From the front entrance, with its brick-red covered door and slate-blue garage door, you might not suspect the splendor that awaits inside Castlewood, a modern Malibu dwelling designed by architect Steven Kent. But that impression changes once you’ve had a chance to look around — especially from the back yard. “Yard,” actually, may be a misnomer: Castlewood’s two-story rear façade tucks into a steep hillside as if planted there. From a comfortable, understated living room, a wall of glass shows you both an exterior deck and the coastline beyond it. In the bathroom, with its twin deep white sinks on marble vanity tops, and neutral pale wood grain cabinets, more vistas await: windows, three panes high, wrap around the corner for sunlight by day and moonlight by night.
Interior décor is simple and predominantly neutral. Modern hanging fixtures and recessed lighting play off soaring white walls, providing striking backdrops for charcoal-toned shelving and cabinets; an open fireplace adds warmth and coziness to both the living room — with its plush couch and throw pillows — and the dining room with table and chairs, on the other side. Gentle light from extended windows brightens both serving and cooking areas, the scenery serving as a decorative element of its own in the kitchen. Stainless steel appliances and a center island, easy-care streamlined cabinets, and a mellow tile pattern behind countertops play off the blue of ocean and sky. It all adds up to a pleasing, serene, stylistic whole — a true “castle,” nestled in the hills of Malibu between earth and sea.