I’ve been waiting, patiently, for us to come out of the holidaze to show you this drop-dead gorgeous historical Colonial mansion at 4224 Armstrong Parkway. We see a lot of über luxury homes each day, but this one ticks every single box I can think of that a multi-million-dollar home should offer and some I’d never considered!
First and foremost, hats off to owner Torie Steele, the visionary behind the transformation of this historical Colonial mansion. So many buyers would have razed this baby, and we’d have written a sob story about how Dallas has no soul and doesn’t value historical properties. But here comes Steele to save the day and save it to a degree of perfection we seldom see. But then Steele is a perfectionist in many areas. If you know anything about fashion, Steele was an industry leader in the 1980s. She started her first eponymous boutique on Rodeo drive and was the first to bring multiple European designers together under one roof. This was way before department stores even considered carrying big name designers. If you keep up with the Westminster Kennel Club Dog Show every year, you’ll have seen her wire fox terrier, Sky, win Best in Show a few years ago. She’s been breeding them with great success for over a decade. Striving for perfection and succeeding is in her DNA, and we’re delighted she turned her talents to saving this extraordinary home.
When you renovate a home to make it appealing and appropriate for the way we live in 2019, thoughtful and careful decisions must be made. This historical Colonial mansion has a provenance you don’t want to screw up. The original architect was Hal Thomson. For our newbies to Dallas, he was one of the most prolific architects of the era and designed many of the iconic homes on Swiss Avenue and in Highland Park.
Thomson got it right, to begin with, so you don’t want to get it wrong when you start updating. You just want to get it better. This historical colonial mansion was started in 1925 and took three years to complete. There have been less than a handful of owners over the years, and although the home had been meticulously cared for, it was seriously dated. Just take a look at the before photo of the peach and yellow living room. Taste, style, and certainly amenities change, and they change rapidly.
Steele brought the architectural firm of Larson and Pedigo who were able to share her vision. Clowdus Construction executed that distinct vision.
“The house was basically rebuilt,” Compass Real Estate listing agent Dan Rhodes said. “The façade is largely original, but the stone accents had been painted white. Torie had the paint removed then redid all of the mortar on the entire house so the stone and mortar would match. She also removed the hand-blown glass windows on the front of the house and had them completely recreated.”
The roof is Vermont slate, and that’s a new granite driveway because granite lasts forever. Yes, it runs right into the three-car garage.
The historical Colonial mansion was extended above the porte-cochère and expanded across the back. A new floor plan was created to embrace the classic style and add a formal entry. Steele even had craftsmen match original hardware and doorknobs. The basement was blown out and attic space expanded. Of course, all the plumbing and electrical were redone. She thought of the state-of-the-art amenities we all long for like art lighting, radiant heated floors, generators, solar panels, a Crestron system, and an elevator to all four floors.
“The control room in the basement looks like a ship,” Rhodes said. “She thought through everything. You cannot tell where the old and new meet because the remodel is completely seamless and honored the nature of what was originally there.”
The remodel on this 11,459-square-foot historical Colonial mansion took three years. With five bedrooms, seven bathrooms, and a powder bath, there’s plenty of room for a family and entertaining on a grand scale.
If you have house guests, even for an extended period, you have no worries. In fact, you may never see them because there is not only a guest cottage over the garage, but there is also a full guest suite in the basement. It’s close to the wine cellar and a place that perfectly fits a pool table, so you can see why guests might linger — for months.
There are a lot of jaw-drop moments when you first see this home, but the pièce de résistance has to be the master bathroom.
“It’s incredible,” Rhodes said. “The iron and glass cupola reminds me of something out of ‘Willy Wonka & the Chocolate Factory.’”
“It’s a house to be experienced, Rhodes said. “It has been brought back to life with current luxury home standards. Today you only find modern construction that has the features this home offers.”
This historical Colonial mansion is listed for $15,528 million. It really has it all, architectural significance, a flawless expansion, a remodel that honors the historical origins and every modern amenity. One last thing, it’s in an undeniably perfect location, four houses down from the famous holiday tree of lights on Armstrong Parkway!
Karen Eubank is the owner of Eubank Staging and Design. She has been an award-winning professional home stager and writer for over 25 years. Karen teaches the popular Staging to Sell class and is the creator of the online course, The Beginners Guide to Buying Wholesale. Her love of dogs, international travel, history, white paint, champagne, artificial turf, and Tudor and Midcentury Modern homes knows no bounds. Her father was a spy, so she keeps secrets very well! Find Karen at www.eubankstaging.com