A Hilltop Midcentury in Berkeley With Bay Views and a Writer’s Cottage Asks $970K

A Hilltop Midcentury in Berkeley With Bay Views and a Writer’s Cottage Asks $970K

By Kathryn M.
Available for the first time in nearly 60 years, the home offers a glass-fronted living room with views of the San Francisco Bay.

New to the market in Berkeley, California, is a hillside home that captures picturesque views of the city below and San Francisco Bay beyond. The property, which features a soaring great room at its center, was designed in the early 1950s by local architect R.W. Ratcliff. Last sold in 1963, the home has been lovingly restored and maintained by its current owner, who even added a quant writer’s cottage in the side garden.

Built in 1951, this midcentury home is nestled into the Berkeley Hills near Claremont Canyon Regional Preserve. The structure sits midway down a sloping lot, with a staircase providing access from the street and additional stairs connecting to verdant gardens around the home.

The home’s most dramatic feature is a central living room oriented to take advantage of northwestern views over Berkeley and toward Marin County in the distance. Along one side of the space, a glass door leads out to the surrounding patio.

Inside, the home’s post-and-beam construction is on full display, with expansive panes of glass and wood beams in every room. Other features include exposed brick, concrete and tile floors, and wood-clad ceilings and walls. A vintage tiled bathroom and a stained glass window in the living area add to the home’s charm.

The eight-inch-thick brick walls are visible along the opposite side of the living area, which also offers a corner fireplace and concrete floors. The current owner had the brick and wood ceiling sandblasted to remove paint applied by previous owners and reveal the original finish.

Supporting the dramatic roofline is a central iron beam that runs diagonally across the ceiling. Near the kitchen, a stained glass window hangs over the doorway.

Offering two bedrooms and one full bathroom, the 1,435-square-foot home is located along a winding residential street with easy access to the city below, as well as nearby hiking trails. Keep scrolling to see more of the interior and exterior—including the adjacent cottage—and if you’re interested, act fast. With an asking price of $969,000, the property is likely to sell quickly.

The L-shaped kitchen features two large windows overlooking the patio and panoramic views.

The kitchen also comes with freshly painted cabinetry and new countertops.

A sunlit hallway leads to the home's two bedrooms and bathroom along the left-hand side.

Both bedrooms are brightly illuminated by windows that span the width of each room.

The home’s full bathroom offers colorful tile and wood-clad walls, along with a mix of vintage and updated fixtures.

At the end of the hallway, the second bedroom is currently staged as a home office. A clerestory window follows the home’s sloping roofline.

To the side of the main house, the writer’s studio provides an additional space to work quietly or host overnight guests.

Wood dominates the interior of the cottage, which features several built-ins and a leaded glass window.

The unpermitted structure also comes with a half bathroom.

Another view of the cottage shows its placement alongside the home.

At the opposite side of the lot, a partially covered patio provides a large area for outdoor entertaining.

A small patio is also located along the front of the home, where a staircase leads up to a parking area near the street.

Around back, an additional staircase connects to paths that wind through the property’s garden. Views from the hilltop lot include Sather Tower, a landmark on the UC Berkeley campus, as well as Mount Tamalpais in the distance.

3541 Dwight Way in Berkeley, California, is currently listed for $969,000 by Mary Canavan of The Grubb Company.

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