We’re often advised not to judge a book by its cover. The same can be said of houses. A colonial is a colonial, right? Unless, of course, there’s a more intriguing design story to be told just behind its classic brick facade. The home at 4535 Windom Place NW in American University Park is just such an example: a traditionally elegant exterior that unexpectedly reveals a work — and works — of art within.
Situated on a corner lot beautifully landscaped with an array of pink coneflowers, impatiens, scented lilies and evergreen shrubs, this residence offers 3,949 square feet on four levels of graciously proportioned living space. It includes four bedrooms; three-and-a-half bathrooms; family and rec rooms; a wood-burning fireplace; and a host of thoughtful custom built-ins and decorative touches. The house also boasts owner-curated paintings, sculpture, textiles and furniture throughout. There is also a landscaped back patio off the large family room/conservatory, which was added to the original 1940 house in 2003. The property is now on the market for $1,495,000.
A Palladian entrance with a red door opens into a center hall facing a wide staircase. Grass cloth with a subtle hand lines the walls up the stairs to the second floor.
To the left is a formal living room anchored by a vintage wood-burning fireplace with white wood mantel and brick surround, a recessed arched bookcase and large windows overlooking the gardens at front and back of the house. The living room opens into a sunny office that includes several oversized windows with extra-deep sills for plants.
To the right of the entrance hall is the formal dining room, attired in Chinese red — silk/linen wall coverings, chair rail and archway trim. It can easily seat eight to 10 people.
Next door is a sunken great room — large enough for a grand piano and breakfast table — with skylights and three sets of wood-trimmed French doors that open into the rear garden. Facing the wall of windows are built-in light wood bookcases and a curved room divider with shelves, cabinets and whimsical tile treatment (also repeated as the backsplash) that sets off the step-up galley kitchen.
The kitchen features Shaker-style cherry cabinets with nickel hardware; an island/breakfast bar with built-in wine rack; granite countertops; and limestone tile floor. Pendant lights hang over the island. A custom-painted feature wall (same color as the cabinetry) adds visual interest. Stainless appliances include a French door refrigerator/freezer; two Kohler sinks (one on the island); a Bosch dishwasher; a Panasonic microwave; and a Viking Professional six-burner gas cooktop, double oven and warming drawer.
The main level also houses a deep pantry, hall closet and blue/cream half-bath with blue burlap walls that lend a nautical look and feel.
On the second floor there is a recessed sitting room by a window and two sizable guest rooms — one blue, one green — that both feature double exposures and deep closets. A full hall bath off the second floor landing has a Kohler sink and commode and vintage black-and-white tile floor. The master bedroom boasts two large walk-in closets; windows facing south, west and north; and an en-suite bathroom with vintage black-and-white tile backsplash and spiral tile floor.
A few stairs lead up to a media room or office on the third floor, where a vaulted ceiling adds lift and light.
Downstairs on the lowest level, the fully finished basement is every bit as refined and beautifully finished as the rooms on the upper floors. It includes two large rec rooms (one set up now as a screening room, the other as a living room with a working fireplace); full bath with blue/white colorway; and a second kitchen with a 1940s vintage Frigidaire stove pullout five-burner range and built-in storage. There is also a Kenmore washer and dryer.
Windom Place is a quiet street minutes from Tenleytown or Spring Valley transit, retail and restaurant options. Local parks and recreation centers are also nearby.
The four-bedroom, three-and-a-half-bath home at 4535 Windom Place NW is listed for $1,495,000 with Washington Fine Properties. For details, contact Lee Murphy at 202-277-7477 or Lee@LeeMurphy.net. For a virtual tour, visit bit.ly/2sI8dfD.