California New-Build Gets a “Modern Loft Bungalow” Makeover

John McClain’s newly-built, modern home in Los Angeles came with clean lines and endless potential – the perfect canvas for the designer to execute his “bold, colorful and undiluted design.”

“As in most new-construction, builder-grade homes, the finishes were standard and, in some cases, subpar to my usual design selections,” says the creative director and CEO of John McClain Design. “I saw the opportunity to really bring my vision to life. Design-wise, all stops were pulled and every stone turned.”

Photo by Zeke Ruelas

Dubbing his new home the “Modern Loft Bungalow,” McClain wanted to bring a cozy, inviting feel to the modern architecture of the loft. Guests, he says, should want to come in, feeling a sense of welcome, wonder and curiosity at every turn.

“My vibe varies per space but overall, there is a sexy, moody, sophisticated sizzle that relaxedly entertains all who enter,” McClain says.

As someone who frequently entertains and loves to cook, McClain says the kitchen is the most important room in a house and he knew it had to be just right. He chose a neutral palette of gray, black, brown and gold throughout the design, mixing modern and classic aesthetics. An inspirational slab of porcelain bedecks the kitchen’s countertops and backsplash and waterfalls down the end of the peninsula, capped in a brass design that he calls the kitchen’s “visual star.”

Photo by Zeke Ruelas

 “This detail really emphasizes my love of geometry, mixed metals and drama,” he says.

Making the design work pop is a suite of luxury appliances from Monogram’s Minimalist Collection. Refined handles brought in the contemporary look he craved, and the simple architecture of the appliances prevents elements from competing.

“I wanted a sleek, sexy ‘wow’ kitchen and I couldn’t have achieved that objective without the Monogram Minimalist Collection,” he says. “These appliances blend seamlessly into our other design selections and add a bit of sophistication.”

Photo by Zeke Ruelas

Function mattered as much as form, of course. McClain loves the 36” Induction Cooktop, touting that he temperature control of gas can sear a steak in mere moments. Tied with the cooktop for his affections is the 30” Wall Oven – specifically, the air fry feature (“Who doesn’t love crispy freezer fries or making mozzarella sticks snap and ooze?”)

The wall oven, installed beneath the cooktop for a traditional range look, and the ventilation system above it, featuring Monogram’s inventive Slide-Out Hood, are treated aesthetically as a single unit in a much darker tone. The pillar effect, McClain says, is echoed in the panel-ready, side-by-side Monogram refrigerator situated directly opposite.

Monogram’s appliances make for hosting soirees a little easier, McClain says. A swanky upstairs loft is the perfect spot for a cozy after-dinner cocktail with a concealed Monogram undercounter refrigerator and icemaker integrated into the sleek cabinetry. Self-serve drawers in the kitchen free hosts to continue working and socializing without letting guests get thirsty.

Photo by Zeke Ruelas

“Monogram double refrigeration drawers at the end of our peninsula allow guests to help themselves without stepping in the activity,” McClain notes. “And for larger events, double ovens are a must. To save space and satisfy five functions, we installed the Advantium® Smart 5-in-One – convection oven, microwave, warming drawer and toaster.”

Photo by Zeke Ruelas

McClain says an invitation to the Modern Loft Bungalow guarantees “fabulous cocktails, something Southern and comforting, and definitely home-baked sweets.” Another guarantee? Guests will feel swept away by dramatic spaces and eclectic details, and, more than likely, they’ll spend a lot of time in that kitchen. After all, he says, “We all know that everyone ends up in the kitchen during a dinner party.” And in a kitchen like McClain’s, they might never leave.

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