An Updated Classic from a Bygone Era on Swiss Avenue Hits the Market

An Updated Classic From a Bygone Era on Swiss Avenue Hits the Market |

I don’t write a lot about single family homes. So it’s gotta be good when I do.

The word that jumps out about 5105 Swiss Ave. is “original.” For a home built in 1924, that’s an important word. (By the way, I used the evening picture above because of the obvious drama, but it’s winter and the landscaping is asleep. Still, it cuts a pretty stately rug.)

By the numbers, this is a four bedroom home with six full and two half baths rambling across 6,282 square feet. It sits on 0.8 acres, giving it room to breathe and space for most any outdoor frivolities. This house is listed with Sharon Quist from Dave Perry-Miller Real Estate for $1,999,900.  

An Updated Classic From a Bygone Era on Swiss Avenue Hits the Market |

The other thing that got my attention was a floorplan rendering. Hallelujah! Here you get the rhythm of the home.

Enter through the original wood and glass round-top door into a generous foyer flanked by a staircase on the left and the main living area on the right. The living spaces are all interconnected, flowing from living into family and dining areas. Toss in dual half baths and you’re set for when the whole mess of family and friends to come over. Because let’s be honest, people entertain here.

The kitchen and butler’s pantry (people had butlers in 1924) are off the dining area. There’s even a back staircase kitchen shortcut. Being the outdoorsman (okay, patio man) I am, I like the large covered patios on two sides.

An Updated Classic From a Bygone Era on Swiss Avenue Hits the Market |

Up either staircase and you’re in bedroom-land with four of them, each with an en suite bathroom. I’m going to guess there were originally more bedrooms (people had more kiddies in 1924 and masters didn’t get such lavish suites). There’s a game room at one end, but whoa-ho, there’s a nearly 10-by-22-foot closet (that’s 211 square feet, folks). The laundry room is smartly located up here, too.

An Updated Classic From a Bygone Era on Swiss Avenue Hits the Market |

Back in the real world, here’s the foyer. But even before you get this far, you know something is up. The front door is bordered by original Rookwood tile. Inside, big ceilings from the days before air conditioning make the space feel generous. The opening under the stairs takes you to the kitchen while the main archway leads to the living room

An Updated Classic From a Bygone Era on Swiss Avenue Hits the Market |

I’m really enjoying the chimney wall. The way the breast fans out and connects to the ceiling moulding (not “molding”) highlights the bookend doorways leading to the family room. The cast stone fireplace and wood floors are original, ‘natch. The Palladian French doors are one of three sets facing the front of the home. The red room to the left is the dining room.

An Updated Classic From a Bygone Era on Swiss Avenue Hits the Market |

Through either of the doorways from the living room, the family room is where most of your hang-out time will be spent. The fireplace is double-sided (did you expect less?), offering warmth to both spaces. In this room, the Italian tile floors and Rookwood lintel and fireplace hearth are original.

Jumping over to the red dining room, we see an elegant space too refined for poor ol’ me to be invited to (ha!). I really like the way the room isn’t entirely red. The way it stops shy of the ceiling makes the paneling feel like a stage set, something I always find a fun decorating trick. Literally dinner theater.

An Updated Classic From a Bygone Era on Swiss Avenue Hits the Market |

Here’s where you (or your caterers) will be making those theatrical dinners. Tons of counter space and multiple things: two sinks, two dishwashers, two refrigerators, two ovens, and a six-burner gas range top.

An Updated Classic From a Bygone Era on Swiss Avenue Hits the Market |

Moving upstairs, you’ll see the stained glass on the landing and think it’s pretty cool. But guess what, it’s not original to the house, it’s older.  The original owners of the home moved those windows from their prior home on Ross Avenue. I can see why they liked them so much.

All the bedrooms are on the second floor, but the only one you care about is the master (I’m figuring the folks with the checkbook are reading this, not the kiddies). Recall from the floorplan above, the master suite is pretty much one end of the upper floor. You can see the closet entry to the right.

I can see where separate bathrooms might be a key to a happy marriage. Aside from questionable wallpaper, I like the darker feel in here and especially the dedicated shower. The dark painted trim adds a nice accent that would have been overpowering on the vanity.

Her bathroom shoes how the same cabinetry and trim in a finish can produce a completely different feel. I’m happy the tub is here, out of my way. 

While I may be leaving you (sorta) in the bathroom, there’s plenty more to see. A partial attic conversion offers a large third floor media room while there’s even a 17-by-26 basement.  Yes, a basement in North Texas in 1924. I suspect in those pre-AC summers, it was where you stripped naked and laid on the floor to cool off.

Generous grounds (pardon winter’s bareness)

Speaking of cooling off, there’s a luxe outdoor pool and spa and detached garage. The two-car garage has a workshop, cabana, and half bath on the ground floor while there’s a full apartment on the second floor (likely where the staff lived in times gone by).

I can see a buyer for this home wanting the full-on home experience coupled with handiness to an urban environment’s entertainments and amenities. I would say that’s something that’s not changed since 1924, but back then, Swiss Avenue was likely thought of as suburban versus urban by a much smaller city.


Remember: High-rises, HOAs, and renovation are my beat. But I also appreciate modern and historical architecture balanced against the YIMBY movement. If you’re interested in hosting a Staff Meeting event, I’m your guy. In 2016 and 2017, the National Association of Real Estate Editors has recognized my writing with two Bronze (2016, 2017) and two Silver (2016, 2017) awards. Have a story to tell or a marriage proposal to make?  Shoot me an email


3 Comment

  • What a beautiful old gal. I just love seeing a house like this with so many original features looking so lovely. And a basement! Whoa.

  • mm

    Now you have found Candy’s next home! This home epitomizes the amazing beauty of Swiss Avenue architecture, which we can thank Dallas legend Virginia McAlester saving. Whenever I think of preservation, I think of the beauty of these homes that we will hopefully have for generations!

  • Outstanding domestic architecture was a 1920s American norm, and this beautiful home superlatively fills the mold. However, The Lone Star State is American and not British, Jon; accordingly, I’m staying with the American spelling of molding. I will magnify your “Hallelujah,” as these floor plans exhibit excellent living-family-sun-and dining room circulation for family and guests.