For Sale/Rent

On the Market: The Gloucester House That Inspired an Edward Hopper Painting

You can find Hopper's watercolor in the National Gallery of Art, or you can make your way to Gloucester to glimpse the hilltop "wedding cake house" in person.


Photo by Russell Serbagi for Coldwell Banker

316 Main St., Gloucester
Price: $1,245,000
Size: 3,491 square feet
Bedrooms: 4
Baths: 4.5

The story goes that American painter Edward Hopper and his wife, Josephine, used to refer to the house on the hill as “the wedding cake house.” From street level, the 30 granite steps lead up to a mansard roofed home, topped with a widow’s walk—meaning it might just look like a giant confection if you’re hungry enough.

But more than any frosting-finished dessert, this home is the spitting image of Hopper’s ethereal watercolor, “Haskell’s House.” The painting’s subject was built for master mariner and public official Melvin Haskell in 1900, and in 1924 Hopper immortalized the home. If you want to see Hopper’s version, you’ll have to travel to D.C., where the painting is on display at the National Gallery of Art. Or, you could take a drive up to Gloucester, and marvel at the residence in person. If you’re lucky enough to step inside, make your way to the dining room where a satisfying Droste effect hides—a very convincing replica of “Haskell’s House” hangs prominently on the wall.

While inside, be sure to take in the property’s beautiful finishes. A marble appointed sun room allows for ocean views from several angles, 10-foot ceilings make each room feel spacious and airy, and window seats serve as quintessential reading nooks. There’s also a gorgeous bathtub set on a polished brass base, and a home theater complete with cushy couches, backlit tray ceilings, and tiered floors for uninterrupted sightlines.

And let’s not forget the wedding cake topper: The home’s highest point is the widow’s walk, a petite roost with 11 windows that offer 360-degree views of Gloucester Harbor and the charming town that inspired more than 100 of Hopper’s paintings.

For more information, contact Mary Matthews, Coldwell Banker Residential Brokerage

Photo by Russell Serbagi for Coldwell Banker

Photo by Russell Serbagi for Coldwell Banker

Photo by Russell Serbagi for Coldwell Banker

Photo by Russell Serbagi for Coldwell Banker

Photo by Russell Serbagi for Coldwell Banker

Photo by Russell Serbagi for Coldwell Banker

Photo by Russell Serbagi for Coldwell Banker

Photo by Russell Serbagi for Coldwell Banker

Photo by Russell Serbagi for Coldwell Banker

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