145 Lexford, Piedmont

Click picture for additional photos and complete listing courtesy of Sharon Zhan, Coldwell Banker

Today we feature an unusual Piedmont residence designed by a pair of renowned interior designers. The home belonged to Val Arnold who according to Architectural Digest in the 1980s was one of the ten most important designers in America. His collaborator was Arthur Elrod whose Palm Springs home designed by John Lautner makes a cameo appearance in the James Bond film Diamonds Are Forever.

Arnold’s Piedmont house has a relatively conventional Third Bay Region silhouette outside, but inside it is the flamboyant feast for the eyes that one might expect from a pair of interior designers. Each room is a new adventure full of unexpected textures and details – quite a departure from your typical understated 70s tract house.

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30947 Vallejo, Union City

Click picture for additional photos and complete listing courtesy of Andrew de Vries, Berkshire Hathaway-Franciscan

Henry Meyers is not an architect who is as well known today as many of his contemporaries who were more prolific home builders, but the mark that he made on the shape of the East Bay is undeniable. Meyers was the Alameda County architect for two decades starting around 1912. He was responsible for some of the most recognizable buildings in Oakland including Highland Hospital and the Veterans Memorial building on the lake. His residential work is less well known and is mainly found on the island of Alameda where Meyers made his home.

The example we feature today is not on Alameda, but it is certainly equal to any of Meyers’ commissions there. It is a stately and highly symmetrical prairie box full of great period detail. When the home was built it was in the heart of the town of Alvarado which is one of the three communities which would eventually become Union City. Inside, it is packed with original woodwork and light fixtures – a rare treat in an area not particularly known for well-preserved homes.

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1421 San Antonio, Alameda

Click picture for additional photos and complete listing courtesy of Anne McKereghan, Alain Pinel

This intriguing shingle style colonial revival foursquare is a bit of a mishmash with a prairie style side entrance and a curved corner that pays homage to the turrets of its Victorian forebears. The home was reportedly designed and built by A W Pattiani who was responsible for some of the showiest homes in Alameda. He is best known for his Queen Anne residences but this example provides ample evidence of his ability to design in other modes as well with no less success.

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5566 Greenridge, Castro Valley

Click picture for additional photos and complete listing courtesy of John Heywood, J Rockcliff

Our featured home today is a beautifully preserved Castro Valley Eichler. The home is being sold by its original owner which no doubt accounts in large part for its pristine condition. Not only is most of the original mahogany paneling intact but so are the kitchen and baths which is exceedingly rare – an unusual treat for the Eichler enthusiasts out there.

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120 Wildwood Gardens, Piedmont

Click picture for additional photos and complete listing courtesy of Anian Tunney, Grubb

This picturesque Piedmont Spanish colonial is attributed to Frederick Reimers who was responsible for some of the most impressive period revival structures in the East Bay. It has a number of features in common with the showy model home he designed for the Claremont Pines subdivision in Oakland just a year later. Reimers had an extraordinary ability to create substantial homes that manage not to be bulky or overwhelming through creative detailing and varied massing. This home is a great example with a wide variety of traditionally Spanish exterior embellishments and interiors that do not fail to impress.

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67 Stonecastle, Alamo

Click picture for additional photos and complete listing

It is exceedingly rare to have the opportunity to rent a home designed by one of the Bay Area’s most respected local architects even for a short period, so finding a long term rental like the one we feature today designed by none other than the inimitable Carr Jones is almost unheard of. Jones trained under Bernard Maybeck and he adopted much of Maybeck’s love of material and of craftsmanship as his own. His storybook style homes are immensely creative undertakings hand built by Jones himself and full of his thoughtful and idiosyncratic detailing.

This particular home is one of the two original structures after which Stonecastle Court is named. It has recently undergone a substantial renovation which has managed to update the home’s amenities while still maintaining Jones’ trademark rough-hewn lumber and creative brickwork as well as one of his always impressive glazed gables in the living room. Take advantage of this rare chance to make your home in a residence designed by one of the Bay Area’s best.

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510 Lakewood, Walnut Creek

Click picture for additional photos and complete listing courtesy of Shannon Conner, Village Associates

A few years ago we featured an interesting mid-century home in Walnut Creek designed by Frederick Dyer-Bennet for his family. Dyer-Bennet was a British architect who studied at Berkeley and then settled in the East Bay. Today we are fortunate to have another of his thoughtful homes to share. This one was built the year after Dyer-Bennet’s own home and it is an equally compelling example of his reserved and understated modernism – well worth a visit to see the work of one of the few modernist designers to practice in Walnut Creek.

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