- The Washington Times - Friday, May 30, 2008

Massachusetts Avenue in Northwest Washington is known around the globe for its stately homes that house many of the world’s embassies and the personal residences of diplomats. Many of these homes have a formal elegance, enhanced with wide lawns and decorous landscaping.

A recently renovated four-level Federal-style Colonial home, which sits far back from Massachusetts behind a swath of green grass, is now on the market for $1,475,000.

Located at 3923 Massachusetts Ave. NW, just south of Macomb Street, this impressive home offers a prime location within walking distance of the National Cathedral and the shops and restaurants of Wisconsin Avenue. Walkers will be tempted by the downhill stroll to Georgetown, and Dupont Circle is a few minutes away by car.

The owner added a new portico, thicker columns and pediments above the front windows, which add to the solid impression of the home.

While the front of the home provides a formal setting and includes a flagstone walkway to the flagstone front stoop, the back of the home is equally inviting. An extensive flagstone patio offers a private spot for entertaining, dining outside or simply sunning while enjoying a good book.

Just beyond the patio is a green lawn surrounded by flower beds with shrubs and trees. The yard is fully fenced and includes a detached two-car garage, accessible from a wide alley that can be reached from three directions.

Renovations to this home, completed earlier this year, have enhanced the elegant floor plan, expanding the space and bringing in touches of modern comfort.

The residence has four finished levels with zoned heating and air conditioning. Particularly appealing are the floors, which include restored hardwood, limestone and marble.

A glass front storm door and a front door with glass add light to the foyer along with a sweeping view of the front lawn from the inside of the house. The foyer and main hall have pale limestone tile flooring, set on the diagonal.

To the left is the formal living room, which has three large windows on the front and side of the house with plantation-style white wood shutters, restored hardwood flooring, recessed lighting and a wood-burning fireplace with an elaborately detailed white-painted mantel.

The long living room opens into a den or library at the back of the house, an addition with one wall of exposed brick and French doors that open onto the flagstone patio. This den has limestone flooring, a space for a flat-screen television and has been wired for surround sound.

On the opposite side of the house, facing the front lawn, is the formal dining room, which has a ceiling medallion and chandelier. This room has a double-hung window at the front and a triple, cottage-style window at the side of the room above a built-in buffet. A swing door links the dining room with the kitchen, which is also accessible from the main hall.

The kitchen features gleaming hardwood flooring that sets the tone for an elegant space. This renovated space features marble counters with upgraded stainless steel appliances including a Viking refrigerator, a gas range and oven, a built-in microwave and a dishwasher.

The kitchen includes a sleek contemporary frosted-glass cabinet in one corner that blends easily with the white cabinets, deep stainless steel sink and the shining white tile backsplash.

A breakfast nook around the corner includes a butler’s counter for easy serving when entertaining in the dining room.

During the kitchen renovation, walls were removed and the space opened up so that the staircase to the lower level is wider and more inviting. A compact powder room was tucked into the space next to the kitchen, which also has a glass door to the flagstone patio.

Upper-level renovations resulted in a generously sized master suite with a sophisticated new bathroom. Hardwood flooring on this level has also been restored.

The master bedroom includes sleek built-in Scandinavian wardrobes with a charming window seat in between that offers a view of the front lawn. Limestone tile flooring has been added to the dressing area, which has a built-in marble credenza that includes a rough-in for a sink so that future residents can add a coffee bar, if desired.

Just beyond the dressing area is another built-in wardrobe and a walk-in closet with cherry drawers and cabinets.

The dramatic master bath, converted from a former upper-level sunroom, has an exposed brick wall, hardwood flooring, recessed lighting and a triple window facing the garden. This room has large tub, a marble vanity with two sinks and an oversized marble and tile shower with access from two sides.

This level includes two additional bedrooms, each with hardwood flooring, windows on two sides and a closet.

The first of two hall baths has been renovated and is reached through a charming arched entrance. This bath has limestone flooring, a contemporary clear glass bowl for a sink and a tiled shower.

The second hall bath, also renovated, features walls and flooring of marble, with a marble combination tub and shower with clear, frameless glass doors. This bath has a window facing the front lawn.

The finished attic level, reached by hardwood stairs, has two charming rooms, each with a sloping ceiling. The sitting room has two windows and a closet.

Across a narrow hall is a guest bedroom that a little girl who enjoys fairy tales would cherish, with its two windows offering a birds-eye view of the world and its sloping ceiling adding a touch of enchantment to the space. A bathroom could be added to this level by reconfiguring unfinished attic space.

The lower level adds more living space, reached by a hardwood staircase. The family room, which has hardwood flooring, has a wood-burning fireplace with a wood mantel that extends into built-in glass-front cabinets. This extensive space has multiple windows tucked under the ceiling.

On the opposite side of the stairs are several small rooms that can function for a variety of purposes.

The den, currently functioning as a charming tiny guest room, has windows on two sides and a closet. Nearby are a storage room and a large laundry room with additional storage space. More storage is tucked under the stairs. This level also has a partially renovated full bath with a shower. A door links the lower level to a few steps leading to the back patio and garden.

Extensive renovations have created a move-in-ready home at this elegant Massachusetts Avenue location that can accommodate nearly any decor.

3923 Massachusetts Ave. NW, Washington, DC 20016

Cleveland Park

Built in 1938


Lot of 6,250 square feet

$10,746 in 2007


Federal-style brick and stone Colonial with Hardiplank siding on rear exterior; manicured front lawn with professionally landscaped front and back gardens; detached two-car garage.

Four finished levels with four bedrooms; 4 1/2 baths; limestone flooring in foyer with hardwood staircase to upper and lower levels; restored hardwood flooring on most levels; formal living room with fireplace opens to library with French doors to stone patio; formal dining room with windows on two sides and built-in buffet; renovated kitchen with marble counters, stainless steel appliances, recessed lighting, white cabinets; master suite with window seat and built-in wardrobes, dressing area with built-in credenza, walk-in closet and bath with tub, walk-through shower, marble double-sink vanity and exposed brick wall; two more bedrooms on second level with hardwood flooring; two renovated hall baths with marble flooring; finished attic level with bedroom and sitting room with sloping ceilings and closets; finished lower level with family room with a fireplace, den, full bath, laundry room, storage room and walk-up to garden.

Two wood-burning fireplaces; flagstone patio facing rear lawn and garden beds; zoned air conditioning and radiator heating; built-in bookcases, crown moldings.

Walk to Wisconsin Avenue shops and restaurants and to National Cathedral; close to Embassy Row, minutes to Georgetown or to downtown Washington.

June 1, 1 to 4 p.m.

Realtor Karen Chipman of Weichert Realtors at 703/255-1585.

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