- The Washington Times - Friday, February 19, 2010

The Northwest Washington neighborhood of Forest Hills, tucked between Rock Creek Park and Connecticut Avenue Northwest, offers its residents an unusual blend of suburban and urban living.

Walk in one direction, and residents find themselves deep in the park, surrounded by trees, streams and deer. Walk in the opposite direction, and they can quickly reach shops, restaurants, the University of the District of Columbia and the Van Ness Metro station, which links the area with downtown Washington. Energetic walkers can head south on Connecticut Avenue to Cleveland Park and more restaurants and shops and the National Zoo.

Housing in Forest Hills includes some high-rise apartments and condominiums near Connecticut Avenue, but for the most part, the neighborhood offers single-family homes in a mix of architectural styles, many built in the 1930s and 1940s. Contemporary homes from more recent decades sit side by side with traditional brick Colonials, Cape Cod cottages, Victorian residences and Craftsman bungalows.

Many of the homes in Forest Hills have been remodeled and expanded over the years to match evolving tastes and the desire for more living space. At 2913 Brandywine St. NW, a single-family home built in 1943 has been expanded and remodeled multiple times by the owners, who have lived in it for decades.

Now on the market for $998,765, this home sits on a valuable homesite of approximately a quarter-acre, with an expansive, level backyard and side yard with space for more additions, if desired. Tall trees and a landscaped front yard with a stone retaining wall add curb appeal to the front of the home, which has a one-car attached garage and additional off-street parking in the driveway. The side yard includes a concrete patio and a hot tub.

The exterior of the home, a mix of brick and Hardiplank siding, has a traditional appeal, but inside, visitors will find a contemporary-style home with a quirky, yet charming, floor plan. Major improvements have been made to the home, including new windows, a new water heater and a new heating and air-conditioning system. Ceiling fans and recessed lighting have been added to many rooms.

The living room, which has a wood-burning fireplace with a brick hearth, includes tall windows on two sides plus French doors leading to the side yard. This generously sized room has hardwood flooring.

The dining room, an addition adjacent to the kitchen, has a cathedral ceiling, ceramic tile flooring, a ceiling fan and tall windows on three sides of the room, facing the front yard and trees.

The updated kitchen includes maple cabinets; a double window over the sink, which faces the trees; Corian counters in a muted green tone; and ceramic tile flooring.

Surrounding these main rooms are hallways and steps leading to rooms with flexible uses. Buyers may want to widen doorways or halls to create a more open floor plan that matches their use of the rooms.

At the back of the main level is a first-floor master suite, an addition with windows on three sides of the room, a glass door to the backyard and an exposed-brick wall that once was an exterior wall of this home. This expansive bedroom includes a deep niche with a window that can function as a computer work station or even as a small sitting area. The bedroom has two double-door closets.

Adjacent to the bedroom, the large master bath features dramatic slate flooring, two sinks and a window.

A closet with a front-loading washer and dryer is located conveniently in the hall near the master-bedroom suite.

The main level also includes a set of rooms that can function as a second master suite or as living space. A door links the foyer with this suite, which includes a den with a picture window facing Brandywine Street. Near the den, a hallway lined with closets leads into a two-story family room with an exposed-brick wall and four picture windows facing the street. Stairs lead from this room to a spacious loft with more windows, skylights, a ceiling fan and two closets. These two rooms work as a family room and home office or as an expansive master bedroom and sitting room. The adjacent full bath is also accessible from the foyer.

Hardwood stairs lead from the foyer to the upper level. One bedroom, which overlooks the backyard, has windows on two sides, a peaked ceiling and an exposed-brick wall. The second bedroom has a peaked ceiling with a ceiling fan and a walk-in closet. Between these rooms is a door leading to extra attic storage space. This level has a renovated full bath.

The lower level includes both finished and unfinished spaces. The unfinished rooms include storage and utility rooms and additional laundry equipment, along with access to the garage, which has shelving and storage space.

Beyond the garage is another separate suite, with an exterior door to the front walk. This bedroom includes tall windows facing Brandywine Street and has an adjacent full bath.

The flexible floor plan in this home, which has more than 3,100 finished square feet, will enable future residents to use their imaginations to determine the function of each space. A large family would appreciate the abundance of bedrooms and bathrooms, while a couple needing two home offices would find plenty of appealing spaces for working at home.

DETAILS

Address: 2913 Brandywine St. NW, Washington, DC 20008

Community: Forest Hills

Age: Built in 1943, several additions between 1971 and 2009

Price: $998,765

Size: Approximately 3,100 finished square feet on a quarter-acre lot

Taxes: $9,555

Homeowners association fee: N/A

Exterior features: Contemporary-style single-family home with brick and cement-siding exterior, landscaped front yard with stone retaining wall, off-street parking in driveway, one-car attached garage.

Interior features: Five bedrooms; four full baths; three finished levels; foyer entrance; living room with fireplace, windows on two sides and French doors to patio; dining room addition with cathedral ceiling, ceiling fan and floor-to-ceiling windows; updated kitchen with maple cabinets, Corian counters and ceramic tile flooring; bamboo, cork and hardwood flooring; first-floor master suite with exposed-brick walls, glass door to yard, niche for computer desk, double-door closet and adjacent updated bath with slate floor and double sinks; second master suite on first floor with loft bedroom, sitting room or family room, den and full bath; two upper-level bedrooms with peaked ceilings; full bath upstairs; finished lower-level bedroom with exterior door and full bath; additional basement storage.

Amenities: Fenced, level backyard with hot tub, wood-burning fireplace, new windows, new heating and air-conditioning system, new water heater, front-loading washer and dryer.

Close by: Walk to Van Ness Metro station and shops and restaurants on Connecticut Avenue; near National Zoo, Rock Creek Park and movie theaters; quick access to downtown or Maryland suburbs.

Open house: 2 to 5 p.m. Feb. 21

Contact: Associate Broker Kay Young of ERA Blue Diamond Realty at 703/929-4523

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