Hot House: Oakdene, 1021 Greenspring Valley Road, Lutherville, 21093
Historic country manor house in stone and stucco, circa 1830, in good but basic condition. 12 bedrooms, 9 bathrooms, 9’ ceilings, hardwood floors, french doors, ballroom, carved moldings, servant quarters. Nearly 10,000 sq. ft. over three stories, unfinished basement. Swimming pool, barn, stables and farm hand’s house: $2,900,000
What: A vanishing way of life. Owned by a series of old Baltimore families – Cockeys, DeFords, Carrolls – Oakdene passed finally, in 1920, to the Trimbles. “Five generations of my family have slept under this roof,” says Bill Trimble, a little sadly, “with nothing but pleasant memories.” It’s a lovely old place, named for its gigantic oak trees, a few of which remain. A long drive leads way back from the road, past the mown fields. There are 24 acres here, surrounded by that holy grail of the countryside: “protected land.” Kevin Plank and Buck Showalter would be your neighbors. Oakdene has a kind of rambling, country charm that’s sweeter than some of the more formal estates out here, and it looks like a real home. It’s been decently maintained, which is not to say that it doesn’t need work. New kitchen, new bathrooms, at a minimum. The his-and-hers master bedrooms probably won’t work for you (hopefully), and there’s general cosmetic work to be done, at least $500,000 worth. The upside of that is that you can leave your personal stamp on the place, and with any luck, five generations of your family will sleep here.
Where: From Green Spring Station, Oakdene is about a mile out Greenspring Valley Road, on your left. St. Paul’s School is nearby, over on Falls Road. At Green Spring Station you can hang at the Stone Mill Bakery, Tark’s Grill (at least check out the bar scene) and shop for jewelry at Bijoux. Access to the wide world of Baltimore is easy from here, via Falls Road and 83.
Would Suit: Incomers, who want privacy and/or horses with city access.
Why: Potential to be a Martha Stewart-like dream property – chickens, vegetable gardens, rose gardens, ponies, friends, children.
Why Not: Annoying view of nearby house with baby blue aluminum siding shatters bucolic mood. A couple of evergreen magnolias could block it out.
Hot House is sponsored by Cindy Conklin and Bob Merbler of Prudential YWGC Realty