Alle Fister was preoccupied planning a wedding when she first discovered her Playa del Rey home.
Sitting pretty on a sunny seaside avenue, a mere 40 minutes or so from downtown Los Angeles, the five bedroom, four bathroom mid-century marvel boasts unmatched views of the bustle below.
"My husband, Don, actually found the property," explains Fister, the founder of L.A. based communications firm Bollare.
"He took me over to the property one night — so I could see the lights and those city views. What he didn't show me was the dilapidated mess the house was in! It had fantastic bones, sure, but it desperately need a refresh."
This quintessentially Hollywood home — once owned by American automobile tycoon Carol Shelby sometime during the '60s — struck gold when it met a couple willing and able to restore the property back to its heyday.
"Luckily, my husband is in the restoration business," says Fister.
"So while I was busy planning our wedding, Don was building our dream home."
Flash forward eight years and countless changes later, and Fister's Playa del Rey address is once again befitting of those sweeping views. An expansive open-plan kitchen, custom wine cellar, multiple Missoni-clad living areas, and an elevated dining space are just a handful of attributes that make Fister's home utterly unique.
Upon entry, floor-to-ceiling windows and angled ceilings offer boundless natural light. Come nightfall, the glittering city below seeps in. A custom wine cellar by One Tuscany plays host to an impressive private collective, conveniently located behind the couple's lengthy dining table. When it comes to decor, Fister doesn't shy away from pattern — or color, for that matter — with her penchant for one Italian design house standing out among the rest.
"My favorite piece? Definitely our Missoni Mah Jong Sofa by Roche Bobois. I was lucky enough to consult for them for many years and with that I had the opportunity to purchase it." she smiles. "We're not afraid of color. To us, color is happy, it's vibrant — if we like a particular color or pattern, we’re not intimidated, we embrace it."
Coinciding living areas as bold as the next each boast something a little different. Off-duty nooks complete with twin Ligne Roset ottomans encourage you to relax and unwind, leaf through a coffee table book, or imbibe a glass of wine, all the while basking in that L.A. glow. There's a pool table — "Don actually designed it!" adds Fister — slinky Wassily Knoll style armchairs, sectionals you can just sink into, and a second Ligne Roset showpiece — a sofa rendered in soft, caramel colored leather. As for pattern, there's flame stitch virtually everywhere, a print now synonymous with Missoni's design DNA. For Fister, home is an opportunity to showcase pieces that make you feel a certain way. Some might incite emotion, nostalgia, or simply brighten up your day.
As avid entertainers, the duo built their home to be enjoyed by visiting friends and family. "Every party starts — and finishes — around that ping-pong table," Fister admits.
" I think it's important to keep the surrounding space subdued and pick one bold hero piece," she explains, when further quizzed about her decorating and style ethos. "You should consider how that piece makes you feel. I love that sense of discovery that comes with decorating. The process of actively looking for whatever it is you have in mind, I love using my imagination."
Glide through to the couple's bedroom and another of Fister's favorite pieces holds pride of place, sitting pretty on display like a work of art.
"The Philippe Starck mirror in our bedroom would have to be my favorite splurge," Fister explains. "I love the way it totally opens up our bedroom space, embraces and reflects the natural light — something about it is so architectural."
When asked what she'd change, if anything, about her bold and beautiful Los Angeles address? Fister's response is refreshingly relatable.
"Simple. I'd like to be home more," she says, matter of factly. "We work so hard to have this beautiful space, a home designed to entertain and to enjoy. I just wish we could be here more often."