Tuesday, July 10, 2012

My impressions: 5 open houses in early July.

I don't usually get to go inside: Grant Park, Druid Hills, Candler Park, Virginia Highlands, and Morningside, from 1920 to 2012.

I think architecture tourists deserve curated lists of open houses. I mean: We aren't buying but we are certainly in love.

Grant Park

On July 1st, I visited this 1920 Victorian overlooking Grant Park. It's as perfect as a 90 year old smallish family house can be. In the early 70's this house was probably falling down. You could have bought it for a few thousand.

It's pretty close to the house next door but they do have this nice stained glass window. With a 12 foot ceiling in the central hall and with parlors right and left, you feel like you are in a museum. The bathrooms and kitchen are up to date but they don't do houses like this any more. And maybe that's a good thing.

But someone will fall in love. Maybe JoAnn and I would have in an earlier era. In the meantime I have a crush.

On the 8th I did 4 houses. I just cruised looking for balloons. I hoped to find one in Inman Park. Who knows what you'll find in Inman Park.

But Chandler Park is just fine too.

This had me at the driveway. In fact this was an architects house. Too small for their family they moved away and rented it for decades. Then a tree smashed it. They added an upstairs and put it up for sale. It's a 1930 bungalow updated with clever design and oodles of hand made details.

Perhaps the hand-made driveway will give you a hint of the clever, practical, arty, funkiness. This is a labor of love and design savvy

It's a charming bungalow in the front, modern-practical in the back, Funky fun done well. I smiled the whole time. I think I could live here.

On to Druid Hills.

It's a 1929'er with a big garage/maids quarters/ student apartment in the back. Several Emory VIP's have lived here. It's elegant and beautiful but not a mansion.

I felt important when I walked into the central hall with very fine if not overly grand stair. The dining room is to the left, great parlor to the right exactly as expected. It has some add-ons, some enclosures, and a new kitchen.

There was no funkiness so I wanted modern closets and I wanted a kitchen/family room combination in this one. But I could live here none-the-less.

On to Virginia-Highlands.

This is a 2006 teardown. It might as well be brand new.

It's a lesson in maximizing a 50' wide lot into 4000+ square feet and a 3-car garage, The left door can park cars 2-deep. There are a bunch of these in Linwood Park.

It fits the modern checklist for kitchen, bathrooms, closets, interesting ceilings, family room, elevator, and space, space, space.

It's a city house. But the double garage in front keeps it from being a Virginia Highland house.

Finally to Morningside/Johnson Estates.

This is a 1940'er renovated into a brand new house. It's absolutely in keeping with the neighbors. Very clever design meets the modern check list in a minimum of square feet. And there's no climbing to bring the groceries in.

It's in a very desirable location. 

Though it's a renovation, it feels as if it's been designed from scratch. I could live here.

That's five down, and thousands to go.


  1. I like them all except for the Virginia Highland one. I swear that neighborhood, along with Morningside, has been a haven for lazy 2000s design. Judging from the awful features of the lower two levels I'm kind of glad you didn't show the whole shebang LOL.

    1. There's another one like this being built nearby: double garage and split-level entry.

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  3. That stained glass window is nice. I like the stained glasses of 1940' houses.

    - Herman Swan

  4. A view of some parts of town that I rarely visit - Atlanta is a great place, isn't it? So much to see, so many great houses. A great place to live.

  5. I am sure I would love the first bungalow - so much history, character and charm...the hand laid pavers are wonderful!!


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