A scallop-shaped California beach house is up for sale

A Northern California coastal home designed by modernist architect Mark Mills and inspired by seashells found on a nearby beach is up for sale for $10 million, according to Coldwell Banker Real Estate.

The three-bedroom, three-bathroom home sits on 1.16 acres along famous 17 Mile Drive in Pebble Beach, near Carmel-by-the-Sea. Spanning 2,200 square feet, the shape of the home resembles a scallop shell, with the arches of five individual bedrooms framing a different angle of the stunning ocean views near Fanshell Beach.

Inside, vaulted ceilings made up of concrete and wood beams form an intriguing undulating pattern that resembles a clam shell. Looking through the windows is like looking from inside a large, partially open two-valve comb hull.

A unique almond-shaped swimming pool sits at the center of the property, which blends into the natural surroundings of sand dunes and the ice factory.

There is an open plan kitchen and living room, bonus room and office and a separate two car garage.

Dubbed Fanshell Beach House, the residence came on the market a week ago for the first time since 1972, when tThe property was purchased for $40,000, according to public records. Janice O’Brien, known locally for “her environmental activism and for living in a unique beachfront home,” according to an obituary in The Carmel Pine Cove newspaper, commissioned and built the residence in 1974.

O’Brien died on January 7, 2022 at age 100. Her children are selling the house, according to a Coldwell Banker representative.

This Pebble Beach Icon Represents a Rare Opportunity for a world-class location, timeless architecture and some of the best views on Earth,” the official property listing reads.

Mills, the architect, was drawn to the organic shapes of seashells in his designs, from a book about the architect titled “The Fantastic Shell of the Mind: The Architecture of Mark Mills” by Janey Bennett.

“Mark Mills was a visionary architect, an apprentice of Frank Lloyd Wright whose innovative designs go beyond Wright’s work to uniquely blend the structural principles and organic forms of seashells,” according to the book’s description.

David Caraccio is a video producer for The Sacramento Bee who was born and raised in Sacramento. He is a graduate of San Diego State University and a lifelong journalist who has worked for newspapers as a reporter, editor, page designer, and digital content producer.

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