23111 Mariposa De Oro Malibu, CaOffered at $11,700,000
Iconic Villa Mariposa Estate in Serra Retreat
Why long for escape in far-flung locations when there is a home offering the amenities of a fantasy vacation within immediate reach? A house that is both private and accessible, grand and intimate, near the beach but tucked into the wood, centrally located but also remote. Finding a property that slips into all of these seeming contradictions would seem an impossible task, until one discovers Villa Mariposa, set within the 26-acre, guard-gated Serra Retreat neighborhood.
Located within walking distance to Malibu’s popular shopping complexes—Malibu Country Mart, The Park at Cross Creek and Malibu Village—needs and wants within quick reach. Malibu’s other favorite haunts—Nobu, Malibu Farm and Soho House, and Surfrider Beach’s famed right-hand break— also are within strolling distance.
Like a diamond enhanced by an ideal setting, this homes sparkles brilliantly within its alluring location and surroundings. Tucked into the place where Mariposa del Oro and Serra Road meet, it flirts from behind a pale stucco wall that hints at the lush one-and-a-half acre landscape enclosed within. A slender brick driveway curves around the home’s discrete front gate, which opens to a covered entryway bordered by an indoor garden where a fountain burbles under a canopy of flowers. The best examples of the details that herald Spanish Colonial style—stone fireplaces and dense wood beams, sturdy floors, clay red tiles—are here and used to dazzling yet understated effect. Many of the home’s materials were gathered from across Europe, Mexico, and South and Central America. Their patina reinforces the aura of solidity and grace that infuses the rooms of this home.
Stepping through the home’s heavy wooden front door and into its light-filled hallway reveals an expansive sunken formal living room, warmed by a skylight that peeks through a wood-paneled and beamed ceiling. French doors on three sides of this space lead to gardens dominated by mature coral trees which bloom bright orange flowers and towering royal palms. On one side, the pool and Jacuzzi, surrounded by an expansive brick patio, rivals that of an exclusive multi-star resort. That same seamless indoor-outdoor flow, a hallmark of life in Southern California, has been flawlessly integrated into all of the rooms on the main floor. The open-plan family room, which wraps a professionally sized kitchen, breakfast room and family room into a welcoming central hub, shares its outdoor space with the dining room, the expanse of which is made intimate by a domed brick ceiling. (This partnership enables a private chef and staff access to events that bring the two spaces together; an outdoor kitchen and a bar designate this space as an ideal setting for a cocktail event.)
On the family room’s den side, a garden with an outdoor fireplace flows to the two-bedroom guest and spa wing that showcases a professionally-equipped gym, an infrared sauna and a steam room. The library/office, tucked just off the living room, also opens to the gardens. Its stunning features of built-in wood shelves, steel- framed windows and French door, wooden ceiling and burnished wood floor reimagines the home office as a space that celebrates the creativity of work.
Spaces throughout are grand with soaring ceilings and generous size. (Should there be any doubts that this home can accommodate a gala, the knowledge that scenes from “Father of the Bride” were filmed here put them to rest.) Parking for 23 guests and a staff apartment over the two double-car garages, a state-of-the-art theater, ½ basketball court, outdoor fireplace and lounge areas—there’s even a chicken coop and fresh fruit trees—provide plenty of flexibility when it comes to entertaining.
Meanwhile, an industrial-sized generator, whole-home water filtration system with an additional reverse osmosis drinking water unit, new A/C units, ductwork and UV/Hepa units under- line the home’s functionality.
Imbued with the laidback feeling that is at the heart of Malibu’s beach-forward lifestyle, the home, while exquisitely designed, is equally well suited for everyday living. The master suite features and materials, including large walk-in dressing areas, a beautifully tiled bathroom with deep Turkish tub and room for a generous seating area around a stone fireplace, are indubitably luxurious. Yet again its warm materials and perfect proportions offer the ideal balance of elegance and ease. The sound of birds, the gentle breezes coming off the ocean, and rich green foliage in a house poised to support it so elegantly feels like a fantasy that only exists in Villa Mariposa.