Tuesday, April 26, 2011

Heart of Piedmont, with All the Modern Conveniences

If friends or colleagues have been searching for a home with all the modern conveniences that typical Piedmont homes just can’t offer, see 221 Highland Avenue! Situated in the center of town, 221 Highland Avenue offers gorgeous space, architectural integrity, convenience and eco-friendly systems and features:


Unassuming from the street, the home opens up with light and space as you move from formal rooms to informal rooms to the rear terrace and big fenced backyard.

Including its major 1999 expansion, the home encompasses 2744 square feet, including a master suite with two spacious walk-in closets and a home office area, a master bath with separate steam shower, a second master suite, and two additional bedrooms on the upper floor. The 4-bedroom/3-bath arrangement on the upper floor is a rare find in Piedmont.

On the main level, enjoy tranquil views of the park-like lot next door through the home’s signature banks of south-facing windows. The East Bay’s famous sunshine floods into the open kitchen, dining area with banquette seating, and family room. Entertain indoors and out, with easy access through French-door sliders to the rear terrace and big, flat, and extraordinarily private backyard beyond.

And then there’s the garage--constructed at the time of the 1999 expansion, it provides room for all the camping equipment, kayaks, bicycles, and woodworking equipment you might have in mind. Currently set up with a wall-mounted television, it does triple duty as an indoor gym, or play area protected from rain.

Architectural Integrity:

Originally built in 1924, 221 Highland Avenue seamlessly blends the woodwork, hardwood floors, gracious bannisters, and crown molding you might expect, with up-to-date fixtures and contemporary layout.

The owners have carefully extended these architectural elements throughout the Christopherson/Graff-designed addition. Built-ins abound. And one of Piedmont’s oldest Victorians offers additional architectural interest toward the rear of the home.


A more convenient location would be hard to find! Just a block to rebuilt Havens Elementary School and two more to the middle and high schools, your mornings should be a breeze. With plenty of staffed cross walks and child-friendly drivers, playdates and games of catch or Frisbee are easy to organize!

Grab a latte at Mulberry Market and take casual carpool to the Financial District; take the internet-equipped express bus back, pick up kids at Schoolmates after-school care, and stop by Mulberry’s again for a gallon of milk.

San Francisco, Berkeley, Emeryville and the Lamorinda/Tri-Valley area are all a convenient commute on Rt. 580/80 or Rt. 24, as are SFO and OAK. And Piedmont is a perfect jumping off point for weekend cyclists heading for the East Bay Hills!


Older homes too often sport drafty windows, soft foundations, and roofs in need of replacement. Not this house! The rear of the home, from foundation to roof, from kitchen to master bath, was newly built in 1999, and the original baths have all been beautifully updated.

The owners relied on trusted vendors such as Kohler, Grohe, Thermador, Dacor and Amana to source their fixtures and appliances. Whether it’s energy-efficient lighting, double-paned windows, efficient radiant heat, water-efficient fixtures, seismic upgrades from bolting to shearwalling, drainage systems or insulation, this home has it.

These improvements translate into lower utility bills and greater comfort--a winning combination.

The Community:

Piedmont is one of the East Bay’s most sought-after communities. Offering wonderful views of the Bay and San Francisco beyond, San Francisco magazine declared the town the “best place for kids” in a 2005 article. Its school district offers excellent public schools (the high school is currently 73rd in the nation according to US News and World Report), and locally controlled emergency services and police are based a few blocks from the home. Restaurants, movies and shopping in Rockridge, Piedmont Avenue, Montclair and the Elmwood are just a short distance away.

For more info and thirty photos: Click here.
For a Google mashup,click here.

Four bedrooms, three and a half baths. Open Friday and Saturday during the Children's Support League Tour (10 am-4 pm; tickets available at Better Homes in downtown Piedmont) and Sunday 2-5 pm.

Offered at $1.595 million.

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