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This Japanese-inspired Sacramento home is wrapped around a reflecting pool

Local architect John Harvey Carter designed this midcentury-modern Sacramento home in 1968 with borrowed elements of Japanese design, including a zen courtyard reflecting pool and ‘floating’ interior walls.

Located at 729 Columbia Drive, the ranch-style California property has been owned by the original family for 50 years, preserving Carter’s vision for the single-storey residence.

Photography: Stefan Deliivanov

Its living spaces, particularly the formal living room, dining room and family room, peer onto the reflecting pool through floor-to-ceiling glass, while the overhanging eaves of the roof nod to those favoured in Japanese dwellings, shading the house from the California heat.

Photography: Stefan Deliivanov

Walls of wood have clerestory windows, helping light flow through the recesses of the three-bedroom home – listed for $1,385,000 via Susan Pillon of Nick Sadek Sotheby’s International Realty – which has been updated ahead of its sale. Don’t worry though, there’s plenty of original features and character to be found in the sunken living room, with a dramatic floating fireplace, and the midcentury kitchen with teak cabinetry, plus room for its new owners to leave their stamp (shag pile carpets aren’t for everyone.)

John Harvey Carter has a very prominent following in this pocket of California with his crop of ranch-house designs highly coveted half a century on.

Photography: Stefan Deliivanov
Photography: Stefan Deliivanov
Photography: Stefan Deliivanov

Japanese-style Berkeley home asks $3.5m




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