Cliff May-Inspired in Eastside Costa Mesa

We talked about this home several months ago when it was first listed. The listing expired but it resurfaced earlier this week and I thought it would be good to revisit it. I’m always a little wary of reading that a home is “inspired” by another architect. There are a couple of reasons for that. For starters many times (but not all), it’s a cheap ploy to try and associate with a famous name. But secondly, and perhaps more importantly, I think it takes away from the unique design the house has.

I think the latter is the case here. While this home has glass French doors with a very similar proportion to those seen on many Cliff May homes and there are clerestory windows — I think that’s where the inspiration ends. There is no enclosed courtyard, no single level living, and no subtle Spanish “ranchera” influences.

But none of that matters, because this is an amazing home in its own right. From the balconies to the exposed beams, to the unique opened trellis up above. There are a lot of things to love here. Outside the home, you have one of the most beautiful, mature trees we have ever seen acting as a centerpiece for the backyard. This is one of those homes where you can’t go in thinking you’ll turn it into something it’s not. You need to respect the original Asian-influenced palette and work with it, rather than bending it to your own vision.

It’s a great size, spacious enough to never feel cramped, but not so big as to feel wasteful. I know the right person is out there for this home (is it you?) but I also fear this home will be bought by someone who plans to gut everything and turn it into a nuveau modern rustic semi-industrial home. And that’s too bad. This home has a timeless style that needs tweaking, not reimagining.

If you’re ready for a personal look, give us a call!


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