Open House Report, SF Edition: Four Definitions of “Modern” Just Over the Bridge


There’s a lot of good Mid-Century architecture in the suburbs around San Francisco. We’ve left out the usual suspects— tract houses by Joseph Eichler— and here are three in Marin County from the period plus one completely new house worth seeing. All are open on Sunday, fairly close to the Golden Gate Bridge and each other. 

280 Loma Avenue, Tiburon, $1.595 (pictured above)
Built in 1962, this 2-bed, 2.5-bath house has been respectfully renovated, and although the saltillo terra-cotta tiles probably date to the 80’s, the tongue & groove ceilings have been sandblasted and there’s a recent kitchen in the usual light wood with black granite— just better than most. The real reason to buy this house is the views, looking out over the neighbors towards Angel Island, plus it’s ready to move into. We’d be quite happy with just the master bedroom and deck, above. Open Sunday, March 4 from 2:00pm to 4:00pm  

101 San Carlos Avenue, Sausalito $1.199M
Japan-Meets-Northern California is the vibe in this 2-bed, 2-bath cottage  remodeled by architect John Marsh Davis in the 1960s. Only on the market a few days, it has that classic indoor-outdoor quality that makes Sausalito so easy to live in. Davis had a long career designing hand-crafted houses and gardens in Marin and Sonoma Counties plus wineries in Napa– Rutherford Hill, Joseph Phelps– in redwood, fir, and stone, with signature pergolas. Open Sunday, March 4 from 1:00pm to 4:00pm 

4 Lower Crescent Avenue, Sausalito, $2.95M
A new house that’s taken some lessons from its Mid-Century predecessors. On the market since September, 2011, and recently reduced by $245K, this 4-bed, 3.5-bath house is new construction and replaces an earlier house on the street-to-street site. Designed by architect Jay Behr with multiple levels around an open stairway, the house includes a large open living/dining/kitchen area and a media room, as well as three bedrooms downstairs around a family room and a master suite at the top. Great view of the bay from many rooms, including the kitchen (above) and beautiful finishes. Open Sunday, March 4 from 1:00pm to 3:30pm  

38 S. Knoll Road, Mll Valley, $850K
Designed in 1955 by architect Francis J. McCarthy, who had emigrated from Australia and worked under the Bay Area great, William Wurster, this 4-bed, 3-bath house is in almost original condition and beautifully sited on almost a half-acre. Rooms are composed of planes of Luan mahogany and very simple details. Although we’d probably want to lose the aqua. Barely visible from the street and with handsome old trees, this could be a great house for a collector of Mid-Century furniture. We also love the very private pool. Open Sunday, March 4 from 2:00pm to 4:00pm 

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