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New (Again) Monterey: See the Sea: Expansive and plentiful windows, French doors and long stretches of balcony offer dramatic views from this renovated two story.— Hali Jones

David and Nicole Brown have two businesses in the Central Valley; David not only works in Modesto but also on the Peninsula four days a week. It became clear to the couple that a house here would lessen some mighty commutes and give them the fun of a second home, too. They found a two-story in New Monterey that needed everything and bought it. “We tore it down ’til nothing was left but walls and the reverse floor plan,” Nicole says.  Before the demolition, the 20-plus-year-old home had little attention paid to it in a while. Now the two-story house is better than new.

Starting from the curb, a medium-high white fence runs along the sidewalk, with flowering plants bordering a bright green lawn. Over the roof, a tall umbrella-shaped deciduous tree—with silvery trunk and artfully trimmed branches—attends one end of the house. From the second floor master those branches artfully frame views of the bay. This same view across the water to Marina is seen from the house-length terrace and every main-level room, protected by mountains scalloping the edge of the sky with their profiles.

The wood house is painted taupe with white trim and very dark burgundy front door frames. The depth of that color against the natural tone of the paint is so right for the facade that it’s a subliminal invitation. The second floor balcony runs the length of the house, creating extended eves over the front. Suspended from there, hanging demurely near the tree, is a bench-style swing. There’s curb appeal, but more than that, there’s a real home waiting there.

Inside begins with a small foyer and stairs leading to the main level (living room, dining room, kitchen, master bed and bath), the entry level with two bedrooms and a full bath. The larger bedroom is a honey for either a second or primary master. It’s supremely private, nearly 20 feet long and has gentle light through sliders to a large private patio in the backyard enclosed by tall grape stakes. The doors have their own lock; there is passage from the front along a side path so one need not interact with the rest of the house if so desired.

The layout is friendly: The bright open upper level is Monterey modern with bay views from all rooms, with light, smart wall colors and two opposing balconies in the living room. The long terrace starts at the master sliders, passes the full dining room, then culminates in a large square extending well beyond the eves and over the entry of the single garage. French doors from the living room open directly onto it for the best views of all.

A fireplace set into an elegantly long, high surround is flat, toned slightly darker than the light taupe walls with white trim. Like the front door, one wall along the living room and dining room (each with great windows) is dark burgundy. Gorgeous.

From the dining room a paned glass door secludes the master with its own big windows and sliders to the terrace, with the see-through tree by it. Across from the dining room the well-done kitchen maintains the modern design; a deep garden window extends from the double sink with views of the backyard.

Why the “For Sale” sign? Nicole says the place just got too popular. “Way too many guests to accommodate,” she says, “so we got a new place in Pacific Grove.”

Price: $899,000 1207 Hoffman Ave., Monterey • Contact Laurel Jaques, The Jones Group, Town and Country Real Estate, 915-1185.

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