$2.5 Million Homes in California

The Silver Lake section of Los Angeles was developed in the early 20th century around Silver Lake Reservoir, a man-made lake about a mile from this house. The reservoir remains a center of neighborhood life, surrounded by walking trails, a dog park and a recreation center.

This house is about a block and a half from the artisanal coffee shops, vintage boutiques and restaurants of Sunset Boulevard. Downtown Los Angeles is about a 15-minute drive on the 101 freeway; the center of Hollywood is about the same distance.

Size: 2,837 square feet

Price per square foot: $879

Indoors: A long stairway from the sidewalk leads up to a pair of glass doors to the foyer. From there, more stairs lead up to the main living area and down to the garage.

The living area is laid out in open-plan style, with hardwood floors, a fireplace and glass pocket doors that slide open to a street-facing patio, giving the space an indoor-outdoor feeling. The kitchen faces the seating and dining areas, with Bertazzoni appliances and a center island with built-in storage.

Beyond the kitchen are a powder room and a laundry room with a washer and dryer. A hallway leads from the kitchen to the back of the house, where two guest rooms (one currently used as a home office) have access to the backyard. Two bathrooms are also off the hallway, one with a combination tub and shower and the other with a walk-in shower.

An open staircase in the main living area rises to the top level of the house, used as a primary suite. The bedroom has a private balcony overlooking the street, and the bathroom has a glass-walled shower and a soaking tub that sits beneath a window.

Outdoor space: A landscaped patio with separate spaces for dining and lounging is accessible from the main-level hallway and bedrooms. An adjacent lawn offers more room for lounging, and a teak fence provides privacy. The attached garage has space for two cars.

Taxes: $31,692 (estimated)

Contact: Alyssa Valentine and Kurt Wisner, the Courtney and Kurt Wisner Real Estate Team at Compass, 323-667-0700;

This house is near Inverness, an unincorporated community in Marin County nestled between Tomales Bay Ecological Reserve to the east and Point Reyes National Seashore to the west, where there are hiking trails suited to a variety of skill levels. The area has long been a destination for Bay Area vacationers, with cozy bed-and-breakfasts and farm-to-table restaurants in the heart of Point Reyes Station, about two miles from this property. Limantour Beach and Drakes Beach are half an hour away. San Francisco is about an hour and 15 minutes’ drive.

Size: 2,798 square feet

Price per square foot: $892

Indoors: A wooden fence with a gate separates this house from the street, with a stone footpath that cuts through a side garden to the front door.

To the left of the foyer is a bathroom with a shower; next to it is a guest room with French doors out to the garden.

To the right of the foyer is the main living area. The space, which is open to the kitchen, has a brick Rumford-style fireplace, vaulted ceilings with clerestory windows and French doors that open to the deck. The kitchen, separated from an open dining area by a breakfast bar, has quartzite countertops and stainless steel appliances, including a Viking range. Just off the kitchen is a pantry with custom shelving.

At the end of the main hallway is the primary suite, with large windows overlooking the hills, glass doors to the deck and vaulted ceilings; the en suite bathroom has a soaking tub and a glass-walled walk-in shower.

From the main living area, stairs lead to a lower level with a wine-storage room and an open space that could be used as a gym or playroom. Also on this level are a half bathroom, a mudroom and access to the garage.

Across the driveway from the main house is a guesthouse with a full kitchen and living room, as well as a private deck.

Outdoor space: Off the main level is a wide wooden deck, with space for outdoor dining and entertaining. On one side of the property is a garden planted with lavender and succulents. From the side yard, outdoor stairs lead to a flat expanse of land that could be used as a play area. The garage, attached to the main house, holds two cars.

Taxes: $37,920 (estimated)

Contact: James Whitney and Ryan Rodoni, Coastal Marin Real Estate, 415-663-1104;

This neighborhood, known as the Riviera, is mostly single-family homes designed to take advantage of the views of the Santa Ynez Mountains. The property is roughly half a mile from Parma Park, the largest park in Santa Barbara, with hiking trails that are especially popular during the spring, when wildflowers bloom along the hillsides. The Santa Barbara Bowl, an outdoor music venue, is a 10 minutes away, as are the city’s public middle and high schools. The beach is about 15 minutes away by car; the shops and restaurants of downtown are about the same distance.

Size: 3,817 square feet

Price per square foot: $642

Indoors: A long, private driveway leads from the street to a carved-wood front door. In the sunny foyer, a wrought-iron light fixture hangs above stairs to the lower level; beyond is a dining area in front of sliding-glass doors facing a deck.

To the right of the foyer is a den overlooking a sunken living room. Stairs trimmed in imported Spanish tile lead down to the living room, which has hardwood floors (like most of the rooms), a fireplace with a carved stone mantel flanked by arched windows, and more sliding-glass doors that open to the deck. Also on this side of the house is a full bathroom decorated with green Spanish-style tile.

To the left of the entry is the kitchen and breakfast area. The kitchen has custom wood cabinets and more imported Spanish tile, used here as a backsplash behind a Wolf range. A farmhouse sink is set underneath a deck-facing window, and a wine fridge is tucked into one corner.

A staircase with a wrought-iron railing leads from the kitchen to the lower level, where there are four bedrooms, including the primary suite, which has a fireplace and access to a second deck area; the primary bathroom is spacious, with a porcelain soaking tub. Next to the primary suite is a carpeted guest room currently used as a home office. At the other end of the hall are two more guest rooms, each with an en suite bathroom. A tiled laundry area on this level is concealed by a set of wooden doors.

Outdoor space: The outdoor spaces are designed to take advantage of the setting, with mountains visible from the upper and lower decks, both which have travertine-tile floors. A private patio is accessible from the primary bathroom, with a hot tub surrounded by native plants. The attached garage holds two cars.

Taxes: $28,416 (estimated)

Contact: Cristal Clarke, BHHS California Properties, 805-886-9378;

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