This Edgy Olson Kundig-Designed Malibu Home Defies the Definition of a Traditional Beach House

When thinking of a traditional beach house, one might conjure images of a rustic bungalow filled with coastal hues or a shingled cottage sprinkled with nautical motifs. But this stunning residence located directly on Malibu’s Carbon Beach—aka Billionaires Beach due to the high concentration of billionaires who own along the coveted stretch of sand—is a fresh, industrial-style take on your typical oceanfront getaway. The 13,000-square-foot stunner occupies a double lot and was designed by Seattle-based architecture firm Olson Kundig, whose principals, Tom Kundig and Jim Olson, are known for their industrial style. This was their first-ever project in Malibu.

Completed at the end of 2023, the home was designed for a client who wanted both a tranquil and refined beach escape and a strong architectural statement that looked unlike its neighbors, yet maximized ocean views with breezy, open interiors and a serene vibe. It’s situated along the Pacific Coast Highway, which is constantly packed with traffic, so to create a buffer from the busy highway action, the architects crafted a massive concrete and steel wall along the home’s highway-side entrance that offers a unique transition from the frenetic atmosphere of the road to the calming, light-filled retreat that exudes an ultra-modern brand of California cool.

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Carbon Beach House Malibu Olson Kundig
The striking entrance to the home is via a towering, 16-foot-tall door.

The concrete street façade is a bit forbidding, but once you step through the imposing, 16-foot-high orange metal door, you’re met with huge expanses of glass that frame unimpeded ocean views. The materials are both raw and organic, featuring mixed wood finishes, exposed timber, blackened steel, concrete, and glass. There are towering white walls, which were purposely designed for the client’s impressive art collection. Despite the industrial bones of the house, the rooms are soft, warm, and textured, with sumptuous curved furnishings, organic decor, and a calming color palette that also allows the colorful art to pop.

There are five bedrooms dispersed among the expansive, open-plan living spaces that are arranged around an internal courtyard and prioritize an easy indoor-outdoor lifestyle. Kundig wanted the user experience to be intimately connected to the landscape, which is why most of the rooms either overlook the internal courtyard or the beach and ocean. A deck that runs the entire length of the house on the main floor is connected to the communal living spaces via floor-to-ceiling sliding glass doors. Most of the bedrooms on the upper floor are also lined with floor-to-ceiling windows that let in plenty of natural light and connect to private oceanfront terraces.

Carbon Beach House Malibu Olson Kundig
The living area is dominated by a monumental, double-sided concrete fireplace.

Olson Kundig is known for its use of durable and high-quality yet low-maintenance materials and their creation of one-of-a-kind dynamic mechanisms that provide both form and function. These might include levers, wheels and axles, pulleys, or inclined planes. And, congruent with many of Olson Kundig’s projects, the ocean-facing side of this home has operable louvre shades designed to reduce solar gain, regulate temperature, and modulate the strong onshore winds that blow off the ocean.

Adventurous and cutting-edge yet livable, the home also has a gym, office, movie theater, private terrace with a fireplace and ample seating area, and direct beach access. The home is available to rent at $350,000 per month and is listed with Denise Moreno and Gordon MacGeachy of Hilton Hilton.

Click here for more photos of Olson Kundig’s Carbon Beach House.

Carbon Beach House Malibu Olson Kundig
Carbon Beach House Malibu Olson Kundig

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