Life on the Hill: San Diego Home Comes With Its Own Funicular

If you've ever struggled to haul heavy bags of groceries up a flight of stairs, you'll appreciate the unique feature of this $2.4 million home in San Diego. The 3,388-square-foot home sits at one of the highest points in its cul-de-sac, with amazing views of the blue waters of San Diego Bay and downtown San Diego.

Those views come at a cost beyond the multimillion-dollar price tag: You need to ascend a 62-step staircase to get to the first floor. Or you can make use of a funicular, which will whisk you, and those heavy bags of groceries, straight up the hillside and right to the front door.

The funicular was installed when the home was built in 1988 and is maintained by an elevator company, listing agent Anne Heyligers explains. "It's great when you have all those steps." Heyligers has fit as many as six people in the funicular car, for an open house, so it's large enough to hold an entire family.

At the top, attention quickly turns from the cable-powered hillside conveyance to the views. "The views are the highlights of the house," says Heyligers. "Last week, when it was so clear, you could see all the way to Mexico." Also visible is Coronado Island, home to the well-known Hotel del Coronado, a playground of the rich and famous.

The three-bedroom home was designed by a local architectural firm that also designed the San Diego Yacht Club. It features fireplaces in the master bedroom and the family room. The two-story house has a rose garden, a gazebo, balconies, a deck, and a lower-level covered patio.

On the market for the first time in 27 years, this home can be customized and personalized, Heyligers notes.

For example, the new owner could knock down a wall in the small-size kitchen and create an open-concept space so popular in today's homes. Its list price, considerably lower than that of similarly sized homes in the exclusive neighborhood, is an acknowledgment that the new owner will want to update the interior.

In the Italian folk song about a funicular, " Funiculi, Funicula," a young man professes his love for a woman while riding a funicular. Taking the funicular at this house may have you professing your love for living in a home overlooking San Diego Bay.