Nestled in the hills of Santa Monica, California, Laura and Steven Baker's home blends as seamlessly with the surrounding landscape as any man-made structure could.
The open style and thoughtful siting of the 1,600-square-foot house, designed by famed modernist architect Craig Ellwood in 1953, are among the traits that persuaded the Bakers to purchase it in the early 1990s. At the time, the couple, who have two children, Jed, 15, and Lucie, 12, were living nearby in bustling Century City. "We decided we needed nature to be a bigger part of our lives," says Laura, an interior designer. "When we came here, it was so peaceful. I looked out at the greenery and trees, and they just won me over."
The Bakers, with their children and fox terrier, sit around a steel fire pit, a reproduction from a late-1940s design.
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