Stunning main abode, cabana, quarters, putting greens, tennis court, pool, private stone-lined waterway and even an original storm shelter. Whose home is it? Oh how my lips are sealed! When someone asks me not to reveal information they give me, keep a secret, I DO. And so I am torn, dear readers, simply torn because this is SUCH a beautiful, sprawling, distinguished estate that has truly merged the elegance of yesteryear with today’s fingertip conveniences — so rarely found in Dallas.
But I have promised not to say who lives there.
So very many major names have been here, played here, slept here. Rather than tearing down and starting anew, these owners preserved the historic significance of a pioneering Preston Hollow home. I would love to tell you whose jammies it holds, but alas I gave my word. So zip. Mum. This home is not even in MLS.
This is what I can tell you: the beautiful estate, or a portion of it, was built in 1939 in old Preston Hollow when Preston Hollow was not even a part of Dallas. That’s right, Preston Hollow was actually its own township, just like Highland Park. In the late ’30’s, residents banded together to set up a township with Ira Deloache as one of the leaders in a move to incorporate as a tax-free city. On November 18,1939, Preston Hollow became incorporated as a township and remained independent (and tax-free) from the rest of the city, which practically ended at Mockingbird Lane. Preston Hollow was annexed by the city of Dallas on April 3 1945, for water and utility access. Recall my call to de-annex from Dallas a few years ago when I furious over property tax raises? Well if this home could talk, it would tell you what life was like in Dallas — no, scratch that — Old Preston Hollow before Northwest Highway even existed. Talk about walkable, Preston Hollow was TROT-ABLE: Eva Potter Morgan over on Ravine once told me she came home from school and rode her horses all through Preston Hollow, sometimes galloping.
But I digress from the story of this 10,000 square foot landmark estate. Nestled on almost five acres along a tributary of Bachman Creek, the English style home has had only three owners over the past 75 years.
Hmmm maybe I can tell you who two of those are…
Several years ago the current owners embarked upon an extensive, exhausting refurbishment of the original estate led by Boerder-Snyder Architects, designer Rebecca Hughes, and contractor Mike Deaton. Original elements were restored and fluffed, including the lime stone veneer facade and the slate roof. The original 1939 structure was then seamlessly expanded while it was improved, yet all the while mindful of the principal architect’s English country intentions and integrity.
Let me tell you what you get for a price somewhere in the eight digits. The main residence consists of four large, airy bedrooms — the master alone is about 18 by 26 — , five full and two half baths. The master bath is a his and her’s with enough closet space to hold Neiman Marcus NorthPark’s couture department. There is the original living and dining rooms, a conservatory, a sun room, family room with office tucked away, loggia, chef’s dream culinary kitchen, trophy room, a morning room (we know what those are) with media, and then something very unusual and uncommon, a “common room”. A “common room” is what the English and Canadians call a shared lounge, that is connected to many private rooms and sometimes shares a bathroom. The common room in this estate is more like the resting room at the Ritz Carlton Spa, and has an exterior entrance.
Retractable doors from the main house serve as the entrance to the magical back yard acreage experience with lush green and color, color everywhere. There is an outdoor kitchen on the way to the pool pavilion should you need nourishment. There are twin open-air pergolas near the pool pavilion, a pool and spa. There is also a large cabana room with a full service kitchen, fireplace, shower bath, and changing rooms. I have no doubt you could create a private jogging trail in the woods if none exists. There are also, and this is highly unusual, not one but TWO putting greens. A charming footbridge crosses a Bachman Creek outlet with limestone retaining wall, which leads to a peninsula where you find the regulation-size tennis court. Tucked discreetly in this scenario is a full service laundry facility, a breezeway, and a spacious four car garage.
Oh, and those Preston Hollow pioneers were smart whippersnappers: this home also has an underground storm shelter built in 1939 and tucked away in the original basement. If I have said it before, I’ll say it again: one of the most significantly amazing homes in Dallas, and the tops of any Most Beautiful list I might create. Listed with Ralph Randall (he gets the best dang listings) of Dave Perry Miller, an Ebby Halliday Company.