Portland Heights awaits you…
By Darcy Henderson
The 2013 Ainsworth Holiday Home Tour offers the rare opportunity to visit five Portland Heights gems: Three grand dames dating back to the early 20th century, a 1929 architectural marvel, and an impeccable 1940 “English Transitional” with scenic vistas. Two of these residences are listed on the National Register of Historic Places. And – extra bonus! – all of the houses are located within a one-mile stretch of the Portland Heights neighborhood. Park near Ainsworth, put on your walking shoes, and enjoy your own walking tour of some of the neighborhood’s most lovely homes. Be sure to visit (w)here Realty in Uptown for refreshments before you embark on the tour!
Begin the tour at theReal Estate open houseand enjoy coffee and pastries from 9:00-11am & cocktails and hors’d oeuvres from 5-9pm.The SMS building was built in 1910 by the Gambrinus Brewing Co. as a bottling plant for a brewery that was located across the street where Uptown Shopping Center is now. In the 30’s, with prohibition, the building was converted to a van and storage facility. In the 60’s it became Youngland, a popular children's clothing store. Paul Schneider, the current owner, purchased and completely re-modeled the entire building in 1994. Paul owns Twist, an eclectic store featuring some of the most unique jewelry from artists and designers around the world as well as home decor. (W)here Real Estate renovated the upstairs space and moved into the offices in May of 2012. They share the floor with Lawyers Title. (W)here inc opened their first office on Irving street in January 2012. They currently have 24 amazing real estate brokers and 5 support staff. It is the company's mission to support education in the area their brokers represent. Happy Holidays and thank you for continuing your support of Ainsworth Elementary School.
1. Elegant Colonial Revival
The oldest home on the tour, this 1911 Colonial Revival is also one of the most historically intact. Walking through the house, you will get a true sense of the features found in finer residences of the era: the original (still operable) intercom system, dust chutes on every floor, servants’ staircase, original light fixtures, steam radiators, a laundry chute, secret panels, sinks and fireplaces in the bedrooms, custom shaped windows and screens, and plentiful built-ins. While retaining all of these elements, the home has been decorated with tasteful elegance that honors tradition yet infuses it with 21st century style.
2. Arts & Crafts Grandeur
While all of the homes on this year’s tour are impressive, the 1913 Geisy/Failing house is truly magnificent. Considered to be one of noted Portland architect Josef Jacoberger’s finest designs (with architecturally consistent modifications made in 1922 when two of Henry Failing’s daughters purchased the house), the original state of the home’s superior craftsmanship remains intact, having been maintained and cherished over the past century. From the expansive entrance to the impressive dining room to the grand staircase and private quarters above, the formality and grandeur of a bygone era remain intact in this Portland treasure.
3. Scenic 1940's English
Thoughtful design and careful landscaping serve to maximize this “Transitional English” home’s sweeping views of Montgomery Street below and Mount St. Helens beyond. A recent, extensive renovation preserved much of the home’s original character through thoughtful attention to moldings, cabinets, hardware and other details. Most importantly, the remodel maximized the site’s natural light and provided visual depth, connecting the home’s comfortable interior with the lovely back patio and garden, a welcoming spot for relaxing, playing and entertaining. You will feel right at home in this meticulously designed and beautifully finished family residence.
4. Historic Vista Prominence
Built by Preston Smith in 1912 along the popular Council Crest streetcar line, this home has commanded a position of prominence on Vista Avenue for more than a century. The home retains many original elements, including the covered porch, a bay window and window seat, inlaid floors, box beams, built-ins, and even a fir-paneled “fur room.” Although the streetcar tracks are long gone, and mature trees and many other residences now surround the house on all sides, this magnificent craftsman continues to dominate upper Vista Avenue and impress passers-by, just as it did in 1912.
5. Architectural Masterpiece
Listed on the National Register of Historic Places, the 1929 Jorgensen House (built for Portland hotelier Victor Jorgensen) showcases architect Herman Brookman’s innovative use of space and his renowned design skills. What appears to be a modest 1½ story house from the street is actually a complex and charming assembly of six levels above and below street grade, with exceptionally detailed spaces featuring fine finishes, vaulted ceilings, banks of windows, and seamless transitions. It is unmistakably the work of a skilled artist. As you tour the house, you will discover numerous surprises, including a cozy phone nook and a secret, moving bookcase.
Real Estate open house
Coffee and Pastries will be
served from 9:00-11:00 am
Cocktails and Hors’D Oeuvres
from 5:00-9:00 pm.
Parking available at Uptown Shopping Center lot.
All attendees will receive a ticket to shop downstairs at Twist. Special shopping event at Twist
to benefit Ainsworth
10% of all sales made on December 12th w/ (W)here voucher will be generously
donated back to Ainsworth Elementary.
Store Hours will be from
10:00 am – 7:00 pm.
Previous Year Home Tours
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