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Tech couple’s $10M home renovation is ‘masterpiece’ of art + elegance in Bay Area. See it

A Silcon Valley CEO and his wife, a venture-capital investor, put $10 million worth of improvements into their Northern California home to transform it into a wonderful combination of art and elegance, according to Compass real estate firm.

Adam Dornbusch, the CEO and founder of software firm EnTribe, and Amy Dornbusch, general partner of Willowtree Venture Fund, purchased the house in 2018 for $3.325 million. The estate in Orinda, California, east of Oakland in Contra Costa County, just hit the market for $12.9 million.

Located at 119 Melody Lane in Orinda, the house spans 7,852 square feet and sits on 3.4 acres. There are six bedrooms and six bathrooms.

The feel of the residence, which was completely gutted and re-imagined in 2020, went from dated extravagance to fresh and serene opulence, according to a New York Times article about the remodel of house.

“It exuded bygone opulence, with tired expanses of off-white tile and cabinetry, beige broadloom and curly ironwork. And there were so many rooms that it felt like you were passing through a procession of useless spaces when you walked through some parts of the home,” according to the New York Times.

Some of those rooms were combined into larger spaces. Walls of glass were installed. Also, lots of color and warm, natural materials — such as rough-hewed wood, white-oak floors, concrete tile, leather-wrapped handrails, built-in log-shaped consoles and blackened-steel hardware — were added “creating an ambiance of tactile luxury,” according to the listing.

The renovations took place before the COVID-19 pandemic, but the work included desirable lock-down amenities such as a playroom, work spaces, a home gym and a stylish swimming pool.

“When we had to quarantine, we always felt as if we had our own zones to engage in our own activities and have privacy to ourselves while also being home together as a family,” Amy Dornbusch said in a statement via email. “The billiards room, pool and spa area, outdoor pizza oven, playroom, play yard and movie theater have enabled us to spend countless moments together enjoying each other as a family in a variety of spaces throughout the home.”

The Dornbusches also wanted plenty of space to display their contemporary art collection.

“Additionally, the home, with so much natural light and expansive white gallery walls, provided a space that encouraged us to really think about expanding our art collection and using the home to showcase creative talent that breathed so much additional life into the space,” Amy Dornbusch said.

Despite making the grand home exactly to their liking, the couple have found an equally appealing home at Lake Tahoe which is now their primary residence. Therefore, they put the house near Oakland on the market.

“It was equally a masterpiece for entertaining and also a fully functional, livable and enjoyable home for a family of five,” Amy Dornbusch said. “At the end of the private road, it always felt like a nature preserve for us with gorgeous hillside views over the Orinda valley, enveloped in giant Valley Oak trees and the quietness of being in the woods and at the end of a private road.”

In addition to the pool, outdoors spaces provide a kitchen, extensive decks and grassy lawn. The design creates a seamless flow from outside into the light-filled main residence.

“With all bedrooms on the lower level, the main floor represented an opportunity for seamless entertaining between the wine and sitting room, formal dining room, spacious kitchen and lounge, billiards room, movie theater and expansive decks for cocktail parties and nature viewing,” Amy Dornbusch said. “With proper spaces for entertaining, we hosted so many events at the home including fundraisers, birthday parties, endless summer pool parties, wine dinners, film viewing parties and even a wedding … during the pandemic.”

Beyond home’s expansive bedroom suites are a home theater, the gym, a separate apartment, ideal for a nanny, and a 1,200-bottle, temperature-controlled wine room.

The home not only provides luxury but offers smart-home functionality with solar, batteries and remote systems.

Anhthu Le of Compass is the listing agent.

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