Slate steps lead to a secluded courtyard that introduces an expansive manse with optimal views.
Anyone who’s ever watched the BBC show Doctor Who knows the Doctor’s time-traveling spaceship is bigger on the inside than it is on the outside.
A similar spatial conundrum takes place when one encounters the four-bedroom, 4.5-bath home at 17044 Broadway Terrace, built in 1996 in the Oakland hills. First impressions would suggest a standard-sized home with a very nice yet basic wood-paneled garage door. Of course, as with many houses in the hills, the garage is a mere hint of what’s terraced below.
Head down slate steps through a swath of plantings and Japanese maples and come across a gated entry to the front courtyard, secluded from the street. You’ll encounter a lovely Mediterranean-influenced exterior — a front door of security glass flanked by more windows, the patio rimmed with lavender and bougainvillea. Yet still, even from the courtyard, the home appears to be merely a standard, single-level structure.
Once inside, however, the nearly 4,000 square feet of space opens up. Gray granite flooring in the entryway wraps around an ultra-modern glass-railed staircase leading to the floor below. Vaulted living-room and dining-room ceilings seem to rise much higher than imagined from the outside. Curved soffits add a space-age architectural element. Light bounces off blond hardwood floors and pale dove-gray walls, and a warm wooden-manteled fireplace keeps the space-age feeling in check.
Of course the most dramatic spatial element of the home is on the other side of a full wall of sliding glass doors — the panoramic views of San Francisco Bay.
“The property has many wonderful features, but, depending on one’s perspective, the views from the main deck would be at the top of the list,” said listing agent Pamela Sweeney of Golden Gate Sotheby’s International Realty in Berkeley. Indeed, the scene encompasses three bridges, San Francisco’s sparkling skyline, and Mount Tamalpais as a solid backdrop to it all.
The spacious deck is rimmed with horizontal metal railings and an interesting partial wall with vertical slot openings, providing privacy from neighbors without completely obstructing the views.
Back inside, the formal dining room branches off from the living room, with more great views and sliding glass doors. Staggered wood shelves on one wall add interest, and bucket-style light fixtures dangle over the table. Around the corner is the breakfast area for casual dining where windows look out to redwoods. Steps away is a large pantry behind wooden barn doors.
The kitchen has stainless appliances, wood cabinetry with glass doors, a central island with granite top, and a recessed white ceiling that expands the feel of space.
Back through the house to the foyer, pass through a modern, round-cornered doorway to the den/media room with a wall of built-in wooden shelves. A half bath is also on this level.
Then take the stairway down to the lower level where you’ll find the en-suite bedrooms. The large master features a double-sided gas fireplace, set in a tall stone structure between bedroom and bath. Windows high on the walls let in light, but also maintain privacy. Glass doors lead out to a private deck. The master bath is made to seem even larger than it is with a full-wall mirror over the vanity. The soaking tub is not far from the fireplace for a cozy soak. There’s also a glassed-in stall shower on the other side of the vanity.
A nearby bedroom is all ready for kids, especially kids who love wild things —- wonderful murals with friendly lions, monkeys, and a rhino liven up the walls. This room includes a custom bureau and dressing area on the way to the bath.
Down the hallway, the blond hardwood floor leads up several steps to a “special place,” Sweeney said, that could serve as an additional bedroom, an au pair space, in-law quarters, game room, or art studio. It’s a large living space with its own entrance off the main front courtyard.
“The whole home has clean lines and architectural details, making it a perfect gem for entertaining,” Sweeney says.
17044 Broadway Terrace, Oakland
4 bedrooms, 4.5 baths
3,907 square feet
Two-car garage, two fireplaces, dramatic views