Hot House: 719 University Parkway, Baltimore, 21210
Late Victorian, Palladian style mansion, circa 1913, in cream painted brick and stucco. Ten bedrooms, 5.5 baths, on .44 acres. Original architectural details, four fireplaces, 13’ceilings, hardwood floors, formal gardens: $799,000
What: A jaw-dropping confection, dramatically sited at the summit of University Parkway. Built in 1913 by an indulgent father as a wedding present for his daughter, the columned and carved portico decorating the front is monumentally romantic, virtually impossible to drive by without an admiring glance. For many years the house was broken-up into six apartments. Current owner has restored the two main floors to a single family home, retaining two rental units on the third floor. Purchased in 2006 for $1,000,000, the house is still in transition and needs a fair amount of work – some rooms have been beautifully restored and decorated, others halfway, and some not at all. The kitchen is a big, sunny space with new spotlights in the ceiling, new stained glass and polished oak floors, but otherwise empty. Living and dining room are magazine beautiful, but the sunroom, with its rows of fine Palladian windows, has an old linoleum floor and chipped brickwork. Upstairs rooms are luxuriously large, but the layout feels choppy and you’ll probably want new bathrooms. There is a good-sized flat back yard and the remains of formal gardens, but landscaping is needed. Good news for the buyer, though —there’s a full kitchen in the (semi-finished) basement – so you could easily live here while finishing the job.
Where: Drive south on Roland Avenue, past Cold Spring Lane. Roland Avenue becomes University Parkway. #719 is on the right hand side.
Why: Everyone’s favorite house – total eye candy. Instant fame just by living here.
Why Not: No central air. Also no private entrance to the rental apartments.
Would Suit: Big personality.
NB: In the world of decorating, what a seller thinks are “fun touches” – like say, a low-hanging giant propeller/ceiling fan – a buyer might perceive as “weird stuff.” There’s some of that here.