This beautiful, hypermodern home used to be a 1920s-era garage, which further confirms my theory that all the best homes were originally built as something else, a la the warehouse loft, the container home, etc. This house, and its very similar neighbor, collectively make up the Cluss Court Car Barn project, which sounds like the name of a jam band formed by a bunch of country musicians who just took LSD for the first time. It’s named after the original architect, Adolf Cluss, who was also one of the designers behind the Smithsonian castle; the castle is one of the most unique buildings in the District, so this place has an enviable pedigree.
You enter through a Corten fence, which is a kind of decorative steel wall that wouldn’t look out of place in a sculpture garden, but could also withstand a direct hit from a bazooka. A fence like this in the front of your house is the most unsubtle way possible to communicate to your neighbors that you’re either deeply antisocial or are growing a bumper crop of medicinal-grade marijuana on your patio. Possibly both. Speaking of the patio, it’s made of white birch and opens into the front of the home via a massive folding glass door, so that the whole front part of the house becomes an open air gallery. Inside, the living room has a totally open floor plan and a huge wood-burning fireplace, in case your heat gets turned off for nonpayment in the wintertime, and you have to heat the place with tree branches stolen from Rock Creek Park. (I actually had to do this one winter; I was shocked at how much heat a fireplace can blast out, but the entire house and everything in it slowly became covered with a thin layer of soot, and after a couple weeks I was coughing up dark mucus every morning like a coal miner with black lung. Moral of the story: pay your gas bill.) (Still, a crackling fire is nice now and then.)
The all-white kitchen features stainless steel appliances and a massive marble-topped island with a long breakfast bar where I guarantee you’ll never eat breakfast, because as every office worker knows, ten extra minutes of sleep is totally worth starving until lunch. Upstairs, the master bedroom is huge, with two exposures, and oversized windows that extend basically all the way to the ground. If you sleepwalk, you might want to tie your ankle to your bedpost. The master bath is truly lavish, with twin basins and backlit mirrors that’ll make you feel like you’re using one of those intergalactic communication devices from “Star Trek” every time you floss. The huge soaking tub is in the actual shower – why not? – and there are two showerheads, which brings up a whole list of questions that I can’t really go into here. Oh, and there’s a skylight in the shower, which is pretty cool. In the den-slash-family room, which is located nearby, there are three more skylights, so you’re going to get great natural light in there. Don’t even bother thinking about the rare but well-documented cases of massive frozen chunks of airplane sewage plummeting to earth like asteroids made of toilet water.
322 Adolf Cluss Court SE
3 Bedrooms, 3.5 Baths
All photos courtesy MRIS; listing courtesy Sotheby’s, 202-333-1212