In coveted San Rafael's Dominican Black Canyon, also known as the area's "banana
3 BR, 2 BA
18 Dominican Drive, San Rafael, CA
The coveted Dominican Black Canyon neighborhood is not only blessed with a superb climate but it boasts what seem to be endless open spaces. In 1965, in exchange for a portion of a very special, private lot, the home was designed by architect Donald Sandy, whose firm, SB Architects, was to become world renowned. 1 of the family sons remembers this of growing up in eighteen Dominican: "In 1964, our father, a young lawyer in San Francisco, found a property in the hills above San Rafael where he hoped to build us a house. It was on solid bedrock with amazing views of the surrounding hills and Mt. Tamalpais in the distance. The only problem was that it was landlocked by other parcels so he set out to get a driveway easement off of Dominican Drive and a sewer line easement downhill to David Court. He was successful and we now had a valuable parcel in the hills of Marin. The house was designed by renowned architect Don Sandy who built a similarly-styled home just below. Most of the work was done by a contractor but our father participated whenever he had the time. As kids, we spent a lot of weekends playing in the dirt while the construction progressed and we moved in to our brand new home in the summer of 1965 (?). I’ll never forget us kids walking out our longish driveway to look around the new neighborhood and other kids milling about as we got to know each other. 1 kid named Tony became a fast, dear friend with whom I spent a lot of time until he moved away in about 1970. Tony and I spent most of our time running around in the oak forest behind the house. There were no fences then so we wandered freely from our yard, through others and up and down the hills. We camped in the woods there, climbed trees and pretended to be Batman and Robin endlessly. The hills became our home as it seemed like our backyard. The location always proved to be a great asset. We walked to school – even high school, which wasn’t too far away. We walked or rode bikes all over and the only downside was the daily trudge up the hill after school. Since the house had a long, flat driveway, we always had a good place to ride bikes around or have various races or play basketball. The views through the large living and dining area windows was always a reward for the effort to get there. Our father was a lover of trees and we planted many, had to cut a few down years later, but many remain. The house location down the long driveway, along with the oak/bay forest in back and the landscaping around the house made it feel like a sanctuary of sorts. Safe from cars, very peaceful, no power lines or street lights and with outstanding views, it was a true pleasure to live there in the rustic, wooded setting." And 1 of the daughters commented on the indoor-outdoor aspect of the house. The large windows allowed her to unobtrusively observe wild life, from mule deer to birds. Among her favorite activities were climbing trees, camping in the back yard, swinging from a tire swing, family dinners on the porch, walking in the nearby Dominican College campus, picking blackberries. Today, eighteen Dominican Dr is ready for a new chapter, ready to be partially modernized to meet today's sensibilities.
2,417 sq. ft.
Basketball, Patio/Deck, View
For sale by:
March 13 on Vanguard Properties