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Miles Davis lived here

This 1983 Buff and Hensman contemporary on the west end of Malibu was a beachfront hangout for the jazz legend.

October 11, 2009|Dinah Eng

Ocean views and a bountiful flower and vegetable garden create a peaceful setting for this 1983 Buff and Hensman beachfront house at the west end of Malibu that once was home to jazz trumpeter and composer Miles Davis.

Conrad Buff III and Donald Hensman are credited with helping to define "ultra-cool" in contemporary-style homes during the 1950s and 1960s, with modern designs that embraced the Southern California lifestyle. They designed homes for many celebrities, including Frank Sinatra, Paul Anka and Steve McQueen.

"Buff and Hensman did the initial design of this house in 1963, but it wasn't built until 1983," says Martha Lefkovits, an interior designer who owns the home with husband Norman, an avid fisherman. The pair wanted a house on the beach. "To me, this is the most pastoral place in the United States."

Houses in the neighborhood, west of Leo Carrillo State Beach, have direct access to the ocean.

The front door opens to a two-story skylighted and tiled entryway with a dramatic staircase along one wall. The entry leads to a living room and dining room with picture-window views of the ocean. The kitchen features a granite center island and opens to a walkway leading to a small greenhouse.

Behind the kitchen is a three-quarter bath with shower, an office with built-in bookshelves, a laundry room and a two-car garage.

Upstairs are a master bedroom with fireplace, a pair of walk-in closets with skylights, and French doors that open to a balcony with an ocean view. The master bathroom includes a spa tub and oversize shower.

A carpeted hallway leads to another bedroom with sliding-glass doors to a balcony. A shared bathroom connects to a third bedroom, also with an ocean view. Farther down the hallway, a fourth bedroom has its own bathroom. Completing the floor is a redwood-lined room, used as an art studio, that was originally a sauna.

A patio is near a garden filled with flowers, vegetables and herbs. A winding brick pathway leads down the hillside to a patio deck and beach cabana, outfitted with running water, refrigerator, camp stove and television. The path continues down to the waves.


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The view is kind of blue

Location: 41700 Pacific Coast Highway, Malibu 90265

Asking price: $6,495,000

Previously sold for: $2.45 million in 2000

Size: Four bedrooms and 3 3/4 bathrooms in 4,551 square feet

Additional features: Gated, two KitchenAid dishwashers, Russell Range cooktop, Thermador convection double oven, Sub-Zero refrigerator, fireplace in living room

Around the neighborhood: Through June, 52 single-family homes sold in the 90265 ZIP Code, according to MDA DataQuick, at a median price of $2,265,000. That was a 35.3% price drop from the first half of 2008. There were 325 homes listed for sale last week in 90265 at, priced from $450,000 to $36 million.

Listing agent: Ellen Francisco, Coldwell Banker, Malibu West, (310) 589-2464


Home of the Week

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