343 Alta Vista Shines

The interior of the home is a treat for the eyes

PHOTO: Chris Considine | 343 Alta Vista Avenue in South Pasadena

There is a home currently for sale at 343 Alta Vista Drive in South Pasadena that offers innovative architecture, amazing views and a tranquil refuge from the hustle and bustle of the city.

Built in 1988 and tastefully remodeled even more recently, this property has everything to live your best life in South Pasadena. Listing agent Catherine “Tink “ Cheney with Coldwell Banker Realty explained, “The current owners have remodeled the kitchen and baths and landscaped the hillside below with graceful paths and plantings.  They have also created a home gym in a bonus room on the lowest level. The Sellers’ aesthetic is stunning and minimalist with a crisp gray palette.”

The original 3 bedroom, 3 bath structure was brilliantly conceived by architect William Wietsma. The living space measures approximately 3,083 square feet. Among the many striking features of this home are the creative use of glass blocks to let light penetrate throughout the interior – while maintaining separation and privacy. The theme of light and glass also emerges in a vast wall of windows in the large open living room to take full advantage of the elevation and views present at this property.

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PHOTO: Chris Considine | Wall of windows in the large open living room.

Ms. Cheney explained the positioning of the home, “The topography of the lot is hillside. William Wietsma, AIA has made optimum use of the lot to showcase views of the lush canyon below and city lights beyond.” On a clear day you can glimpse the tops of the downtown L.A. high-rises from the highest points in the home.

It is said that William Wietsma has an eye for detail. There are so many thoughtful and well-considered aspects to the home – it’s hard to describe them all. Here are two clear examples: the bedrooms each have a visually hidden alcove which gracefully wraps around to reveal a hidden set of built-in bookshelves. Any dedicated reader would quickly understand the value of a built in “reading nook” right in your bedroom. These nooks also have stunning views out of the back of this hillside home.

PHOTO: Chris Considine | Hidden bedroom alcove with glass blocks and bookshelves.

The second example is simple and reveals both the design aesthetic and craftsmanship of the builders. The toilet in the master bathroom is separated from the main bathroom by a curved “U-shaped” wall. It’s so subtle and yet brings feelings of form and coziness to a normally overlooked and functional everyday item.

According to Ms. Cheney, “The perfect buyers for 343 Alta Vista in South Pasadena are sophisticated people who value striking design, quiet privacy and a spectacular setting.”

Built onto a generous 7,747 square foot hillside lot, the home perches above a verdant valley between two hills. Prescient design has the home sited above and an interesting and winding path which leads to solitude in the form of a lower patio – completely removed from urban distractions. One peers at this tranquil spot from every balcony at the rear of the home.

PHOTO: Chris Considine | Lower patio in a sea of tranquil green.

And there are balconies to be had. Each major room has either a view balcony or large windows bringing the outside world in. In addition to the conventional stairs within the structure, there is also a set of stairs connecting all the outside balconies together and also leading to the lower yard and patio area. Therefore, the home levels are connected both inside and outside. A light bounce down to the lower level reveals a perfectly placed workout room or solarium with accompanying outdoor shower and a graceful built-in hot tub – again with views.

PHOTO: Chris Considine | There are balconies to be had – rear of the property at 343 Alta Vista.

Of course the interior of the home is a treat for the eyes. The flow around the living room to the magnificently designed kitchen then flows into the dining area – complete with built-ins for glassware and fine china. The built-ins are essentially glass closets – with the interior contents displayed as a form of art.

PHOTO: Chris Considine | Master bedroom with tree-top balcony.

If you have been looking for a truly impressive, open and larger home with great views in South Pasadena – this property should be on your list.

343 Alta Vista Avenue is currently for sale with a listing price of $1,988,000. The listing agent is Catherine “Tink “ Cheney with Coldwell Banker Realty. This gorgeous home is now available for viewing by appointment only.


Derek Vaughan
Derek Vaughan is a contributing writer and local realtor specializing in South Pasadena. Known for his expert knowledge of digital marketing and the local real estate market, Derek has lived in South Pasadena for the past 20 years. Derek has also worked for the Walt Disney Company where he was responsible for digital marketing for both the ESPN.com properties and the NASCAR online store. He also holds degrees from the Indiana University School of Music, Purdue University and an MBA from Vanderbilt University.