Spend summer 2014 in the Berkeley hills (minimum rental period 6 wks)
As a bi-coastal couple spending the months of july and august on a maine island with a view out the atlantic, we seek responsible renters for our berkeley home, which looks out to the golden gate and the pacific beyond. The house is an outstanding example of California mid-century architecture, built in 1948 in a neighborhood of architecturally important houses of an earlier period (the street is a destination for individuals with architectural interests). This is a classic and elegant house: bright, open, simply furnished to focus on the architecture, and beautifully designed to bring the outside in; the house is a joy to live in.
The panoramic bay views from the front of the house are complemented at the rear by a private garden, the site of sculpture designed by the same artist who created the award winning, upstairs home office as well as a sideboard/shelf and wrap around firescreen in the dining and living rooms.
The house includes formal living and dining rooms, kitchen with all major large and small appliances, large pantry and laundry room, master bedroom with two connected dressing rooms, guest room with double bed, 2.5 baths, home office and den/tv room. Located within walking distance of the Berkeley campus and public transportation, the house features level-in entrance to the main floor and off-street parking. A major feature of the architecture is a “floating staircase.' though aesthetically important, the latter would would be dangerous and hence unsuitable for small children.
Tenant pays utilities, phone service, and weekly housekeeping help; owner pays cable, wireless, water, and gardening service.
We are a retired academic couple (husband from Rutgers, wife from UC Berkeley), both now writing full-time at home. To accommodate our needs, we converted two of the original bedrooms to a study/den (tv) room and a home office designed with two desks and work spaces. We have also added considerable book storage to both rooms.
We spend a good part of the working day in these upstairs rooms; but there is always the pleasure of going down to cook (for ourselves and for frequent guests) in a kitchen where windows occupy the walls usually filled by high cabinets (our cabinets are in the pantry) and one seems to be literally outside in the garden; then, of course, comes the enjoyment of dinner with a view of a brilliant sunset over the Golden Gate Bridge.
We spent two years looking at property in Berkeley and made up our minds to purchase this house as soon as we saw it. The longer we lived here, the more we came to appreciate the work of its designer, James Dinwiddie. Everyone who comes hers, guests and previous tenants, have all responded to the way this house never crowds the residents, always offers a sense of light and freedom.
Berkeley is a vibrant community. It is the site of all the cultural activity connected with the flagship campus of the University of California--museums, theater, lectures, sports events, etc--and it enjoys a location that offers splendid views and opportunities for enjoying the outdoors. It is a joy to reach a beautiful hiking trail only minutes away, to be able to imagine oneself miles from a busy urban center. A forty-five minute (or less) drive takes one to Marin County and the magnificent coast at Point Reyes; a much shorter trip, by car or underground, takes you to the heart of San Francisco.