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This Modern $3.5 Million Manse in LA Has Separate Wings for Work and Living

This industrial-style compound has two structures—one for living and another for your day job.

David Ming-Li Lowe House REWS Media

The late award-winning architect and artist David Ming-Li Lowe was known for his industrial innovations in the homes he built. In 1994, he was credited for designing the first earthquake-resistant home in Los Angeles—his own home—by placing 17 truck-sized coils underneath the edifice. This idea caught the attention of structural engineers, the city’s building inspectors and the US Geological Survey.

While not every home he ever constructed included these earthquake-resistant coils, Lowe’s projects are identifiable by the industrial style and materials—and this home at 1949 Federal Avenue is no different. Located in the trendy Sawtelle neighborhood of Los Angeles, the residence, built in 2008, features two separate structures divided by a spacious outdoor patio. It was designed as a live/work compound, meaning that the future buyer can rent out the front home for work or rental income, or simply enjoy both structures as one residence.

David Ming-Li Lowe House
The home feature glass garage doors. REWS Media

In total there are five bedrooms and four bathrooms; the front house has two bedrooms and two bathrooms, while the rear house has three bedrooms and two bathrooms. From the outside, the home looks like an office building, but once you enter, you’re exposed to Lowe’s architectural prowess. The property focuses on indoor-outdoor living through glass garage doors and sliding glass doors. Nearly every room has access to a patio or terrace, including the second level, which opens onto a sprawling stone terrace. There are two living areas: one covered by the bow truss roof and another sun-soaked sitting area perfect for large gatherings to enjoy the sunny Los Angeles weather. The open-plan living spaces, featuring industrial materials like concrete flooring, are ideal for those seeking to use the home as a collaborative work or creative space.

David Ming-Li Lowe House
A living area. REWS Media

Some of the home’s most prominent and unique features are the bow truss roofs with exposed beams and the cozy inner courtyard that makes the property feel like a true compound. Inside, the newly renovated spaces are bright, airy and open with reimagined lofts, wood floors in some rooms, remodeled bathrooms and storage. It’s minimalist and practical, yet fit for those who appreciate detailed design and immaculate architecture. 

Sawtelle, near Brentwood and Santa Monica, has some of the city’s best sushi and coffee shops and is centrally located to everything the city has to offer. The listing agents are Melissa Alt and David Mossler of Douglas Elliman Realty.

Check out more photos of the property below:

David Ming-Li Lowe House
The kitchen and living in one of the structures. REWS Media
David Ming-Li Lowe House
Both homes are full of natural light. REWS Media
David Ming-Li Lowe House
A kitchen. REWS Media
David Ming-Li Lowe House
A bedroom. REWS Media
David Ming-Li Lowe House
The second-floor patio. REWS Media
David Ming-Li Lowe House
An aerial view of the home. REWS Media

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