For Sale/Rent

Jawdropper of the Week: Riverside Reverie in Andalusia for $3.7M

Dr. George Fox's "Chestnutwood" mansion sits beside the Delaware in its original historic splendor. It would make an ideal personal retreat - or a fantastic B&B.

325 Chestnutwood Lane, Andalusia, Pa. 19020 | TREND images via RE/MAX Hometown

If you’re one of those people whose vision of the good life involves relaxing on your porch and looking out over water, your boat has pulled up to the dock.

Once you get out of your boat, feast your eyes on this splendid historic mansion located right on the Delaware just outside Philadelphia.

Built in 1857 by physician George Fox, “Chestnutwood” has been impeccably maintained over the 160 years that have passed since its completion. It’s the finest example of Victorian elegance we’ve seen in quite some time, and it’s built to impress your family, friends and visiting guests. We’re sure you won’t lack for the last of these if you turn it into the bed-and-breakfast inn it cries out to be.

From the grand entrance foyer to the two parlors to the dining and breakfast rooms, the main floor is designed to accommodate guests in style. In addition to the classic plaster moldlings in all the rooms, other noteworthy architectural details include the elegant chandelier and wainscoting in the formal dining room, the marble fireplaces in the parlors, the Mercer tile fireplace in the library and the hearth fireplace in the office. A pass-through serving window connects the breakfast room to the butler’s pantry, which is in turn connected to a modern kitchen with two sinks.

(Should you decide to turn this home into an actual guest house, you might want to consider upgrading the kitchen with commercial-grade appliances.)

Up on the second floor, five bedrooms open onto a spacious central gallery. Each of the bedrooms is attractively trimmed, three of them with classic wallpaper. Off the gallery is a hallway that leads to two more bedrooms and the rear staircase from the downstairs office. In all, the second floor has seven bedrooms and four full bathrooms.

There are five more rooms on the third floor, from which you can also access the roof.

The stone- and brick-walled basement contains a rec room with a pool table, dart board, chess table and popcorn machine. It has enough additional space to accommodate a wine cellar or cigar lounge.

This estate also comes with several accessory buildings that can help you with the property’s upkeep. It has a carriage house that contains four two-bedroom, one-bath apartments, a one-bedroom, one-bath cottage and a three-bedroom, two-bath river house with two decks and a dock. Renting these units out gives you a revenue stream of about $100,000 a year.

That ought to be enough to keep this estate in good order even if you decide not to go into innkeeping. In that case, you’ll have a fantastic private retreat that recalls opulent times past. But this place and its setting are just too beautiful not to share with others.

THE FINE PRINT

BEDS: 8

BATHS: 4 full, 1 half

SQUARE FEET: 9,280

SALE PRICE: $3,700,000

OTHER STUFF: The home and its outbuildings sit on a 7.93-acre lot approached from land by a picturesque country lane.



325 Chestnutwood Lane, Andalusia (Bensalem), Pa. 19020 [Brad Tomaziefski | RE/MAX Hometown]


Sandy Smith Home and Real Estate Editor @MarketStEl
ssmith@phillymag.com