On Monday, Washington Fine Properties listed a home on University Terrace in DC’s
Kent neighborhood for $19.5 million—making it the most expensive home on the market
now in the District. What does nearly $20 million buy you these days? Five bedrooms
and seven baths spread out over 10,000 square feet, plus a guest house, a pool, and
gardens on more than six acres. “There’s hardly any other property in the city that
has that much land,” says
Tom Anderson, president of Washington Fine Properties.
According to DC tax records, the home is owned by
“James C. Biddle Trustee.” Biddle, who died in 2005, was president of the National Trust for Historic
Preservation as well as an adviser to First Ladies Jackie Kennedy and Lady Bird Johnson
on historic furniture.
The house—which came in eighth on our list of 50 Most
last year and is currently assessed for $13.7 million—has
recently been home to Biddle’s
Louisa, and her late husband, former ambassador
Robert Duemling, who died in July. It sits on University Terrace, a woodsy, winding road near Battery
Kemble Park in upper Northwest Washington.
If you were to buy the home, you’d be neighbors with former
Washington Post executive editor
Len Downie Jr., who lives a few houses down in a four-bedroom that’s assessed for about $750,000.
Ralph Cicerone, president of the National Academy of Sciences, also comes home to University Terrace;
his five-bedroom is assessed for $3.3 million. A Kent cocktail party might also include
Tucker Carlson and the power couple of NBC’s
Andrea Mitchell and former Chairman of the Fed
According to the listing, there is a “possibility of subdivision,” which may explain
the hefty price tag. But is $19.5 million realistic in this economy? “We know the
air is always thinner at the top, but there are big buyers out there,” says listing
Heidi Hatfield. “I’m happy to report the phone is ringing.”