Of course we “ooh” and “ahh” over new homes and the latest design features, but a lot can be said for homes that stand the test of time. Some estates become standard-bearers for architects and designers, evoking a time and place like no other home can.
These are exactly the types of properties that are showcased in Saturday’s “Grounds For Preservation” home tour hosted by Preservation Dallas. This home tour is an extraordinary opportunity to see the sprawling estates of Dallas designed by well-known architects.
“Our tour this year highlights iconic historic houses in Dallas, and this tour is unique because it highlights estates and their grounds,” said Donovan Westover of Preservation Dallas.
There are six estates on this year’s tour, which has stops in Preston Hollow, the Park Cities, Oak Cliff, and East Dallas. Tickets are still available for the general tour ($40 for Preservation Dallas members, and $50 for non members) as well as the Patron Party at the Jackson House on Strait Lane ($85 for members, $100 for the public). You can find out more about purchasing tickets on the site.
Last year’s fall home tour was exclusively mid-century modern, but this year’s catalog showcases a wide breadth of architectural styles in this, including a 1920s Georgian mansion built in 1963, an English estate from Hal Yoakum on Strait Lane, the much-talked-about Beck House by Philip Johnson, as well as a midcentury modern by Howard Prinz in Kessler Park with some truly dramatic features.
The Hayes home, which was built for legendary car dealer Earl Hayes, is “99.9 percent original,” Westover said. It has so many interesting architectural features and eye-catching spaces, and with its swim-up bar and cantilevered master bedroom wing, it has plenty of dramatic appeal.
“The Bromberg House is another one of those home that is almost completely intact,” Westover said. That’s thanks to interior deed restrictions that have kept most of the key spaces of the home just exactly as they were when they were designed by O’Neil Ford in 1939. “Of course, Preservation Dallas loves interior deed restrictions,” Westover added.
I can see why, considering that when you buy a landmark home from a well-known architect, the exterior of the home wasn’t the only part of the design process. The interior spaces were considered as well, and just because a home ages, that doesn’t mean they become obsolete. Through this year’s tour, Preservation Dallas hopes that by seeing the innate beauty in these homes, more people will be inspired to preserve the architecture in their neighborhoods.
“No matter where you live in Dallas, and no matter what style of home you live in, these home can be renovated. They can be restored,” Westover said. “These owners with estates on this year’s tour are part of a long-growing list of homeowners who support preservation. You can certainly do this with any house. You don’t have to tear it down. This is the reality of preservation.”