- The Washington Times - Wednesday, May 18, 2005

Showering in a stone grotto with dangling vines and relaxing underneath a dome with a faux-painted starry night sky sound like a fantasy to be fulfilled only at an exotic resort, but buyers of the unusual home at 11334 Bright Pond Lane in Reston can enjoy these experiences right at home.

Designed by Lessard Architectural Group Inc. in 1994, this home has been an object of interest along Reston Parkway ever since it was completed. Located at the end of a private drive off a cul-de-sac, this property appears at first to be a cluster of buildings gathered around a circular brick courtyard. Brick columns add drama around the courtyard, which functions as a parking area for additional cars.

Now on the market for $1,415,000, the property includes a detached two-car garage facing another court for parking extra cars and has a two-car attached garage, which has been converted to storage space. Placed on nearly three-quarters of an acre, the home backs to woods and includes a terrace off the living room. Additional lawn space could be converted to a deck or patio.

Multiple peaked cedar shake roofs hint at the unusual rooms to be found inside, but unexpected decorative elements add even more interest to the floor plan. Two glass doors function as the main entrance to the home, opening onto a circular foyer with 20-foot ceilings. Round windows surround the upper portion of the foyer, while the columns and walls below have been faux-painted to resemble stucco walls covered with vines. Frescoes cover the foyer walls.

The main level features light maple flooring, and a maple staircase with a distinctive wrought-iron railing curves around to the upper level. Directly in front of the foyer are a few steps leading down to the sunken living room, which includes a marble fireplace, two sets of French doors to the terrace with Palladian windows above, and two more walls with windows and transoms.

The formal dining room has a wall of windows and a chandelier, with a butler’s pantry adjacent to the room. A large bar with a wine rack is in a corner across from the dining room and adjacent to the living room.

The casual areas of the main level include a vast kitchen with a 20-foot ceiling and dozens of pristine white-painted cabinets and drawers.

Corian covers the counters, the center island and the peninsula that separates the kitchen from a hobby room. This unique space has cabinets and counter space that can be used for additional cooking space, a computer work space, or for sewing or craft projects.

The hobby room and kitchen are flooded with light from a corner of glass, which leads from the counter level across two walls and up into a skylight supported by narrow white-painted wood beams. The counter under these two walls of windows forms a perfect location for indoor plants. A storage closet is off the hobby room.

Across the kitchen is a breakfast nook with three walls of windows and a charming peaked roof, which has been covered with red-and-white striped wallpaper. A three-sided fireplace warms the kitchen and breakfast area and also the family room, which is a few steps down from the kitchen.

The family room has a 20-foot tray ceiling and two glass doors that lead to the front courtyard. Across the back of this room is a long, gently curving wall of windows with a row of transoms framing views of the treetops.

Just past the family room is a large laundry room with a window and additional storage cabinets. A door near the laundry room leads to the auto court for quick access between the house and the detached garage. A breezeway links the garage to the house for protection in stormy weather.

The attached two-car garage is currently configured with glass doors across the front and back of the room, track lighting overhead and carpet underfoot. The owners use this space for extra storage, but it could be easily converted to living space or garage space, if desired.

Opposite the main foyer, a step up leads to a hall and into a main-level bedroom suite with a dramatic high tray ceiling and a double-door entrance. A separate exterior door and vestibule connect this room with the brick courtyard.

This generously sized room includes round windows and two additional windows, plus a private full bath with a glass-enclosed shower. This bath has been enhanced with paintings of flowering vines and outdoor scenes. Originally designed to function as a library or guest suite, this room can be used for a professional office or as an in-law suite because of its private entrance.

A second set of double doors leads into the crown jewel of the home, the dramatic master suite. The bedroom area is open to a spacious sitting area, which is created by a meandering wall of curving windows. The sitting area features a domed ceiling that has been painted as a night sky, with lights inside the dome for nighttime drama.

The sitting area shares a three-sided fireplace with the master bath.

A large portion of the home has been devoted to this unusual bath, which has stone walls and a natural-stone open shower at one end of the room. A small section of the floor has been dropped to create a circle to define the shower space, and multiple shower heads can be focused on the circle.

Overhead is a barrel vault, which has been painted to resemble a grotto, with real vines hanging from the edge of the vaulted arch. A round window and skylights have been placed at the end of the arch behind the shower, where a waterfall pours down the natural stone wall. A seat has been placed underneath the shower heads in front of the waterfall.

A long vanity and two additional vanities with sinks appear to have been carved from the stone, and a four-person whirlpool tub is adjacent to the fireplace. The bath area also includes two walk-in closets, recessed lighting and transoms tucked under the ceiling on three sides of the room.

Less dramatic but equally interesting is the upper level of the home, which covers only a small portion of the residence. Stairs lead to an open loft and study, which includes a circular wrought-iron railing overlooking the foyer and has a corner with windows on two sides.

This level includes a full bath with a painting of a mermaid on one wall and two large bedrooms. One bedroom has a platform bed built into one end, while the other has a wood floor with painted trim and a dark blue ceiling covered with tiny gold stars.

Address: 11334 Bright Pond Lane, Reston 20194

Community: North Point Village, Reston

Age: 11 years

Price: $1,415,000

Size: Homesite of 0.74 acres

Taxes: $10,514 in 2004

Exterior features: Brick and siding Colonial-style exterior with multiple peaked roofs, brick circular drive and courtyard with brick columns; backs to woods; two-car detached garage with storage, auto courtyard and second two-car garage currently used as storage space

Interior features: Four bedrooms; 31/2 baths; dramatic two-story turreted foyer with round windows and domed ceiling; living room with fireplace and adjacent full bar; formal dining room with butler’s pantry; kitchen with center island, cabinets and drawers, adjacent breakfast nook with windows on three sides and adjacent hobby area with cabinets, counter space and walls of windows leading into a skylight covering most of the ceiling; three-sided fireplace links kitchen with step-down family room with walls of windows on two sides; large laundry room next to garage converted to carpeted storage space; first-floor master suite with sitting area under domed ceiling and circled by windows, unique luxury bath; second bedroom with private full bath on main level with separate vestibule entrance; upper level loft/study; two additional bedrooms and third full bath on upper level

Amenities: Unique floor plan with numerous 20-foot ceilings, faux painting, hand-painted murals and frescoes in multiple rooms; grottolike master bath with open, natural-stone multihead shower, natural stone walls, whirlpool tub; three fireplaces; security system; gas heat

Close by: Walking distance to North Point Village Shopping Center, community swimming pool, tennis courts, jogging trails; minutes to Reston Town Center, Washington Dulles International Airport, Dulles Town Center, Dulles Toll Road

Schools: Aldrin Elementary, Herndon Middle, Herndon High

Open house: May 22, 1 to 3 p.m.

Contact: Realtor Edwin Yao of Home America Realty Inc., 703/709-5740

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