My girlfriend sometimes goes to these open houses with me, depending on the price range. If it’s a place she could theoretically afford, she always goes, and gets super petty and critical of the place. (“Great views … of the dumpsters.” “I’ve seen airplane bathrooms with more counterspace.”) But if it’s way out of her price range, she either goes and gets really quiet and sullen and then spends the rest of the day sighing, or doesn’t go at all. On this Sunday, when she asked me what house I was going to check out, I said, “It’s the most expensive listing in the city, a gut renovation on a massive corner lot that backs up to the park.” She just looked at me for a long time and then said, “Just listening to that description depressed me. I’m depressed now.” (An hour later, when I was at the open house alone, she sent me a text that said, “Still depressed.”)
This actually is a depressingly great house, but I mean that as the highest compliment. With the corner lot, the top-notch renovation, and the park literally in the backyard, this house is like one of those ultra-rare people who’s both super good-looking and also super smart. (A hundred percent of those people are full-blown sociopaths, but still – how great would it be to be able to talk yourself out of parking tickets?) It’s been totally remade and improved both inside and out, sort of like you say you’re going to do to yourself the morning after you get really really drunk, but then Monday comes and you go right back to looking at Reddit until 4:15 and then doing 40 minutes of work before adjourning to Hooters. The interior is all clean lines and bright open spaces, with an awesome open staircase as the centerpiece of the main level. Upon closer inspection, what looks like gaps are actually glass risers, which gives the stairs a sort of PG-13 voyeuristic flourish. Get ready for lots of accidental eye contact with family members through the glass stairs. (Just kill me now.) The living room has a frankly jaw-dropping double-sided indoor/outdoor fireplace, which I didn’t even realize was a thing that existed, so people out on the patio can enjoy the same fire as the people inside, in the living room. We all have that friend who, when you have a party, is going to get wasted and try to get a running start and dive through the flames into the living room. (Twenty bucks says his name is Steve, Doug, or Brad.) In the other living room area is a regular one-sided fireplace, though I bet you could convince Steve, Doug or Brad to jump headfirst into it anyway.
The kitchen is a big centrally-located slab of all-white vaguely European sophistication, with top-of-the-line appliances worth more than many small planes, and Calacatta Gold silestone counters. Did you know that silestone (which isn’t actually a real stone – it’s a synthetic quartz compound) has antibacterial properties? Makes it great for kitchens. If this open house would’ve been a few weeks later, during allergy season, I would’ve been happy to demonstrate by sneezing all over the counters, but alas, it was in March. (Agents – contact me starting April 1 if you’re interested in this service.)
Upstairs, the master bedroom has two perpendicular walls of honest-to-gosh floor-to-ceiling windows facing the park, so feel free to walk around without any clothes on, you unrepentant pervert. The master bath seems as spacious as an auto showroom, and features twin basins, a glass-walled shower, and a freestanding soaking tub. There are also heated floors, a feature I personally regard as the deciding line between “nice” and “luxury.” (My bathroom not only doesn’t have heated floors, it’s not even heated.) Out back is an awesome patio, and at the side of the house is a brick “motor court,” which is a fancy term for a small parking lot where your kid’s friends are going to park their Range Rovers after he flunks out of University of Maryland and moves back home to work in “music promotion.” (Selling drugs.) And again, the house is right on Glover-Archbold Park, so you can literally stroll from your yard directly into the park for a beautiful evening walk. It’s a peaceful, gorgeous little park, though I have to admit that I did snicker when I saw the line on the park’s Wikipedia page that states, in no uncertain terms, “Some people extend their yards into the park, and the NPS asks them to stop this practice.”
4401 W Street NW
6 Bedrooms, 6.5 Baths
All photos courtesy MRIS; listing courtesy Washington Fine Properties, 202-944-5000