SalemNews.com, Salem, MA

Homes of the Week

March 15, 2013

Downtown living is easy in beautiful Marblehead

Boasting expert craftsmanship, sleek design and a diverse use of exotic materials, this Marblehead home is sure to excite even the most discriminating buyer. From wide-open spaces to dramatic vaulted ceilings, there is something to be envied at every turn.

Recently renovated and expanded by the current owner, an esteemed local builder himself, the house is meticulous. According to Realtor Dick McKinley of Harborside Realty, who lists the property for $799,000, this is a rare downtown offering.

Not always the sprawling three-plus-bedroom home it is today, this dwelling was originally a “Sears Kit House.” An earlier version of today’s “modular home,” the retailer once sold these “do-it-yourself” sets, which came complete with 10,000 to 30,000 pieces and a 75-page instruction booklet.

“It’s been such an interesting process because he (the owner/builder) lived in the original structure while constructing this whole ‘new’ house around it, constantly building as he went along,” McKinley says. “One room that can be used for an in-home office or extra bedroom and a half-bath on the first floor are original, but other than that, everything in this house is new. In fact, every time I come by, I see something different.”

From the moment you enter, you are struck by the remarkable woodwork and utter ease and flexibility of the floor plan. Serving as the focal point is a kitchen complete with a spacious dining area and top-of-the-line amenities, including “soft-close” cabinetry, stainless-steel appliances, pendant and recessed lighting, and a granite island with seating for as many as six.

Within easy eyeshot from either direction are two stunning living rooms. One, up a few short steps and through commanding French doors, features a magnificent floor-to-ceiling stone fireplace, while the other has a marble fireplace flanked by custom-built shelving.

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