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This two-bedroom condo works out to a whopping $1,359 per square foot. By Michelle Thomas

This Foggy Bottom condo—a penthouse on Pennsylvania Avenue—is loaded with custom luxuries. Private elevator? Check. Hand-cut herringbone floors? Yup. Huge terrace? Naturally. Plus the place features a sleek, modern stone fireplace, built-in shelving, limestone counters, and top-level appliances in the kitchen. The 2,300-square-foot apartment is listed at $3.2 million.

Take a look below, then go to Beasley Real Estate for more details and here for the full tour.

Find Michelle Thomas on Twitter at @michellethomas4.

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Posted at 12:34 PM/ET, 08/27/2014 | Permalink | Comments ()
DC houses fetch close to $4 million and $7 million. Plus—a former NFL commissioner and player strike deals in the burbs.
This six-bedroom mansion in Massachusetts Avenue Heights sold to a UBS managing director. Photographs by David Pipkin.

This Victorian rowhouse with a wine cellar in Georgetown sold for $3 million-plus.

In DC

Stephen and Diana Goldberg sold a nine-bedroom, 11-bath Tudor on Garfield Street in Wesley Heights for $6.6 million. The 12,000-square-foot home boasts a three-story guesthouse, his-and-hers master bathrooms and walk-in closets, a theater, and a pool. The philanthropists are best known for two $25-million donations—in 2001 and in 2008—to Children’s National Medical Center, among the largest ever to an American pediatric hospital.

Dale Gray, a senior risk expert at the International Monetary Fund, and wife Cheryl, a director at the Inter-American Development Bank, bought a Victorian rowhouse in Georgetown for $3.1 million. The renovated four-bedroom, six-bath home has a wine cellar and gourmet kitchen.

Margaret Warner, a correspondent for the PBS NewsHour, sold a five-bedroom, five-bath house on Loughboro Road in Spring Valley for $2.3 million. The Georgian has a master suite with dressing room and fireplace, plus enough parking in its circular driveway for ten cars.

Roderick and Alexia Von Lipsey bought a French Provincial-style mansion in Massachusetts Avenue Heights for $3.3 million. At almost 6,000 square feet, it has six bedrooms and six baths. Roderick Von Lipsey is a managing director at the financial-services firm UBS.

Real-estate developer Conrad Cafritz sold a Colonial on Garfield Street in Wesley Heights for $3.9 million. The four-bedroom, five-bath house features a 60-foot-long pool and was renovated by award-winning architect Mark McInturff. Cafritz is CEO of Cafritz Interests, which owns 100-plus properties valued at a total of more than $1.2 billion.

In Maryland

Paul Tagliabue and wife Chandler bought a three-bedroom, three-bath condo in Chevy Chase for $2.9 million. The 2,500-square-foot space includes built-in shelving, multiple balconies, and a master bath with a whirlpool tub. Paul Tagliabue was commissioner of the NFL from 1989 to 2006. A graduate of Georgetown University, he’s currently chair of the school’s board of directors.

Built in 1925 and since expanded, this Dutch Colonial in Arlington went for $1.8 million.

In Virginia

Joan Rohlfing and husband Pallav Das bought a five-bedroom, four-bath Dutch Colonial in Arlington for $1.8 million. Built in 1925 and since expanded, it includes a sunroom and a spacious patio. Rohlfing is president and chief operating officer of the Nuclear Threat Initiative, a nonprofit focused on preventing the spread of nuclear, biological, and chemical weapons.

Steve and Terry Largent sold a Colonial-style townhouse on Randolph Court in Arlington for $1.6 million. The three-bedroom, five-bath home has an elevator, theater room, and large master suite. Steve Largent played 14 seasons as a wide receiver for the Seattle Seahawks before serving as a congressman from Oklahoma from 1994 to 2002.

Some sales information provided by American City Business Leads and Diana Hart of TTR Sotheby International Realty.

This article appears in the September 2014 issue of Washingtonian.

Posted at 11:00 AM/ET, 08/26/2014 | Permalink | Comments ()
The place includes nine rentable lofts in addition to the über-custom, two-story owner’s penthouse. By Michelle Thomas

Offering an income-generating rental alongside an owner’s home isn’t exactly novel for the Washington real estate market. But this place? It has nine. English basements, these are not.

After Pierce School fell into disuse and later, disrepair, the building was purchased from the city—for a bargain price of just $275,000 in 2000—and has since been transformed into a set of large loft rentals, with a massive owner’s unit taking the crown penthouse position. Said owner’s unit holds court as one of Northeast DC’s most unusual properties, taking up more than 9,000 square feet and reincarnating classrooms as living areas, a huge gourmet kitchen, and a giant office, plus four guest bedrooms and a 14-person theater complete with seats from an old airplane. The building’s former life peeks out via chalkboards and lockers incorporated into the design, and hints of the original architecture take the spotlight in the soaring ceilings, oversize windows, exposed brick, and hardwood floors. A sprawling 800-square-foot private deck and glass-walled sun room offer panoramic views on the rooftop. And beyond the nine rental apartments, the rest of the building offers up a community fitness center and a secluded, sanctuary-like 38,000-gallon pool. 

The entire building went on the market in the fall of 2013, and has since dropped $750,000 to sit at its current price of $6.5 million. Check out photos of the industrial-luxe penthouse below, then head to TTR Sotheby's for the complete details.

 

Find Michelle Thomas on Twitter at @michellethomas4.

 

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Posted at 02:32 PM/ET, 08/13/2014 | Permalink | Comments ()
This Dumbarton Street home spotlights tons of original ornamentation. By Michelle Thomas
Photographs by Fusion Photography for HomeVisit.

This Dumbarton Street home, just off Wisconsin Avenue in the heart of Georgetown, was originally built in 1875—and it still retains many of the era’s most beautiful historic architectural flourishes, from the soaring ceilings and double doors to the gorgeous moldings. Our favorite room: A large double-size parlor, decked out with a charming bay window, built-in display shelving, two fireplaces, and a pair of crystal chandeliers. Upstairs, the master suite opens to a lovely upper-level screened porch, and in back, there’s a secluded, lush terrace garden space. 

The five-bedroom, six-bath home is listed at $3.295 million. Take a look below, then go to Washington Fine Properties for a full tour.

Find Michelle Thomas on Twitter at @michellethomas4.

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Posted at 01:45 PM/ET, 08/08/2014 | Permalink | Comments ()
Check out this four-bedroom, five-bath at the Ritz-Carlton Residences. By Michelle Thomas
Photographs by Fusion Photography via HomeVisit.

This isn’t the first time a penthouse at the Residences at the Ritz-Carlton in Georgetown has listed at this price level—in April, this one went on the market for $7.995 million, gold-leafed powder room and all—but that doesn’t mean it’s any less impressive. Four bedrooms and five baths are contained within the condo’s 5,664 square feet of living space. A large foyer leads into a gallery and open layout living area, a kitchen with its own breakfast area, a library, and a huge master suite with custom closets, a sitting room, and a private balcony. Some of the highlights? The gorgeous herringbone Brazilian wood floors, decorative moldings, rich mahogany detailing in the library, and a sleek kitchen to add to the service entrance and garage parking.

It’s listed at $7.95 million. Take a look below, then go to Washington Fine Properties for the complete tour.

Find Michelle Thomas on Twitter at @michellethomas4.

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Posted at 11:00 AM/ET, 08/06/2014 | Permalink | Comments ()
Super-sophisticated interiors are the draw at this $5.95 million five-bedroom. By Michelle Thomas

At $5.95 million, we’re not joking when we call this a fantasy home—one peek at the interior will tell you why we love it. Positioned at the end of a private lane in McLean, this five-bedroom was restored under the supervision of award-winning designer Darryl Carter, who set it up in his signature neutral aesthetic. The result? A stunning modern-traditional home that highlights Carter’s tastefully dramatic flourishes, including deeply hued wood floors, plenty of clean, crisp white, and exquisite architectural detailing—elaborate wall paneling in the office, the family room’s arched French doors, and a marble-and-white bath. Naturally, the Carter-selected furniture is practically design perfection, too. Beyond that, it’s also got manicured grounds, a beautiful pool, a charming guesthouse, an outdoor pavilion, and a private putting green.

Take a look below, then go to TTR Sotheby’s to get the full scoop.


Find Michelle Thomas on Twitter at @michellethomas4.

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Posted at 11:30 AM/ET, 08/01/2014 | Permalink | Comments ()
This place has its own “sport court.” By Michelle Thomas
Fusion photography by HomeVisit.

Built in 1902, this grand estate leaves almost no lavish detail untouched. A cobble- and flagstone driveway leads to the four-car carriage house and then to the main home, a property of nearly 10,000 square feet that boasts ten bedrooms and eight baths. Inside, the home is decked out with such luxe details as ebonized, pine, and marble floors, custom moldings and ceiling medallions, stenciled paneling in the library, and gilded and crystal chandeliers. The kitchen was updated to include honed granite counters, a butcher block island, custom wood and glass cabinetry, and top-level appliances. Upstairs, the master suite features a wood-burning fireplace (one of two in the home), a private deck, a dressing room, and a master bath outfitted with an inlaid marble floors, two black granite vanities, and a marble soaking tub. Elsewhere, there’s a media room, a caterer’s kitchen, and a two-bedroom, two-bath guest cottage. That’s all on the 1.25 acres of manicured grounds—which includes a sport court for private tennis and basketball games.

The home is listed at $4.95 million. Check it out below, then head to Washington Fine Properties for the complete details.

Find Michelle Thomas on Twitter at @michellethomas4.

 

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Posted at 12:56 PM/ET, 07/30/2014 | Permalink | Comments ()
Opera star Renée Fleming lands in the Palisades for $1.9 million, and Redskins coach Jay Gruden buys in Leesburg for $2.5 million.
Redskins coach Jay Gruden bought a model house built by Apex Custom Homes. Photograph courtesy of Apex Custom Homes.

In DC

Renée Fleming and her husband chose a new Federal-style townhouse with views of the Potomac River. Photograph by David Pipkin.

Opera soprano Renée Fleming and husband Timothy Jessell bought a three-bedroom, five-bath Federal-style townhouse in the Palisades for $1.9 million. Built this year, the home has Potomac River views, a rooftop terrace with a fireplace, and a master bathroom with heated floors and a jetted tub. Fleming became the first classical singer to perform the national anthem at the Super Bowl in February. Jessell is a partner at Greenberg Traurig.

Diane Guglielmino-Terpeluk, widow of Republican fundraiser and former ambassador to Luxembourg Peter Terpeluk, bought a Tudor in Wesley Heights for $2.7 million. The five-bedroom, five-bath home, built in 1932, was renovated in 2009. It features a flagstone terrace and an au pair suite.

Attorney Robert Litowitz bought a contemporary loft-style penthouse on Adams Morgan’s Champlain Street for $1.8 million. The three-bedroom, three-bath condo has soaring ceilings and 1,900 square feet of private terrace. Litowitz is a partner at the intellectual-property law firm Kelly IP.

In Maryland

Financial executive Mark Spindel and wife Kathryn bought a five-bedroom, eight-bath modern house in Glen Echo for $4.1 million. The award-winning home, designed by Robert M. Gurney, overlooks the Potomac River and boasts a saltwater lap pool and a detached guest suite and home office. Mark Spindel is founder and chief executive of the investment-management firm Potomac River Capital.

Construction executive Brian Abt sold a four-bedroom, five-bath Colonial on Rollinmead Drive in Gaithersburg for $1 million. It features a library and sunroom. Abt is division president and CEO of the Mid-Atlantic region for Clark Construction.

This Wesley Heights Tudor, with five bedrooms and five baths, sold for $2.7 million. Photograph by David Pipkin.

In Virginia

Redskins head coach Jay Gruden and wife Sherry bought a newly built home for $2.5 million at Creighton Farms, a gated golf-course community in Leesburg. The four-bedroom, five-bath French Provincial boasts a wine cellar and a grand walk-in closet/dressing area in the master bedroom. The home comes with access to concierge services and the Jack Nicklaus Signature golf course. A bonus: Gruden now lives just a few doors away from RG3.

Former congresswoman Margaret Heckler,Secretary of Health and Human Services during the Reagan administration, sold a three-bedroom, three-bath, two-story penthouse condominium on Oak Street in Arlington for $1.7 million. The unit has panoramic views of DC and the monuments and a private elevator.

Attorney L. James D’Agostino and wife Joan sold a six-bedroom, six-bath Colonial on Litton Lane in McLean for $1.7 million. The house has a wood-paneled “clubroom” with built-in bar. D’Agostino is a partner at Greenberg Traurig.

Some sales information provided by American City Business Leads and Diana Hart of TTR Sotheby International Realty.

This article appears in the August 2014 issue of Washingtonian.

Posted at 11:43 AM/ET, 07/28/2014 | Permalink | Comments ()
This elegant mansion has 9,000 square feet of luxury living space. By Michelle Thomas

This elegant mansion—on tony California Street in Kalorama—has been carefully restored to incorporate its original 1916 details, such as high ceilings and ornately manteled fireplaces, with new luxe features: heated floors and a large, contemporary kitchen). It’s a spacious property, with six bedrooms and eight baths spread over nearly 9,000 square feet of living space on four floors, and includes parking for ten cars. Outside, there’s a party-ready limestone terrace with a built-in grill and serene pool with water features. The home is listed at $4.99 million. Take a look below, then head to TTR Sotheby’s for the full details.

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Posted at 11:04 AM/ET, 07/23/2014 | Permalink | Comments ()
The Upperville, Virginia, property is more than 2,000 acres and includes a jet landing strip. By Carol Ross Joynt
Rokeby Stables on the Mellon estate. Photograph via Wikimedia Commons.

Update, 8/15: Washington Fine Properties has listed Oak Spring Farm at the anticipated $70 million. The original post follows.

The 2,000-plus-acre Upperville, Virginia, estate of philanthropists and art collectors Paul and Bunny Mellon will be listed for sale in the next several days at an asking price of $70 million, according to their executor, Alexander Forger. He also confirms that Dan Snyder, owner of the Washington NFL franchise, has made “an expression of interest” in the prized property, known as Oak Spring. “But a lot of folks are interested,” he says. “Who wouldn’t be? It’s gorgeous territory.”

Forger says, “Our preference would be to sell it as one parcel to a single owner.” What the buyer would get, he says, is “a landing strip, the red brick main house, 20 tenant houses, a pool house, stables and barns, maintenance buildings, greenhouses and guest houses, and virtually every other structure that comes to mind.” The exception is 100 acres that surround the Mellons’ personal residence, an elegant whitewashed farmhouse that is home to Bunny Mellon’s acclaimed Oak Spring Garden Library and the foundation she set up, named after her father, to administer the library, staff, and related educational programs.

Paul Mellon, whose family founded the National Gallery of Art, died in 1999 at age 91. Bunny Mellon died last March at age 103. Her funeral at Trinity Episcopal Church in Upperville was attended by dozens of family and friends. Mellon herself scripted the service in which she was eulogized by actor Frank Langella, and singer and actress Bette Midler sang “The Rose.”

Forger also says a date has been set for the auction of more than 2,000 items from the Mellon estate—treasures valued at more than $100 million—at Sotheby’s in New York. “The single owner auction will be Monday, November 10, of major art,” he says, “followed by additional sales at Sotheby’s of jewelry and decorative arts.”

The property in Upperville was the Mellons’ principal residence. Already sold were homes in Washington, DC, and New York City. Still on the market is a home at the Mill Reef Club on Antigua, listed for $11 million (plus an additional 27 island acres for $8 million) and a 95-acre oceanfront property on Nantucket that Forger hopes “will be appraised and listed soon.” All proceeds from the Sotheby’s auction and the real estate sales will go to the Gerald B. Lambert Foundation. Lambert, Bunny Mellon’s father, was the president of the Gillette razor company and a founder of Warner-Lambert, which initially marketed Listerine. The Foundation and Library have a separate entrance from Oak Spring farm. According to Forger, “it is carved out” of the overall estate.

Forger says that while certain pieces of the Mellon art collection already have been bequeathed to family and art museums, there is still some furniture at Oak Spring but it does not convey with the property sale. He says there also are still more than 100 employees working and living on the farm, as well as a fleet of farm vehicles. “If a single owner wants to run it as the Mellons did, they will need the employees and equipment.”

We asked whether he expected Oak Spring to sell quickly. “I don’t have any real basis to measure from a comparable property point of view. There’s a lot of farms around, but this one is unique.”

When we asked Dan Snyder’s spokesman, Tony Wyllie, about the team owner’s reported interest in Oak Spring, he said, “I don’t know what you are talking about,” but he also said he was not familiar with the property or Upperville. (We promised to send him the link as soon as the story posted.)

If Snyder were to purchase Oak Spring, he would be the second Washington team owner to have a connection to Mellon. Jack Kent Cooke, when he first moved to Washington, lived practically next door to the Mellons. He reportedly tried to form a friendship that never developed. He is, however, buried at Trinity Church, just across the lawn from the Mellon family plot.

Find Carol Ross Joynt on Twitter at @carojoynt

Posted at 03:20 PM/ET, 07/21/2014 | Permalink | Comments ()