117 Montrose Ave., Bryn Mawr, Pa. 19010 | TREND images from Long & Foster Real Estate
Sellers who photograph homes for sale, and some brokers as well, often resort to tricks to make spaces look larger than they are. It’s a shame, for usually, photos that show the spaces as they are will reveal that they have enough room for a typical buyer.
Most often, this takes the form of using a wide-angle lens to take in more of the space. This week’s featured home employs a most unusual tactic: the use of fish-eye lenses.
As we’re pretty sure you wouldn’t want to hang your pictures and mirrors from bulging walls, please be assured that the walls of this comfortable, recently updated home close to the heart of Bryn Mawr are perfectly straight, as some of the photos make clear. Read more »
723 N. 5th St., Philadelphia, Pa. 19123 | Images courtesy Solo Real Estate
Do you long for the elegance of the Victorian era yet still want to enjoy modern comfort and convenience?
We’ve got just the home for you in Northern Liberties.
This large townhouse boasts the high ceilings, plaster moldings, and classic design of the late 19th century, all meticulously restored. At the same time, it boasts the sorts of amenities modern buyers want: a high-end kitchen, modern bathrooms with radiant heat floors, and dual-zone central air conditioning. Read more »
1538 Rodman St., Philadelphia, Pa. 19146 | TREND images via BHHS Fox & Roach
The strict definition of a “trinity” is a home with three floors, each of those floors having just one room (the bathroom doesn’t count). Basements, being common features in 19th- and early 20th-century homes, don’t count against the total, and in many trinities, like today’s featured home, later owners put the kitchen down there.
Those who didn’t usually added an ell onto the back of the trinity for the kitchen. Some other later owners then built on top of the ell, creating the “expanded trinity” — one whose rooms were larger, or which had two rooms on each floor.
This week’s featured trinity has been “expanded” in a different way: Meet the four-story trinity, whose fourth floor has no roof. Read more »
While much has been written about Millennials’ love affair with the city, research conducted by the National Association of Realtors and others indicates that once those Millennials start thinking in a family way, they follow their parents out to the suburbs, where most of them grew up.
But once they get there, they still want the vibrant amenities and walkability they fell in love with in town.
America’s edge cities are actually in a position to provide both suburban comfort and urban vitality, and Eric Goldstein, executive director of the King of Prussia District, has been busy reshaping Greater Philadelphia’s premier edge city to do just that. Read more »
Scaffolding surrounds the Walnut Street townhouse in Van Pelt Mews in September. | Photos: Sandy Smith
It seems that architect Cecil Baker has the golden touch these days. Not only is he the emergency surgeon of choice for ailing projects, having resuscitated at least two high-profile projects that were going south design-wise with their neighbors, he has produced equally high-profile designs of his own that have won him further acclaim for the way they interact with their sites, in particular a luxury condo tower behind Independence Hall that hides itself from the Liberty Bell.
His latest project may not fall into the high-profile category, but it once again shows why he has become our most praised residential architect.
Van Pelt Mews is a 12-unit luxury townhouse project on Rittenhouse Square’s western fringes that combines the historic restoration of a 19th-century townhouse and carriage house on Sansom Street with nine large new homes fronting on Van Pelt Street. Read more »
34 Rabbit Run Rd., Malvern, Pa. 19355 | TREND images via BHHS Fox & Roach
There are more than two stones now along the driveway leading to the “Hill with Two Stones” (the English translation of this unique farmstead’s Welsh name, “Bryn Ddeu-Faen”).
Not to mention the thousands of them that went into constructing the late 1700s farmhouse and mid-1800s field master’s house that have now been combined into a single residence.
All those stones speak to this home’s deep Pennsylvania roots. And in the two-year renovation and expansion project that created this home, the owner made sure to graft the rootstock properly.
What you see here is the result of a splendid collaboration involving, among others, architect Peter Zimmerman, landscape architect Jonathan Alderson, cabinetmaker Bruce Ritter and skilled Mennonite craftsmen, along with ironworkers from Maryland and Delaware. Their end product is as authentically rustic a home as we’ve seen in quite a while, yet one that contains the amenities modern buyers expect. Read more »
Upsala, 6430 Germantown Ave., Philadelphia, Pa., 19119 | TREND images via Elfant Wissahickon Realtors – Chestnut Hill
After nearly a decade of efforts to find a new future for Upsala, the historic home across the street from Cliveden on the Germantown/Mt. Airy border, its owner, the National Trust for Historic Preservation, has opted to let the market figure it out.
If living or working in a bona fide link to the American Revolution gets your juices flowing, you now have a rare opportunity to do so at a bargain price. Just be prepared for the Battle of Germantown to be re-fought on your front lawn on the first Saturday in October every year.
“The decision to put it on the market is the culmination of about a decade of looking for the right use and the right steward for Upsala,” said Katherine Malone-France, vice president for historic sites at the National Trust. Read more »
This year’s Design Home is the one on the right. | Photos: Jay Greene
Those eight days the DesignPhiladelphia festival is spending exploring “Home” are just a warmup to the main event: a home full of ideas you’ll want to take home with you.
You’ll find them at Philadelphia magazine’s Design Home 2016, which this year returns to its city roots. We’ve chosen a brand-new luxury townhouse in the Adagio development, where Old City and Society Hill meet, to showcase all that’s hot and cool in the world of design. Built by U.S. Construction, designed by JKRP Architects and outfitted by WPL Interior Design, this year’s Design Home is a work of modern art that brings the classic townhomes of Rittenhouse Square and Society Hill into the 21st century. Read more »
4355 Mitchell St., Philadelphia, Pa. 19128 | TREND images via Keller Williams Real Estate
The classic 1920s porch-front row house can be found in neighborhoods all across Philadelphia. This week, we’ve found a very appealing example of the genre. A very recent top-to-bottom makeover has given this half duplex an updated traditional vibe and all the features modern buyers look for in a home.
The front porch with its lacy wrought-iron railing immediately makes you feel right at home, whether you’re living there or just visiting. That feeling continues on the inside, where a color palette of light gray walls and white crown moldings and wainscoting make the living and dining rooms look brighter and more inviting. That sense of lightness is enhanced by the large windows that let in plenty of natural light. Balancing these light colors are the warm hardwood floors, brick decorative fireplace and vintage-style lighting, most notably the wood-bladed, energy-saving ceiling fans. Low dividers separate the living and dining rooms while preserving the overall openness of the main living area layout. Read more »
Stephen Burks | Photo portrait: Rainer Hosch, 2012. Other photos by JPG Photography
According to Stephen Burks, design as we know it is a fundamentally Western concept.
But that doesn’t mean that there’s no design outside the West.
“In other places in the world, people solve problems, people make beautiful things, people manipulate material for the betterment of humanity, passionately, every day,” he says. “It’s part of life, and it’s always been part of life. Everyone is capable of design.
“And I think the more we recognize that, the more space we can create [for the rest of the world] in what is traditionally a European narrative.”
This insight, which Burks first gained on a trip to South Africa in 2005, has informed everything Stephen Burks Man Made produces. What may be equally notable is that he got one of the pillars of French high-end design to buy into it too. Read more »