Listing of the Day
Location: Brooklyn, New York
Price: $3.995 million
On a quiet block in the Cobble Hill neighborhood of Brooklyn, a circa-1850s townhouse draws in passersby with its striking design.
According to listing agent Jill Braver of Brown Harris Stevens, the house was completed in 1888 by architect James Naughton, a former superintendent of buildings for the Brooklyn Board of Education.
“He embellished the facade, added a story and put the mansard roofs and the turret on the house,” Ms. Braver said. “It’s a very whimsical piece of architecture—really, one of a kind. Anyone who walks by it says, ‘Gee, I wonder what it looks like inside?’”
Owner James Stewart is happy to provide some details. “The house is a beautifully preserved 130-year-old place with parquet floors, 15-foot ceilings and pocket doors,” he said.
But he cites the home’s spaciousness as its greatest asset. “The main advantage of having a big house in New York is that you can be generous—we have loved entertaining our relatives and friends over the years,” Mr. Stewart said. “We set up the top floor a guest quarters so people can have their own space. And it’s exactly what we were looking for in terms of city living. We’re quite close to Manhattan but can walk just about anywhere we need to in the neighborhood.”
The home’s main floor has a living room with a bay window and a window seat overlooking the front garden; the kitchen and dining area is also on this level. The downstairs unit has its own kitchen and full bathroom.
Mr. Stewart’s wife is a therapist who currently uses the garden apartment as her office. But the property is a legal two-family residence, so the space could be rented out.
The home has five bedrooms, three full bathrooms and one half-bathroom within 3,718 square feet of interior living space. These numbers include the garden apartment.
A standout feature of the property is that it the stands back from the street, which allows for a garden in the front; there is also a landscaped rear garden. Inside, there are two wood-burning fireplaces on the main floor. They were not used by the current owners, but could be brought back up to required code, according to Ms. Braver.
Each fireplace retains its original marble mantle as well. “You see so many houses that have been denuded of period detail, but all of the moldings, the marble fireplace mantles and the pocket doors, are all intact here,” Ms. Braver said. “It’s hard to find a place that is truly renovated but keeps the details intact, which is such a pleasure to see. ”
Top-notch restaurants on Court Street and Smith Street are just blocks away, as is a local movie theater and plenty of places to shop. Nearby subway lines include the F and the G trains; the Borough Hall transit hub is a 10-15-minute walk.
“It’s a very family-centric neighborhood, so there are playgrounds all over,” Ms. Braver said. “And there are good schools—both public and private.”
Agent: Jill Braver, Brown Harris Stevens
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