Editor's Note: Houston is loaded with must-have houses for sale in all shapes, sizes and price ranges. In this continuing series, CultureMap snoops through some of the best and gives you the lowdown on what's hot on the market.
A piece of Houston's history just went up for sale: The Waldo Mansion in Montrose.
Confederate veteran J.P. Waldo and wife Mary Virginia Gentry, daughter of railroad promoter Abram Gentry, first built this magnificent house in 1885 at the corner of Rusk and Caroline. In 1905, Waldo's son Wilmer moved the residence to its current location, 201 Westmoreland, where it now nestles on a 25,000-square-foot corner lot among mature trees, lush lawn and landscaping and decorative iron-fenced privacy. Period detail and elegance is found everywhere inside the 6,598-square-foot residence.
Past the charming wrap-around veranda, enter through stained-glass interior doors protected by an exterior and insulating double-door vestibule to a stately ambiance reaching from original wood floors all the way to the top of the 15-foot-high ceilings. In fact, you'll find authentic wood elements from the flooring to wall panels and door and window frames throughout, all in immaculate condition.
To the right, a study awaits the gentleman — and gentlewoman — of the house, while to the left, a living room with working jet-gas fireplace awaits. Step into the dining room, where a vintage chandelier casts its warm glow over the large room. A modern kitchen is close at hand, with plenty of room for catering parties. Downstairs is roomy wine storage for those favorite beverages.
Upstairs via either of two elegant, curving staircases, new carpet covers the floors, and 14-foot ceilings house the three bedrooms. The master bedroom includes a sitting area and luxurious bath with marble columns on either side of a center bathtub that sits directly in front of a fireplace with mantel. In total, the house features 10 gas fireplaces, with one mock in the entry hall. A lofted-ceiling cubby on the third floor is now designated as a media room.
The private courtyard is a place to relax to the sounds of a fountain with goldfish pond guarded by towering palm trees. A detached 1600-square-foot guest house has two to three bedrooms and two baths. Additional bonus: A three-car garage with a large gated motor court sit to the side of the mansion.
Square footage: 6,598
Asking price: $3.5 million
Listing agent: Richard Ray, John Daugherty, Realtors