Living Large: Put Down Roots
Rachel Slade’s off-kilter take on hub dwellings.
Photographs by Russ Mezikofsky
Poking about Beacon Hill has its rewards, and few are as satisfying as an encounter with 130 Mount Vernon, also known as the Sunflower Castle. The showstopping façade, festooned with carvings of griffins and, yes, sunflowers, was conceived by 19th-century artist and designer Frank Hill Smith. Behind this fantastical exterior is a bright and inviting interior with high ceilings and copious windows. The current owner, who bought the 3,420-square-foot home 12 years ago, spent $2 million overhauling the parts few see but everyone prays are sound, including the foundation, plumbing, and wiring. (She jokes that the house is so firmly anchored that it’ll remain even when the neighboring Back Bay finally slips its moorings.) An avid green thumb and cook, the owner also added a new kitchen overlooking a thoughtfully executed Japanese garden. Finally, using old photos as reference, she reproduced original details such as the fireplace surrounds and staircase bannister. But what we love most is the choice corner location on the flat of the hill, with a view up Mount Vernon to Louisburg Square—the comings and goings of senators and billionaires are always of great interest.
ON THE MARKET
Address: 130 Mount Vernon St., Boston
Listing price: $4,600,000
Listing agent: William Montero, Warren residential Group, 617-312-7232, warrenre.com
Stats: Four bedrooms, three baths, one half bath
After a recent court ruling, any licensed general contractor can now work on solar photovoltaic projects (previously, only master electricians could do so). More installers, of course, means more renewable energy and less dependence on oil.
According to a Men’s Health study, Boston is one of the least dog-friendly places in the country, coming in 89th out of the 100 cities surveyed. Does our lack of parks and pet-accommodating apartments make us all…cat ladies?