Hot House: 1424 Bolton Street, Baltimore, MD 21217
Brick Georgian-style townhouse, circa 1920, with recent rubberized roof. 3,770 sq. ft. over 4 levels, including unfinished basement. 4 bedrooms (two master suites), large custom walk-in closet, 3 full baths, office, upstairs sitting room, living room, dining room, kitchen leads to back garden. Custom wine cellar, Central a/c, completely wired for home-run distro audio data, voice and video: $650,000
What: A good-looking city house, with wrought iron Juliette balcony, marble front stairs and pedimented front door. There’s a pretty entrance vista down the hall to a curved staircase which has an arched wall niche, currently inhabited by an Asian statue. To the right, a big living room with two long windows and a carved marble non-working fireplace. Living room takes you through to a formal dining room and on to the kitchen, with convenient back stairs up to the second floor.
A while back, this house was converted from three apartments back into a single family home, and while the job has been well done, it does not feel totally finished. The kitchen could use more counter space and cabinets, and the refrigerator is a little far from the action. Some of the wood flooring on the stairs and landing was replaced (using quality repurposed hardwood), but not all of it. To get to the first master bedroom, you go through the master bath. What does work well is the second floor sitting room and office, with windows at the front of the house facing east, and a long hallway that’s been fitted out with shelving for collections of books, art or objects. The second master suite is really luxurious, with a fabulous walk-in closet and a big glass shower in the bathroom. Two third floor bedrooms are sunny and serene. It’s a great house with a couple of loose ends.
Where: Bolton Hill has long been Baltimore’s answer to London-style living: elegant city homes at a lower density than other downtown neighborhoods, with wide shady streets, and a quiet residential feel. F. Scott Fitzgerald and the Cone sisters thought so, and the residents today are still an interesting mix. Another upside is proximity to public transportation. It’s an easy walk from here to Penn Station, with daily Marc trains to DC as well as Amtrak service. There’s the Mt. Royal Light Rail station and the State Center station on the Baltimore Metro. No large grocery store nearby, otherwise you could really be car free here. Popular with families, the neighborhood has its own Swim and Tennis Club, a public charter school (Midtown Academy gets high marks from parents), and the Bolton Hill Nursery School. There’s a little park with benches around the corner from the house, which looks well-kept and dog friendly. The Inner Harbor is only a mile and a half away, although it feels like another country.
Would Suit: DC commuters, families not dying to move to the suburbs.
Why: Gracious city living.
Why Not: Rubberized roof needs to be treated every year or two.
NB: So what are you going to put in the stairway wall niche?