Out of the Ordinary
Thursday, April 13, 2006
Knowing that Stone Oak Cottage was remodeled on spec, and understanding that many local properties are, and appreciating that most have brought Carmel-by-the-Sea into a residential theme quite Southern European in concept, one probably wouldn’t do double-takes in front of a recent remodel currently on the market. But this house will make you do a double-take.
The color of the house is, even on stovepipe gray days, buttery. The color is neither Tuscan cottage nor ‘50s Americana, and is nothing like the über-suburban hue seen in Spielberg movies. It’s luminous, softly stated and lives well among surrounding homes. A separate garage close to the house is the same easy color, with star jasmine growing up the entire southwest wall to the peaked wood shake roof, a splurge of rich leafiness seeming all the more fecund contrasted by the light background.
Looking for details, one sees the ossature of the house is granite, raw chunks set into a foundation wall perhaps five feet high. With French doors closed behind it, a handsome Juliet balcony built out at that level seems to float over the front garden very nicely.
Set back from the façade up a wide stone walk, the entry to Stone Oak Cottage is a simply derived doorway arch. No extras. It’s becoming clear why the house inspires a second look. The design is modern in the principle of clean lines yet evokes feelings similar to those available when looking at a dog-eared photo of a cottage remembered. Only the house isn’t trying to be a replication of anything.
As one enters through the foyer (with a stone rear wall) into the great room, a granite fireplace and hearth are seen centered behind the Juliet balcony in a space replete with light and domed by high ceilings and delicate timber accents. Hardwood floors run throughout, except upstairs and on the stairs themselves. The house is one level but for a big guest room with a high ceiling, that takes up the entire second floor. Its special feature is a rooftop terrace of Carmel stone, begging for raised toasts to the morning sun (southeast exposure) with one’s eye-opener of choice.
The hardwood flooring is especially compatible in the kitchen where fossil stone counters (in both full baths also) reveal myriad shell shapes within a warm/neutral base. One could lose time tracing the curves and articulations of fossil portions seen like smoke within the surface.
A broad farm sink set into the counters sits beneath two windows facing southwest; the fridge is a Subzero, the range a Viking and the cabinets are V-grooved (picture thicker wainscoting) in off-white blending with the walls. The fridge is neatly fronted by V-groove as well. Across from the kitchen the family room (or formal dining room) spans to French doors with matching side panels and is beautifully light and demure.
Down the hall one discovers the third bedroom and main bath, then the seclusion of the master, with stunning bath, inset granite fireplace and French doors to the back terrace. There can be seen the oaks of Stone Oak Cottage. Standing mighty tall and perfectly vertical in keeping with the unadorned concept of the property, several thick trunks among gentle flora provide a natural, meditative view for the master.
Stone Oak Cottage wants for nothing save satisfied inhabitants.
Price: $1,699,000. 8th Avenue and Santa Fe, Carmel-by-the-Sea • Contact Cheryl Heyermann, CRS, Coldwell Banker Del Monte Realty, 595-5045.