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Stretching from Playa Vista to Santa Monica, the oceanside suburb of Silicon Beach is one of the hottest property markets in Los Angeles right now. In the wake of tech giants Maker Studios, Tinder, SnapChat, YouTube Space and Hulu setting up base in the area, luxury real estate developers have swooped in to feed increased demand from venture capitalists and newly-minted software engineers. And while property analysts CoreLogic reports that median new home prices rose 169 per cent between 2013 and 2016, real estate investors will find Los Angeles to be cheaper than tech hot spots San Francisco and New York, giving property values abundant room to grow. Here are our top picks.
1. Jewel Playa Vista
A partnership between Hilton & Hyland and Brookfield Residential is behind the 14-home Jewel Playa Vista community at Village Drive and Firefly Place. The modernist-style detached homes feature three-storey, open-plan layouts designed by Robert Hidey Architects, and span 4,200 to 4,500sqft. The three- to five-bedroom homes are finished with wide-plank wood floors, marble countertops and an innovative covered outdoor kitchen. Jewel Playa Vista is located in a neighbourhood that comprises mostly condos, and is just blocks from the Marina del Rey harbour. Priced on the high-US$3 million mark (S$4.14 million), these are some of the priciest you’ll find in the area. The homes are being built and sold in phases, through 2018.
2. Aire Santa Monica
The 19 boutique townhouses and garden-level flats that make up Aire Santa Monica are a mixture of flowing indoor-outdoor space, offering effortless connection as well as coveted privacy. They are ideally positioned in the heart of Silicon Beach, surrounded by office space, shopping and restaurants. Santa Monica’s stoic NIMBY-ism limits the opportunities for building and buying new housing. That makes these properties, priced from mid-US$900,000 (S$1.24 million) and go up to US$2 million (S$2.76 million), rare offerings. Two-bedroom garden flat residences include more than 1,000sqft of interior space and anywhere from 140 to over 600sqft of outdoor space. Three-bedroom townhouses generally offer around 1,700sqft of interior space and close to 500sqft of exterior space.
Aire Santa Monica
1433 14th Street
3. Marina City Club
Those looking for an investment buy that doubles as a vacation destination may consider owning a condo at the members-only Marina City Club complex in Marina del Rey. The boating community has yet to be transformed by Silicon Beach gentrification, so buyers can get more for their money. On the other hand, Marina del Rey sits between Venice and Playa del Rey. It’s only a matter of time before new development explodes and condos turn into investment gold. The 16-storey building, made up of 600 units – many of which sell in the low US$700,000 (S$970,000) range – overlook the marina; some units are sold with boat slips included. The club in the building features tennis courts, a gym, maid service, room service, a fitness centre, and day spa.
Marina City Club
4222 Admiralty Way
Marina del Ray
Tel: +1 310 822 0611
4. The Collection
Come July, Brookfield Residential will unveil 66 three-storey, contemporary-modern residences, ranging from 2,600 to 3,600sqft. The Collection is built in one of the last available spaces for single-family homes in Silicon Beach, making these units another area rarity. Residents will be steps away from The Campus at Playa Vista (http://playavista.com/the-campus) and tech companies like IMAX, Google, Yahoo and YouTube Space. Within the community, a residential activity centre called The Resort includes a fitness centre, pool and catering kitchen. Offerings start in the low-US$2 millions (S$2.77 million).
San Francisco developer Pacific Eagle is joining the seaside action with a 10-acre (4-hectare) development in Malibu, Cavalleri . Just north of the tech hub, Malibu is dotted with exclusive celebrity homes, all built in careful isolation. Notoriously restrictive building practices keep the population low, and property values are some of the highest on the west coast. That means this condominium development, with 68 residences, resort-like concierge services and outdoor spa and pool facilities, is entirely new territory for the small community of Malibu. The Spanish-style development is being converted from an existing complex, with sizes ranging from 1,577 to 2,200 sqft. Owning a piece of the West Coast’s most desirable real estate market usually comes with a multi-million dollar price tag. But a few units at Cavalleri start at under US$1.23 million (S$1.7 million), making this a great buy in an always-appreciating location.
6487 Cavalleri Road