Modish tree house in the Oakland Hills asks a shade under $900,000

Modish tree house in the Oakland Hills asks a shade under $900,000


Heat wave? If you lived in this midcentury view house you could take advantage of Oakland weather and still cool off beneath the leafy treetops (or inside where there's central A/C).

Built by Tom Lowe, an architect best known for the type of downslope residences that are common in the Oakland Hills, this Merriewood home lets in sweeping vistas (it's on a street called Valley View, hello) through Lowe's signature wall of windows, made all the more lofty with vaulted beamed ceilings that echo the woods outside.

Most of Lowe's work can be found throughout nearby Montclair and Piedmont Pines where, from the 1960s through the '90s, he designed variations of the same plan: downslope lot; garage at street level; living space below. The entrance would be off to the side, in this case to the left of the garage, and often there would be a single high window above, along with a covered breezeway.

This 1964 house follows suit, along with a freestanding sheet metal hearth that's characteristic of his earlier designs. Modern updates include a new roof, recently replaced windows, an additional 500 square feet, and a car charger.

The communal living space is the heart of the home, with a wood-paneled vaulted ceiling, rail lights, and a wall of glass looking onto the upper deck. The living room and hearth flow seamlessly into the airy dining room and kitchen. There are also two bedrooms, each with their own bathroom. But if we lived here, we might drag our sleeping bags out onto one of the two decks to catch some R&R beneath the stars.

Location: 6400 Valley View Rd. (Oakland)

Bedrooms: 2

Bathrooms: 2

Asking price: $899,888

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