat encourages them to stay. With the front of the house catering to formal entertaining, the back area was created for game-day fun. There’s plenty of room in this wood-paneled media and game room for a generous, comfortable sectional to watch the large screen TV. Spacious enough to accommodate a pool table, game table and a juke box, this is the hang-out spot, with a second snack kitchen doubling as a wet bar, ideal for tending bar, whether the drink of choice is a Manhattan or a Margarita. There’s a wine cellar downstairs and, just outside, a barbecue.

Still another setting for socializing is the landscaped pool area. Positioned outside the dining room, living room and game room, it’s perfectly situated to take advantage of the scene. Serve dinner under the loggia, tangled with wisteria, while the kids let off steam playing tag on the lawn. The vegetable, herb and flower garden, situated only steps from the barbecue, puts nature’s bounty within easy reach of the table.

The home’s secondary bedrooms seem conjured up from a fairytale: two double-height en-suite rooms give children or guests a choice of sleeping and visiting areas with ground floor and loft spaces; and a large guest suite frames the home’s beautiful scenery through its leaded glass windows.

With the home’s upstairs guaranteeing privacy, the generous master bedroom suite boasts a fireplace, a balcony sitting area overlooking the pool, and a separate sitting room. But it’s the dressing room that stuns, with room for seasons’ worth of clothes behind wood-paneled doors. Merged into the bathroom—where a tub set within a bay window practically demands long bubble baths—it promises to make the simple act of dressing into a mindful moment. A minibar ensures that snacks and beverages are close at hand, making a five-star hotel hard-pressed to compete with this space.

Also on the property are three cozy and welcoming stand-alone houses, each with its own kitchen, bath and patio, offering a myriad of possibilities, functioning from private writing retreat to yoga pavilion to art studio to recording studio. And, of course, they’d be ideal for housing weekend guests or those staying long-term.

Certainly, anyone under the spell of this wild and enchanted place will find it hard to leave. As the sun sets, casting its glow over the lawn, there is no thought of the city. Just pure beauty. Pure escape. Pure magnificence.

Portrait of an Artist

New this summer, an aptly expressive exhibit at the Getty paints a compelling picture of David Hockney

Written by Jenn Thornton | Photography Courtesy of The J. Paul Getty Museum

Through his iconic oeuvre, British-born artist David Hockney—a leader of the Pop Art movement who put roots down in California decades ago—has greatly informed perception of life not only in Los Angeles, with his suburban scenes simultaneously calm and kinetic, but also more broadly, with works bearing both unorthodoxy and keenly observed social construct. Hockney’s works, so often of the familiar, are celebrated the world over for their distinctiveness—their glazy yet clear-eyed feeling of a particular moment.
In this sense, Hockney’s work is ageless, though the artist himself is on the precipice of turning 80 this July. Marking the milestone, the J. Paul Getty Museum presents its forthcoming exhibition Happy Birthday, Mr. Hockney in two parts, one of them being a collection of drawn and photographic self-portraits the artist created over 60 years. These little-seen loans from David Hockney, Inc., the David Hockney Foundation, and a private collector, respectively, form a studied examination of the artist.


In the first gallery, Happy Birthday, Mr. Hockney: Self-Portraits, is an assemblage of Hockney’s self-portraits “never before seen together as a group, from all periods of David Hockney’s career so far,” says Dr. Julian Brooks, senior curator of drawings, the J. Paul Getty Museum. “Visitors will almost certainly witness aspects of the artist’s work that they have not seen before, but will particularly admire how an artist of Hockney’s stature has constantly studied himself in innovative ways, yet always with insight and humor.”
The second gallery presents Happy Birthday, Mr. Hockney: Photographs. Here will be one of Hockney’s most eminent works, Pearblossom Hwy., 11-18th April 1986, #2. “Made up of almost 800 photographs, Pearblossom Hwy. epitomizes the artist’s understanding of photography as ‘drawing with a camera,’” explains Virginia Heckert, curator and department head, Photographs, the J. Paul Getty Museum. “Hockney activates the scene as he moves through it and constructs it over time. The fragmented forms and multiple viewpoints reveal the influence of Cubism in his work.” This highly praised depiction of a desert road in the Antelope Valley of California is the first time in a decade that the photograph will be on view.
Happy Birthday, Mr. Hockney underscores its namesake’s standing as one of the art world’s most significant and prolific contributors, with each gallery its own celebration, not only of the artist’s singular style, but his enthusiasm for experimentation with technique and media. “While resistant to self-portraiture in his early career, Mr. Hockney made his first large series of drawn self-portraits (about 35 of them) in 1983,” says Dr. Brooks. “He didn’t intend it as a campaign or project, but just became increasingly intrigued by how everything changed each time he drew himself, and how he came to draw himself differently. Later he embraced other technologies, including the iPad (“like an endless sheet of paper”) for self-portraits, too.”
In addition to Happy Birthday, Mr. Hockney—Self-Portraits opens June 27 with Photographs following July 18, both at the Getty Center through Nov. 26, 2017—will be related programming including gallery talks, a panel discussion, and a drop-in family workshop. GettyEdu.com

An Ode To The Red And Blue

Expect much more than an Italian restaurant at DTLA’s newly opened Rossoblu

Written by Wendy Bowman | Photography Courtesy of Rossoblu and Frank Wonho Lee

When it came time for Steve Samson to choose a moniker for his and wife Dina’s new Northern Italian restaurant, he looked to his Bolognese heritage, settling on a name that not only channels a mixture of red and blue but carries a lot of personal meaning as well. While Rossoblu is recognized as Bologna’s—and Steve’s favorite—soccer team, its hues also are apparent in the beloved Lambrusco wine of Italy’s Emilia-Romagna region, and signify a meeting of L.A.’s blue skies and Bologna’s red rooftops.

“I’m so thrilled to be cooking the food of my mother and grandmother… As the matriarchs of my family, they really fostered my love of, and taught me to make, dishes such as tortellini in brodo, tagliatelle al ragu, milk-braised pork and countless others.”

“Rossoblu is a home away from home,” says chef/owner Steve Samson, who also is behind the city’s award-winning Sotto restaurant. “We want to make our guests feel comfortable, while also transporting them out of L.A. with soulful Italian cooking in a unique space.”

Situated at 1124 San Julian St.— on the border between DTLA’s Fashion and Wholesale districts—Rossoblu is the first eatery to debut at City Market South, a 75,000-square-foot dining, retail and office space comprised of vintage, brick and bow truss warehouses and open-plan concrete structures on 2.5 acres at the southern end of the city’s oldest wholesale produce market. Given its history, Samson tapped designers Marwan and Mies Al Sayed and J.P. Guiseppi to give the establishment a more modern feel while maintaining its raw character. Expect an elegant interior sporting long banquettes with printed lace details that remind Samson of his grandmother, along with tables made to be pushed together to bolster a sense of community, and an edgy, large-scale mural by CYRCLE.

Outside, a piazza-esque dining space mirrors the spirit of Bolognese festivals. As for the culinary offerings, guests will find an extensive menu focused on the food of Bologna and its Emilia-Romagna region, including fresh sausages and aged salumi (cold cuts), and pastas made in-house al matterello (meaning by hand with a large, traditional rolling pin). Meanwhile, Bar Director Brynn Smith has compiled a menu of sumptuous Italian spirits, and Wine Directors Jeremy Parzen and Christine Veys have curated an excellent selection of Italian and California wines, including 14 expressions of Lambrusco from Sorbara to Parma and beyond.

“I’m so thrilled to be cooking the food of my mother and grandmother, having spent numerous summers there and in the surrounding region of Emilia Romagna,” says Samson. “As the matriarchs of my family, they really fostered my love of, and taught me to make, dishes such as tortellini in brodo, tagliatelle al ragu, milk-braised pork and countless others. This is the same food that I fell in love with growing up and I love the fact that I am bringing that to my hometown of Los Angeles.”

ROSSOBLU

1124 SAN JULIAN ST.

LOS ANGELES, CA 90015

213.749.1099

ROSSOBLULA.COM

Reimagining the Corridor

A boutique collection of 56 residences coming soon to L.A.’s Wilshire Boulevard gives real-estate seekers a golden opportunity.

Written by Wendy Bowman | Photography Courtesy of Kilograph

As one of the first high-design residential developments to debut in L.A.’s Wilshire Corridor in decades, The Liddel is set to transform the city’s premier condo neighborhood. Targeted toward young working professionals seeking luxe, amenity-rich living quarters along the sought-after thoroughfare, the new modern collection of 56 residences is expected to supplement the Golden Mile’s traditional, older buildings with a refined contemporary take on casual California living.

“We have recognized this increased demand and limited inventory, and are creating a boutique residential offering for this new generation of buyers,” says Ken Simpson, vice president of Palisades, the project’s developer. “The Liddel will play an important part in shaping the future of the Wilshire Corridor, a famed stretch of real estate with a storied past and a reputation of providing the most luxurious residential offerings in the city.”

Situated at the epicenter of a two-mile tract of luxury condo buildings that run from Westwood Village to the west side of the Los Angeles Country Club—adjacent to Beverly Hills, Holmby Hills and Bel-Air—The Liddel will offer residents convenient access to top dining, shopping, culture and entertainment, along with Santa Monica’s beaches. Living options include one- to three-bedroom residences ranging from 1,030 square feet to 2,700 square feet, and priced from $900,000 to more than $4 million. Sales are set to begin in early 2017, with The Agency serving as the development’s exclusive broker. Expect a warm, authentic living environment featuring an artful blend of earthy, airy tones and strong, vibrant finishes, with select homes connecting to private terraces boasting panoramic city views. Designed by renowned interior architect Jamie Bush, of L.A.-based Jamie Bush + Co., the residences will focus on open-concept living. Among the notable features are European-inspired kitchens sporting Miele appliances paired with an elegant mix of charcoals, creams, whites and stainless-steel surfaces; wine storage; wide-plank white oak flooring; organic design finishes; great rooms that open to private terraces; and master bedroom suites showcasing spacious dressing rooms and spa-like baths with heated floors and fixtures by Waterworks and TOTO.

Residents also can avail themselves of numerous ground-floor communal spaces, including a club lounge with a fireplace, bar and full sliding glass door that opens to a garden space; a stunning wine room comprised of ebonized oak walls, brass accents and aubergine tiles for intimate tastings and events; a private dining room and catering kitchen; and a fully equipped fitness studio. Atop The Liddel, a rooftop terrace unfolds to a gathering space with a fireplace, lounge areas, barbecues and views of the city. “Every common area space has been carefully curated by Jamie Bush to give the building its own distinct personality,” says Simpson. “To create an inviting, surprising aesthetic, Jamie has used his fresh, discriminating eye to blend exotic elements with custom-made details, and incorporated engineered onyx and marble. Some of the most surprising accents are the eclectic vintage furnishings placed alongside contemporary pieces.” Taking it a step further, The Liddel will provide a bike to each resident for partaking in nearby trail riding, along with 24-hour valet and concierge service. Think an effortless, cosmopolitan lifestyle experience in the heart of the Golden Mile.

FARM-TO-PIER

Farm livin’ is the life for private chef turned restaurateur Helene Henderson—and Malibu is the place to be

Written by Wendy Bowman | Photography Courtesy of Martin Lof

After spending years hosting home-based cooking classes and organic pop-up dinners on her 2-acre Point Dume spread, Swedish-born private chef and caterer (and former model) Helene Henderson turned her culinary prowess toward Malibu, where she’s created a thriving duo of eateries at opposite ends of the beach community’s pier.

malibufarm1

Known as Malibu Farm—a nod to her plot of land holding a menagerie of chickens, goats and a pig, along with vegetable gardens, a fruit orchard and vineyard—the casual counter-service café sits at the tip of the 780-foot pier, while the restaurant and bar heralds the entrance to the historic landmark.

Locals, celebrities, fisherman and tourists all regularly gather at both establishments to enjoy stellar ocean views amid a rustic and casual atmosphere created by L.A. interior designer Vanessa Alexander. The Scandinavian-inspired interiors feature custom-built scaffold wood tables topped with herb-filled copper pots, sheepskin-covered benches, and white, gray and wood décor.

But chef Henderson’s bounty of local, organic and fresh fare definitely is the star here. Delish dishes are prepared using ingredients sourced from local fisheries and farms (including persimmons, carrots, asparagus, fresh herbs, eggs and more straight from her own backyard).

“We do a lot of breakfast and lunch, so that is what we are mostly known for, although we also serve a great dinner,” says Henderson. Among the menu favorites: quinoa oatmeal, Swedish mini-pancakes and fried egg sandwiches for breakfast. Lunch and dinner patrons clamor for salads like the popular Vegan Chop with kale, romaine, butternut squash, beets, avocado and garbanzo beans, as well as vegetarian and gluten-free dishes such as vegetable-crust pizzas and spaghetti squash lasagna.

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The organic and agave-based bar beverages also are a big hit (think watermelon, jalapeno and coconut cocktails, along with a standout nonalcoholic kale apple juice). Henderson even offers merchandise, such as her own cookbook—The Malibu Farm Cookbook, with 100 fresh recipes—along with fun events, like a magical, eco-friendly snow experience during the holidays. Farm fresh.

MALIBU FARM

23000 Pacific Coast Highway, Malibu, CA 90265

310.456.1112 (café) | 310.456.8850 (restaurant) | Malibu-Farm.com

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