by Eric Prokesh
Slightly under the radar, which we of course love, an architectural gem on Fort Worth’s historic Elizabeth Boulevard is now on the market after undergoing an extensive two year renovation/restoration. And we are just drooling with delight.
The 6500 square foot house at 1302 Elizabeth Blvd. sits on half an acre of lushly landscaped land. There are five bedrooms, four full en suite baths and two partial powder rooms. The usual formals, of course, and a stunningly modernized kitchen but we just want to park ourselves in the solarium with lattice work top and bottom, sip on a mint julep or two, and while the day away. Also here you will find what should be the poster child of master closets –enormous and with windows — a full basement for storm protection and a third floor plumbed for even more finish out. The home was designed as a showplace for John C. Ryan, developer of Ryan Place, by gifted architect Wiley G. Clarkson, born in Corsicana, who left to Fort Worth a legacy of important public buildings as well as dozens of its most beautiful residences. The home was built in 1913.
The current owners, Jennifer and Samuel Demel, engaged Castor Vintage Homes to execute the challenging restoration. For much of the work the couple actually camped out in 2 ground floor rooms with their infant son, Grayson, while the team banished the last vestiges of nob and tube wiring, upgraded plumbing, returned supporting columns to plum, and installed a new HVAC. But oh the touches of yesteryear, like this brass hardware detail on the transoms…
Guiding the aesthetics, was Castor’s designer, Kathy McKibben. Inspired by the pleasingly proportioned, light suffused rooms, the designer selected a palette of mostly pastels of similar color value which give the house an airy continuity. Period chandeliers and sconces were restored and damaged glass in the commanding windows was replaced with vintage glass from Old Home Supply. The unique hardware was sent to Charleston, South Carolina to be re-plated and bronzed. Top of the line flooring and fixtures from Ann Sacks in the baths complete the long list of upgrades.
More than just an award winning restoration, this Jazz Age Palace, is completely livable. Smoothly functioning as a family home, it includes many modern luxury “must haves” such as roomy closets with ample marble covered packing islands, private office spaces and cleverly designed, kid friendly, children’s rooms.
And of course, one of the best locations in Fort Worth: Ryan Place. Listed with the owner/agent, Jennifer Demel, at Burt-Ladner Real Estate for $1,695,000.
Eric Prokesh is an interior designer whose work has appeared on HGTV, in books and publications including DHome, Southern Accents, House Beautiful, and House and Garden. In January 2005, HG named Eric one of the 50 tastemakers in America and DHome has included him as one of Dallas’ Best Designers for 10 years. Having lived most of his life in Dallas, he now calls Fort Worth home and is one of our experts on beautiful Fort Worth Dirt.