Odds & Ends » Home Sweet Home

1020 Glen Haven


The Bench is hot. Mid-century modern is hot. In a matter of days this house was listed and sold-I squeaked in just before the ink dried and locks changed. I had to see it, not just because it only had one owner or that it was designed by local architect Nat Adams or that it was built during a time when cars were big with fins and trimmed with chrome and housewives wore dresses all day waiting for the hubby to come home so they could wait on him hand and foot while Sinatra played in the background, but primarily because I am a snoopy neighbor.

This is the second house I have featured on Glen Haven. Most of the houses in this area were built during that boom in the '50s. Only a few exhibit what could be considered as influenced by the likes of Eichler and Alexander out of California, though regionalized.

The house sits on an irregular shaped lot located in the cul-de-sac (one nice aspect-very little traffic). The driveway cuts through the front, passing through the open porte-cochere which projects out from the house and establishes the overall architectural theme of the house: a wafer-thin roof setting on exposed post and beam construction. The exterior is primarily wood siding with the front clad in Arizona flagstone/rose stone (I need to learn my stones).

My first hint at what I might find on the inside came from the entry door: a simple flush wood door with a brass diamond-shaped molded escutcheon plate-a rather small detail but such a relief. (The previous owners of my house replaced the original door with some paneled thing-it just looks hideous.) The front door sets the tone and opens into a small entry hall that has stone flooring in a contrasting pattern and type from that of the walls. One wall is the rose stone, which serves as the backside of the living room fireplace wall. The coat closet was framed into this thick stone wall and had a wood accordion door and stone shelf-nice!

The layout of the house is simple and straightforward. The entry leads to a hall that links the public and private functions of the house. The living room is long and linear with vaulted-ceiling, exposed beams, lots of glass, stone walls and olive shag carpeting. A sliding door opens out to a covered patio. Most of the glazing is original-all single pane. The owner came in and added a separate glazing section to the outside, which I'm sure it made it a bit more energy efficient and definitely saved the house architecturally. (Warning to the new owner-I will be keeping my eye out for any trucks carrying vinyl windows in that direction.

The kitchen has all the original cabinets-clear-coated flush wood panels with simple brass knobs and pulls. Each of the wall cabinet doors had a framed recipe-Pate Maisson, La Sauce Mayonnaise, Moroccon Carrots are just a few I noted. One could cook for days without asking Betty Crocker for help!

The dining area is adjacent to the kitchen (as it should be) and has some funky blue carpet and pink window valances-this looks like the only room they perhaps tried to update (probably back in the late '70s or early '80s). There is a single wood door that leads out to the back yard.

The three bedrooms all have hardwood floors, plenty of natural light, beautiful vertical grained wood closet doors and a simple wall mounted cone-shaped light fixture. The master bedroom has its own small bathroom with a trapezoidal shaped vanity and tiled shower. The main bathroom is quite large-it does house the washer and dryer, so it needs to be (a set of compact, front loaders could go virtually unseen).

Pros: Pristine.

Cons: I thought it seemed a bit overpriced ($100+/sf)-but it sold. Rumor has it that there are some radical neighbors that are out to protect these mid-century marvels from bad remodels, though I hear that a little wine and pate maisson calms them right down.

"Home Sweet Home" features local, unique, historically or architecturally significant houses for sale. To suggest a house to be featured, e-mail editor@boiseweekly.com.