Berkeley: Day Dreaming Of My Dream Home

A friend from London who is visiting asked me what type of house I would ideally choose to live in here in California — my “money no object” dream home in other words.

I favor a “when in Rome” approach when it comes to selecting a home — I would want a turn-of-the-century apartment if I were moving to Paris, a terraced Victorian house in London and an adobe hut in the Moroccan desert. So which of the local vernacular styles would I choose here?

I currently rent a traditional Berkeley brown-shingle house and I like its robustness (not least when experiencing the directivity effect of a 4.2 magnitude earthquake), intuitive layout and easy comfort.

But I think my fantasy home here would have to be a sleek modernist, or modern, beauty, set high in the hills so I could take in those quintessential Bay Area views with an expansive deck, a hot tub and lashings of creature comforts.

Here are three possibilities on the market now:


2830 Buena Vista Way: 3/2 contemporary in north Berkeley hills (above) with “walls of glass”, vaulted ceiling and views — $850,000 (which seems intriguingly low to me).


1998 Marin Avenue: mid-century home in north Berkeley (above), two master suites and one downstairs unit — $969,000.

40 North Hill Court: 1994 5/2.5 contemporary with “breathtaking views of three bridges”, gourmet kitchen and home office — $1,875,000.