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Unprecedented waterfront Belvedere estate

The idea of building — or attempting to get approved — what most would consider the most spectacular waterfront home ever conceived is daunting in the least, and an arduous task at best.

Which is what makes the opportunity afforded by 135 Belvedere Ave. so astounding. The heavy lifting is complete. The city approvals, the San Francisco Bay Conservation and Development Commission permit for a deep water boat dock and even the fully developed permit set of construction drawings are all in place.

In short, the project is ready to begin.

Lowell and Jacqueline Strauss of Amalfi West conceptualized the serene, sumptuous waterfront estate on Belvedere’s western shore that will soon become a reality.

Amalfi West has built some of the most spectacular homes in Marin County as of late, the sales of which have shattered all records in Marin County which speaks for itself. The level of design and quality of the homes Amalfi builds is truly unprecedented.

The secluded and southern-facing six-bedroom seven-bathroom home, which includes a detached guest house right above the beach, are defined by automated retractable glass walls, sleek lines, smart home automation and massive outdoor spaces.

“This is the crowning jewel of what we’ve ever done,” Strauss said. “It’s not like anything else in Belvedere.”

At the moment, the home only exists in digital renderings, but all the requisite approvals for construction are firmly in place. All that’s missing is a buyer.

Amalfi West intends to break ground in the spring, beginning construction that will incorporate a material palette of flamed stone, European slimline automated glass walls, exposed concrete and steel and reclaimed timber.

“The house is being built more like a commercial building than a typical residence,” Strauss said.

When complete, the gleaming estate will include extras like an eight-person cinema, 2,000-bottle wine room and private gym.

The Baja shelf, a sunken sitting area with a fire pit surrounded by a shallow pool, stands out as one of the backyard’s key features. This sublime sitting area segues to an infinity pool, which stretches toward the outdoor kitchen while framing views of the Golden Gate Bridge and city of San Francisco.

Benched into hillside, the home and its five-car garage and large motor court are virtually invisible from Belvedere Avenue.

“It’s unobtrusive, even the green roof of the structure looks like it’s growing out of the hillside,” Strauss said.

The cascading 1.24-acre landscape descends to a private beach, as well as the first deep-water pier approved on Belvedere Island’s western shore in decades.

“Most hillside homes in Belvedere can’t make use of the outdoors and are very vertical in nature,” Strauss said. “But this is a two-story estate, where you can access the outdoors from pretty much anywhere.”

Rooms are designed as glass and steel jewel boxes, grand spaces that step out to adjoining decks or terraces overlooking the shimmering waters of Richardson Bay. Plunge pools lend subtle tranquility and complement the organic finishes.

The design includes a pair of owner’s suites, one with 1,500 square feet of living space and another with an indoor/outdoor spa shower. A pair of great rooms open to the outdoors. One measuring 24 feet wide and 46 feet long frames unobstructed views of San Francisco, the bay and the Golden Gate Bridge.

The Strausses know their buyer is out there. Amalfi West is willing to sell the project as an entitled, stepping back and/or taking a more advisory role should a buyer want to make tweaks and personalizations.

Amalfi West has set the stage for a world-class residence. It could be argued they’ve made something irresistible.

“I can’t think of any other house in the Bay Area that affords all these different opportunities,” Lowell Strauss said. “It’s a place to enjoy life on the water. It’s close to city of San Francisco — an even shorter boat ride from your private pier. There’s more than 12,000 square feet of living space, a five-car garage, private beach and private deep water pier. It’s a unique opportunity.”

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Listing agent: Scott WoodsVanguard Properties, 415-419-4510,; Bill Smith, Compass, 415-902-4456,


Address: 135 Belvedere Ave., Belvedere.

Price: $65 million.

Features: Approved plans for a five-bedroom, six-bathroom contemporary with a detached guest studio and more than 12,000 total square feet of living space. Sliding floor-to-ceiling glass walls open to decks and terraces overlooking Richardson Bay, the Marin Headlands and the Golden Gate Bridge, while the south-facing backyard enjoys a Baja shelf, an infinity pool and an outdoor kitchen. The 1.24-acre lot includes a private beach, a dock and a boat storage facility.