creating a dream home from a drab house in a desired location

HNR - 543 Elmwood DriveThis is an article I wanted to share with you.  It has been freshly published by my favorite source and Broker: Harry Norman, Realtors.

Young professionals eager to live in Atlanta’s in-town neighborhoods are transforming formerly small, boxy bungalows and out-of-date homes into stunning custom spaces of their dreams. More and more frequently, these custom remodels are sprouting up in Atlanta’s in-town neighborhoods. A prime example of this trend is the formerly nondescript, outdated brick bungalow that sits at 543 Elmwood Drive in the Midtown / Virginia Highland.

“The renovation is now a breathtaking oasis that raises the standard on what it means to have an ‘outdoor-indoor’ space,” says Butch Whitfield, exclusive Harry Norman listing agent for the Elmwood home.

In 2005, the bland bungalow underwent a drastic transformation, documented by HGTV’s “Groundbreakers,” into a stunning Bauhaus modernist home. The owners recognized the potential of their location and capitalized on it – the home is one of seven or eight homes that sit on the Atlanta Beltline and overlook Piedmont Park with unobstructed views of the Midtown skyline. Retractable exterior glass walls make up the entirety of the back of the home; with the flip of a switch, the glass windows can be retracted, transforming the already grand rooms into an “outdoor” oasis that has the feel of a fully-equipped tree-house. The retractable windows cover the great room and master bedroom, making them feel like outdoor living areas but with all the conveniences of luxury living.

Not only does the home overlook picturesque Piedmont Park with pristine Midtown views, but award-winning Japanese-style gardens lush with red bamboo, moss, lavender, and Black-eyed Susans surround the exterior. The koi ponds full of goldfish and lilies are shaded by Japanese maples. To enter the home, guests must pass over a floating walkway surrounded by a stunning water feature. Additionally, much of the materials used in the front were preserved from the home’s original construction.

The home exemplifies luxury in every facet imaginable.  Inside, guests will find a formal library, dining room, breakfast room, California-style kitchen with custom Mahogany cabinetry, concrete countertops and a wash plane sink. Upstairs, the master bathroom (which can double as a steam room) is outfitted with a Japanese soaking tub and multi-head showers. The bathroom and master bedroom are both set underneath the rooftop pool with a glass bottom, giving the rooms a uniquely exotic feel.”

This home of about 4,800 square feet is currently for sale.  Price tag: $1,950,000. Interested?  Call me for more information or click here.

modern home tour coming up

Since 2007 Modern Atlanta Home Tour has inspired, entertained, and educated thousands of admiring fans in love with contemporary architecture and thoughtful designs.  For its 6th edition, a home tour in Charlotte, Chapel Hill and Raleigh has been added on June 1st.

Contemporary residential and commercial architecture, conversion-projects, sustainable designs, modernity, newsworthy trends … Experience the exuberance of Atlanta’s rebellious spirit in modernism on June 8th and 9th.

MA Home Tour ticket price includes:

  • ‘Design Is Human Week’ glossy publication/MA13 Home Tour guidebook
  • the June 1 (10am -4pm) home tours in Charlotte, Chapel Hill and Raleigh
  • the 2-day home tour in Atlanta on June 8-9 from 10am – 4pm
  • entry to 2013 Modern Atlanta Home Tour Launch Event on June 7th at ADAC (Atlanta) from 6:30 pm – 10:30 pm
  • the ‘Design Is Human Week Exhibition’ in Atlanta

Rain or shine, I look forward to seeing you in June!    But before that, I am offering you a Sneak Peak of the 2013 Tour!   Here is 2980 Argonne designed by Dencity LLC and built by Cablik Enterprises in May 2012.

Built on a beautiful .63 acre lot with mature trees in the famous Argonne Forest, 2980 Argonne Drive features 3 bedrooms and 3 baths.   The home’’s entry procures a commanding and striking effect.  An exterior stairway built of aluminum treads and railings leads up to a landing, which appears to be floating over the reflecting pool below.  From the landing, guests are welcomed by a custom-made 6’ x 10’ iron offset pivot door, which provides a grand entrance into the home.

The open living / dining / kitchen area includes an Italian-made Pedini kitchen, and 24” x 24” white porcelain tiles for a clean, modern look.  A separate bar in the living area features a glass countertop and backsplash.  At the back of the home, auto showroom doors open to a full 9′’ opening leading to a gracious back patio with in-ground pool.  This outdoor entertaining area is accessible from both the main living areas of the home, as well as the master bedroom, and a full landscape package compliments the home.  The home is wired for surround sound for television and audio.

The master bath in this modern home features a unique teak countertop, accented by a slatted teak platform near the master shower.  The other baths feature custom silestone raised sinks.

A custom floating stairway with glass handrails leads to the lower level, featuring a bedroom, and gym with steam shower.

The Argonne Residence in Buckhead is designed by Dencity and built by Cablik Enterprises Galina Coada Photography

The Argonne Residence in Buckhead is designed by Dencity and built by Cablik Enterprises
Galina Coada Photography

modern jewel in buckhead

3303 Chatham Road

3303 Chatham Road

Amateurs of modern homes, if you are looking for quality craftsmanship within a prime location, 3303 Chatham Road is an incredible find … that if the price tag of $3,000,000 doesn’t scare you.

Built in 1982 and designed by renowned architect Fred Briggs, this 8,251 square-foot entertainer’s dream is a true California contemporary.   Nestled in the heart of Buckhead, on a private 2-acre lot with a gated entrance, this ultra modern ranch, counts 4 bedrooms, each with its own full bathroom.    From the moment you step in to this home through its majestic entrance, you will enjoy an impressive flow and airy floor plan combined with a deluge of natural light.

The current owners, who purchased their property in December 2008 for $2,245,000, added a 750 square-foot ‘wing’ that includes an indoor salt water pool with spa and a fitness center with full bathroom (bringing the total of bathrooms to 5).  The state of the art kitchen with commercial grade appliances (sub-zero fridges, wine cooler, dual Asko dishwashers, Wolf dual stove & gas cook top, built-in microwave and in-counter steamer) has been completely renovated during the current ownership.  The huge master suite with fireplace comprises custom closets and a spacious sitting room that could easily transformed into an office or a nursery.  This house comes with all the bells and whistles that you can dream of!

Here are a few additional highlights: 3 fireplaces | 3-car garage | high-end security system | Crestron home automation system | Custom finishes throughout home | whole house generator | additional storage.

My colleague Pam Salls from Atlanta Communities, the listing agent for this property, will hold it open to the public between 2 & 4 pm tomorrow Sunday 4/21.  If you go, tell Pam that you found her listing on my blog; she will appreciate it!

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The accuracy of all information is deemed reliable but not guaranteed. Interested parties are advised to independently verify this information through personal inspection by and/or with the appropriate professionals. Offer subject to errors, changes, omissions, prior sales and withdrawals without notice. Equal Housing Opportunity. Listing provided courtesy of ATLANTA COMMUNITIES.  FMLS # 5134301.


The OBIE Awards, named after the obelisk shape of the actual award given, are the premier awards in the new home construction industry.  Awards are given to recognize outstanding achievement in new home building, marketing, remodeling and personal achievement categories.  The Sales and Marketing Council of the HBA presents the annual OBIE Awards every November.

This year Cablik, did it again and added 3 OBIE Awards to its collection:

  • Best New Home $2.5 Million—$5 Million: Greenpine Residence
  • Best Green Home: LaFrance Residence
  • Best Green Renovation: Ragley Hall Residence

The Greenpine Residence also known as “Senegal”, is a custom modern home designed by Dencity LLC and built by Cablik Enterprises sitting on a lake in Sandy Springs.

La France Residence, built in 2011, is a custom built on a small infill corner lot in the Edgewood neighborhood with a construction budget under $500,000.  West Architecture Studio was selected as the architect.

Ragley Hall Residence, located in the in-town neighborhood of Brookhaven, is a 1972 split-level home which received mid-century modern renovation updates for a renovation budget of $200,000.  Once again, Dencity LLC was the master architect for this project!

Cablik with its Modern Dwellings department has become one of Atlanta’s biggest names among the modern home builders.  With a strong presence on the Altanta Modern Home Tour year after year, Cablik presents its innovative concepts to a growing number of Atlantans bitten by the modern bug.

Read more about this year’s OBIE winners.

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how modern is contemporary?

The concept of “modern’ has not yet been captured by our Georgia FMLS system.  In other words, if you are looking at buying a modern home, the only option you have is to select “contemporary’ as style.  In my eyes, there is a huge difference between the two.  Out of curiosity, I just did a quick search for contemporary homes within our FMLS and I obtained no less than 767 houses of which 359 are currently listed at $200K or under.  Only one retained my attention: a renovated mid-century classic (1957).  It’s modern twist is described as concrete counters, stainless appliances, ebony hardwood floors, recessed lighting and stylish fixtures in the bathrooms.  Does it make it “modern”?  Certainly not.  Amongst the 400+ homes left over, 80 made my pre-selection and 45 made the cut.  Here are the listings I classified as “modern” even if sometimes I am not totally convinced.

  • Note 1 – for my FMLS search, I only selected detached houses based on their exterior look.  A “unique” custom built home didn’t make my list either … it doesn’t necessarily qualify as modern.
  • Note 2 – another post will explain what modern means…
  • Note 3 – the concept of contemporary is also hugely misunderstood by some of my pairs … Typo or ignorance … Who knows.  Sellers, check your listing because a buyer looking at a traditional home is not going to find yours if categorized as contemporary … So don’t be surprised that it takes that long to sell.