- The Washington Times - Friday, January 2, 2009

Finding a Mediterranean villa set in the woods of McLean is an unexpected pleasure. The delight continues inside, where soaring beamed ceilings, hardwood and Mexican tile floors and countless French doors and floor-to-ceiling windows blend the colorful interior rooms with the surrounding woods. The home was designed in an authentic Spanish style by a Spanish architect.

Built in 1961, this expansive estate, now on the market for $1,799,000, rests on 5 acres at 1135 Bellview Road in McLean. A private drive leads through the woods to this authentic stucco home, which has a terra cotta tile roof and has been enhanced in recent years with an outdoor entertaining space. Iron gates with stucco columns (to match the house) enclose an extensive patio. The outdoor area features a heated swimming pool, which has an adjacent Jacuzzi with a waterfall. An outdoor fireplace set in an arched stucco wall provides evening warmth for parties.

The 5-acre site includes wooded areas, lawns and mature hardwood trees, including black walnut trees and lushly landscaped garden beds. A detached three-car garage has wooden doors and a workshop, while at the opposite end of the garage, a basketball court appears.

Flagstone steps lead to the wood front door, which has a carved brass knob. The entrance foyer, like most of the main level, has hardwood floors. A beamed ceiling with recessed lighting is overhead.

While this home has many dramatic yet charming features, one of the most distinctive is the three-level wall of windows behind the main staircase. While traversing the hardwood stairs, guests and residents can enjoy a spectacular view of trees, garden beds and grass.

Just opposite this wall of windows is the main dining room, an expansive open space with an exposed beam ceiling, recessed lighting and hardwood floors. Nearby is the sunroom, which has tile floors and windows on three sides, including a glass door to the patio and pool area. The sunroom includes an authentic brick bread oven.

Next to the sunroom is the spectacular family room, a generously proportioned room with a soaring cathedral ceiling with exposed beams. This room has a wood-burning fireplace and windows on three sides.

One corner of the family room opens to the kitchen and breakfast area, which have Mexican terra cotta tile floors. The owners say the kitchen was the big draw to this home when they moved in 11 years ago, with its English cabinetry, granite and butcher-block counters and professional-grade stainless steel appliances. This warm space includes a sideboard and armoire that function as additional pantry and storage space, plus a section built to hold baskets. The kitchen includes tile backsplashes on two walls and two faux paintings, including one with a view of a Tuscan village.

While guests will likely be drawn to the kitchen, this home also has a formal living room at one end of the house. This expansive 26-by-17-foot room has three sets of wood-trimmed French doors, walls of windows at the two ends of the room, hardwood floors and a wood-burning fireplace set in an arched opening.

The first level also has a bedroom or home office with a closet, paneled walls and a private entrance. This room has an adjacent full bath.

Upstairs, the master suite has a wood-burning fireplace tucked under an arch in one corner of the room. This room has a soaring cathedral ceiling, hardwood floors, recessed lighting, a ceiling fan and a private wood balcony with a view of the lawn and trees. A wall of windows in the sitting area at the end of the room overlooks the swimming pool. The suite also includes a walk-in closet with built-in shelving.

The luxurious master bath features a serene green-and-white color scheme, with green-and-white marble tile floors and pale-green English cabinetry. This room has two sinks, recessed lighting, a glass-enclosed separate shower and an oversized soaking tub.

The second bedroom includes two closets, tall windows, a ceiling fan and a private bath with marble walls and marble flooring. The third bedroom features tall windows overlooking the swimming pool, a double-door closet and a private full bath.

The wood staircase links the upper level to the main level and lower level, which has a recreation room with an enormous wood-burning fireplace set into an arched opening. Double French doors lead from this room to the side yard, where there are steps to the swimming pool.

The lower level, which is almost entirely above ground, includes a fifth bedroom with a double-door closet and an adjacent full bath. This level also has an exercise room and two storage rooms with shelving, along with a laundry room. The home also has pull-down stairs to an attic storage space.

The privacy afforded to this home by its 5-acre woodland setting belies the fact that civilization is minutes away in McLean, Great Falls and Georgetown. Guests and residents can pretend they have escaped to the Mediterranean for a vacation, yet commute to work with ease.

Address: 1135 Bellview Road, McLean VA 22102

Community: McLean

Age: built in 1961

Price: $1,799,000

Lot size: 5 acres

Taxes: $15,386 in 2008

Exterior features: Mediterranean-style single-family home set on 5 acres at the end of a private drive with adjacent woods with mature hardwoods and lawn areas; small basketball court, flagstone front walk, terra cotta tile roof, detached three-car garage with wood-trimmed, carriage-style doors

Interior features: Three finished levels with five bedrooms and five full baths; foyer with hardwood floors and beamed ceiling; three-level wall of windows adjacent to hardwood staircase; formal dining room with exposed beam ceiling, formal living room with three sets of French doors and two additional window walls and wood-burning fireplace; sunroom with tile floors and three walls of windows, family room with cathedral and exposed-beam ceiling and stone, wood-burning fireplace; kitchen and informal dining area with granite and butcher-block counters, English cabinetry, tile backsplash, faux paintings; first-floor office or bedroom with paneled walls, closet, full bath and private entrance; master suite with cathedral ceiling, wood-burning fireplace, private balcony, walk-in closet and luxury bath; two additional upstairs bedrooms, each with a private full bath; finished lower-level recreation room with wood-burning fireplace set in arched alcove, double French doors to side yard; fifth bedroom with full bath; exercise room, two storage and laundry rooms

Amenities: Heated outdoor swimming pool with attached Jacuzzi and waterfall, outdoor fireplace and extensive patio for entertaining; wooden playground equipment; four wood-burning fireplaces inside; ceiling fans, recessed lighting, hardwood floors, plaster walls; three-zone heating and air conditioning.

Close by: Close to Georgetown and downtown Washington via Chain Bridge, Great Falls Village Center, McLean and Tysons Corner

Schools: Spring Hill Elementary School, Cooper Middle School, Langley High School

Open House: 1 to 4 p.m., Jan. 4

Contact: Realtor Penny Yerks of Weichert, Realtors at 703/760-0744

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