Before and After: A Beacon Hill Home Makeover
9 Lime Street, Boston
Square feet: 3,410
Year built: 1880
Last remodel: 1992
Aside from being extremely quaint and charming, Beacon Hill is old. Really old.
With some dwellings dating back almost 200 years, it’s possible that 25-year-old decor could seem relatively young. But at 9 Lime Street, it was time for a much-needed change.
The home’s current owner, a serial remodeler of sorts, bought the property four years ago. At the time, it was split into two separate apartments. The owner jumped straight into renovations, knocking down the wall that came between the units to create a single-family home.
While based in California, he worked with F.H. Perry Builder to transform the house into a sophisticated Nantucket-style abode while still maintaining the “odd and old” feel of Beacon Hill. The owner, interior designers, and contractors video conferenced and sent photos back and forth to coordinate the renovations.
Video conferencing aside, renovating a home built in 1880 is no walk in the park. There were a few problems to be addressed, including a wobbly central staircase and lack of storage space. Mike Resteghini, the project manager with F.H. Perry, explains that his team had to strengthen the staircase one floor at a time—from the basement to the third level.
“The spiral staircase was very rickety,” he says. “We undertook the replacement of every single baluster.”
Next, the team paneled the basement in beadboard for a nautical feel. The beadboard was clad over doorways to create “hidden” doors. They look much like the Colonial doors of the Cape and the Islands, as only the hinges and the slits of the door opening are visible from the outside. A new in-home gym occupies the basement area, and a laundry room sits behind a “hidden” door.
Builders also added additional trim to the home’s crown molding, darkened the original wood flooring, and stained the wood on the staircase. In addition to new guest quarters, the home’s roof deck was updated with gas heat, and it received copper molding, framing and detailing.
One unique challenge for Resteghini and his team was transportation.
“Beacon Hill being Beacon Hill, Lime Street is very narrow. It’s one-way, one-car with parking on the odd side of the street,” he says. “So getting material in and out and getting furniture delivered was all via crane.”
Since the kitchen is on the third floor, all of the appliances and cabinets came through the windows. Lime Street was closed to traffic about five or six times during the renovations.
Now that the commotion has ended, 9 Lime Street hit the market this week. While it sold for $2.35 million in 2012, the asking price has been upped to a cool $5.5 million. You can see the listing from Coldwell Banker Residential Brokerage here.
All photos courtesy of F.H. Builder