3898 Happy Valley Road (Recently Sold)

Featured property first time on market in 64 years!

Happy Valley Road has long been regarded as Contra Costa County’s most sought after address. 3898 Happy Valley Road is located along the “Golden Mile” in the heart of Happy Valley, within walking distance of Happy Valley Elementary School and surrounded by multimillion dollar estate properties. It boasts a spectacular 1.5 acre site, featuring privacy, mature landscaping, ample level land, and stunning views. This exceptional property has been in the family of the original owners since the home was first built in 1948, and it is coming to the market for the first time. The residence was built for the Connor family and reflects the vision of the family patriarch. Mr. Connor was an “Ad Man”–an imaginative visionary who hobnobbed with Frank Lloyd Wright, William Randolph Hearst, John Steinbeck, Tom Wolfe, and Herb Caen, among others. The residence he created for his growing family was a definite one-of-a-kind, with extensive redwood interiors, passive solar attributes, and a unique and versatile floor plan.

Upon passing through the wooden entry gate, a visitor finds himself in an enchanted glade, surrounded by towering redwoods, colorful azaleas and rhododendrons. Proceeding up the winding stone pathway, one arrives at the shaded front patio and accesses the home through an inviting dutch door entry way. The gracious living room with its tiled floor and southern exposure was ahead of its time in providing for energy conservation. A raised hearth brick fireplace with wood burning stove insert insures a warm gathering spot on chilly winter days. There are built-in bookcases with seating alcoves below, and the vaulted ceiling provides a view of the second floor loft through wooden slats. The cozy farmhouse kitchen has tile flooring and granite tile counter. The family chef can enjoy lovely views of the outside patio while standing in front of the kitchen sink, and there is an inviting eating area, plus many nooks and crannies for storage. The adjoining family room has a built-in corner sofa and dutch door to the patio. The bathroom on this level has a pedestal sink and combination tub/shower.

The upper story has four charming bedrooms, each with its own character, as well as a central play room. The first bedroom, in the northwest corner, is a spacious sun filled room with large windows overlooking the rear yard. The skylit “game room” with a pool table has tile flooring and built-in shelving, This room adjoins a large family room/fourth bedroom with French doors opening to the yard, a skylight, and beamed ceiling (please exclude wood burning stove). The adjacent bathroom has a tiled shower and skylight. Another skylight brings light to the small kitchenette alcove with gas cooktop, refrigerator, and sink. This wing could also function as an independent au pair or inlaw apartment. Another cozy bedroom is tucked under the eaves, with a slanted wood ceiling. A short stairway lined with built-in bookcases leads to the master bedroom level. A library nook makes an ideal office or study. The bathroom with tile floor and shower has a window overlooking the back yard. The sunny master bedroom itself has lovely views overlooking the side and rear yards. An oversize, walk-in storage room off the stairway completes this level.

Of course, the truly exciting aspect of this property is the beautiful 1.5 acre site. The expansive and private brick patio is a lovely spot to gather for outdoor dining or just a moment of respite and quiet relaxation in a hectic day. The adjoining lawn is great for play. Take a winding path to explore the rear slope, with its grove of lovely mature redwoods, and numerous spots to pause and admire the breathtaking view of the valley below. This lot has a recorded survey and deer fencing, with a gate leading to open space. Many years ago, Mr. Connor, with considerable foresight, obtained direct access to public open space and Briones parkland, ideal for horses or hiking enthusiasts. (The family did stable ponies on the property in years past). The south facing slope would also be an idyllic spot for a potential vineyard. In all, this unique and wonderful property gives a fortunate family the option of restoration of the charming 1948 farmhouse or the opportunity to use the existing residence on a temporary basis, while planning a “dream home” on one of many possible spectacular building sites this beautiful lot affords.

Offered at $1,495,000.

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