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5000 Longmont #10


Willowisp

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Could the curb appeal be any worse with that humongous parking lot in the front? I swear, it looks like a dental office from the outside. Why does it have so much asphalt in front?

The inside is nice, but I nearly had a fit when I saw that it was selling for just under a million!

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It's definitely one of the ritzier townhome addresses in Houston. Probably a little overpriced... But just for perspective, The George & Barbara Bush family used to own #8 and used it as their "Houston base" for many years. This is a nice place in the heart of the galleria area. But it's not really even gated. Maybe they gate it at night? The asphalt is a little street. There is a lot of greenery on the "commons" ground and there is a pool. I can't wait to see it in person. It was featured in Arch. Record when it was built and the architect, P.M. Bolton liked it enough to live there himself.

Jason

Could the curb appeal be any worse with that humongous parking lot in the front? I swear, it looks like a dental office from the outside. Why does it have so much asphalt in front?

The inside is nice, but I nearly had a fit when I saw that it was selling for just under a million!

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You rarely get the figure you ask for. I guess they'll see how low they have to go pretty soon.

Jason

The appraised value of this house on HCAD is $405,000, and it estimates the market value at $515,000. They're asking almost double that. My god. I wonder what the comparable sales prices are on the block.

I'm going to try to go see this today.

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A bit of the modern flavor was lost to time (the flooring wasn't my favorite), but overall it was beautiful and very spacious, with a big courtyard in the middle of it. I talked to the realtor who must have not gotten my email, so maybe we could still have a MOTM there in the future. He was definitely a modernist himself and pleased to meet someone who just showed up for the architecture.

It still needs some work though, and it's on the end so I would think that would be less appealing as it's closest to the street. You would expect that premium of a price to be an absolutely perfect example. I forgot to ask to see the "common areas" of the place.

Jason

Went to the open house yesterday. It's a superb layout, and it all seems extremely well maintained. A great party house. But I don't see it going for anywhere near $995K.
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  • 7 months later...
The appraised value of this house on HCAD is $405,000, and it estimates the market value at $515,000. They're asking almost double that. My god. I wonder what the comparable sales prices are on the block.

I'm going to try to go see this today.

5000 Longmont -- I live at this development and you all seem to have several misconceptions about the place. First, your appraisal is wrong, house 10 is a double lot house so the appraisal is twice what you show, and yes these mid century townhomes are selling for just around the list prices. Your average buyer does not buy here....they don't understand the Meisian esthetic, as seems to be the case with the person who said it looked like a dental office. Read some books on Mesian courtyard homes before you look here, because then you'll have a reference for what you're looking at. The untrained eye does not "get it." That's the whole point of the place.

Although older (as in mid century mod) these Mesian style courtyard homes are considered important national landmarks in Architecture. See Stephen Fox's guide to places of historical importance in Houston. Built by Preston Bolton and several other noted local archtects, there is lots of literature on the numerous state and national architectural awards they won after development...see literature from the 60's and 70's... for their outstanding design, which was typical of the genre.

Sobel, Brown, Bolton and several other architects actually built thier own personal mod dream homes on the street, and sold lots only to other knowledgable friends. The quality of the materials is spot on Mesian meets Texas. That's why they are historically unique.

Many famous people lived here over the years. These homes seldom come up on the market because many are still beloved by original owners. Estate sales are the most common means one can get a unit in somewhat original condition. It takes a knowledgable eye to turn back the clock and restore any transitory changes made over time. Its a small community, but we try to maintain the original look and feel of the development and the list price is mostly determined by location, location, location.

Comparable sized new (stucko yucko and tyvek) homes next door to the one you mention above, at the same time of your posting, go for 1.5 million plus, so under a million is considered a bargain for these homes....however the good news is that most buyers don't understand mod architecture and go for the newer properties. Only those who know what they are getting can see how to put back the original bones and have a work of art to live in that WAS the esthetic of Mesian architecture...less IS more. That's why the property you mention was listed in the Wall Street Journal real estate section....not many available in the nation and very special to Houston.

Best well kept architectural secret in town. Privledged to be able to live here. Don't tell anyone who does not understand the modern esthetic....there's plenty of contractor built homes out there to keep them happy. Not many of these gems left in town.

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Thanks for your post and the note on the double lot.

I have visited with Preston Bolton and he was happy to talk about 5000 Longmont.

#16 is for sale right now.

Do you know if any of the owners own mainly modern furnishings? Just curious. I would love to see one of these really shine with modern furniture in it, and I'm sure that one of us would love to photograph something like that...

Jason

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  • 3 months later...
http://www.har.com/7475233

I tried to email this realtor to ask if they'd like to be a mod of the month earlier in the month, but never heard back. Well, it's open this Sunday, so go if you can...

Jason

You should see the wonderful job the new owners did in bringing the House 10 up a notch....very tasteful and added value to the mid-century esthetic. The two hip young guys who own the house might be interested in being MOD of the month if you asked them. They are designers and have great taste. I'd send them a letter if you want them to share thier home with the community. They can only say no.

Also the Sobel designed house if for sale and, since there are articles showing the house in at least one 1970's magazine (the association has a copy), it would be easy to restor-ate this house for someone who values it's classis bones and location. Hopefully such a buyer will come along and make a good neighbor to the others on the street. The Sobel house has gem potential, but now has Versache glam fullnes that a knowledgable buyer can easily see beyond. The 1970's magazine describes the home basically a "single open room built around a glass walled patio" with flowing visual views and spaces, its 45x78 feet of expansive living in a compact space that was designed by Architect Sobel for his personal use. They are having open houses, so watch for one if you want a look.

The Longmont homeowners association is working on a project with knowledgable experts that may lead to the street being listed as a National Place of Historic Importance on the 50th birthday of it being platted...in 2010. Therefore now is a good time for someone who's passionate about important mid century modern to become a part of this unique, important and wonderful niche of modernism. The association is working with Preston Bolton and there may be a book published on this location. Bolton just recieved the AIA award at the MFAH in December and recently visited the development to visit with owners and talk about the project.

As for the question raised about modern furniture, these homes were always planned as an eclectic blend of tastes and esthetics ranging across the board depending on owners tastes. You'll note that original articles on the owners and architects who built the homes often mention original owners non-modern antiques or art work as part of the design constraint...that's part of the original esthetic blend. These houses live with time and are not so limited to be exclusively "retro"....they never were that way in the first place. The blend remains, and you'll find plenty of mid-modern esthetics blended with a wide spectrum of tastes....in the esthetic of each current owner, inside thier home. Living history....not museum history. Nobody actually "lives" in a retro world....we all want microwaves. We simply want the best part from each human achievement that has gone before us. As for architecture...Longmont has some of the best bones Houston has to offer, in my humble opinion. :rolleyes: It's worth preserving.

Just thought you'd like an update on Longmont :D

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I'm assuming the Sobel designed house is #16? I'd like to see that. Give us a heads up if it's open some Sunday.

Thanks a lot for the information. Things are looking up for 5000 Longmont. It's a beautiful and posh place.

I forgot what was written before, but no one would argue that "mid-century modern fans" don't want microwaves, computers, or flat screen tvs. For some reason I've got two microwaves. We had just gotten a new one before we moved and the house came with one so we kept both, and actually use both at the same time too often. I do still have the original stovetop though, and I'm pretty proud of that. It works just fine, as does my awesome 50s blender and mixmaster. But I wouldn't go for a 50s washing machine. I digress.

You're right, few published Houston mid-century homes began with owners who wanted modern furniture. I know Jenkins and Keeland were fans of it and staged some of the homes they designed with it for photos, and of course the Gordon House interiors were designed by Florence Knoll herself, and later on the Style in Steel townhomes were staged modern, but I'm not sure of many others. Bolton's own house is pretty eclectic.

The Owsley House, Menil House, Maher House, Neuhaus House etc, were fully decked out in antiques or eclectic new versions of antiques when they were published/photographed. I get that, but when I've visited some of those houses, I've wondered what they would look like with Knoll and Herman Miller furnishings... Is that just me?

Jason

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