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What we would buy if we had $2.75 million. By Michelle Thomas
All photos by Fusion Photography by HomeVisit.

In DC real estate, there are few things more enviable than a perfectly renovated old rowhouse—and this particular one is a triple threat, combining a glam restoration with a beautiful private patio and a killer location. The turn-of-the-century end-unit rowhouse sits on one of our favorite city streets, Q Street in eastern Georgetown—a quiet, shady street conveniently positioned just a few blocks from gorgeous Montrose Park and Dumbarton Oaks. The four-bedroom home is a sleek stunner, recently redone with a contemporary style that includes some majorly chic touches. Some of our favorite details? Downstairs, we love the foyer’s bold checkerboard flooring, the kitchen’s Carrera marble counters, custom Porcelanosa glossy white lacquer cabinetry, and statement dining chandelier, and the living room’s modern marble fireplace. Upstairs, the master bedroom is designed with high-drama black wall, and the spa-like master bath features a freestanding soaking tub, eye-catching tilework, and a huge walk-in rain shower. But the best part, perhaps, is the private garden in the rear of the home­—a two-level, surprisingly deep patio space with a cozy stone fireplace area and ample built-in seating throughout. It practically begs for summer entertaining. Fingers crossed for an invite.

This home is listed at $2.75 million. Take a look below, then go to Washington Fine Properties for the full tour.


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Posted at 11:59 AM/ET, 06/20/2014 | Permalink | Comments ()
This place has 35 rooms and a wine cellar fit for 3,000 bottles. By Michelle Thomas

It’s the raw numbers that make you realize just how big this McLean mansion is. For example: There are 35 rooms. Eight fireplaces. Twelve bathrooms. A wine cellar that holds 3,000 bottles. And a library with enough shelving for 6,000 books. This hilltop home is pretty huge, and it’s also decked out with a laundry list of opulent details—thanks in part to a recent $1 million renovation. Among the highlights: the double-height grand foyer, which has a floor inlaid with a mahogany, cherry, and maple compass design, mirrored walls, and a large baroque crystal chandelier; the kitchen, featuring white Calcutta Gold granite counters, an imported Italian tin ceiling, a travertine floor, and a breakfast room that has its own a wood-burning fireplace and skylights; the aforementioned 6,000-book library, a double-decker with an antique chandelier and iron spiral staircase; and two master suites, one of which encompasses his-and-her closets, a mirrored dressing hall, and a massive bath with a soaking tub. On the lower level, an entertaining space is set up with a billiards room, a home theater, a bistro-style wet bar with a Brazilian hardwood dance floor, and the wine cellar, finished with 19th-century French oak doors and an antique alabaster gas lantern. Outside, there’s a private walled garden, a pool, and a lion-head fountain in the courtyard. Nearby, a newly renovated carriage house offers a guest bedroom, two baths, a kitchen, a dining area, and a large living area overlooking the pool. This home is listed at $4.295 million. Check it out below, then go to TTR Sotheby’s for the complete details. 

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Posted at 12:34 PM/ET, 06/18/2014 | Permalink | Comments ()
This enormous mansion checks off every lavish detail. By Michelle Thomas
All photos by Fusion Photography by HomeVisit.

This week’s peek into the world of the super-expensive returns to one neighborhood where there are mega-mansions aplenty: Potomac. This brick Colonial near Great Falls fits right in. No opulent detail goes unspared—the home’s 20,000-square-foot living space includes ornate architectural features such as herringbone hardwood floors, intricate crown moldings, and imported fireplaces. In addition to the seven bedrooms, seven full baths, and four half-baths, the four-level estate also includes a wood-paneled study, two dining rooms, a stainless steel and marble chef’s kitchen (with dual everything), and a five-car garage. And outside, there’s a pool and pool house, a two-bedroom guest house, and a full tennis court, all on four acres of land. 

The home is listed at $9.8 million. Check it out below, then go to Washington Fine Properties for the complete details.

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Posted at 03:00 PM/ET, 06/12/2014 | Permalink | Comments ()
It sits on 52 private acres of rolling hills and open pastures. By Michelle Thomas
All photos by Fusion Photography by HomeVisit.

Don’t consider your mansion complete without tons of privacy (and maybe a hen house)? While this enormous seven-bedroom Potomac home easily ranks as extravagant all on its own, add in the surrounding 52 acres of land—which encompasses open grazing pastures, hen and goat houses, a barn, a pond, a tennis court, and a pool—and it's a next-level lavish estate. 

The dramatic contemporary architecture inside includes such luxe highlights as soaring cathedral ceilings, elegant basketweave hardwood floors, a light-flooded sunroom (check out the three walls of windows!), and a glass wall entrance to the dining room. A Boffi-designed gourmet kitchen is outfitted with thick-cut granite and stainless steel counters, plus all the appliance bells and whistles—including dual wall ovens, a six-burner cooktop and grill, warming drawers, wine refrigerator, vent hood, and two dishwashers. The upper-level master suite features crown molding, tray ceilings, one of the home’s five fireplaces, a spacious dressing room, and French doors that lead to a terrace overlooking the backyard and pool. The spa-like master bath boasts dual vanities, a huge soaking tub, and a teak-floored shower. Downstairs, there’s a large lower-level entertaining room with a wet bar that leads to the sprawling backyard and pool area, which includes a pool house set up with a sitting area, two full baths, and a sauna. Luckily there are staff quarters on-site to help with the upkeep of this massive estate. The seven-bedroom, 12-bath home is listed at $8.75 million. Check it out below, then go to Washington Fine Properties for more details and lots more photos. 

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Posted at 02:30 PM/ET, 06/05/2014 | Permalink | Comments ()
The seven-bedroom home was restored to blend its original 1929 detailing with modern-luxe amenities. By Michelle Thomas
Photographs by Fusion Photography by HomeVisit.

Set on a quiet, winding cul-de-sac just off of Massachusetts Avenue, this 1929 English manor-inspired home was completely renovated to spotlight an elegant fusion of original historic architecture with modern, high-end finishes. The restoration retained the period moldings and millwork, leaded-glass windows, intricate ironwork, antique French doors, and ebonized hardwood floors.

A rundown of the home’s many standouts: On the first floor, there’s a living room featuring beamed ceilings, built-in bookcases, and a wood-burning fireplace (one of three in the home), a rounded sunroom, and an octagonal office with display niches and a concealed safe. A gourmet kitchen is outfitted with natural stone counters, classic subway tiling, a coffered ceiling, a built-in china display, a wrought-iron staircase, top-of-the-line appliances, and an adjoining butler’s pantry with a wine refrigerator. On the upper two levels, there are seven bedrooms, including a duo of master bedroom suites—one with a fireplace, marble bath with a soaking tub and rain shower, and large, windowed dressing room; the other octagonal, with a private laundry room, coffered ceiling, double walk-in closets, and a marble bath. On the lower level, there’s a recreation room, mat-floor gym, temperature-controlled wine cellar, and third laundry room. Outside, a brick-walled terrace overlooks manicured gardens and views of Rock Creek Park. The 10,000-square-foot-home is listed at $6.749 million. Read on for a short tour, then head to Washington Fine Properties for more details.

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Posted at 02:11 PM/ET, 05/29/2014 | Permalink | Comments ()
Redfin tells us all the stats, including how many of those 1-percenters are purchased in all cash. By Michelle Thomas
Georgetown is home to our region’s top tier of expensive homes, and this N Street rowhouse easily makes the cut at $7.98 million. Photograph courtesy of MRIS.

Whether this is good news or bad might depend on your budget: An analysis from Redfin released Tuesday reports that while home sales in general are down from this time last year, there is one sector of the market that’s still on the upswing. In the Washington area, sales for the top 1 percent of the most expensive homes increased 2.4 percent over last year, while the remaining 99 percent of homes fell 8.7 percent.

So what’s that top-tier home gonna cost you? In DC, that means a home of at least $1.64 million, which is 4.7 times the median sale price in our market and sets us right in the middle of the cities Redfin examined—twice as expensive as Raleigh and Atlanta, but less than half as pricey as Los Angeles and San Francisco. The real estate site also conveniently puts things in perspective: In order to own said $1.64 million home, you’d need a suggested income of at least $281,000 a year. Your monthly mortgage? $6,551. Exactly where those homes are located isn’t much of a shocker, if you’ve been reading our luxury homes reports—Georgetown (where the average luxe home costs $2.895 million), Rosslyn, and Kalorama. And then there’s Redfin’s final tidbit: More than 25 percent of buyers paid for their high-end home all in cash.

Want to see the full analysis? Take a look on Redfin’s blog.

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Posted at 12:00 PM/ET, 05/27/2014 | Permalink | Comments ()
Former presidential candidate Jon Huntsman sells his Kalorama home for $3.8 million and moves to McLean.
Fans of Bravo’s Top Chef may recognize this DC house, which Jon Huntsman sold for $3.8 million. Photographs by David Pipkin.


Politician Jon Huntsman and wife Mary Kaye sold a five-bedroom, six-bath home in Kalorama for $3.8 million. The house—where Bravo’s Top Chef: Washington D.C. was filmed—has five fireplaces and a two-car garage. Huntsman, who ran for the Republican nomination for President in 2012, is former governor of Utah. The couple recently paid $3.1 million for a Colonial in McLean.

Investment executive Thaddeus Paul bought a Colonial in North Cleveland Park for $2.6 million. The five-bedroom, five-bath house has a yard with terraced gardens and two seating areas. Paul is managing director at the Carlyle Group, the private-equity powerhouse.

Thaddeus Paul of the Carlyle Group paid $2.6 million for this house in North Cleveland Park.

In Maryland

Real-estate executive Colin Dyer and his wife, Anne, bought a three-bedroom, five-bath condominium in Parc Somerset for $5 million. The 4,500-square-foot condo has a library, a master suite with private study, and his-and-hers walk-in closets. Dyer is chief executive officer of Jones Lang LaSalle, a commercial real-estate firm.

Nonprofit executive Eric Adler and wife Suzanne, an endocrinologist, bought a five-bedroom, six-bath Arts and Crafts-style home in Bethesda’s Edgemoor neighborhood for $3.9 million. The nearly 8,000-square-foot house has a home theater and library. Adler is cofounder of the SEED Foundation, which operates urban boarding schools for inner-city kids.

Eric and Suzanne Adler spent $3.9 million on a five-bedroom home in Bethesda.

Lobbyist Peter Roberson and journalist Alexandra Stoddard bought a Colonial on Leland Street in Chevy Chase for $1.8 million. The five-bedroom, five-bath house was featured in Better Homes and Gardens. A former adviser to the House Financial Services Committee, Roberson is a lobbyist for Intercontinental Exchange. Stoddard is associate editor of the Hill newspaper.

The home of the late George Huguely III—a five-bedroom, five-bath Colonial on Armat Drive in Bethesda’s Longwood neighborhood—was sold for $1.3 million. The house has an au pair suite with a separate entrance. Huguely’s grandson George Huguely V is the former University of Virginia lacrosse player convicted in 2012 of murdering his ex-girlfriend, Yeardley Love. The Huguely family has owned a local lumber business since 1912.

In Virginia

Republican heavyweight Frank Carlucci bought a three-bedroom, four-bath condo in the Broadway of Falls Church building for $830,000. Carlucci held sever-al senior government positions throughout his career, including Secretary of Defense under President Ronald Reagan and deputy director of the CIA under Jimmy Carter.

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

This article appears in the June 2014 issue of Washingtonian.

Posted at 10:46 AM/ET, 05/23/2014 | Permalink | Comments ()
The former Redskins player’s huge estate features a home theater and a pottery studio. By Michelle Thomas

Now that Chris Cooley has retired from the NFL, it seems he’s looking to get out of his Leesburg home, too: Back on the market is his six-bedroom, seven-and-a-half-bath stone mansion in Loudon County. It’s a giant estate—13,000 square feet on three and a half acres of land—and though the vaguely Tuscan decor may be a bit bland, the house is decked out with just about every amenity there is. Beyond the marble foyer and Brazilian cherry-wood floor, there’s a wine cellar, libary, game room, home theater, and elevator. Off the master suite is an oversize soaking tub and massive dressing closet. Outside, a pool, hot tub, deck, and a sand beach. And, of course, there’s the huge pottery studio, where the former tight end—a college art major who now owns a gallery in Leesburg—practiced his craft. The property is listed at $2.39 million. Read on for a short tour, then head to Redfin to see the entire place. 

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Posted at 01:50 PM/ET, 05/22/2014 | Permalink | Comments ()
The minimum cost of entry: $3 million. By Michelle Thomas
Renderings courtesy of EastBanc.

Another day, another über-luxe condo development: Sales for the seven residences in Georgetown’s still-under-construction, canal-facing condo development—dubbed 1055 High after the pre-1895 name of Wisconsin Avenue—started yesterday. Built with an eye toward evoking the historical architecture of the neighborhood while infusing the design with modern-industrial details, the building boasts some pretty lavish-looking amenities, such as a garden roof terrace with a 45-foot pool and a glass-enclosed rooftop fitness center. The private residences are huge—all three or four bedrooms units of up to 4,300 square feet—and feature private terraces or balconies, walls of windows that overlook the C&O Canal, Georgetown, and garden views, and two garage parking spots each. Naturally, the prices reflect the luxuries: The condos start at $3 million and range up to more than $5 million for the corner penthouse. They’re slated to be ready for a late fall move-in. Check out the just-released renderings below, then head to the development’s website for more details.

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Posted at 02:30 PM/ET, 05/21/2014 | Permalink | Comments ()
Architect David Jameson designed the place as his personal residence­—and it’s been honored eight times. By Michelle Thomas
Photographs courtesy of Fusion Photography by HomeVisit.

This one’s for the modern architecture aficionados: Designed by acclaimed contemporary architect David Jameson­—and once used as his own personal residence—this light-flooded Bethesda home is built to center around a large interior courtyard, outfitted with a volcanic rock gas fireplace and laid with bluestone terrace. The home’s California-inspired design allows the open layout, huge picture windows and floor-to-ceiling sliding glass doors to fill nearly every room with natural light and blur the lines between indoor and outdoor space. This home, dubbed “Jigsaw,” has snagged eight awards for its contemporary design—including several honors from the American Institute of Architects. Among the home's highlights: On the first floor, there’s a gourmet kitchen with custom cabinetry and an 18-foot teak island, an adjoining family room with more custom teak cabinetry, another volcanic rock gas fireplace surrounded by travertine and flamed granite, and glass doors that lead to the pool area, a two-story living room with 20-foot ceilings, a library with floating bookshelves, and the main-level master suite, which features a sitting area, dressing suite, master bath with a custom vanity, hanging medicine cabinets, marble counters, limestone floors, and a freestanding soaking tub, plus a master study that overlooks the private front garden. On the second floor, there’s a playroom, two bedrooms and a bathroom, while on the lower level there’s another bedroom with a private entrance, a full bath, a media room and a laundry room. Outside, sandstone and steel walls and a Spanish cedar and stainless steel gate create a private oasis for the property, and in back, there’s a saline pool, spa, and a built-in Viking outdoor grill. The home listed at $2.195 million. Keep reading for a tour, then head to Washington Fine Properties for more details.

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Posted at 01:41 PM/ET, 05/14/2014 | Permalink | Comments ()