On the Market: Georgetown listing offers modernist take on historic house

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The historic home at 1412 34th St. NW balances historic and modern design. (Photo courtesy of HomeVisit)

Architectural style is an eminently renewable resource. The John McKenna House at 1412 34th St. NW is a beautiful example of Federal style, with its understated exterior, simple moldings and geometric lines. All of these features make the brick home, recognized by the Foundation for the Preservation of Historic Georgetown, the ideal frame for the very contemporary and minimalist aesthetic within.

The historic home at 1412 34th St. NW balances historic and modern design. (Photo courtesy of HomeVisit)

Built in 1891, it was totally gutted, reimagined and rebuilt in 2014 by Rixey-Rixey Architects, whose commitment to historic preservation and expertise in sustainable design is evident in even the smallest detail (for example, gray-painted window interior trim that seems to disappear, square recessed downlights, concealed Adorne electrical devices, and custom designed baseboards and millwork).

The three-level property offers close to 2,400 square feet of open and flexible living space and includes two bedrooms, two-and-a half baths, two fireplaces and rear garden. It is on the market for $2,500,000.

The entrance hall and first-level gallery are an extension of the cool, pale dove-gray facade. To the left is a white brick accent wall — a design element that repeats again in the kitchen and bathroom on the second level — and floating glass and stainless staircase with hidden storage and witty house-shaped pet door underneath. To the right is a library with white custom bookshelves and cabinetry surrounding the street-facing windows.

This front room leads to a kitchenette bright with high-gloss gray cabinetry, mirrored backsplashes, white Caesarstone quartz counters, a concealed Sub-Zero undercounter refrigerator and a Miele dishwasher.

Off the kitchenette is a guest room with a double-hanging closet and a full guest bath, featuring a large walk-in shower with glass doors, a Toto wall-hung toilet and contemporary vanity with a distinctive disc-shaped glass and chrome faucet.

The stairs take you up to the main floor of the home (the “piano nobile”) on the second level — a loft-like space dramatically lit by three skylights, a wall of historic windows overlooking the street and four French doors that open to the private flagstone patio with terraced gardens and built-in Wolf natural grass grill/rotisserie.

A two-sided glass contemporary gas fireplace adds to the light and airy feel, while bamboo floors lend an exotic and eco-friendly touch to the open plan dining/living/sitting area.

The historic home at 1412 34th St. NW balances historic and modern design. (Photo courtesy of HomeVisit)

The galley kitchen, a sleek and minimalist workspace, opens to the rear patio and is visible to the living room via the gas fireplace. It features Woodmode cabinets (white lacquer and wood grain) with soft-close doors and drawers, white Caesarstone quartz counters and LED under-cabinet lighting. A suite of high-end appliances includes a fully integrated Sub-Zero refrigerator and two freezer drawers; Wolf dual fuel four-burner range, exhaust hood and oven; and Miele dishwasher.

Also on this level is a powder room with mirrored walls and wall-hung vanity with Philippe Starck faucet.

At the top of the house is the master suite, a stunning retreat with walls of windows offering garden and street views. A massive walk-in closet and open dressing room, both located in a hallway off the bedroom, provide ample storage with extensive built-in millwork. There is also a laundry room with LG large capacity washer and gas dryer and high-gloss white cabinets.

The master bedroom enjoys abundant light thanks to south- and west- facing windows and a large skylight. Like the sitting room downstairs, it features a recessed wall-mounted TV (here with an in-mirror screen) and contemporary gas fireplace.

Of all the rooms, it is the master bath that has pride of place, starting with the LED drop-light fixture set in a circular recess and pulsing with ever-changing bioluminescent color. Other luxe features include a heated porcelain floor; an 11-foot-wide Wood-Mode vanity in high-gloss white with white Caesarstone top; contemporary sinks complete with lower outlets for personal care devices; a free-standing Victoria + Albert tub with Grohe fittings; GSI contemporary toilet and bidet; and deep walk-in shower with frameless glass doors and Grohe rainhead showers.

Located in Georgetown’s West Village, this high-tech, high-touch property is within walking distance to all the neighborhood’s dining, retail and cultural attractions and a short ride along 34th Street to Key Bridge and Virginia.

The two bedroom, two-and-a-half-bath home at 1412 34th St. NW is listed for $2,500,000 with Long & Foster Real Estate. For details, contact Stephen C. Vardas at 202-744-0411 or scvardas@gmail.com. For a virtual tour, visit bit.ly/2oKKhqd.