Designed to mimic the curves of the Pacific Ocean: Wave House

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Designed to mimic the curves of the crashing waves of the Pacific Ocean, the “Wave House” is an iconic home built in the early 70s, designed by noted architect Michael Carmichael. Located in Goleta, California (just outside Santa Barbara), the house is set on a bluff some sixty feet above the ocean. When originally designed, the architect was given free reign to build this architectural masterpiece. He designed the home to not only look like a wave, but to capture the sounds as well.

“In the spirit of Gaudi and anticipating the curvilinear masterworks of Frank Gehry, the architect designed, engineered, and built what he called the ‘Wave House’. The house is defined by long, sweeping laminated wood beams, custom crafted to form the underside of a huge wave which curls up and over the living space. The design also incorporates amazing wave-shaped glass panels which provide stunning vistas of the ocean beyond,” states listing agent Steven Richardson of Coldwell Banker.

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The house was listed for sale back in 2013 for $2.45 million. Its current owner was drawn to the property’s whimsical design and unique architectural details. The homeowner contracted Mitch Williams Construction to help with the renovations, updating everything that had aged. The home required central heat and air conditioning, brand new windows and a roof. Others who worked on the project included James Mayo Macari Architect and Design Source for the interior design.

The main house consists of just 1,500 square feet of living space. It originally had two bedrooms, but an additional bedroom was added at the request of the homeowner. Additional living areas includes a living, dining and kitchen area and two bathrooms. There is also a detached guest tower encompassing 1,000 square feet of living space, with three bedrooms and three bathrooms. The tower is 30 feet high and boasts an incredible observation deck, soaking in the views of the Pacific Ocean.

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In the original design, a main floor siting area had featured a spiral staircase that connected it to the master bedroom suite above. The new design converted this sitting area into a third bedroom, while a main staircase was designed in the front hallway to connect to the second level. Everything in the design is free-form, with no true arches and very few straight lines. The wave-shaped windows of the original structure were expanded to maximize the ocean vistas.

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Above: The front door and hardware is original to the home. The gardens are the handiwork of the homeowner, who has a passion for gardening.

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Above: Throughout the main level, the flooring is fossilized limestone, sourced from Greece. The stone actually includes real fossils of a seahorse or a sea snail (one of every ten tiles).

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What We Love: The Wave House has to be one of our most favorite home tours that we have featured here on One Kindesign. Not only is it spectacular in design, but it is truly unique, one-of-a-kind. From the maximized ocean views to the heavy use of natural timber both inside and out, this home is inviting and warm. Love all the curves, so much varied interest throughout… Readers, please share your thoughts on the design, do you find this home unique? Anything you don’t like about the design?

Note: We have featured another really unique home tour that we would love to share with you in case you missed it, take a look: Cliff house buried in the mountain off the Granada coast.

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Above: A strong focal point of the living room, the fireplace is original to the home, have received just a fresh coat of paint.

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Above: The wood throughout the interiors was cleaned and bleached—refinished to allow the natural wood grain to come through.

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Above: The kitchen in it’s original design; new tiles on the countertops replace those that were cracked or chipped. A brand new wood edge for the countertops added a clean, fresh aesthetic. Oak slat board is used in front of the fridge to create a harmonious aesthetic with the surrounding cabinetry.

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Above: In the master bathroom, onyx was used on the countertops and walk-in shower—mimicking the waves of the house and ocean beyond. Radiant heat flooring was used in all the bathrooms, including those in the guest tower.

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Above: The original deck had substantial dry rot, so the builder ripped it out and replaced it with Brazilian ipe wood.

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Above: The home was completely re-sided with new cedar shingles and re-roofed.

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Above: The three-story guest tower is 30-feet high and includes an observation deck for soaking in the peaceful ocean vistas. Each of the levels boasts a bedroom and a bathroom!

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Above: At the edge of the property, there is another deck and a hot tub, which provides unobstructed ocean views.

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Above: The property also features a new staircase, which provides direct access to a private beach some 60 feet below. The beach is located 3 miles North of Refugio State Park.

Photos: Courtesy of Mitch Williams Construction

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