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Tucked away in the affluent Orinda neighborhood of Charles Hill lies a rare gem of preserved original architecture with modern updates. Two separate driveways lead up to the park-like grounds of this classic 1940 Spanish Mediterranean villa, situated on a 0.67-acre corner lot. The views through the mahogany-framed windows are spectacular, with the distant hills rising up above the surrounding lush vegetation. Authentic design elements include vaulted wood-beam ceilings, arched doorways, solid mahogany doors, terra-cotta tiles, ornamental ironwork, and copper gutters. The remodeled grand kitchen is equipped with an incredible La Cornue range, marble countertops, solid walnut island, elegant custom cabinets, and full-height glass bifold doors that slide away to create the perfect indoor/outdoor entertaining area. They open to a tiled courtyard terrace that has its own outdoor kitchen and fireplace.
The main level has a large living room with vaulted wood-beam ceilings, stone fireplace, white oak floors, arched doorways, and alcove windows with incredible views. The adjoining dining room also has an alcove of windows with an amazing view, French doors that open to the graceful lawn surrounded by mature trees, and a pass-through opening to the kitchen. 3 bedrooms and 1.5 baths flank the other end of this level.
The kitchen has been remodeled with the highest-quality materials and appliances. The showstopper might be the French La Cornue range with a double convection oven and a pot-filler faucet built into the tile wall above it. Or it could be the large center island made of walnut, featuring a marble top and a beautiful copper farmhouse sink. The classic style of the custom cabinetry, including a paneled fridge door, is complemented by the continuation of marble counters. Unique, however, is the wall of glass doors that fold away, instantly creating an even larger entertaining and dining experience as they open to reveal a courtyard terrace of terra-cotta tile that has its own outdoor kitchen and fireplace! Perfect for gatherings of all sizes it is intimate in atmosphere yet accommodates many guests.
On the third level lies the master’s retreat. Full-height glass doors like in the kitchen, open from the bedroom onto a private terrace overlooking the property and hills beyond. The updated master bath is like a luxury spa. The soaking tub is flanked by windows that look out to the surrounding trees. A separate glass shower is tiled entirely with Carrara marble, which is also echoed in the floor and double-sink vanity. This oasis opens onto a private upper garden.
On the lower level of this magnificent house are another 1 bedroom/1bath, living room, climate-controlled cellar, office and bar/kitchenette; a steam room; and an electric car charging station within the garage. This space is a great complement to the house or could be considered as a secondary unit for your home office or visiting guests are given all it has to offer & its separate entry.
The property has 2 driveways, one that leads to guest parking and a cascading stone front stairway; and a second one that leads to the 2-car attached garage and first level of the home.
18 Charles Hill Road is a rare find in this class of California architecture.
Great schools, weather, and access to San Francisco thanks to the Bay Area Rapid Transit (BART), as well as semirural country living makes Orinda a desirable place to live in the Bay Area. Large lots house lovely Spanish-, Mediterranean-, and contemporary-styled homes. Orinda's open spaces attract road and mountain bikers and hikers along the extensive network of trails. The proximity to Tilden Regional Park, San Pablo Reservoir, Briones Regional Park, and the Lafayette Reservoir offer plenty of options for nature lovers. Orinda's small-scale shopping district is home enticing boutiques and entertainment venues. Orinda Books in Village Square offers a reading series featuring local poets and literary notables. At the center of Orinda nightlife is the revitalized Orinda Theatre Square, anchored by the renovated, Art Deco-styled Orinda Theater. The theater is home to the California Independent Film Festival, hosts independent films and conversations with actors and actresses, and presents comedy nights and live theater performances. The California Shakespeare Theater, located in Bruns Amphitheater, presents live shows in a gorgeous outdoor setting.