Thursday, August 30, 2007
There’s a precious place on the Monterey Peninsula exemplary on this coastline and unique in the world. For first-time visitors, it can be transforming, and for those who’ve seen other coasts on other continents, it’s no stretch testifying that the nexus of cliff and sea west of Mal Paso Bridge is unmatched. It’s still “Carmel” yet sits subtly at the edge of a massive national forest where no spoiling city gnaws at the delicate fringes of nature’s purest; only higher cliffs and deeper waters are found in any direction. Even the greatly appreciated Carmel Highlands must stand back, looking down from its eastern slope to see just a part of what is face-first at 110 Yankee Point.
From the living room, dining room and sanctuary/sun room, the “front yard” seems to skim unimpeded to the open Pacific. When the whales migrate annually from Alaska to Mexico and back, it’s a magnificent illusion that on the edge of this tabletop property one could reach out and touch a passing fluke. Lavender and flowering bushes make the land look puffy above moderate cliffs and craggy outcroppings with foaming whitewater that quickly become the glorious other world of the Monterey Bay Canyon.
With exclusive views of these near Disney visions, the house sits on the south-facing rim of Yankee Point. Retired Naval officer Art Hull and his very productive artist wife, whose enviable 21-foot-by-15-foot studio is glare-free, built their home in adoration of the location. Devoid of pretense and designed ideally, the walls, ceilings and floors are wide planks and the specifically scaled and shaped windows everywhere enshrine the property’s natural world. An exterior/interior existence was vital to the Hulls, so their home has glass doors to the seasoned ground level redwood deck (living room, sunroom and master) or to the side garden in others (breakfast room, guest room, studio, plus), each is a part of the innate vitality of this house.
It’s where Mal Paso Creek meets the tide. Over centuries, Mal Paso carried boulders smoothed by eons to the shore, providing carefully selected ones for the fireplace in the living room. It’s a marvelous, comforting construction that even when unlit is a friendly presence. Standing on the deck, one looks up to appreciate the bouldered chimney rising over different shake roof levels and shingled house. Three wood burning stoves are perfectly placed within. Intentionally harmonious with the natural setting and mightily ship-shape, the Hulls called their home Gull Cottage.
With nearly 3,000 square feet, the house is also imbued with the infinitely clever storage of a Navy ship. Lift a myriad of seamless wall sections in any room to find all manner of disguised, ingenious interiors. There are two office-sized lofts, one above the breakfast room and one above the master, offering endless uses. Most rooms are medium sized for choice of function, yet the space in all three full baths could hardly be anticipated. Beginning with the one in the hallway by the living room, the very tall ceiling frames a 3-foot-by-5-foot skylight complete with spindle and rod. An iron claw and ball foot tub with deliciously relaxed back angle engenders fantasies of long, luxurious soaks. The master bath is vast, bright and practical as is the guest bath with its wonderful wainscoted cabinets and clear, sea green glass pulls. The entire ready-to-move-in house is creatively sophisticated, top of its genre, contiguous with much sea life and the kinetic sky, all so dearly prized by those who would treasure home here.
Price: $3,499,000 110 Yankee Pt., Carmel • Contact Glenn McKee, Sotheby’s International Realty, 915-0440.