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With multiple offers and $400k over ask, this Cardiff house by Brett Farrow reinforces the value of architecture

Plus: Why Buyers Covet Cardiff

Image Credits Photography by CURB360 Photography

“You can say light is one of my building materials,” says Cardiff-based architect and developer Brett Farrow. If there was ever living proof of this design philosophy — it’s 119 Mozart Avenue. The Cardiff property sold in five days with multiple offers and $400,000 over ask. The allure?

“The effective storytelling of notable architecture,” says Rande Turner of Rande Turner Collective of Pacific Sotheby’s International Realty, the listing agent for 119 Mozart Avenue. Buyers were drawn to the neighborhood’s walkability, and Farrow’s timeless design approach: modern, efficient, bright, and natural. And the ocean-view roof deck? Hard to top. The 3-bedroom, 2.5-bathroom house sold in May for $3,465,000.

Farrow’s superpower? Designing houses that leverage lots while prioritizing indoor-outdoor living and enhancing an emotional connection to nature. A peek-a-boo ocean view here. A breezy balcony there.

In 2007 when Farrow moved to Cardiff from Little Italy to raise his family at the beach, The Mozart Project became his vehicle to erect a sense of place. Featuring five distinctive residences, the in-fill redevelopment project was designed to maximize sunlight in winter, provide shade in the summer, and expand living spaces into the gardens to enjoy open-air living year-round. Mission accomplished.

“What we found in Cardiff was an authentic and one-of-a-kind beach town where we could walk everywhere: restaurants, the post office, library, supermarket, the school and of course the beach and surfing,” says Farrow, who has successfully gone onto create innovative community projects including the nearby Montgomery in Cardiff and Laguna Row in Carlsbad.

On the data front, Cardiff is an incredible investment opportunity, according to Turner. The median home price in Cardiff was up by 16.3% from $2,150,000 to $2,500,000. That’s 13% year over year. “Buyers are craving the active lifestyle, urban beach vibe, and walkability,”says Turner, who has sold three Cardiff houses in the span of three months.

With ocean views from the balconies and rooftop deck — and bifold doors opening onto the verdant landscape — the house personifies North County living. Big windows and seamless connections to outdoor spaces allow not-so-big homes to live big, says Farrow.

The emphasis on the south-west exposure to sun was critical for the architect. So too was harnessing morning light in primary bathrooms and the kitchen. “The low winter sun that goes deep into the home with strong, dramatic shadow lines definitely creates a ‘moment’ that I look for in a home,” he says.

The property is also rich in heritage. The origin story: Farrow obtained it from Victor Kremer, the Composer District’s original developer. Kremer was a famous musician and composer; he is credited with not only naming the streets after composers — Rubenstein, Bach, Liszt, and Mozart — but affixing “by-the Sea” to Cardiff.

Caption:  For The Mozart Project, award-winning architect Brett Farrow enlisted light throughout while the beam ceilings provide day-dreamy escapism and an irresistible connection to nature. The house sold in May for $400k over ask by Rande Turner Collective of Pacific Sotheby’s International Realty.


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