Del Mar, California is located just north of San Diego and typically known for Tuscan-style homes. Rustic terra-cotta, whimsical iron accents, and textured walls define the aesthetic–but that’s not what this home in Del Mar is all about.

The new construction spec home, designed by Kara Smith of KES Studio, feels youthful and organic. “We stepped away from the Tuscan style of Del Mar and came to the project with a fresh approach to modernize it a bit,” Kara tells us. The goal was to appeal to a wide range of buyers with a varying age group, so they relied on a California Mediterranean style with a fresh twist.

Kara and her team were involved from the start of construction and brought in show-stopping design moments like hand-painted stair riser tiles by Smink Studio and custom dip dyed drapery panels in the living room by Opuzen. She also brought in a rug from her collaboration with Marc Phillips. There’s a custom travertine dining table based off of a vintage design and a carefully curated art collection including pieces from Art in Return and Mary Little, as well as ceramic vases by Ceramicah.

KES Studio was involved from 2016 to 2020, and the client is thrilled. “Most importantly all their potential buyers have been excited,” she concludes.