Just Listed: Renovated Rowhouse in Bella Vista

A top-to-bottom rebuild has turned this unassuming South Philly rowhouse into a neotraditional contemporary showstopper.

house for sale Bella Vista renovated row main floor

The agent’s listing classifies this house as “contemporary” in style, and it’s definitely that. But as this photo of the main floor of 933 E. Passyunk Ave., Philadelphia, Pa. 19147 should prove, that contemporary style comes with a generous helping of traditional detailing. | Photos: Rachel McGinn via Space & Company/Red Balloon Communications

house for sale Bella Vista renovated row exterior front

Exterior front

Rowhouses that look like this one on the outside are a dime a dozen in South Philadelphia. Most of them date to the first decade or two of the 20th century. Somewhere along the way, their facades got rebuilt to make them a little more modern-looking on the outside. I can’t say for sure when most of these got that treatment, but it looks to me like the deeds were done in the Fifties or early Sixties.

According to the public records, this Bella Vista rebuilt rowhouse for sale was built in 1915. Not quite six years ago, it became a sophisticated modern looker with loads of neotraditional flair.

The team that executed this makeover put in all sorts of stylish and eco-friendly design elements, fixtures and features, starting with the Danish-matte white oak floors that Provenance, the gods of architectural salvage hereabouts, harvested from already fallen trees.

house for sale Bella Vista renovated row living room

Living room

The floors make the already bright white-on-white open main floor even lighter.

house for sale Bella Vista renovated row dining room

Dining room

The main living area sets the tone for the makeover with its crown moldings and wainscoting on the one hand and its modern steel stair rail and mix of traditional and contemporary furniture on the other.

house for sale Bella Vista renovated row kitchen


Yesterday and today also mix it up in the kitchen. Its ceiling features thick beams reclaimed from a barn in Lancaster County, and its Shaker-style cabinets with contemporary drawer and door handles nicely complement the Georgian-era brass bridge faucet on the sink. The appliances, of course, are all modern and clad in stainless steel.

house for sale Bella Vista renovated row sunroom


Beyond the kitchen, a sunroom with a built-in bench seat with storage space and a Tom Dixon copper mirror-effect pendant light serves as a bridge between the main floor and the lushly landscaped rear patio.

rear patio

Rear patio

This urban garden features brick pavers, a stone retaining wall, cedar fencing and a canopy of mature cherry and crepe myrtle tres.

second-floor bedroom

Second-floor rear bedroom and balcony

The second floor has two bedrooms, one of which has direct access to the hall bath and the other of which has its own private balcony overlooking the rear patio. Right now, that bedroom is configured as a den. It could also serve as a home office — and so could the sunroom.

primary bedroom

Primary bedroom

The primary suite on the top floor contains a bedroom and a bathroom, each with a vaulted ceiling. The bedroom faces east and includes built-in shelves and bureaus with Schoolhouse Electric drawer pulls.

primary bathroom

Primary bathroom

The bathroom features an exposed brick wall, double vanity, freestanding soaking tub, glass-enclosed shower and separate toilet closet.

powder room

Powder room

Speaking of toilets, you will no doubt be equally impressed by the first-floor powder room, which is completely covered in custom-printed floral wallpaper designed by Ellie Cashman based on Dutch Golden Age still lifes.

And below all this, a finished basement provides storage space or space for recreation, play, or media consumption.

The last thing this knockout rehab has going for it is its location. The South 9th Street Italian Market lies two blocks to its west, Fabric Row is a roughly five-minute walk to the northeast and the East Passyunk Avenue shopping and dining district is a mere seven-minute walk to the south that passes through Cheesesteak Corner en route. Around you in all directions lie many of the city’s best eateries and a panoply of unique local boutiques.

Built for the urban sophisticate and located in one of South Philly’s most attractive neighborhoods, this Bella Vista rebuilt rowhouse for sale offers you style and comfort in a classic yet up-to-date package.



BATHS: 2 full, 1 half

SQUARE FEET: 2,817, including finished basement

SALE PRICE: $899,000

OTHER STUFF: Three to four years remain on this house’s property tax abatement.

933 E. Passyunk Ave., Philadelphia, Pa. 19147 [Brigit Brust | Space & Company]