By Ron Donoho / Photography by Jeff "Turbo" Corrigan
Four homes that are LEED-certified by the U.S. Green Building Council line one block of Neptune Street in Leucadia. To call them "eco friendly" would be an understatement. As far as man-made structures go, they're environmental BFFs.
"I don't think you could find this kind of green density anywhere else in the nation," says real estate developer Rich Williams, founder of ArtHaus, LLC, in Encinitas.
LEED stands for "Leadership in Energy and Environmental Design." Williams' residential project at 1491 Neptune Street stands as the county's second home to earn the LEED Platinum certification.
The 3,279-square-foot ArtHaus-2 has three bedrooms and three-and-a-half baths. It's on the market for $2.56 million, which feels like a bargain when admiring the panoramic ocean view.
Über-efficient inside and out (in terms of water and energy use), the never-before-lived-in residence has a solar-powered water heater and photovoltaic panels that produce electricity. "Smart skylights" feature thermostatic controls, low-flow bathroom and kitchen fixtures are as elegant as they are resourceful, and Forest Stewardship Council (FSC)-certified wood comprises the cabinets and flooring.
Williams hired Bay Ho-based Room by Room, Inc. owner/designer Stephanie Malcolm to make "green" feel "beachy."
"It's a modern home, and very green, but we gave it a softer look," says Malcolm. Among other touches, she brought in vintage photos of surfers (including one of her father, as she likes to lend personal flair to each design project), added a signature Dalmatian sculpture and repurposed a bed headboard from an old saloon chalkboard.
Chalked on the headboard: "Dream On Neptune."
Fittingly, two San Diego-born BFFs - Miss California USA 2013 Mabelynn Capeluj and Miss California Teen USA 2013 Cassidy Marie Wolf - are spending the day at ArtHaus-2, dreaming of their future beach homes while showing off the fashionable colors of spring... and feeling green with envy of whomever ends up owning Williams' masterpiece.
Green House Effects
LEED certification categories
In assessing a construction project's overall LEED score, the U.S. Green Building Council gives credits according to these and other criteria.*
Water efficiency credits
promote smarter use of water, inside and out, to reduce potable water consumption.
Energy and atmosphere credits
promote better building energy performance through innovative strategies.
Materials and resources credits
encourage using sustainable building materials and reducing waste.
Indoor environmental quality credits
promote better indoor air quality and access to daylight and views.
Smart location and linkage credits
promote walkable neighborhoods with efficient transportation options and open space.
Neighborhood pattern and design credits
emphasize compact, walkable, vibrant, mixed-use neighborhoods with good connections to nearby communities.
Green infrastructure and buildings credits
reduce the environmental consequences of the construction and operation of buildings and infrastructure.
Miss California USA 2013
The last girl standing
She started her pageant journey as Miss Greater San Diego 2012. Now, 21-year- old Maybelynn Capeluj will represent California in the Miss USA competition this June in Las Vegas. Born in Rancho Penasquitos and raised in Temecula, she models, blogs and likes to chill with her cats, Felix and Lola.
PacificSD: You nearly fell to the ground when you won the Miss California USA title. What was going through your mind?
Capeluj: I heard them announce the other girl's name, and my legs got weak when I realized I was the last girl standing.
Did you practice how you would look if you won?
No, that was a real moment. I made a crazy face.
What will you do to prepare for the Miss USA pageant in June?
A lot of fitness and healthy eating. And practice interviews.
What do you think of Miss USA pageant owner Donald Trump? I follow him on Twitter, and I like that he is very passionate about his ideas.
How do you keep up on current events? I get most of my news on Twitter.
What career are you hoping to pursue? Broadcast journalism.
What's Cassidy like? She's funny, a little clumsy. She's like my little pageant sister.
Describe your dream home. A beach house in La Jolla.
(energy-efficient components in photo above):
FSC-certified "Orosi" tropical hardwood flooring from Costa Rica; custom-made concrete treads on upper staircase section, with stringer and railing made from recycled-content steel; high-performance Loewen doors and windows provide energy efficiency with reduced heating and cooling losses.
Miss California Teen USA 2013
All the right moves
She's a dancer who was born in Escondido, grew up in Ramona and now lives in Temecula. Eighteen-year-old Cassidy Marie Wolf, who reigned as Miss Teen Greater San Diego 2012, is looking forward to competing for Miss Teen USA - not in the least because she'll get to ride the water slide at the Atlantis Hotel in The Bahamas this July.
What went through your mind when you won the Miss California Teen USA title?
I was surprisingly relaxed.
Did you practice how you would look if you won?
Some girls do. But in the moment, you forget.
What's Mabelynn like?
She's very responsible. Loud. Determined. She's always looking out for me - like a big sister.
How will you prepare for the Miss Teen USA pageant?
I'll get in A-game shape. And practice speaking on point.
Will you try to win the Miss California USA title next?
I'll wait a couple years. In the meantime, I want to try out for the Laker Girls or the Charger Girls.
And if you could choose between the two?
Laker Girls. I'd like dancing in that enclosed environment. You're 20 feet from the audience. Plus, Justin Bieber would probably sit courtside.
Describe your dream home.
It'd be one block from the water in Pacific Beach, and very cozy. And I'd have the master bedroom. I've never had the biggest room in the house.
Green Light (above):
Highly durable Ceasarstone engineered quartz countertops; cabinets constructed from FSC-certified solid maple boxes with Rift Cut oak facing, finished with premium- quality, Low-VOC FUHR Waterborne industrial urethane; FSC-certified "Orosi" tropical hardwood flooring from Costa Rica; high-efficacy LED lighting; Energy Star Miele refrigerator and appliances; high-performance Loewen doors and windows provide energy efficiency with reduced heating and cooling losses.
Benjamin Moore "Aura" Low-VOC paints with photo-resistance and high durability; 100 percent high-efficacy lighting; FSC- certified "Orosi" tropical hardwood flooring from Costa Rica.
Benjamin Moore "Aura" Low-VOC paints with photo-resistance and high durability; FSC- certified "Orosi" tropical hardwood flooring from Costa Rica; 100 percent high-efficacy lighting.