Magical Mountain-Top Home in Mill Valley
This magical mountain retreat at 88 Marin View Ave. in Mill Valley delights in every way! Once named the Tower House by early owners, this unique property features two tower rooms, several large viewing decks, and a recording studio built by one of its former owners, renowned musician Carlos Santana. Situated at the end of a private street off Panoramic Hwy, this approx. 10,000 sq. ft. lot affords you ultimate privacy, serenity, and a true get away for those seeking a tranquil and peaceful lifestyle. The large, sunny lot affords plenty of room to build that organic vegetable garden you’ve been dreaming of.
Enter the property through a wooden gate to a peaceful, level garden that is completely fenced for privacy. From the front yard, enter the house to the open living and dining area. This great room features paneled wood walls, box beamed ceilings, craftsman style light fixtures, and vertical fir wood trimmed windows, built in bookcases, vintage wood floors, and a French door leading to a deck and front yard.
The LR/DR flows directly into the upgraded open kitchen with an island and tile countertops, vaulted ceiling, bamboo countertops, newer light fixtures, and refurbished cabinets. This cheerful room opens up to the front yard and deck for outdoor dining and entertaining.
Also on the entry level is the extra-large master bedroom suite with ensuite bathroom. This bedroom opens to a large den with gas insert fireplace, built in bookcases, and picture windows for viewing the towering redwoods. A second full bathroom is located between the kitchen and den.
From the living area, stairs lead to the unique two-story tower, and viewing decks at each level, and a large roof deck.
Below the entry level you will find a laundry room, a room currently used as a home gym, and a recording studio with a sound booth (remaining from from Carlos Santana’s ownership) and half bath. This level, with its own entrance, could be an au-pair unit, home office, children’s play area, etc.
Site and Floor Plans
This home is only 12 minutes to downtown Mill Valley with groceries, restaurants, entertainment, and boutique shopping. For easy, local dining out, the romantic Mountain Home Inn is a 13 minute walk or two minute drive along Panoramic Highway. The drive to San Francisco, via the Golden Gate Bridge, takes about 30 minutes.
For nature enthusiasts, 88 Marin View is close-by Stinson Beach, Muir Woods, Mount Tamalpais State Park, and the Golden Gate National Recreation Area, with some of the best hiking and outdoors adventures in the Bay Area. Trailheads into Muir Woods National Park and Mt. Tamalpais State Park are a six-minute walk down Marin View Ave. and across Panoramic Highway.
History of 88 Marin View Ave, the Tower House
- The land including 88 Marin View Ave on Mt. Tamalpais was purchased in 1912 for $200 by an Austrian immigrant, hiker, artist, naturalist, and craftsman named Wilhelm Heidelmann. Wilhelm was one of the founders of the San Francisco Nature Friends and he helped build and maintain for 35 years their clubhouse in Muir Woods (see www.touristclubsf.org). This group came to Mill Valley and Mt. Tamalpais to hike and camp soon after the 1906 San Francisco earthquake and fell in love with the beauty and peace of the mountain. Their moto was “Dieser Berg ist fur uns: This mountain is for us.”
- Heidelmann also purchased parcels on what is now Marin View Ave, off Panoramic Highway, to use as his weekend retreat. Here he later he built the Tower House and
cottage to keep him close to his beloved Muir Woods clubhouse.
- A cottage at 86 Marin View was built in 1917, and the Tower house at 88 Marin View was started in 1917, continued in 1924. After the Golden Gate Bridge opened in 1937,
Wilhelm and Wilhemina (Mimi) moved into 88 Marin View as their principal residence. Their caretaker/gardener lived in the cottage at 86 Marin View.
- In 1927 Panoramic Highway was built over the mountain.
- In 1933 the pool at the bottom of 88 was built for Mimi’s use. Wilhelm Heidelmann died in March 1947 at the Muir Woods clubhouse and Mimi died in 1964.
- Part of the neighborhood lore is that a neighbor bought the Tower House, and although he did not live in the house, he started tours of the Tower House as advertised in Sunset Magazine until some neighbors put an end to his “commercial” venture.
- Carlos Santana purchased 88 Marin View in 1970. In 1973 Carlos and Deborah Santana also purchased 86 Marin View. The Santanas owned both 88 and 86 Marin View until the parcels were sold separately in February 1988.
- In February 1988 Alan Gardner and Catherine A. McKittrick purchased from Santana 86 Marin View and Wayne Wagner and Lois Hannen purchased 88 Marin View. Both these parties worked for George Lukas at Skywalker Ranch.
- In April 1997 the present owner acquired 88 Marin View .
- Santana called 88 Marin View the magical house, and indeed it is.
Address: 88 Marin view Ave.
City: Mill Valley
Square Feet: 2,760
Year Built: 1924