Not everyone can afford to have a second home for vacations, but the next best thing is to own a home that provides its own resort-quality entertainment areas. A swimming pool for summer; an outdoor kitchen; open, welcoming rooms for friends and family - these are all items that top the list of desirable amenities for those who love to entertain. The home at 5445 Ladue Lane in Fairfax offers these features and more.
While not everything gets better with age, some things do. The Ladue Lane home, on the market for $789,000, is a prime example of a residence that has been lovingly restored and enhanced since it was built 77 years ago.
This farmhouse, purchased 13 years ago by the current owners, rests on a 1.5-acre site that offers the privacy and serenity that can be hard to come by in the busy Washington area.
The owners took what was a charming home surrounded by gardens, lawns and mature trees and added spaces desired by today’s families: a backyard entertainment center with a swimming pool, a recreation room above the detached garage and even a smaller, quiet patio for relaxing away from the pool.
The main entrance to this home is through the deep, covered front porch, an original - and appealing - feature of the home where guests can be welcomed or residents can enjoy a long, relaxed summer afternoon in the shade. The front door opens into the formal dining room, which has plenty of space for seated dinners along with instant access to the front porch for after-dinner drinks or coffee.
The main level also has an expansive step-down living room with terra-cotta tile flooring, a dramatic wood-beamed cathedral ceiling and a three-sided wood-burning fireplace. The living room includes French doors to the adjacent side patio, which has a fire pit for enjoying cool evenings.
The focal point for any farmhouse, equally appealing for families who enjoy a casual lifestyle, is the country kitchen and open breakfast area. The old wood floors in the original kitchen have been adorned with stencil designs that have worked their way into the wood planks. The kitchen has been updated with recessed lighting, stainless steel appliances and new tile counters that straddle the line between the old-fashioned farmhouse look and modern styles. The character of this kitchen has been retained while meeting contemporary standards.
A butler’s pantry with plenty of storage space links the kitchen to the first-floor laundry room, which has a door to the backyard and swimming pool.
The main level also has a bedroom with windows on two sides and two walk-in closets. Adjacent to this bedroom and to the kitchen is a full bath. On the opposite side of the home, near the dining room, is another bedroom with a closet. The owners use this bedroom as a home office.
Hardwood stairs lead up to a centrally located family room, a perfect spot for reading, playing games or doing homework. Two bedrooms flank the family room and share a full bath with a soaking tub and separate shower. Each bedroom has two deep storage closets, and one has skylights. All the upstairs bedrooms have hardwood flooring.
The upper-level master suite is accessible from a private staircase as well as from one of the secondary bedrooms. The master bedroom has a cathedral ceiling with exposed beams, a Palladian window overlooking the side patio, two walk-in closets and a luxury bath with a dual-sink vanity, a deep soaking tub and a separate shower.
While the indoor spaces are charming, residents of this home are sure to spend as much time as possible outside enjoying the backyard entertainment center. The generously sized swimming pool is surrounded by ample deck space for multiple chaise lounges and by extensive professional landscaping and mature trees.
Next to the pool is the outdoor kitchen, which has a refrigerator, a gas grill and running water. The outdoor island is backed by a trellis covered with a clematis vine. Guests and family members using the swimming pool can avoid dripping water into the house by using the home’s fourth bathroom and changing room, located just inside the detached three-car garage next to the pool.
Entertainment options have been further expanded with the addition of a recreation room above the garage. The garage’s roofline was designed to follow the rooflines of the original farmhouse, which this left space for finishing under the roof. The recreation room has plenty of space for a pool table, seating areas, a TV and more and offers a great venue for slumber parties.