How do you make a beach house feel like a true getaway when it’s just a short drive from your Monday-to-Friday home? For Los Angeles designer Joe Lucas, the answer was to build a blissed-out, light-filled oasis for a Southern California family whose Hermosa Beach retreat is just 15 minutes from their main house down the coast.
Known for his relaxed-traditional vibe and his passion for modern makers (many of whom are represented at his shop, Harbinger), Lucas created a contemporary slant on coastal here. “I wanted sleek, but not Less Than Zero, chrome-and-glass modern,” he jokes. “I didn’t want anything fighting that view.”
In the living spaces, sandy neutrals are accented with easygoing ocean hues. Pattern and texture — wavy prints, driftwood-inspired floors, a clay finish on the walls — add interest to the subdued palette. “The ocean is the star of this house. Having a more neutral palette in the main living spaces lets your eye go directly out to the view."
But in the bedrooms, Lucas pumped up the volume, working deftly with colors suggested by the family’s kids.“We had fun with the bedrooms, where we intensified the blues and greens used in the living areas. It’s a sophisticated, muted palette, but it’s still colorful.”
“Luckily, they’re teenagers, so their taste is getting sophisticated,” he says. The owners gave Lucas carte blanche. “I bought the art, dishes, beach towels — everything except the bikinis,” he says. “This house is ready for summer fun.”
“The beach room is a very relaxed space,” Lucas says. “Since it’s on the ground floor, it was important to keep everything light and bright. But I knew the room was going to get a lot of use, so we did plenty of outdoor fabrics, like on the sofa. We brought in some pretty, watery blues with the printed textiles on the chairs, pillows, and curtains. The jute rug has an earthy, sandy color, which repeats in the warm leather on the coffee table and stools. I think every room should have a little bit of leather in it: It adds texture, and it’s durable! I always tell my clients not to worry if leather gets beaten up. It just adds to the patina.”
See more photos of this gorgeous home:
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This story originally appeared in the March 2018 issue of CQ.