By Christina B. Farnsworth. Chimney Corners' look pays homage to the historic California Monterey style of the 1920s and 1930s. Subtle detail in the 2,526-square-foot, $429,990 Wishing Well model includes shutters proportioned to cover the windows they flank. The garage is hidden under the eaves of a cantilevered balcony and further disguised by interspersing strips of grass rather than including a totally paved driveway.

This is a family house, zoned for openness. The home flows together seamlessly, even as it offers distinct places for family functions. It also offers practical 21st-century planning; the home office has its own front door and an adjacent bath, so it would be equally useful as a first-floor suite for guests or older relatives.

Photo: Eric Figge Photography

The rest of the bedrooms--and there are four more--are upstairs. The stairway isn't a showcase placed for glamour at the front of the house, but rather resides at the back of the home, linking the downstairs informal rooms to the upstairs bedrooms. The upstairs hallway has room for linens and a computer desk. As modeled, interior shutters filter light and separate the formal dining from the great room. Category: Single-Family Production, 2,000 to 3,000 square feet; Entrant/Architect: JBZ Architecture + Planning, Newport Beach, Calif.; Builder: John Laing Homes, Newport Beach; Rancho Mission Viejo Cos., San Juan Capistrano, Calif.; Land Planner: Wagner Halladay, Placentia, Calif.; Forsum Summers and Murphy, Dana Point, Calif.