Park Place - Short North
While it's perfectly true that Columbus doesn't have the kind of massive, urban green-space that Central Park provides for the citizens of New York City, those living in the Short North and Victorian Village will tell you that the smaller-scale Goodale Park suits their Midwestern needs just fine. And while there is certainly no comparison to be made in terms of sheer size and scope, one thing these areas do have in common is that the homes situated along the border of these two parks are some of the hottest properties in town.
This month, C Magazine was fortunate enough to tour one of these historic beauties from the inside out—which provided us with a real opportunity to find out whether the home's interior can stand up to the grandeur of the home's exterior. As expected, we found that great care has been taken over the years to preserve the integrity of the entire property, though several recent renovation projects have added touches of 21st century comfort here and there. Now, just over a century since the home was built, the resulting structure is an immaculate, 3,800 sq. ft. brick four-square complete with three bedrooms, 2.5 bathrooms, a one bedroom guest suite with kitchenette and full bath on the third floor, and a two car garage. And that's just the tip of the iceberg.
Back in 2000 when the home's current owner moved in, the Short North was really starting to take off. "Choosing this property really came down to the location and neighborhood," he says, "There were some upgrades needed and renovation projects to live through, but I saw a lot of potential here and I kept thinking about what I could do with this place." And though the owner readily admits the home is too big for one person and has even considered downsizing, investors shouldn't get their hopes up yet. "When I think about everything I want in a living space—the tall ceilings, the neighborhood, etc.—it's all right here. It's great to just walk the dog across the street to the park."
Starting in the home's front yard, a large tree provides plenty of shade for the decorative plants and flowers as well as for guests coming up the walkway. After climbing a short flight of concrete stairs, you find yourself on a columned front porch large enough for entertaining. Inside the main entryway, it's impossible not to notice the pristine condition of the home's hardwood floors. And considering hardwood covers nearly all of the first floor (with the exception of the kitchen), its condition is all the more impressive considering it's handled over a century's worth of foot traffic without ever needing replaced!
Two highlights on the home's first floor include a spacious dining room and the modern, renovated kitchen. The dining room houses an Art Deco-influenced table for twelve, in addition to a builtin china cabinet and a stained glass window. Adding even more interest to the space is a gigantic four-wall mural, based on paintings by 19th century artist George Innis and created by local artists Mike Altman and Steve Galgas. Many in the local arts community will recognize Altman and Galgas as the artists who created Short North Gothic, the irreverent twist on Grant Wood's iconic painting American Gothic. As for the kitchen, it was remodeled in 2006 to include stainless steel Jenn-air appliances, ceramic tile floor, glass tile walls, Brazilian granite counters, maple Shaker style cabinets, Swarovski crystal pendant, and a Nelson bubble lamp.
On the way up to second level, it's impossible to miss the antique chandelier salvaged from the Deshler Hotel hanging in home's stairwell. But once you've made it to the top of the stairs, however, you're immediately drawn to the master bedroom. Though the space was once two separate bathrooms, the owner's vision of a true master suite was completed in 2007 to include a master bath with marble mosaic floors, radiant flooring, marble wainscoting, steam shower, and a double vanity. The project also included a second floor laundry space for added convenience.
Some of the home's other points of interest include the matching 1920's hammered bronze pendants from Argentina located in the front parlors to the art collection consisting of paintings and sculptures by Ohio artists Ron Arps and Mitzi Prince, in addition to Randall LaGro, Lui Liu, Russell Whiting, Santiago Perez and Oscar Senn.
But in the tradition of saving the best for last, we'd be remiss if we didn't say at least a few words about the home's unique backyard. Built in 2005, the home has an 18,000 gallon, kidneyshaped salt-water pool, complete with deck jets and surrounded with professional landscaping that includes five varieties of bamboo, several evergreen varieties, hydrangeas, azaleas, pink dogwood, and a hornbeam privacy hedge. In short, it's like the urban equivalent of a tropical resort— providing a private getaway where deck jets drown out the hustle and bustle of the city, and where guests can truly imagine they're on vacation.