House of the Week: “Luxury Home” on Prytania Street

Sometimes, I’ll be sitting on the stoop of my apartment building waiting on a friend, or a Lyft, and I will frequently see tourists taking pictures of the mansion across the street and it makes me shake my head. Why? Because, not including my ghastly building and the one behind it, that house has to be the ugliest monstrosity in the area. It’s gaudy, flaunting wealth without any sense of style, turning a Victorian beauty into a Georgian-like eyesore. Additionally, I am pretty sure that no one actually lives there. It’s a party house, regularly swarming with gardeners and maids, and every month or so they’ll have a huge ado and there’ll be no parking for several blocks around. Plus, what’s up with that symbol on the pediment? What does it mean? Needlepoint? Omega-topped spaghetti? What?

This was the original house. Thank you Google!

Originally this property consisted of two lots and on the left-hand side, where the current home sits, there was a darling, mid-19th century Victorian. Apparently Barry Fox, a local architect known for his “Grand New South-style,” designed this renovation in 2012. At the very least, I do have to give him props as it seems the original structure did serve as a base for the new design. Plus, it appears he kept the floor-to-ceiling windows, and possibly the ceiling medallions, fireplace mantles, and pocket doors. Nonetheless, I would’ve much preferred a more modest, less garish update to the original, 1858 structure. All I know is that even if I had a butt-ton of money, I still wouldn’t lay out $2,790,000 for this. Would you?

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