Historic Museum District home near Rice University

November 25, 2018

This stunning Museum District area home within walking distance of Rice University offers the rare combination of outstanding location and historical significance. Located on nearly an acre at 1324 North Blvd. in Broadacres, the two-story home represents the work of renowned architect Birdsall Briscoe.

Listing agent Ed Wolff of Beth Wolff Realtors, Real Living says the careful attention to detail by the current owner has served to sustain the authenticity of this residence and adds that this Broadacres estate is full of rich history.

A canopy of live oak trees, paved pathways, Azaleas and a custom chevron walkway provide a beautiful walk to the front door.

Inside, block-paneled walls and elegantly carved balustrades exemplify Briscoe’s attention to detail in the foyer, which is filled with natural light from a north-facing window above the stairway landing and rear-door windows overlooking the gardens.

The formal dining room’s abundant entertaining space features classic chair rail, crown molding, and front windows affording a picturesque view of the boulevard and its oak trees. Wolff said that Briscoe’s use of architectural detail is evident in the living room that features a recessed window with north garden exposure. The moldings, recessed panel wainscoting, and circa 1850s pegged wide-plank hardwood floors make this room even more memorable.

Located off the formal living room, the sun parlor opens to the east patio and gardens that feature rose bushes, camellias, azaleas, and other plantings. Wolff adds that the original porte cochere is still intact and was relocated from the rear door to the northeast corner of the garden.

Completed in 1989, the two-story family room was added with a design that was derived from the sun parlor’s original plan. This area has a wood-burning fireplace and cathedral-style ceiling with decorative wood beams, and a wall of arched doors that open to the west patio.

The sun parlor is just off the formal living room and opens seamlessly to the east patio and lush gardens featuring rose bushes, camellias, azaleas, and other plantings. The original porte cochere is still intact and was relocated from the rear door to the northeast corner of the garden offering a quiet spot for reflection.

The home also has a (historically called) “ladies conversation room,” which is a comfortable gathering space that provides a glimpse into the history of this unique residence.

Centrally located, the library has access from the formal dining room and breakfast room via French doors.

The large island kitchen includes a seven-burner induction cooktop, double convection ovens, two Sub-Zero refrigerators, two dishwashers, a dumbwaiter and glass front cabinets — designed by architect Jorge Munoz of Munoz and Albin. A bar area that is convenient to the kitchen, breakfast room and rear gallery has a separate sink and dishwasher. The home also has a climate-controlled wine room with a 1,400-bottle capacity, which is located in the fully functioning cellar.

Adjacent to the kitchen, the breakfast room is enhanced with views of the side gardens and courtyard.

Located on the second floor, the master suite includes tree-top views, numerous sitting areas and a dressing room as well as dual baths with two showers and a separate tub. All of the home’s secondary bedrooms are spacious in size, offer scenic views and are flexible in design.

One of the en-suite bedrooms is currently being used as an office, and another (also with an en-suite bath) is an exercise room. The home’s main guest bedroom has a wall of built-ins and a balcony overlooking the two-story family room.

Manicured gardens and trees enhance the rear elevation and backyard that includes a heated swimming pool, walkways, and inviting entertaining/gathering areas.

Additional highlights include a two-room apartment with a full bath and kitchenette, a greenhouse, tool shed and half bath and a two-car garage, as well as a 48-kW natural gas generator.

Beth Wolff Realtors Real Living offers the following historical details:

Historically significant, Broadacres was originally conceived by the land owner, the Captain James Baker family. Envisioned as an enclave for Houston’s most prominent families, architect William Ward Watkins, the original architect of Rice University, was retained to design the public spaces and lush oak tree-lined esplanades, creating a serene retreat that feels far from its busy urban location.

Designed in the Cotswold country vernacular by Birdsall Briscoe in 1925, 1324 North Blvd. stands as a testament to the splendid vision of Broadacres. Many feel that Briscoe’s designs in the 1920s represented his best work. Sited under canopies of oak trees, the two-story red brick estate with beautifully manicured gardens is distinguished by its geometric composition and elegant detail.

Its current owners have meticulously maintained, renovated, and updated this home, and they are only the fifth owners of the estate. Originally designed for Mr. and Mrs. Jemison E. Lester, the home passed to Mrs. Flora McIver Streetman and her family in 1934. Hiram Clarke, president of HL&P was the next owner and, subsequently, it served as the residence of the Most Reverend John A. Morkovsky, Bishop of the Roman Catholic Diocese of Galveston-Houston.

With 7,196 square feet, five bedrooms, five full baths and two half baths, this home is priced at $6,870,000.

For more information, visit www.BethWolff.com.

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