Wednesday Wonder: Gorgeous Lake Highlands Home on Athlone Has a Stunning Custom Kitchen

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9623 Athlone/Photos: Shoot2Sell
9623 Athlone/Photos: Shoot2Sell

I love the look and feel of this Lake Highlands home inside Lake Park Estates, a very popular area just a short jaunt from White Rock Lake. Owned by Todd Howard, founder of architecture firm th+a, 9623 Athlone is a 1950 ranch transformed into a modern retreat.

Open and airy inside, this home is sublimely modern with the perfect balance of angles and curves, cool and warm, glass and wood. It’s a three-bedroom, two-and-a-half-bath beauty with 2,854 square feet, several living areas, gorgeous wood floors, tons of windows, and the most incredible kitchen (more on that later!). It’s marketed by Realtor extraordinaire David Bush for $650,000.

9623 Athlone Patio

9623 Athlone Living

9623 Athlone Formal Dining

The upgrades in this incredible home are spot on, and the design speaks to the owner’s expertise and sensibility. The walls are smooth and the track lighting aplenty, making this home perfect for an art collector. There is plenty of outdoor space for entertaining, especially surrounding the beautiful in-ground saltwater pool.

9623 Athlone Kitchen 1

But it’s the kitchen that gives me the tingles. Designed by Howard and his wife, it features a 5-burner Dacor range, double ovens, built-in everything, and the most gorgeous Makore custom cabinetry installed by master carpenter Bart Thrasher. Now, Bart’s wife, Karen Thrasher, is a senior partner at th+a. The Thrashers used to be my neighbors in my little enclave of Casa View Haven, and I miss them terribly. So I was thrilled to see Karen reminisce on the beautiful little house they used to live in on the ThrasherWorks blog:

Bart and I have lived in our current house for just over three years.  The main reason this seems absolutely impossible is that my son Hank  turned 2 years old the day we closed.  He’s now about to start kindergarten.  AGH.  I’m not ready for what is coming.

Despite my trepidation, I have fond memories of the house we sold before we landed here.  The fond memories include buying a house all by myself (thank you crazy mortgage market), making it a home with my husband, our awesome deck he built for the dogs, and most important:  the ultimate custom kitchen.

The last memory happened because I was able to strike a deal:  “I’m having your first born.  A son.  I want the kitchen I’ve always dreamed of.”  Silly us, we took this to heart.  Bart managed to avoid making any money those last few months before our son was born and concentrated on building my kitchen.  It turned out to be marvelous!  Something I weep for to this day.  I miss that kitchen because of the design, craftsmanship, and the memories or our infant son.

And I miss having the Thrashers as neighbors, but I am so happy we got to hang out together as much as we did in their lovely kitchen on our quiet little street. And knowing what an amazing kitchen Bart built for that little house, and how much care and attention to detail he put into it, I know the kitchen in 9623 Athlone is an incredible one. It’s made with Makore wood, a type of African cherry, and has the most gorgeous grain that spans across the entire kitchen. The countertops are poured-in-place concrete, and the hardware is custom, too.

9623 Athlone Kitchen 2

9623 Athlone Kitchen 3

9623 Athlone Breakfast

The whole kitchen and breakfast area are open, airy, and just absolutely perfect. It’s a credit to both Bart Thrasher’s craftsmanship and Howard’s visionary design sense. It is perfect for entertaining groups both large and small, and will leave any home chef pleased as punch.

Of course, if that’s not amazing enough, the master suite will sell you on this home. It is huge, and features tons of windows and enough room for oversized furniture and some comfy reading chairs. The master bath is gorgeous with heavy-gauge slate tile, a huge spa tub, sleek fixtures, and the perfect shower (no glass!).

9623 Athlone Master

9623 Athlone Master Bath

9623 Athlone Master Bth 2

Outside there is a beautiful deck and a spacious lawn, and that gorgeous saltwater pool that is just calling to me on this 95-degree day. If this isn’t wonderful, then I need a reality check! What do you think?

9623 Athlone Deck and Backyard

9623 Athlone Saltwater pool

9623 Athlone LA Study

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Joanna England

If Executive Editor Joanna England could house hunt forever, she absolutely would. Instead she covers the North Texas housing market and the economy for While she started out with the Real Estate Center at Texas A&M University, Joanna's work has appeared in The Dallas Morning News as well as several local media outlets. When she's not knitting or hooping, or enjoying White Rock Lake, she's behind the lens of her camera. She lives in East Dallas with her husband, son, and their furry and feathered menagerie.

Reader Interactions


  1. Larchwooder says

    I promise I will stop soon on being the LH police, but this is OLD Lake Highlands and does not feed into Lake Highlands High School or any of its feeder schools. This house feeds DISD, not RISD, a big difference when most people hear “Lake Highlands home”.

      • Larchwooder says

        Hexter feeds Hill Middle School. How’s Hill Middle School? I’m asking because I really don’t know. I suspect it’s not as good as any school in the city.

    • mmJoanna England says

      According to DCAD, this home is in Lake Park Estates, not Old Lake Highlands. Many people still think that the greater Lake Highlands area, which is often considered to start at East Lake Highlands at Peavy — right next to Lake Highlands Park — is still a good general description of the area. And yes, it feeds into Hexter, a blue-ribbon school.

      But seriously, y’all. LOOK AT THAT KITCHEN!

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