We all know you can't judge a book by its cover - and sometimes you can't judge a home by its exterior.
The brick home at 3841 Cathedral Ave. NW, on the corner of 39th Street and Cathedral Avenue, appears to be a classic Colonial-style single-family home. While the elegance continues inside, this home has been completely remodeled and includes a floor plan with open rooms that suit 21st-century tastes.
Built in 1928, this residence has been the site for more than a year of renovation activity by builder Taft Hawken that transformed the interior of the house while expanding the living space. A glass-enclosed deck and glass-enclosed balcony add to the outdoor living space and provide a hint of the transformation that occurred inside.
On the market for $2,925,000, this property features the highest level of craftsmanship and materials, from the hand-honed wood balustrades to the exposed-wood-beam ceilings to the polished stone and hardwood floors. The interior design pays homage to the original architectural feature seen in many neighboring homes: archways for both interior doorways and exterior windows.
A flagstone walkway leads inside the low brick walls that form the perimeter of this property and to the front porch. The porch features a slate floor and offers a shady spot tucked between arched brick walls.
The exterior brick arches of the porch are echoed by a row of tall arched windows that face the porch and offer a glimpse of the airy space inside. Double wood doors provide an elegant entrance to the home.
Every surface in the interior of this residence is new, from the floors to the walls and the windows to the ceiling. Distinctive cove lighting discreetly adds light in multiple rooms, and high ceilings are complemented by 10-foot doors in every room.
The two-story foyer features travertine flooring with skylights overhead. The foyer leads directly into a reception hall with travertine flooring and a series of open archways leading to the library and to the gallery connecting the front and rear sections of the home.
The gallery has a wall of built-in wood bookcases and cabinets. Nearby is a hall with a double-door closet and a powder room with travertine flooring and a granite-topped vanity.
The generously proportioned library includes built-in bookcases and cabinets, hardwood flooring and a gas fireplace enclosed by a distinctive slate hearth and surround. Recessed lighting complements the natural light provided by two walls of oversized windows.
The library and the rest of the first and second levels, as well as the outdoor spaces, are prewired for a sound system.
The focal point for residents and their guests is sure to be the great room, an open space with an exposed-beam ceiling and travertine flooring with space for a living area and a dining area adjacent to the open kitchen. The living and dining areas are visually separated by a granite-topped serving bar with cabinets underneath. The living area includes multiple arched windows and a gas fireplace.
The dining area, wrapped in windows, has glass doors that open onto a spacious, maintenance-free deck with built-in speakers and a gas line for a grill. One side of the deck's railing is glass, allowing for an open view.
The kitchen includes granite counters and a center island with a five-burner cooktop and a sleek contemporary glass hood above. The stainless steel appliances include a 72-inch-wide refrigerator and freezer, double wall ovens and a microwave.
Next to the kitchen is a walk-in pantry with a modern electronic dumbwaiter for easily transporting groceries from the lower-level garage.
The main level also includes a spacious bedroom with windows on two sides, an oversized walk-in closet, and an adjacent stone, glass and granite full bath.
A hand-hewn, double-wide maple staircase leads from the main level to the upper level and includes a granite-topped ledge for art or plants.
Double doors with frosted glass for privacy open into the master bedroom, which has a dramatic exposed-wood-beam cathedral ceiling. The suite includes a sitting area and a bedroom visually separated by a two-sided glass fireplace with Red Dragon granite.
The sitting area includes a coffee/beverage wet bar with a refrigerator. Glass doors open from the bedroom area to a glass-enclosed balcony. The suite also has two walk-in closets with built-ins.
The luxurious master bath features ceramic tile flooring with granite inserts, two vanities with Red Dragon granite tops, a stone shower with a glass door and a whirlpool tub with air jets.
The upper level has two additional bedrooms, each with ample closet space and a private full bath of stone, granite and glass. A double-door linen closet provides additional storage, and one bedroom has pull-down stairs to reach attic storage. A wide closet off the upper level has space for a washer and dryer.
The lower level includes a finished room with slate flooring and recessed lighting for use as a recreation room, media room or fitness room. Nearby are a finished storage room, a half bath and unfinished storage spaces. The home has an unfinished temperature-controlled wine cellar.
Two garages, one with space for two cars and the other with room for one car plus storage, are accessible from a rear alley with an asphalt drive that can accommodate two more cars. Between the two garages is a storage room with a carved wood door to match the front door.
This pristine home provides a sophisticated setting for entertaining, but residents may find themselves dining out often at restaurants in nearby Foxhall Square, Glover Park and Georgetown. Residents can walk to many shops and restaurants and Washington National Cathedral and will be close to multiple bus lines for easy access to other parts of the city.
Address: 3841 Cathedral Ave. NW, Washington, DC 20016
Community: Observatory Circle
Age: Built in 1928, completely remodeled in 2012
Size: Approximately 6,000 square feet on lot of 0.17 acres
Taxes: $10,502 in 2011
Homeowners association fee: None
Exterior features: Colonial-style single-family home with brick-and-stucco exterior, landscaped lot with mature trees, stone walkways, stone front porch, one- and two-car garages
Interior features: Three finished levels; four bedrooms; four full baths; two half baths; hardwood, slate and ceramic tile flooring; library with fireplace; great room with two-sided fireplace; upgraded kitchen with adjacent pantry; first-floor bedroom with full bath; master suite with sitting area and luxury bath upstairs along with two more bedrooms, each with full bath; finished lower-level home office or exercise room
Amenities: Deck off main level, balcony off master suite, high-tech wiring, electronic dumbwaiter, three fireplaces, skylights, extensive closets and storage space
Close by: Walk to Washington National Cathedral, restaurants, shops and Metrobus on Wisconsin Avenue; walk to Glover Archbold Park and Battery Kemble Park; walk to restaurants and shops at Foxhall Square
Open house: 1 to 4 p.m. June 10
Contact: Realtor Kathleen Bridget McGovern of Long & Foster Real Estate at 210/833-6156 or visit www.longandfoster.com
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