HOMEPAGE: Hidden Spaciousness
Thursday, June 2, 2005
Romanticism and Carmel are synonymous in the minds of many who visit the village by the sea each year. They cruise past houses on tree-canopied streets and wonder who lives in them and how much it would cost to do that themselves someday. They speak of the charm and sense of mystery some Carmel homes hold for them and often ask about the histories behind certain ones.
Carmel native Michael Whitcomb is someone worthy of those precise questions due to his knowledge of the origins and background of some of Carmel’s most intriguing properties.
At one time, in fact, the Whitcombs owned the house at 25995 Junipero Ave., one of those causing tourists all the more wonder by revealing only an enticing glimpse of its inner life from the street. A passerby can discern a white Cape Cod-style garage with slanted shake roof dappled by sun filtered through two full oaks arching from opposite sides of the property until their leaves pattern together. Since the Whitcombs owned it, the house has passed to other hands and has been for sale twice in two years as upgrades and sales continue in this round of real estate musical chairs being played everywhere.
At this time, 25995 Junipero Ave. gives the genuine feeling of a house worthy of any family life placed within its care, and one with potential to be successfully launched forward by decades should it be rebuilt, though it’s hardly necessary.
To enter, one goes through two garden gates, the first a handsome white curve, the second a tall grape-stake that blends into the fence entirely. Between the two, roses bloom and dew glistens at the edge of red-and-white petals here and there. Beyond the second gate, a patio of worn brick introduces the beginning of a most delightful wander through a two-story home that has a terrific use of space and style. What appears to be a Cape Cod cottage is in fact a five-bedroom, three-and-a-half bath home with delicious French country details.
The house was remodeled last year with hardwood floors and a kitchen done in granite and marble, wide plank floors, Viking dishwasher, Thermador stove and a butler’s pantry big enough to be the whole kitchen in a different house. Paned double windows over the sink have a view to the north yard where ivy and shapely oak continue the European feeling. The east yard is revealed through glass doors at the end of the kitchen where a café table and two chairs await a chat over espresso.
One steps into the home via brick stairs and enters a great room with long dining table and brick fireplace. Through a wide arch and down two steps, the living room enjoys three side-by-side, eight-by-three-foot east windows, and French doors onto the south front patio.
Also on the first floor is a master suite with beautifully appointed full bath complete with French spigots. Upstairs, a huge master bedroom and full bath is incredibly appealing under the eaves with southeast sunshine. There are other bedrooms upstairs, as well as the third bath.
Some houses enchant by details and others by location—near the ocean or above the valleys. 25995 Junipero Ave. is one of those properties with wonderful details and scenes out each window, plus livability with an overall mood of security and pleasure. It even has the very rarest of Carmel finds: a two-car garage with deep double driveway.
Price: $2,260,000. 25995 Junipero Ave., Carmel. Contact Noel Beutel, Burchell House Properties, 624-8423.