Tuesday, September 10, 2013
Photos: Ever seen a bedroom closet with a coffee bar and refrigerator?
This 8,900 square-foot monster in Highland Park has one.
HIGHLAND PARK I call this a Dallas Blueblood house! I loved this home when Angie owned it, and I love it even more now that it’s back on the market. Ronald Unkefer, he of First Broadcasting fame, and his beautiful wife Terry Lee, bought 3301 Beverly from Angie Barrett in November, 2008 after selling a larger, and quite breathtaking home at 4412 Lakeside Drive. (That pup was listed at $12,995,000 with Ellen Terry!) I just don’t have words to describe what happens when you take an awesome house and spend a year and a half with Lisa Luby Ryan as contractor/designer, add a few square feet — in this case, a screened porch off the master suite, and then, voila! It’s uber awesome!
Built in 1931, this Beverly babe is one of Highland Park’s more historic estate properties, and honestly, most beautiful. The 8,957 square foot home is set on a double acre, so you are buying .65 acres of BLUEBLOOD Highland Park dirt and the street name plus location don’t get much better. The lush lot also contains more than 40 trees — it’s like a park. Even better: a gated drive up with hand-laid stone motor court leading to the attached three car garage, and gated entrance off both Beverly and Abbot. Again, Blueblood property. It’s like you are in the estate area but in Highland Park!
When Angie owned this home, from about 1995 to 2008, it was remodeled to the tip-top with four bedroom suites, six full- and two half-baths, media room, wine cellar, elevator and pool. And of course she had the best master closet in town!
Well, the Unkefers remodeled again! It took a year to complete the remodel and as I said, Lisa Luby Ryan was at the helm. They stayed mainly within the footprint of the house, adding the screened outdoor area off the downstairs master suite. The house is now over 8,900 square feet with four bedroom suites, six full-baths including his/her master spa baths, a full pool bath, and of course private baths in each bedroom which we call “en suite,” plus two powder baths.
There is a beautiful large, formal living room at the front of the home with a private handsome library adjacent. The dining room has doors to walk out to the patio, and the lady of the manor’s office has windows to a pretty garden in the backyard. The kitchen, oh my. I thought it was great when Angie had it, but it was gutted and reconfigured to open it up and now includes an informal dining area, new enlarged windows, state of the art appliances and all new custom cabinets. The Great Room, 29 by 38 feet, is an incredible space for entertaining, with multiple seating areas and views to the pool and yard. Also here: an enormous wet bar and a grand piano enclave.
Those rooms are all amazing, but I believe it’s the master suite that just quickens my pulse. First of all, it is on the first level, rare for Highland Park but achievable in this home because of the huge lot. The master is off the Great Room with a fireplace, sitting area, doors to the newer screened outdoor area, both his and her bathrooms AND dressing rooms. Like I said, Angie Barrett had the best closet! The Unkefers took it a step further, adding a coffee bar in her closet that includes a sink and refrigerator. The only other master closets in town like this would be Leigh Bailey’s, the current Mrs. Mike Mullins in Preston Hollow, and maybe Sharon McCutchin who once had a 3,500 square foot master.
Oh, I am not through with you yet — you stay right here! There is a basement in this house, which Angie used as a wine cellar. Now it has been converted into an even more fabulous wine cellar with seating and expanded wine storage. Best tornado shelter in town!
Up the sweeping staircase, the second floor features an upstairs living area and two bedroom suites with private baths. The third floor has an additional bedroom and large bath, which I believe Angie used for an exercise room, or maybe it was the Unkefer’s previous home on Lakeside that had a third floor exercise room. I mean, just run up and down all those stairs and you can have legs like Lynae Fearing!
What is amazing is how the house was transformed and given Terry Lee’s personality and taste, without robbing one bit of 1930s charm. And you know, I feel a bit of Angie Barrett in here too, even though she escaped to total modernism down at One Arts Plaza. Asking price is $6.25 million. Listed with Eve Sullivan and Shelly Tillery at Allie Beth Allman. I think they’ll get it, or very close. Angie had it listed at $6,495,000 back in 2007 just before everything real estate went kaput. She lowered it to $4.8 million and it sold. The Unkefers, who moved to Texas from San Francisco and the Napa Valley in 1995, have poured buckets of money and love into the estate. In 2007, Ronald Unkefer stepped down as CEO of First Broadcasting on his charity organization, the Unkefer Family Foundation, a nonprofit organization that focuses on helping needy children and improving health care in Texas. Like their previous home, this one has great vibes … and the best master closet in Texas!
(P.S. The house when Angie owned it…)
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