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Friday, December 12, 2014

901 Washington Street, Key West - Stunning Casa Marina Area Makeover

Just Listed by Preferred Properties (but not by me), 901 Washington Street, Key West. Unlike the Cute Conch Cottages, the Elegant Eyebrow Houses, and the Grand Conch Houses that are rooted in the late Nineteenth Century neighborhoods of Old Town Key West,  this recently renovated mid-century home is emblematic of the new wave of architecture and design taking root in the Casa Marina Area in the 21st Century.
Loyal Readers of my blog (Thank You, All!) know that I live in the Casa Marina area of Key West.  I love the area and have never regretted leaving Old Town nineteen years ago to move to the Casa Marina.  For many years I would ride my bike past 901 Washington Street on my may to the Club Body Tech when it was located at Duval Square. I remember thinking to myself how out-of-place the house looked amid all the other lushly landscaped homes in the area. I dug into the old shoebox and found a photo of 901 Washington Street as it appeared in 1965 (black and white photo above). The old chain link fence and stark landscaping (or lack of any landscaping) contrasted with swaying palms and lush tropical foliage that envelopes the south end of the Island of Key West. Then around 2003 a new owner began remodeling the house that was originally built in 1958.
The original house was a two story stucco over concrete block construction. The house sat on a mostly empty lot surrounded by a galvanized chain link fence. There was a grass lawn, a cactus, some bushes, and a large satellite TV antenna.. The house and lot was blah. I don't want to offend anybodies relative who may have lived there. But it was. The new owner revamped the entire house on the inside and outside. A pool and garden were added.  A privacy wall was built. Peering eyes like mine were no longer able to see inside the yard. That would have been the end of the story on most properties were an expensive renovation was done, but that was not the case here.
The owner who did the 2003 renovation moved a few blocks away to a different home in the Casa Marina area.  The current owners of 901 Washington Street recently completed an amazing two part transformation of  the already beautiful home. The newest version of residence is stunning in its simplicity of design. Designer David Smith transformed the house into a work of art. The transformation included the addition of a room over the previously existing first floor front room which extended out from the body of the main house. This new space became a part of the new master suite. Windows in the original first floor front room were removed to create a new semi-enclosed informal outdoor living area. A new dining pavilion was added adjacent to the kitchen on the west side of the house.  All of the windows were removed and replaced with new high-end impact windows and doors that are trimmed in black. The windows became "more than windows" - they became "picture frames" that focused attention on the beautiful exterior views.
Egyptian limestone pavers were added as walkways throughout the garden. Front porch furniture by Dedon.

Two first floor folding doors by Eurowall open out to the pool and east gardens. New porcelain tile floors were added throughout most of the house and extend out to the pool area to provide a seamless transition from inside to outside and vice versa. The kitchen counter top was replaced with an amazing slab of agate. Since the building was constructed of concrete, the designer created a network of wires from which lights were suspended to illuminate the revamped living room.  The dining room chandelier was custom made in New York City by Lindsay Adelman. Light became art. Windows became picture frames. Floors and walls became a showcase on which to display important pieces of furniture and ob-jets d'art..
The stairway to the second floor and  hallway morphed into a museum-like space for the display of art. The porcelain tiled floors, black framed impact glass windows, drop ceiling, and pin-point light fixtures blend together to create a subtle showcase that lures you to the second floor to see what more wonderful sights surely would be located there.
The front half of the second floor is the master suite. You enter into a private sitting room that is complete with a morning kitchen.  The walk-in closet has lots of built-in drawers and racks. The tray ceiling, coved lighting, and natural toned walls and porcelain floors set the stage for entry into the bedroom chamber. All rugs are silk from Rug Company. The sectional is by Roche Bobois
The master bed was designed by Minotti. The bed sits in front of an incredible wall tile that was finished in place. The wall looks like ripples of sand turned on its side. It begs to be touched to see what it might be.  Bartel sliding doors in the master bedroom are made of macassar wood. The bathroom rivals a spa at some exotic resort.

Two guest bedrooms are located on the north side of the second floor. The east bedroom has a picture perfect view of the poolside sculpture created by Debra Yates. The private bath has one of those amazing picture frame views of the outdoors where nature seems to become art in this house.
The west bedroom has a rooftop sundeck where you can watch sunset far from the madding crowds of Mallory Square. The floors in this guest bedrooms are acacia wood.
There is a fourth bedroom complete with en-suite bath on the main floor that is located just off the living room. The current owners use this space as an office.
The transformation of the gardens and grounds was just completed under the direction of landscape architect Craig Reynolds. The combination CBS and louvered wood fence was set on its ear and given a dramatic new flare. The main entry became a statement of arrival at some place important. The former gardens were removed and replaced with new plantings. A Zen garden with reflecting pool provide a restful view while sitting in the covered outdoor living room or when dining in the pavilion. The two poolside diases on either end of the pool and fountain were revamped with new palms and exterior lighting.  CLICK HERE to view more photos of this stunning Casa Marina home.
901 Washington Street is offered at $2,875,000. Furnishings are negotiable.  If you are looking to buy a home in the Casa Marina area or any place else in Key West, please contact me, Gary Thomas, 305-766-2642  or by email at to schedule a showing. I am a buyers agent and a full time Realtor at Preferred Properties Key West.


The information on this site is for discussion purposes only. Under no circumstances does this information constitute a recommendation to buy or sell securities, assets, real estate, or otherwise. Information has not been verified, is not guaranteed, and is subject to change.


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Key West, Florida, United States
I first read about Key West in a magazine called "After Dark" sometime in the mid 1970's. But it wasn't until March 1984 that I made my first visit to the island that would become my home. I had two weeks for a vacation and reserved a room at Colours Guesthouse (now Marrero's Guest House) for one week. I thought that if I didn't like Key West, I could always go back to Miami or Ft. Lauderdale for the rest of my trip. But after a couple of days in Key West, that was no longer a consideration. But when I wanted to extend my stay for the extra week I found there was no room at the inn. The guesthouse owner did find me a room at LaTeDa, the infamous guesthouse/restaurant. That's a story I'll write another day. But those two weeks in Key West gave me the realization that I had found Paradise. Key West has been my home since 1993 and my only regret is that it took me so long to get here. I am a full time Realtor at Preferred Properties CRI. Let me help you find your new home or business in Paradise. Living in Paradise is not a slogan, it's a way of life.