5706 Watson Cir IHOTW

Dallas has always been a hotbed of excellent residential architecture, and our Inwood National Bank Home of the Week is a perfect example of the sterling level of local talent. The architectural firm Domiteaux + Baggett are the masterminds behind this Frank Lloyd Wright inspired Preston Hollow custom home with a Palm Springs vibe. It would be a perfect location for a remake of any Rat Pack movie. We can easily imagine George Clooney and Brad Pitt hanging out by the pool at 5706 Watson Circle.

The 5,000-square-foot home is listed by Minnette Murray with Coldwell Banker for $2.75 million and we were lucky enough to get a peek at it this week.

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The Beat Condos Ext

The Cedars is a favorite trendy neighborhood of ours, full of urban lofts, condo buildings, and townhomes in an area that is cleaning up nice, but still is a little gritty, kind of like Brad Pitt in “A River Runs Through It” or George Clooney in “The American.”

So yes, like both Pitt and Clooney (SWOON!), the Cedars is a fantastic neighborhood that is easy on the eyes even with a five o’clock shadow. It’s a hub of artists and venues and great local dives. It has downtown views, is close to North Oak Cliff, and next door to the Trinity River. It has mass transit and is fantastic for someone who wants to simplify, and perhaps live car free.

The Beat Unit 406 Living Dining

And this unit inside the popular Buzz Lofts is a great place to start your urban lifestyle. It has an open, convertible floorplan that is either a large one-bedroom unit or a cozy two-bedroom apartment with a spacious single bath. Unit 406 at 1111 Akard St. has a gorgeous view of downtown Dallas, too, and is listed for lease by Virginia Cook Realtor Chad Barker for $1,325 a month.

Considering the sleek, Euro-style kitchen with island, and convenient garage-door opening to the balcony, these condos often feel like they would be more at home in Denmark than in Dallas, and still, with our mild spring and fall, I would have that roll-up door open early and often to soak up the urban vibes.

The Beat Unit 406 Kitchen

The bamboo floors are a boon for anyone who wants cool, low-maintenance floors that aren’t quite as freezing cold as polished concrete but still feel a little edgy. There’s a huge utility area and closet — 12 feet of space! — which is rare for an urban loft. You have more than 980 square feet of space to move around and customize, and considering the separate bedroom accommodations, you could easily make this home a great place for hosting a few friends by using the second bedroom area as a living or dining room, and perhaps even put a large farm table next to the roll-up door, which you could open when the weather suits you for a lovely dining experience.

The Beat Unit 406 Second Bed or Living THe Beat Unit 406 Master Partition The Beat Unit 406 Master Creepy Sconces The Beat Unit 406 Bath

Now, the only nit I’m going to pick isn’t even a big deal, because those creepy human-looking wall sconces in the master? They’ll be gone by the time you move in. So it’s a non issue! Still, are they not super weird voodoo doll looking things? I would not be able to sleep with those at my bedside!

So come for the culture, stay for the views, and viva la Cedars!

The Beat Unit 406 Downtown View

3828 Turtle Creek poolWe sent CD correspondent Bren Underwood to find out if people really eat in these luxury homes!

Impromptu cocktail parties, Sunday brunches, formal dinners fit for a king – entertaining friends and family brings tremendous delight to hosts and hostesses. I had the true pleasure of interviewing one of Dallas’ premier hosts recently, acclaimed author and art collector Robert Edsel. The topic was how he entertains in his exquisite Turtle Creek estate that is listed with Dave Perry-Miller’s Madeline Jobst for $15,900,000.

Edsel, as you may know, has written three captivating nonfiction books – Rescuing Da Vinci; The Monuments Men: Allied Heroes, Nazi Thieves and the Greatest Treasure Hunt in History; and Saving Italy – focusing on a group of GIs who rescued  more than 5 million cultural objects during and after World War II. In fact, “The Monuments Men” will hit the silver screen as a motion picture this December – a must see! –co-written, directed, and produced by George Clooney and staring Matt Damon and Cate Blanchett.

3828 Turtle Creek groundsNow let me just take a quick minute to set the scene and enchant you with Edsel’s magnificent home. I know you have coveted it. Built in 1926, the Mediterranean retreat resides on two acres along Turtle Creek and features picture-perfect entertaining spots, such as a terrace with a fireplace that overlooks the creek; kitchen-solarium with steel French doors leading out to a large provincial-style dining table; dining room with views of the manicured gardens, and grassy knolls draped in the lush canopy of magnolia trees. Straight out of a movie set, this gorgeous home surely renders its visitors speechless. Thankfully, the high ceilings offer plenty of air circulation because this home is quite often filled with friends. This is how Robert Edsel lives:

3828 Turtle Creek extBren Underwood: How often do you like to entertain?

Robert EdselRobert Edsel: I travel most of the year, however when I’m home I entertain twice a week. When I host friends and family, it’s a chance to create a welcoming and intimate ambiance. To me, entertaining is a reflection of the importance I place on the people I have invited into my home.

BU: Do you fancy yourself a cook or prefer to employ the help of a caterer when entertaining?

Robert Edsel: Most of the time I cook for my guests, with a great deal of the dishes influenced by my years living in Italy. My specialty is grilled Australian lobster tails, however I also gravitate towards traditional Italian dishes, such as pasta al pesto, a Portofino dish that evokes fond memories from the year I lived there.

BU: I am getting hungry! What is your favorite part about creating a meal for friends and family?

3828 Turtle Creek LRRobert Edsel: I prefer cooking at home because I have every accouterment for the event in my herb, floral, and citrus gardens that I could ever need: Rosemary; European basil; thyme; mint; lemon, lime, and orange trees; and rose and hydrangea gardens are right outside the door. I’m happiest when I’m harvesting herbs and fruit from my garden and cooking at home for my friends and family.

BU: You can smell the magnificent gardens. With countless rooms and spaces to entertain in, how do you choose?

3828 Turtle Creek dining roomRobert Edsel: I have so many fond memories and beautiful collectibles gathered from my travels and time spent living overseas that when I entertain, I tend to move around my home so I can appreciate each of them. I hold formal dinners in the dining room, an inviting alcove with a table I designed and had built for 10. For a small group I’ll arrange dinner at the card table in the den, or sit atop stools in the kitchen-solarium where we can admire the walls of fig ivy and jasmine. I also serve dinner in the gazebo to capture the views of reflections of the setting sun rippling on Turtle Creek.  For the most special of occasions, however, I arrange a picnic under the shade of the two of my magnolia trees.

BU: What variety! Dinner does not have to be in the dining room! What is your secret to successfully entertaining?

3828 Turtle Creek kitchenRobert Edsel: The host should have fun too! Relaxing and enjoying myself is an important part of the specialness of hosting my friends. My busy travel schedule precludes being with my friends as much as I wish, so on those occasions I am home, it’s important to me to enjoy my time with those I love the most in the privacy of my home.  I like to think of evenings at my home as the perfect blend of modern American convenience with the ambiance and timelessness of evenings dining with friends in Europe. The great pleasure in this instance is experiencing that enjoyment in my own home.

BU: It’s a beautiful home, indeed.

3828 Turtle Creek patio 3828 Turtle Creek wine cellarBren Underwood is the founder and creator of Must Bring Buns, an etiquette, entertaining, and lifestyle blog. By day, she is the PR Coordinator at Dave Perry-Miller & Associates.