It makes perfect sense: you live in a house of glass, so everyone can see you. Therefore what you wear becomes supremely important and let’s face it — no hauling your butt to the fridge bare-ass naked. So it is smart, very smart indeed that the folks at Highland Park Village trekked out to New Canaan, Connecticut to shoot the fashion spread for the premiere issue of Highland Park Village Magazine. What you say, another new corporate magazine? Yes indeedy, that is the trend. And this one is on the web, too, gorgeous, slick, and brimming with design — kind of like The Glass House. The fact that HPV even got to snap a camera at this architectural landmark is HUGE: apparently Highland Park Village will be supporting the preservation of The Glass House.

With it’s perfect proportions and gleaming simplicity, the Glass House by Philip Johnson is considered one of the most brilliant works of modern architecture. Completed in 1949, the one-story house has a 32′x56′ open floor plan enclosed in 18-feet-wide floor-to-ceiling sheets of glass between black steel piers and stock H-beams that anchor the glass in place. Inspired by the architect’s mentor, Mies van der Rohe, Who built Farnsworth House. The structure, however, did not impress Mies when he visited. According to legend, Mies stormed out of The Glass House in fury because of what he interpreted as a lack of thought in the details of the house.

© Creative Commons – Photo Credit: Melody Kramer

Still, it’s a great place for a photo shoot, and I would think a challenge for any photographer.  The clear glass panels create a series of reflections, including those of the surrounding trees, and people walking inside or outside of the house, layering them on top of one another and creating everchanging images — very cool, but a photographer’s nightmare?.

© http://www.flickr.com/photos/arzan/2784540822/

I have visited Farnsworth House, it is in the vicinity of where I grew up. The Glass House is similar, the interior completely exposed to the outdoors except for a cylinder brick structure with the entrance to the bathroom on one side and a fireplace on the other side. Not open, exposed. The floor-to-ceiling height is ten and a half feet and the brick cylinder structure protrudes from the top. The floor is also made herringbone patterned red brick and is ten inches off of ground level. The only other divisions or solid walls in the house besides the bathroom are discreetly done with low cabinets and bookshelves, making the house a single open room. This provides great ventilation and incredible lighting.

© http://www.flickr.com/photos/arzan/2784530538/

The house is the primary attraction on the site, but Johnson built thirteen more structures that include a guest house, an art gallery, and a sculpture pavilion. In contrast to The Glass House, the guest house is a heavy brick structure, contrasting the extreme lightness and transparency expressed in the Glass House. Interesting: the art gallery is buried underground in order to not take away attention from the house, making it a windowless gallery. (The house reigns supreme here as the art!) There is also a  a sculpture gallery, an “assymmetrical white-brick shed with a glass roof… conceived as a series of interlocking rooms that step down around an open, central space.”

© Creative Commons – Photo Credit: Melody Kramer

The Glass House was declared a National Historic Landmark in 1997.  Now, who is publishing this magazine (again) and why are they jetting all the way to New Canaan to take these photos in an historical landmark? Well one, we do not have a Glass House in Dallas and maybe Farnsworth House in Plano, Illinois was a long drive from O’Hare in Chicago. Two, the publishers would be the owners of Highland Park Village, Ray and Heather Washburne, and Stephen and Elisa Summers. Because magazine advertising is so costly, many companies are opting to forgo it and just create their own publications, like Ebby Halliday’s Grand Vie and Erin Mathews’/David Nichol’s MN Home. The circulation is controlled, and you only hit up folks who can afford to buy your products — make sense?

And I remember a few years ago when some people said luxury was dead. Ha! Now the fine folks at HPV are so busy selling luxury items to luxury buyers, they are extending their hours: the shops that were previously open from 10 a.m. to 6 p.m. will stay open until 8 p.m. so we won’t have to race like hellions to get there anymore.

I have watched, no, stalked, this home at 9839 Rockbrook for a long, long time hoping it might descend into a downward price cycle spiral and end up under $2 million so I might could buy it. But that, my dear readers, is just California Dreamin’ on my part.

Where do I begin? Maybe by wiping the drool off my face. Perfect location, really one of the best in Dallas. Forget Park Cities, Preston Hollow is way too crowded. Rockbrook has always been the street that to me, says, “you’ve arrived.” Rockbrook means that you have it together so much you don’t even think about arriving. This the “Stretto” house was built in 1990 by Thomas Byrne Co for an oil exec and published so much the house is starting to smile for photos. It is probably among the most architecturally significant residences in the city, on the very short list. Set on 1.459 acres, the home feels isolated though you are minutes from Fernandos and Preston Center.

The home evoked the same feeling I had when I visited Farnsworth house in Illinois one frosty morning.

It’s been reduced from $5 million to $4,400,000. Well, every little bit helps!

The home is tucked behind a narrow gravel drive —  provides privacy from the street — nestled behind old growth trees. The owners hired architect Steven Holl after they encountered his work in a show at the Museum of Modern Art. Holl says the overlapping ponds and terrain inspired him. Water is very much a part of this home. Rooms are dramatic and expansive for large scale art, yet there are cozy nooks for living. The first floor is the living, dining, library, kitchen and guest room, and the entire second floor is a master suite, complete with its own outdoor terrace and his and her baths. That’s it: 5000 square feet, two bedrooms.

But your precious guests get to chill in a separate two bedroom, two bath house, accessed by a bridge over a stream. They will enjoy sky, tree and water views from every angle. The main home has 5485 square feet on 1.45 acres, including a wine cellar, media room, library and study and tons of storage. There is another 1 acre lot to the south (9825 Rockbrook) available for extra cashola, an additional $2,500,000 to be exact. That purchase would give a buyer a total lot size of 2.459 acres. On Rockbrook. Heartbeat of Bluffview.

Interestingly, the owners of this home, Charles and Jessie Price, also own a 5049 square foot unit, $3 million plus unit at The Mansion Residences that is NOT on the market. Have owned it since 2010, when they bought it from Lawrence Pollack.  Sounds very much like another well-known natural gas baron who owns multiple Dallas properties and is busy buying more. Stay tuned!  

 

 

 

I’m cheating on my house again, but it is totally worth it for this one. Oh my, oh my. I saw this house and it took my breath away. I cannot help my feelings. It was a total Jedediah Leland/Citizen Kane moment: this house is my “girl in the white dress”.¬† I immediately flashed back to Mies Van Der Roh’s Farnsworth House, near where I grew up. But this home is called The Glass Pavilion, designed by Steve Hermann, and it is almost 14,000 square feet! A little big but I am still head over heels in love!

Set within a 3.5+/- acre estate of oak groves in Montecito, this almost entirely glass home allows occupants to be enveloped by  nature. As you drive down the long gated driveway, it slowly comes into view.

And it appears weightless, through the use of massive structural steel beams, as if it hovers above the expansive lawn. As you can imagine, the budget to build this home was virtually limit-less and it took six years to complete — well, this is California. The glass panels are all created of Star Fire glass, an incredibly clear glass usually reserved for jewelry displays. Kitchens and baths by Varena, Poliform and Antonio Lupi. The home has five bedrooms, five and a half baths, grand hallway and large wine room. (Do you see that walk-through shower?) The glass pavilion includes an art gallery where the owners currently display their vintage car collection. The space is so generous that it is capable of holding up to 32 cars within its walnut lined walls. I mean, you could practically hold the Pebble Beach Concours D’Elegance in there!

The price is $23,900,000 and it has been reduced. I have been telling you — this is a great time to buy a house. Or maybe just buy love! And for a real weekend treat, sit back with a crisp glass of Pinot and watch this video — from the “mahvelous” Kevin Day Media. Crank up the volume! Enjoy!