Homeowner Courteney Cox sought to completely transform a dilapidated collection of buildings on this bluff-top site into a private sanctuary for family and friends. The new house had to provide visual and acoustic privacy from the nearby Pacific Coast Highway, create social spaces for groups of varying sizes, and take advantage of the unparalleled ocean views. Due to Malibu’s restrictive building codes, our team decided to work with the existing vernacular structures rather than start from scratch; so, from the outset, the project was conceived of as a compound, rather than a singular ‘house’.
The property’s north side buildings were transformed to accommodate guest quarters, a screening room, and a catering kitchen. The main house is composed of a large living and formal dining room separated by a wet bar, and a ‘family kitchen.’ The kitchen, which in the original house had been relegated to a back corner, has been moved to a position of privilege, overlooking the pool and ocean beyond. In the living room, oak floors and a flagstone fireplace blur the boundaries between out- doors and in. Punchy artworks by Harland Miler, Massimo Vitali, and Kent Williams add color and humor.
The sense of openness carries throughout the rest of the house, where glass walls flood the rooms with light. In the master bedroom, French doors lead onto another deck overlooking the water.