Hot House: 111 Castlewood Road, Baltimore 21210

Stone colonial-style home, circa 1939, with slate roof. Five bedrooms, three full, two half-baths over three stories and 4,058 sq. ft. Partially finished basement. Entry hall, living room with fireplace, dining, library/den, sun room. Gourmet kitchen with double Viking range, Sub-Zero fridge, wine cooler, granite counters. Master bedroom with dressing room and marble jetted bath. Large downstairs rec room with wood-burning fireplace. Private, fenced backyard with heated pool, pergola, two stone patios. Two-car attached garage, extra wide driveway with parking pad. 0.4 acre lot: $1,050,000. 

What: A classy, substantial North Baltimore home that raises only one question: Why is there a wing chair in the entrance hall? Otherwise, all is as it should be. The patina of copper gutters; the beautiful stonework; the heated and nicely fenced pool. It’s been beautifully maintained. You’d want to redecorate for sure, but it’s all here. It’s a traditional layout, so no open-plan anything, no cathedral ceilings, no great room — just well-proportioned, large rooms that feel comfortable and welcoming. Interestingly, although the move to open-plan design is still going strong, a spate of recent shelter magazine articles (“trend alert”) have been critical of the open-plan kitchen, the main problem being that guests never move into the living room. Just something to consider. This is a house you could live in for a very long time.

Where: The Orchards is a small, quiet neighborhood of nice homes and well-manicured lots, similar to Homeland. It occupies the land between Northern Parkway and Lake Avenue on the north-south axis, and between Roland Avenue and Charles Street from east to west. The rolling golf course of the Elkridge Club offers a lovely green belt along the Lake Avenue boundary. The Orchard’s distinguishing feature is the Bryn Mawr School, which anchors its south side and creates a solid barrier from the rush of traffic on Northern Parkway. The bridge over Northern Parkway from Bryn Mawr offers easy walking access to local schools and all of Roland Park. Boys Latin School, Loyola University and Johns Hopkins are a few miles away. It’s a neighborly community, with kids riding bikes, weekend lemonade stands and many longtime residents.

Why: Heated pool means kids’ friends come to you.

Why Not: Heated pool means pool guy becomes your friend.

Would Suit: Young professionals. Hopkins doc with Bryn Mawr girls.

NB: In The Orchards, signs for painting, roofing or repair companies are not allowed. A seemingly small, yet awesome idea.