The Matt and Lyda Kahn house is being offered for sale this Spring. This mid-century masterpiece is the result of a collaboration between A. Quincy Jones - an extraordinary architect; Joseph Eichler - an enlightened developer; and Matt Kahn - a  refined client and talented designer. Every detail of the house reflects the excellence of this superb team. The Kahn House was completed in 1959 and has been featured in many prominent publications including The New York Times Magazine, and the definitive Eichler book entitled Modernism Rebuilds The American Dream by Paul Adamson. The property defines the classic themes of the post-war Mid-Century Modern California home: an open floor plan, single level structure, post and beam construction, abundant natural light, and an openness to the surrounding landscape.

Matt Kahn, educated at The Cranbrook Academy of Art under Eliel Saarinen, was a Professor of Art at Stanford University for six decades.  As the principle design consultants for Joseph Eichler, Matt and Lyda were instrumental in shaping the distinct iconography of the Eichler brand. They provided a major contribution to the identity of a brand that has become the benchmark for post-war living throughout the United States.

The house stands out for the purity of its architecture and distinctive design elegance. Flexibility of use is a key design element, and the juxtaposition of opposites heightens the house’s appeal and uniqueness.  It is at once intimate yet grand, private yet open, exuberant yet quiet. It is both a stylish setting for social gatherings and an intimate retreat for family members. Matt held teaching sessions at the house where he imbued his students with his philosophy that "the environment is a total work of art".  

Upon entering the residence, its uniqueness is apparent. An enclosed atrium invites visitors into an elegant indoor garden which is visible from all the rooms. The spacious living room is at the center of the U-shaped floor plan, and is designed to separate the master suite from the west wing, with its two additional bedrooms and full bathroom.  Natural light enhances the home's interiors. In the living room, two floor-to-ceiling windows outline a twelve foot freestanding wall which houses a four foot wide fireplace. Fireplaces were a major artistic element in A. Quincey Jones work and this one is no exception. Enthralled by the California light, the owner created exterior stained glass hanging panels on the east and west sides of the living room. The light passing through the glass enriches the living space. 

The dining room, kitchen and multipurpose entertainment area open to a lush outdoor landscape and enhance the indoor/outdoor feeling of the space. A covered breezeway leads to a stand alone studio with its own bathroom. There is ample storage throughout the house, floor to ceiling windows, built in mahogany shelving and cabinetry, as well as display and task specific lighting.

The landscape is as thoughtfully designed as the house. Plants and architectural elements abound  and lend a serenity to the  environment. The Kahn House is real gem in the inventory of Mid-Century modern luxury residences.


  • 2243 SF in main house + 432 SF in studio
  • Three bedrooms, two bathrooms, additional half bathroom in studio
  • 15360 SF mature landscaped site
  • Glass walled, private inner atrium leads to a formal tiled entryway 
  • Spacious living areas with floor to ceiling windows and sliding glass doors
  • Abundant natural light throughout the day
  • Easy access to all the outside spaces for indoor/outdoor California living
  • Custom wood-burning fireplace provides a central focus to the living room
  • Carpeted throughout the living areas and bedrooms
  • Radiant heating system retrofitted to ceiling beams
  • Convertible kitchen table offers versatile dining and work space
  • Original kitchen cabinets and electrical cooking appliances 
  • Hidden walk-in pantry 
  • Ceramic tile floor in kitchen
  • Large dining room located close to kitchen for easy entertaining
  • Multi-purpose family room
  • Built-in mahogany bookshelves and cabinets in dining and family rooms
  • Mahogany wall paneling beautifully maintained throughout the home
  • Task specific lighting throughout
  • Spacious master bedroom suite, with large walk-in closet
  • Master bathroom features a fully tiled, walk-in sunken shower 
  • Second bedroom is configured as a work-studio environment
  • Third bedroom with original grass cloth closet doors
  • Guest bathroom with specially designed cabinets and countertops
  • Convenient inside laundry
  • Separate artist studio, also perfect for an in-law unit or guest accommodations
  • Custom designed storage in studio with two full walls of built-in drawers and cabinets
  • Half bathroom with expansion possibilities 
  • Attached dark room accessed from the outside
  • Studio separated from the main house by a covered breezeway
  • Breezeway facilitates a separate large storage area and utility closet
  • Mature landscaping, flowering plants and towering trees visible from every room
  • Two car carport 
  • Easy access to public walking trail and park conveniently located behind the property
  • Palo Alto schools: Escondido School K-5, Jordan Middle School 6-8, Palo Alto High 9-12