A substantial presence on treasured, private coastal lands, the Sonoma Coast House is an architectural expression of its surroundings.  The ultimate beach house with a sense of anchoring shelter and luminous elegance, the house was designed for the comfort of its owner as well as the ease of sharing the home with his many guests.  A design of imposing beauty and admirable efficiency, ‘this monumental feat of engineering appears both solid as a fortress and fragile as a candle lit lantern.’  A vessel for the delicacy of the light and air which is the essence of the Pacific Coast.  The structure's frank openness and warmth, rich with natural materials, is organized in three pavilions, connected with a floating metal roof to unify the entire house and shelter a deck emulating the horizontal alignments of fog which are illuminated by the sun and sea.    
A spectacular kitchen and “great hall’ is a steel framed glass solarium, occupying the north zone of the building with dramatic scale, organized as a peninsula projecting an impressive sitting room and massive fireplace into the panorama of the endless coastline.  Concrete floors are warmed with radiant heat and the entire structure is aligned for maximum passive solar benefit.  Multiple work-stations topped by custom stainless and stone counters surround a massive walk-in fridge and multiple wet areas for preparation.  A media center is enclosed in an island providing the ultimate flexibility of use for this, the heart of the home.
A steel staircase rises from the kitchen illuminated by a wall of windows to reveal the master suite and office with private deck perched above the coast and accessing the expansive roof decks with sinuous cat walks.  Below are two-car garage, mechanicals and robust storage.
The fully glass enclosed dining room progresses to an awe inspiring living room, gallery and reception room bristling with an impressive web of open redwood trusses which fortify the principal rooms of the home.
The third pavilion houses the guesthouse with three suites connected to the other two sections of the home via roof deck and cat walks under the airy superstructure of steel.  The plan provides multiple gathering spaces as well as refuge and privacy for owners as well as guests.
Outdoor decks and patios plus a third massive outdoor wood burning fireplace guarantees the full enjoyment of coastal nature, any time of year or any day of the year. 
This beautifully realized residence encompasses the bravado of pure space and at the same time offers the opportunity to embrace nature’s unfathomable power.

Construction & Finish Materials
Year Built: 
Major Materials

Wood; tubular W and C steel, exposed steel structural framing at upper levels, galvanized steel bow trusses, re-sawn lumber open-web trusses (built on-site); concrete slab foundations; madrone hardwood flooring at 2nd levels (harvested & milled on-site); corrugated galvanized steel roof; industrial type galvanized steel chimney stacks; black anodized aluminum framing for all windows, window-wall assemblies and skylights; open-grate galvanized steel stairs and catwalks.
Passive Heating / Cooling

Thermal mass heating
Convection cooling: ventilating skylights at stair towers and operable glass at clerestory

Passive cooling: low-emissivity glass
Active Heating

Hydronic in-floor heating (boiler system: LPG)

  • Approximately 4,905 square foot home on +/- 218 acres
  • 4 Bedrooms, 4.5 Baths
  • 3 Wood burning fireplaces
  • Custom kitchen with 8 burner range, walk-in fridge, three wet areas
  • Fully glass enclosed formal dining room
  • Master suite with adjoining office, view deck
  • Guest pavilion with 3 suites and additional sitting room
  • Barn, workshop, pond and 2 car side by side garage
  • Approximately 218 Acres of forest (Redwood, Douglas Fir, White Fir, Hemlock, Bishop Pine)
  • 2 miles to Stewarts Point, 0.7 miles to Sea Ranch Lodge, 9.8 miles to Gualala

Stewarts Point


Stewarts Point

The Richardson family settled at Stewarts Point in the 1860’s. The first Richardson to own and operate the Stewarts Point Store was Herbert Archer Richardson, who arrived here from Franconia, N.H., in 1868. He became a timber baron, and eventually purchased 25,000 acres, including eight miles of shoreline. He ran cattle and sheep and employed more than 300 lumberjacks cutting and processing redwood shipped out of Stewarts Point on his nine sailing vessels.
Lumber was hauled on the nine-mile Richardson Railroad to where the old store is located. Logs were carried the last half-mile to Richardson Harbor on rail cars mounted on wooden tracks. In 1926, when Highway 1 was finally pushed through to Stewarts Point, the lumber ships were replaced by trucks. Lumbering activity slowed considerably during the Great Depression.

The Stewarts Point store was established in 1868 as post office, general store and community resource.   The room above the store was a dance hall until the late 1940s. Across from the old store are two lichen-covered, bare-wood abandoned hotels built in the 1880s.  Also a stagecoach stop, this was once a one room school house.

The Sea Ranch
The first recorded visitors to this land now known as The Sea Ranch were the Pomo Indians, who were hunters and fishermen. They made seasonal trips to the coast to gather kelp and shell fish.
In 1963, architect and land planner Al Boeke recommended that Oceanic California Inc. (OCI), a division of Castle and Cooke, buy the land that is now The Sea Ranch. A 10-mile stretch of California's Sonoma Coast comprised of 5,200 acres, it was envisioned as a unique community for people with a reverence for this rugged coast. It was an environmentally sensitive approach to the development of the land which has been internationally acclaimed.  Among those early planning consultants were:
Al Boeke, architect and vice president of development;
Lawrence Halprin, landscape architect and land planner;
Charles Moore, William Turnbull, Donlyn Lyndon and Richard Whitaker, architects who formed the Moore, Lyndon, Turnbull, and Whitaker (MLTW) group;
Joseph Esherick, architect . 

Sonoma Coast House
In 1992, The Sea Ranch purchased the central section (circa 280 acres) of what is now called the Timber Production Zone (TPZ) from Travelers Insurance Co. It is one of three sections totaling 1,600 acres that Travelers Insurance had purchased earlier from OCI. In late 1992, the northern section was sold to Gualala Redwoods Inc., which owns and harvests several thousand acres of timberland to the east of Sea Ranch. The southern portion was sold to a private party and Sonoma Coast House was constructed. The central TPZ was converted to commons during the year ending April 30, 1997.


Architect: Joan Hallberg

The Sonoma Coast House has been featured internationally in architectural publications:
  • Architectural Record, April, 1994, USA
  • New York Times Magazine, July 31, 1994, USA
  • Prive Das Wohnmagazin, January 1995, Suisse
  • domus International Design Review, April 1995, Italia
  • GA Houses 50, Yukio Futagawa, October 1996, Japan
  • Contemporary California Architects, Taschen 1996, Germany
  • Hyperwest, Alan Hess, 1996, England
  • moebel interior design, January 1, 1998, Germany
  • Beach Houses, Michael Webb, 2002, USA
  • HAUSER Architektur-Kunst-Interieur-Garten, Germany

Floor Plans


Wendy Storch

RealtorSotheby's International RealtyDRE# 01355516415.901.1745 office415.519.6091

Peter Colbert

Realtor AssociateSotheby's International Realty#

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