Thu05052016

News

Hills man arrested on molestation charges

Hills man arrested on molestation charges

Gregory Helfrich

Santa Clara Sheriff’s detectives have arrested a Los Altos Hills man they suspect repeatedly molested a child decades ago.

Detectives arrested Gregory Helfrich, 54, on a warrant at his Old Page Mill Road home April 27 and...

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Schools

Local AAUW gives gift of science to junior high students

Local AAUW gives gift of science to junior high students


Courtesy of Jessica Harell
Blach Intermediate School seventh-grader Paris Harrell, who loves science and animals, recently received a scholarship from the local branch of the AAUW to attend Tech Trek camp.

It’s not every day that a junior hig...

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Community

At 98, former language teacher remains a lifelong learner

At 98, former language teacher remains a lifelong learner


Federici

Longtime Los Altos resident Mario Federici, who turned 98 Feb. 24, is a man of many languages. He shared his knowledge with thousands of students during his long career as a teacher.

Federici was born and raised in Italy, where he stud...

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Comment

Attend an event, get involved, have fun: Editorial

You don’t have to run for city council to get involved in the community. Sometimes it can be as simple as attending a Los Altos event. You’ll have plenty of opportunities, as the May and June calendars are bustling with activity.

The Dow...

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Special Sections

Racing around Monterey

Racing around Monterey


Gary Anderson/Special to the Town Crier
The easy handling of the VW Golf R, above, makes for an ideal ride along the Big Sur coast.

 

When automotive journalists are asked to list their favorite places in the world to drive, Monterey alway...

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Business

'Steampunk' eatery toasts local libations

'Steampunk' eatery toasts local libations


Courtesy of Eureka
Eureka, a new restaurant in downtown Mountain View, highlights local craft beer and whiskeys on a menu of food spanning from sea to farm.

Craft beer and fancy whiskeys headline the menu at Eureka, the new restaurant that opene...

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People

Stepping Out

PA Players seek escape in 'Into the Woods'

PA Players seek escape in 'Into the Woods'


Courtesy of Palo Alto Players
The Baker’s Wife, left, and Cinderella’s erstwhile Prince stand out in the Palo Alto Players production of “Into the Woods.”

Little Red Riding Hood sets forth at the outset of “Into the...

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Spiritual Life

Los Altos United Methodist Church service salutes Heifer International

Los Altos United Methodist Church service salutes Heifer International


Courtesy of Los ALtos United Methodist Church
Hidden Villa will bring some of its farm animals to Los Altos United Methodist Church Sunday to support the nonprofit Heifer International.

Los Altos United Methodist Church is scheduled to salute th...

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The fix is in Los Altos remodel keeps modern family in mind


Ellie Van houtte/ Town Crier
Nadine and Aaron Matityahu transformed an Eastwood Drive house from dated ranch to modern family style.

Nadine and Aaron Matityahu purchased a “fixer” – her term – on Eastwood Drive in Los Altos last year with the intention of downsizing.

The prospect of remodeling the dated ranch-style house didn’t faze them because they have either built or remodeled every home they’ve lived in since their marriage in 1956 – including their “too big” home just off Mora Drive.

“After buying the house on Eastwood and listing our house for sale, we were begged by our 7-year-old granddaughter Erika not to sell,” Nadine said. “She is such a sweet and very articulate child. It really got to us, and we decided not to move.”

Instead, the Matityahus hired architects Amnon Levy and Avi Agasi of Ashford Associates in Palo Alto and went to work on plans to remodel and sell the Eastwood house.

“We saw the potential of the property with its creek setting, great neighborhood and excellent school district,” said Nadine, a broker associate with Coldwell Banker in Los Altos whose passion is remodeling.

She and Aaron, a retired realtor, approached the project as though they were going to live in the house themselves.

“I was 100 percent involved,” she said. “The idea was to create a custom home that would fit into the neighborhood and yet be unique.”

“We used a blend of Arts and Crafts and Contemporary to rejuvenate the ranch style,” Agasi said. “The new facade is distinguished by arborlike structures which emphasize the house is in a garden. And plants can grow and adorn it.”

First impression

The landscaping and fencing are what make the first impression. The house is on a corner lot with a curved fence wrapping it on the right side. Low, curved stone walls in the front and back mimic the fence and portion the front and back lots.

The fence, gazebo and outdoor wood decorations are stained cedar.

They planted a green wall around the front lot perimeter before starting the remodel to enable the plants to grow while rebuilding the house. Some, such as lavender and Queen Palm, are drought resistant.

In the back, a split-rail fence replaced the 6-foot fence so that the Permanente Creek bed became part of the yard.

Consequently, the back of the house is a wall of glass.

“It’s almost like a nursery,” Agasi said.

The stone-lined dry creeks or wells in front and back were installed to collect rain and landscaping runoff – practical and aesthetic touches.

Grassy knolls and a circular driveway in front complete the outdoor picture.

Spacious intimacy

Indoors, from the new vaulted entryway, the home opens up to reveal spacious living areas that maintain a feeling of intimacy because of ceiling treatments. The 3,600-square-foot house has four bedrooms and 3.5 baths.

The architects worked with the existing footprint, added a vaulted-ceiling family room and redefined and expanded the interior. All walls were taken down to the studs. New wiring, plumbing, windows, roof and stucco contributed to the house meriting a green certification from the city.

Dramatic skylights in the open kitchen illuminate the large, multilevel granite island that houses a wine cooler. Other features include Caesarstone countertops, a mother-of-pearl backsplash and custom walnut cabinetry.

The open dining room adjacent to the kitchen sports an oval coffered ceiling and built-in walnut cabinets for display and storage.

The formal living room boasts a vaulted ceiling and opens to the backyard. Its statement-making gas fireplace highlights a distinctive straight line of fire in a bed of crystals.

In lieu of walk-in closets in the master suite, there is a wall of European-style built-in wardrobe closets and drawers. The master bath has a skylight, freestanding oval tub, dual vanity, glass-enclosed shower and towel warmers.

Nadine said she designed the house with the busy modern family in mind. Among the byproducts are a mudroom and a shoe closet.

“In my experience in seeing so many homes, usually shoes are stored in the bedroom closets, which is not very healthful, or they are left by the door. I decided to build a shoe closet in the entryway for storing all the family shoes, and a mudroom off the garage for backpacks and coats for after school,” she said. “I wanted to build a house that would feel good to come home to – one with lots of light and windows to bring the outdoors in. No messy clothes in walk-ins. No shoes or bags to pick up after the kids. A home with the best of everything.”

For a virtual tour of the house, visit www.BuchananAnd Bowen.com.


Eastwood Drive Home - Images by Ellie Van Houtte/Los Altos Town Crier

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