Hosts With The Most
- Written bySuzanna Cullen
In a city where lot size is a highly valued commodity, the McGovern family of Manhattan Beach has it in spades. After living in a small, Cape Cod-style house, Corina and Dave McGovern decided to expand to a larger home in order to accommodate their growing family. Having previously worked with Louie Tomaro of Tomaro Design Group, the McGoverns relied on his advice to purchase a home on a very large lot in Manhattan Beach. Soon after the purchase of their home site, the house next door came on the market. It was a deal Dave could not refuse, and it permitted enough land for a terrific outdoor living and entertaining space.
The McGoverns have three children younger than age 9, and their home is a beehive of activity. All the children are involved in sports and extracurricular activities, so Corina decided she wanted their home to be “the place where all the kids and families would want to gather.” With that goal, the McGoverns and Tomaro set about creating a mecca of family entertainment.
The Italian-influenced home is grand in scale. From the elevated foyer and sweeping staircase to the formally furnished rooms with all new, Continental-style furniture, the house is bathed in neutral and brown tones set within a highly ornate atmosphere.
Tucked in the back corner of the main floor off the very fanciful living room is the billiard room. A massive, baroque-style pool table anchors the room, while a wall-mounted aquarium provides constant entertainment as a contemporary visual. Both the billiard room and the family room have fully retractable sliding glass doors, so the rooms can open to the expansive patio. With numerous areas for seating and dining, there is no shortage of space to accommodate guests.
While adults can relax in various areas of the massive stone patio, children have a wide variety of play areas. The newly relocated play set has a slide and a fort in a corner of the yard—perfect for hiding and games. The stone-surrounded pool has a platform diving area and slide that are in constant use on hot summer weekends. The newly acquired lot has been leveled and divided into two areas. In the back area is a grass field—perfect for family soccer games, while the front area is being converted to a sports pavilion and guesthouse.
With all the places to gather and entertain upstairs and outside, Dave McGovern’s most prized room in the house is hidden downstairs. “I love movies, and this is my favorite place to be,” he remarked upon opening the doors to the theatre. Complete with heavy swag velvet and fringe-trimmed draperies, the theatre is a nod to the glamorous movie houses of a previous era. Large leather chairs make viewing comfortable, while big brown velvet beanbag chairs are perfect for lounging children. A portable popcorn machine enhances the movie experience.
As the McGovern children grow older, it is certain that their home will be the place to gather with their friends. Whether for swimming and sports outside or movies and meals inside, the McGovern home can easily welcome a large crowd. Corina’s wish has been fulfilled, and now she and her family are filling their new home with cherished memories of times shared with friends and family.
Best Qualities: I like the idea of being a gentleman. Old-fashioned, perhaps, but it just feels better than being a jerk.