Sunday Opens (3/23/14)

By Dave Fratello | March 22nd, 2014

You said you wanted more inventory this Spring, and here it is: Legally, officially Spring, and a year-to-date high for MB real estate options, with 47 listings. 

Below we're reviewing 9 listings for the first time, 8 new to market this week.

One of those listings is Dave's at 1600 N. Poinsettia, where we hope you can drop in Sunday 1-4pm and say "hi."

To plan your open-house tours for this week, use MB Confidential's online list of Manhattan Beach open houses (it's mobile-friendly!).

Tree Section

1600 N. Poinsettia (2br/1ba, 920 sq. ft.) is Dave's new listing in the Tree Section. Here's the official listing description:

This charming beach cottage features a great family-friendly location in the Tree Section. This bright and well-kept home is close to school, parks, town and places of worship. You can truly walk everywhere.

Having huge Center Field across the street means no neighbors to the west, creating a feeling of wide-open space that's hard to beat.

The home features 2 good-sized bedrooms and an added den that is great for an office, extra family room or even sleeping quarters.

Enjoy the ample and nicely landscaped front and back yards. Garage now set up as storage. Love this home as is, update it, add on or build new.

We hope you can come by.

1600 Poinsettia starts at $1.350M. Nearby, a similar 3br home at 1500 Poinsettia (3br/2ba, 1230 sq. ft.) is in escrow at $1.399M. 1600 Poinsettia is open Sun. 1-4pm.

1800 Pine (4br/3ba, 3135 sq. ft.) is a very well-executed home in a style labeled "Spanish Colonial Revival."

Though the layout appears at first familiar, with a spare bedroom and all common spaces downstairs, great room in back, there are a couple surprises upstairs. Notably, a "homework desk" pocket in the hallway, and an anteroom in the master suite that could be a small office or home gym – maybe just a spot for yoga.

The details throughout have a seriousness and authenticity to them. Arched windows, decorative wrought iron and Spanish tile, a handsome kitchen with dark-stained butcher block counters and terra cotta backsplash. Flooring through much of the home is an attractive wide-plank pecan.

As would be expeceted in the Trees, this one has a smallish backyard, which in this case has been hardscaped with flagstone and brick. 

1800 Pine sold new in Spring 2007 for $2.400M and starts now at $2.650M. It is open Sun. 1-4pm.

720 31st (5br/4ba, 3360 sq. ft.) is a 90s Spanish with a slightly different floorplan and some updates. It's got a nice spot along 31st, a prime street featuring a lush tree canopy, and a street-to-alley lot with the garage in back.

You enter into a room with 2-story ceilings and formal dining immediately on the left, and a pocket of formal living area – with fireplace – on the right.  This unusual arrangement is mainly about giving those areas direct access to the light and breezes of the front, private courtyard areas. 

The kitchen and a big family room occupy the center of the first floor, opening to a side courtyard. This is more or less the typical great room arrangement people want, just in the middle of the house. The kitchen was recently redone, and while classy, it does not seem to be in a Spanish style, with white cabinets and a light-colored stone for countertops and the island. One spare bedroom is also downstairs, along with laundry and a 3-car garage. 

Upstairs you have 4 more bedrooms, including a master suite with some unique features. First, there are "his and hers" baths and separate closet areas. Then there is a spacious office with a balcony in back, a great space that will get light all day from the south and west, from windows on 3 sides. 

Almost all of the home has a saltillo-type tile throughout, with a couple bedrooms carpeted instead. Most of the baths feel their mid-90s vintage. We would guess that the next owners will do some work.  

720 31st starts at $2.799M and is open Sun. 2-4pm.

3204 Walnut (4br/4ba, 2450 sq. ft.) is a nifty split-level remodel with a pretty open first floor.

The tastefully remodeled kitchen is separated out from the living space some, and opens to a room shown as an office which probably would serve as the formal dining room for a family that wants that. 

Step down half a level for one bedroom (shown as a family room opening to the yard) and back up the steps for the balance of the bedrooms. Up there, the stunner is the master bath, very large for a home this size, highly modern with one exception: the chic old table set up with two sinks set into it.

The backyard space is decent for the Trees and wraps part way around behind the garage (at the back of the lot down a driveway).

There are a lot of new and newer items – new windows, newly remodeled baths, etc. – meant to make the home move-in ready, though you could keep upgrading here and there (moving out the mirrored closets, for example).

3204 Walnut starts at $1.849M and is open Sun. 2-4pm.

2709 Laurel (3br/3ba, 1900 sq. ft.) is a major accomplishment of a remodel. If you happen to remember this one from its past listing in 2012, forget what you know, because this home has been radically altered and, effectively, saved from the 'dozer.

What you'll find now is a home with two big, wide-open spaces, including a big family room up front with treetop views over the Tree Section, and an open kitchen with dining area and a formal living room all in one expansive space. The kitchen is everything modern and current, with white mable tops, sharp white cabinetry and high-end stainless appliances. Additions to the north side of the house allowed this expanded and modernized space to take shape. 

In back you'll find all 3br and – in a nice surprise – 3 baths as well. Both the master and a guest suite get their own baths. Here, again, an addition pushing back allowed the creation of a true master site with a walk-in closet and gorgeous bath.

The kitchen opens nicely out to a side deck which connects to a flat, grassy space in back. This is a much better integration of indoor/outdoor space than we saw in the prior iteration of this house.

This home has square footage (claimed as 1900) comparable to 3112 Poinsettia (4br/3ba, 1750 sq. ft.), the beach-cottage remodel that recently sold for $1.875M.

2709 Laurel starts at $1.849M, and is open Sun. 1-4pm.

Hill Section

853 6th (6br/6ba, 4925 sq. ft.) is just about everything you'd want in a Hill Section estate. Views? Check. Plenty of bedrooms? Check. Guest house? Check. A good layout for kids and families? Check and check.

Because this home's built with an alley for the neighbor on one side, you don't see a garage in front, a nice benefit of the corner location.

Walk in through the pretty courtyard to the entry level, where you'll find a master bedroom suite and three additional bedrooms (two kids' bedrooms connected with a Jack-and-Jill bath, plus a bedroom/bathroom suite). The master has an ocean view patio extending out into the front yard and a long, spacious bathroom with a two-level (!) master closet.

Toward the back of the first floor, Mrs. MBC was immediately sold when she saw the laundry room/mud room, with its own entrance to the outside and connection to the main two-car garage. (Kids walking in and leaving their muddy/sandy clothes in the laundry room before trekking through the entire house... Brilliant.).

One level down is the basement, which has a large storage room (wine closet?), a surprisingly bright guest suite, and an attractively finished entertainment room ("inspired by Chicago's old-style bars/pubs," we're told) with full bar and billiards.

The top floor has all of the common living areas and all of the views. In a very happy recent development, the next-door home at 6th/John, which could have been built up, was sold and extensively remodeled... as a one-story house with a big yard. So the views are nicely protected.

A large sitting room opening out to an ocean-view balcony, a dining room, enormous kitchen, and a spacious living room with vaulted ceilings all contribute to the feeling of openness. A covered deck in the back practically begs for a sunset beach barbecue, with built-in grill and patio heaters.

Step down into the backyard and there's a smallish grassy yard and eating area, then a third garage spot and guesthouse. The guesthouse has a simple bedroom and bath, plus a super-cool loft space accessible by a ladder. The garage space opens out into the backyard with glass sliding doors and could be used for surf/bicycle storage or even an office.

Overall, this 2007 build is still in top shape – in fact, it even smells kind of new.

853 6th sold new in Jan. 2008 for $4.500M, and starts now at $4.950M. It is open Sun. 2-5pm.

227 Larsson (3br/2ba, 1820 sq. ft.) is a throwback to a simpler time when we didn't "need" butler's pantries or media rooms.

It's on a skinny but deep (138') lot on the "right" side of Larsson, with views galore from an enormous 500 sf deck on the second level.

The first floor has three reasonably bright bedrooms, the third of which opens out onto the patio in the back.

Upstairs, there are high vaulted ceilings and two distinct living spaces - one with living room and dining area, another with family room, breakfast nook, and updated kitchen.

Mrs. MBC was charmed by the library with a rolling ladder - the built-in bookcases make the most of the high space.

But the real attraction is the deck, from which you can even see the Hollywood sign on a clear day.

227 Larsson starts at $1.579M and is open Sun. 1-4pm.

Sand Section

312 44th (4br/3ba, 2700 sq. ft.) is a newer El Porto condo with good views and a modern flair. The unit has been upgraded some since its January 2011 purchase.

This is the home that caught MBC's attention late last month thanks to the incredible markup being sought here over acquisition. (See "Double Your Money?") In a FSBO listing, they're asking a "Make Me Move" type of price, $2.700M, for a condo purchased just 3 years ago for $1.269M.

The 3-level unit (with garage underground) has 2br each on the lower and midfloors. One of the private side decks hosts a hot tub, which required a crane to install between tightly packed buildings. (The tub stays.)

While the whole home – as with the whole complex – was built in a modern style only recently, here they've upgraded the master bath with some different tile, added bamboo flooring to some rooms that were carpeted, and added built-ins upstairs to the main living spaces to help the home "live" a little better. They even added a firepit to the front patio.

A home like this is about the views, and they don't disappoint. You can see lots of blue from the living spaces upstairs and especially from the front balcony, where you can get a good panorama from PV to Malibu, with the rooftops of lower El Porto west of Highland beneath.

Location on the east side of Highland puts you on a bit of an island. Traffic noise from Highland is dampened some by having a unit in front. One of those units right in front, 4320 Highland (3br/3ba, 2250 sq. ft.) sold in Dec. 2012 for $1.430M.

People bet against FSBOs, and in a subtle way some agents may boycott them – those that aren't hammering on the sellers to "get real" and list with a local realtor. But in this rising market it's no surprise to see sellers give it a go themselves first. It is a touchy problem, though, when you both challenge convention and push the ceiling on asking price.

312 44th starts at $2.700M and is open Sun. 2-4pm.

East MB

1606 18th (3br/2ba, 1400 sq. ft.) is a really sharply remodeled cottage with a very open front room sporting a modern kitchen and good indoor/outdoor flow to a fenced front patio.

In back, the landscaping (hardscape mostly) is even more stunning and makes for a very inviting space for al fresco dining and just hanging out by the warm fire pit. (We also saw a beach shower on one side of the house.)

It's not bad inside, either.

The open kitchen boasts Caesarstone quartz, stainless appliances and nice custom cabinets. Baths are very tastefully done with bold colors for the tiling work. The wood flooring has been refinished and shines.

The master opens via glass doors to the living room – which might be a bit of a concern – but also trails back to that great yard.

The baths were redone by the prior owner, but the opening up of the kitchen and front of the home, along with the impressive hardscape, was a project of the current sellers.

Boy did they get a nice deal in 2011, picking this one up as a short sale for $792K.

Bonus: We'll share the little chuckle we got from a wall decal in one bedroom: Boy [boi], n.: A noise with dirt on it.

1606 18th starts at $1.299M and is open Sun. 1-4pm.

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