Just in time for Halloween, we have a triple treat for you! It’s a Hollywood Heights magnificent Tudor on a triple lot. That’s right, a triple lot!
You don’t often find a house anywhere, much less Hollywood Heights, that sits on a triple lot. Most of you know by now this is my ‘hood and has been since 1990, so I know a lot about it. We have several double lots, but our last triple was gobbled up by a builder who constructed homes on either side. Don’t get me wrong, they are lovely houses, but having a home with all that land is honestly a value you can’t put a price on. And having a magnificent Tudor on three lots is my version of heaven.
Let me take you back a bit to 1952 when this magnificent Tudor was for sale. Here’s the advertisement that ran in The Dallas Morning News:
A quality home in beautiful Hollywood. Two-bedroom, brick cottage with big pine-paneled den in basement. Lot 150 x 150 with picturesque landscaping. Servant Room. This fine home has charm, and the whole family will love it! $21,500!
So, bear that description in mind. Hollywood Heights is a Conservation District. That means you need a great contractor and a greater deal of patience if you are going to do pretty much anything here. Exterior preservation is restricted in all sorts of ways to ensure people don’t create some sort of modern monstrosity. This is a very real threat as it has happened all around us, in surrounding neighborhoods. Homes in Conservation Districts must remain in character from the front and for a certain distance on either side. But inside, all bets are off. You can do what you want. That’s exactly what the Prieto’s did to turn this small home into the magnificent Tudor you see today.
When Dan and Betsy Prieto purchased their magnificent Tudor in 2014, they fully intended to do an extensive remodel. The house was only about 1,400 square feet, with two bedrooms and one bathroom. Certainly not big enough for a family.
“The house originally sat on two of the lots,” Dan said. “We were not authorized to touch the third lot. Each lot is deeded for a single dwelling.” When this magnificent Tudor was built in 1939, they had approved the building of one house on two lots, so the house was grandfathered in and could be expanded on two of the lots. The couple took advantage of that and built a massive deck off the kitchen and family room.
They hired Matt Montgomery, owner of Montgomery Custom Homes. Matt is a third-generation builder.
“He was doing some spec homes in Hollywood and the C Streets, and we liked his aesthetic,” Dan said. “He also knew how to navigate the conservation district restrictions and is very into green building, so put a lot of emphasis on making the house energy efficient.”
“We opened up the entire house, added onto the back, and added a second story. It now has 3,763 square feet, four bedrooms, four bathrooms, a powder bath, a 462-square-foot guest quarters above the garage, and that basement I mentioned.
Remember that description from the ‘50s? That pine-paneled basement was a big part of the remodel plans.
“The basement was a labor of love,” Dan said. “It’s one of the best things we did. The original basement had six-foot ceilings. The house sits on bedrock, so we had to dig it out! We find ourselves using it all the time. At every party, the kids head to the basement and it and it allows us to have a nice separation for the adults.”
The Prietos are going to miss so much about his home, the vast open-plan living space, and that great basement, but what they will miss the most is the privacy those three lots afford. “We have a dog and two kids who play soccer and football out there,” Dan said. We could have sold that third lot, but we loved having space. You just don’t get that sort of space in Dallas and not in this neighborhood. We hope no one chops it up. If I were looking at this house for the first time, I’d want all the land.”
Then there is the neighborhood that will also be sorely missed. “I’ve never been in a neighborhood with such community,” Dan said. The Easter parade and the Halloween and Christmas events are so unique. The overall feel of the community has a very distinct culture. It’s hard to find that in any neighborhood. We’d never have left if it were not for a great job opportunity.”
Allie Beth Allman listing agent Joe Kacynski has this magnificent Tudor at 620 Monte Vista Drive, listed for $1.049 million. Believe me, you want that third lot, and you can afford it. Just call Joe, he’ll make it happen!
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 all dogs, international travel, good chocolate, great champagne, and historic homes knows no bounds. Her father was a spy, so she keeps secrets very well!