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Stories by Dave Rice

The newest of Heritage Estates has it all

Nestled in the hills of north Poway above the Maderas Golf Club, The Heritage Estates is an exclusive 400-acre enclave of 111 custom homes locked behind a 24-hour guarded entry gate. Most of the Heritage ...

June 2, 2021
The Grand Dame of Coronado

“European Elegance meets casual California beach lifestyle!” shouts the Zillow intro to 708 A Avenue, purported to be “one of Coronado’s most iconic and significant properties.” Billed as the “Grand Dame” of the island, the ...

May 26, 2021
La Jolla’s Monkey House

Renowned local architect Edgar Ullrich was lured from his Colorado home a century ago by a prized commission — chief design responsibilities for Casa de Mañana, a luxury resort hotel in La Jolla that eventually ...

May 5, 2021
The largest residence of Alvarado Estates

Back in 1948, a group of outdoor-loving professors at San Diego State College got together with a handful of other prominent local professionals. The group wanted to mate a pair of desires: city living and ...

April 23, 2021
Where the author of Corpus of Joe Bailey created fictional residents of Mission Hills

Novelist Oakley Hall was best known for his Westerns, including Warlock, which won him a Pulitzer Prize in 1958. But before rising to fame, the San Diego-born writer broke out with 1953’s Corpus of Joe ...

Laguna y Mar: purity in design and sophistication

Regardless of whether you find the penchant of rich people for naming their homes to be eccentric or narcissistic, “Laguna y Mar” (lagoon and sea) probably won’t be making any top ten lists of things ...

March 26, 2021
Koi and contrast in Carlsbad

Many people feel that homes are meant to be colorful. Bright, vibrant hues accentuate their rooms and add personality. Flowers add a pop of color to garden beds. Carefully chosen tones and schemes provide warmth ...

March 10, 2021
Boxing great Archie Moore’s Stockton sanctuary

Stockton, a Southeast San Diego neighborhood wedged in among Logan Heights, Mt. Hope, and Grant Hill, isn’t the first place one thinks of when imagining million-dollar homes. With a median home value more than $300,000 ...

February 24, 2021
Seaview’s views in Del Mar

The key thing to know about the 5900-square-foot mansion at 2008 Seaview Avenue in Del Mar is that it has views. Lots of views. Situated just south of San Dieguito Lagoon and less than a ...

February 12, 2021
Tamarack Beach’s Frank Lloyd Wright inspired townhouse in Carlsbad

The 3400-square-foot townhouse at 195 Cherry Avenue is billed as the first of three newly-constructed, “Frank Lloyd Wright inspired” condominium units erected last year, just a block inland from Tamarack Beach in Carlsbad. According to ...

January 27, 2021
Vista de la Mission: angelic outpost in Kensington

According to listing materials retrieved from Zillow, the historic Vista de la Mission residence in Kensington is “spiritually known as an outpost for angels.” “Privately nestled behind walls in the most desirable cul-de-sac location in ...

January 14, 2021
Mediterranean masterpiece in La Jolla

The 10,300-square-foot mansion at 308 Vista de la Playa in La Jolla is billed in listing remarks retrieved from Zillow as “a rare legacy property.” Built in 2000, the seven-bedroom, nine-bath residence is described as ...

January 1, 2021
Joseph Sfeir fused modern Spanish architecture

The 3900-square-foot estate at 545 Rimini Road in Del Mar exudes “timeless elegance situated on an oversized lot highlighting private grounds, stunning terraces and ocean views,” according to listing materials retrieved from realtor.com. “Rich in ...

December 17, 2020
Rancho Santa Fe Covenant’s “Solace in the Sky”

Behold the home billed as “Solace in the Sky,” a newly constructed 8969-square-foot ultramodern glass cube at 15815 Las Planideras. “No expense was spared in this six-bedroom modern construction in the Rancho Santa Fe Covenant,” ...

December 3, 2020
The history of the San Diego Union’s James MacMullen and his Coronado home

The majestic MacMullen Home at 382 Glorietta Boulevard is the first building visitors to Coronado encounter when crossing the Bay bridge from downtown San Diego. Built in 1914, the home was first occupied by James ...

November 19, 2020
Old world meets contemporary at Rancho Del Lago

“Through the 24-hour security guarded gates of Rancho Del Lago, you approach this magnificent European style estate,” begins the realtor.com listing pitch for 6590 Calle Reina, a 1995-built Rancho Santa Fe estate that spans “approximately ...

November 5, 2020
Spanish hacienda at the southern edge of La Jolla

Older oceanfront houses are a rarity in San Diego. Sand, water, and salty air conspire to degrade building materials years or decades faster than the same stuff used to build homes just a few blocks ...

October 21, 2020
America’s Cup participant William Ruh’s Cape Cod style home

This week, we visit a “stunning Cape Cod style home nestled in the trees of Olde Del Mar,” billed in listing materials retrieved from realtor.com as “a true masterpiece by John O’Brien of Flagg Coastal ...

October 8, 2020
La Jolla Tide Pools meets Craftsman-style renovation

In the early 1900s, many outlying areas of San Diego were experiencing severe contractions following a speculation-fueled housing boom in the 1880s and early 1890s. At the time, areas such as La Jolla were so ...

September 24, 2020
Half-acre estate above Terramar Beach

The oceanfront estate at 5327 Carlsbad Boulevard is “a fresh, global take on Southern California style, pairing modern amenities with elegant touches.” So say listing materials retrieved from realtor.com. Built in 2006, the home hosts ...

September 11, 2020
Christian Rice coastal contemporary design in Coronado

This week, we visit what realtor.com promotional materials describe as a “sophisticated coastal contemporary farmhouse” sitting on just over a quarter-acre of land at 900 Alameda Boulevard in Coronado. Custom-built in 2013, the home was ...

August 26, 2020
The Longview Manor estate built by Ralph Hurlburt

The nearly century-old estate at 2212 La Callecita in Mission Hills, once dubbed Longview Manor, “is truly a one of a kind treasure,” according to listing remarks published at realtor.com. “This architecturally significant home was ...

August 13, 2020
Luxury atop the Omni Hotel

As professional sports leagues attempt in fits and starts to restart their respective seasons, one thing is clear: there won’t be any fans in the stands. So if you want to see live baseball in ...

The Harrison G. Otis House: a Tudor Revival residence

The Harrison G. Otis House, a Mission Hills mansion with nearly 3900 square feet of living space, was originally built in 1910. Per listing materials retrieved from Realtor.com, “historic details abound” throughout the home. Commissioned ...

Encinitas, not a neighborhood but a kingdom

Bicyclists dominate Caltrans meeting About half of the meeting’s 40 attendees indicated they were cyclists, and will use the proposed bike lane. But even hard-core cyclists were skeptical of some sections of the proposed eight-mile ...

Modern masterpiece north of Belmont Park

For just under nine million dollars, you’ve got the chance to acquire a two-year-old, three-story beachfront mansion in the heart of Mission Beach. A few blocks north of Belmont Park sits the “beachfront modern masterpiece” ...

Why settle for the penthouse? Buy the whole building.

This week in Unreal Estate, we’re exploring a property perfect for the aspiring real estate mogul who also needs a place to stay in downtown’s trendy Little Italy neighborhood. Sure, you get the 7000-square-foot penthouse ...

Britt-Scripps House: Bankers Hill’s Queen Anne Victorian Historic Landmark

The story of the tri-level Queen Anne Victorian estate at 406 Maple Street in Bankers Hill already includes a host of interesting chapters. With its latest offering for sale, the home is poised to embark ...

May 21, 2020
Mission Valley – garden-land gave way to shopping centers

The never-ending fix to Hazard Center Drive Hazard Center Drive in Mission Valley East is probably the shortest road incurring the longest completion of any in San Diego. It is approximately three blocks long and ...

Enjoy “effortless living” with Samuel Amoia design

This week, we visit what’s billed as “the highest standard of California coastal living,” a 6532-square-foot oceanview mansion at 516 Stratford Court. According to listing remarks retrieved from Trulia, the home is “ideally situated on ...

May 7, 2020
East Village – built around a ballpark

Short-term rentals thrive in East Village Is the demand for housing suitable to fill the thousands of rental units that have sprung up in downtown's East Village since the mid-2000s, and enough to sustain even ...

Avant Garde architecture in Cardiff

As with just about every other facet of daily life, the spread of coronavirus has dramatically reshaped the real estate market in recent weeks. Appraisers are working limited schedules or avoiding property inspections entirely, thus ...

April 23, 2020
La Jolla’s Taj Mahal

“Private and secluded at the end of a cul de sac, the legendary Casa de las Joyas — also known as La Jolla’s Taj Mahal — exudes charm and character rarely experienced,” opens the Realtor.com ...

April 9, 2020
Best Reader stories from 2019

Hillcrest: gayborhood or ghetto? “I was only in West Hollywood for four years and I came from the East Coast by way of Las Vegas,” he says. “To me, Hillcrest is just normal. At least ...

April 4, 2020
Best Reader stories from 2018

Adam Parfrey goes to the San Diego Zoo It is not generally appreciated that famous publisher Adam Parfrey once lived just off Lincoln Boulevard, a dismal stretch of gasoline-alley slightly east of Venice, California, and ...

March 29, 2020
Wouldn’t it be nice to live in Mike Love’s Fairbanks Ranch mansion?

“Rarely does such a spectacular property become available in the exclusive guard gated community of Fairbanks Ranch in Rancho Santa Fe,” boast listing materials for the mansion at 17261 Circa Oriente, as retrieved from Realtor.com. ...

Sweeping ocean and treetop views on Mt. Soledad

“Timeless architecture is considered to be designed in such a way that it evokes special feelings, outlasts trends, relevant for many years and masterfully constructed of the finest materials,” begins the Realtor.com sales pitch for ...

March 12, 2020
The Mt. Helix of William Gross and Ed Fletcher

In the late nineteenth century, artists of all stripes began abandoning big cities in favor of countryside “art colonies” where they could live alongside and collaborate with their peers. While these villages tended to crop ...

February 26, 2020
Barrio Logan: if you want color

Jack's island: jewel of Barrio Logan Sometime this year, the city council is expected to decide whether to accept a low-ball $30,000 offer for the nearest thing Barrio Logan has to a flat iron building, ...

Rancho Santa Fe mansion infused with Taj Mahal marble and Wolf appliances

“Hollywood glamour finds its home in Rancho Santa Fe,” or so promises the listing description, posted on Realtor.com, of 5516 La Crescenta, a newly-constructed mansion with 8400 square feet of living space, six bedrooms, and ...

February 13, 2020
Chula Vista’s Tour D’Elegance

2920 Gate Five Place, a six-bedroom, eight-bath custom estate with nearly 9000 square feet of indoor living space sits at the end of a cul-de-sac overlooking the Upper Otay Reservoir in eastern Chula Vista. Part ...

January 30, 2020

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4S Ranch Allied Gardens Alpine Baja Balboa Park Bankers Hill Barrio Logan Bay Ho Bay Park Black Mountain Ranch Blossom Valley Bonita Bonsall Borrego Springs Boulevard Campo Cardiff-by-the-Sea Carlsbad Carmel Mountain Carmel Valley Chollas View Chula Vista City College City Heights Clairemont College Area Coronado CSU San Marcos Cuyamaca College Del Cerro Del Mar Descanso Downtown San Diego Eastlake East Village El Cajon Emerald Hills Encanto Encinitas Escondido Fallbrook Fletcher Hills Golden Hill Grant Hill Grantville Grossmont College Guatay Harbor Island Hillcrest Imperial Beach Imperial Valley Jacumba Jamacha-Lomita Jamul Julian Kearny Mesa Kensington La Jolla Lakeside La Mesa Lemon Grove Leucadia Liberty Station Lincoln Acres Lincoln Park Linda Vista Little Italy Logan Heights Mesa College Midway District MiraCosta College Miramar Miramar College Mira Mesa Mission Beach Mission Hills Mission Valley Mountain View Mount Hope Mount Laguna National City Nestor Normal Heights North Park Oak Park Ocean Beach Oceanside Old Town Otay Mesa Pacific Beach Pala Palomar College Palomar Mountain Paradise Hills Pauma Valley Pine Valley Point Loma Point Loma Nazarene Potrero Poway Rainbow Ramona Rancho Bernardo Rancho Penasquitos Rancho San Diego Rancho Santa Fe Rolando San Carlos San Marcos San Onofre Santa Ysabel Santee San Ysidro Scripps Ranch SDSU Serra Mesa Shelltown Shelter Island Sherman Heights Skyline Solana Beach Sorrento Valley Southcrest South Park Southwestern College Spring Valley Stockton Talmadge Temecula Tierrasanta Tijuana UCSD University City University Heights USD Valencia Park Valley Center Vista Warner Springs
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