Hot House: 919 Rolandvue Road, Towson, MD 21204
Mid-century, modern style house in cedar shake, circa 1967, designed by noted architect Walter Ramberg. 4,842 sq. ft. with four bedrooms, 2.5 baths, large deck overlooking woods. Bi-level living room with granite fireplace, floor-to-ceiling windows and two-story built-in bookcases. Curved glass wall in dining room and kitchen (updated in 2015). Thirteen-foot ceilings. Master bedroom and family room with three walls of windows. Central a/c, hydronic radiant floors. Two-story, two-bedroom guest house, woodshed, heated pool, natural landscaping on four private acres: $1,295,000.
What: For some buyers, a house in the woods is a piece of heaven. Others will choose the broad sunlit uplands everytime. If you are of the Henry David Thoreau persuasion, this is a rare opportunity. The architect, Walter Ramberg, designed a handful of houses in Baltimore, several of which won architectural awards. It’s glorious in some ways. The living room soars 13 feet, with skylights that flood the first and second floors with light. The common rooms are large, and the walls of glass, particularly at the back of the house, look directly into the woods so that you feel you are in a tree house. The master bedroom is large, with a fireplace and attached solarium. On the other hand, the kitchen is small and, together with the bathrooms, could use some updating.
Where: Rolandvue is a long, winding hill with widely spaced, beautiful homes that runs from Bellona Avenue up to Malvern, and from there up to Charles Street. Here you are solidly ensconced in ‘old Ruxton,’ with houses and families who have been in place for generations. It is not a walking neighborhood, but this house is less than a mile from shops at Ruxton Crossing — Graul’s Market and Wine Shop, Linens & Lingerie, J. McLaughlin — and just a couple miles from the new, upscale Kenilworth Mall. Also, you have the trifecta of Baltimore County public schools Riderwood Elementary, Dumbarton Middle and Towson High. All this is within delivery range of Graul’s.
Why: Pool and guesthouse are spectacular.
Why Not: At night, walls of glass can become black holes.
Would Suit: Design-aware buyer who wants to commune with nature.
NB: Black-painted chain-link fence offers protection from deer, but as an entrance gate, it’s less than welcoming.