“The Best-Designed Home in Irvine” — a very bold claim but one I’ll stand behind and defend at every holiday party I attend this year. We don’t always think of Irvine as the land of innovative home design — but it is. This is a model in University Park which comes up rarely, and for real, it’s my favorite. University Park (unsurprisingly, near UCI) in general has some of the most innovative homes ever blessed by the Irvine Company.
Just take a look at the photos. The designs feel very reminiscent of the Deane Brothers, but with almost 2500 square feet — this would make it one of the largest one story homes they ever designed, if it’s their handiwork. I think what I love about this space isn’t just the aesthetics, but also the functionality. Yes, the soaring open beamed, tongue-and-grooved ceilings of the foyer is spectacular, but so is the intimacy of the fireplace in the corner — which carves out an intimate space in what would otherwise be a large, imposing room. There’s even a small atrium to round the modern cred.
But then you have the practical…a very large and in-charge kitchen and a master bedroom with plenty of space. This home feels very generously-sized, because it is. And so often, we make significant compromises in comfort and convenience to live in a home that feels like artwork. This one demands no such compromises. Even by Irvine standards, it has a HUGE yard. Not just a postage stamp-sized “outdoor space” — this is a real yard. The kind you could landscape and showoff in Sunset Magazine.
The only bad news? It’s priced over $1M and backs to the 405. The latter I think is mitigated by the gigantic soundwall that casts a shadow of silence. The former — well it’s a no-compromises, turn-key, modern home with great schools in Irvine — as Ferris Bueller said, “If you have the means, I highly recommend picking one up.”
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