This is an excellent example of the kind of house that visitors on tours of the Garden District ooh and aah about. It has all the graceful elements of a bygone era of the Old South: boxed hedges, one tall enough to hide the swimming pool, Greek columns marching across the porch and balcony and plenty of cast iron railings between them.
“This house is a stately Greek Revival in the heart of the historic Garden District,” said Isabel Sanders, the listing agent with Gardner Realtors. “It has a classic exterior with deep galleries featuring cast iron railings, working shutters and bracketed columns.”
The porch is especially cool and welcoming. It’s available for some white wicker furniture, maybe a lazy swing and is hidden from the street by its landscaping. The front door is extra wide and there are spiffy black-and-white tiles to welcome visitors. The foyer contains a magnificent curving staircase with wooden railings to the second floor complete with a window to let in light.
“The interior of the house has 14-foot ceilings, plaster medallions, floor length windows, marble mantels and a beautiful staircase,” said Sanders. “There is also a large master suite plus four bedrooms, each with a private bath.”
The formal rooms are inviting and cozy. The living room has its own fireplace with windows flanking it. The dining room has its own fireplace and chandelier, plus it’s large enough to seat a dozen of your family and friends. Both rooms have refinished wooden floors that gleam invitingly. The rooms are painted a muted cream color to set off their furnishings.
The five bedrooms are generous sized with fans, windows that allow plenty of natural light – and wonder of wonders – each comes complete with its own bathroom.
The kitchen has granite counter tops, light from a window wall at one end and plenty of storage space. Rather than the cold look of stainless steel appliances, the refrigerator and freezer have wooden doors.
“There is also a breakfast room, a study and a third-floor rec room,” said Sanders. “The grounds are professionally landscaped and there’s a pool with an extra bath – plus there’s generous off-street gated parking.”
The Garden District was once a number of plantations, including the Livaudais Plantation. After Louisiana was sold by France to the United States, the plantations were sold off in parcels to wealthy Americans who did not want to live in the French Quarter with the Creoles. It became part of the city of Lafayette in 1833, and was annexed by New Orleans in 1852. The district was laid out by New Orleans architect, planner and surveyor Barthelemy Lafon.
Originally the area was developed with only a couple of houses per block, each surrounded by a large garden, giving the district its name. In the late 19th century, some of these large lots were subdivided, as Uptown New Orleans became more urban. This has produced a pattern for much of the neighborhood: of any given block having a couple of early 19th-century mansions surrounded by gingerbread-decorated late Victorian period houses. Thus, the Garden District is now known for its architecture more than for its gardens per se.
The Garden District was declared a National Historic Landmark in 1974 and has a number of notable landmarks within it.
The writer George Washington Cable’s home is in the Garden District, as is the house where Confederate General Jefferson Davis died. Commander’s Palace restaurant is located here. So is the historic Anshe Sfard synagogue, Lafayette Cemetery No. 1 and The Rink, a 19th-century skating rink that has been converted into a small shopping mall. The McGehee School, a private girls' school, is within the boundaries of the Garden District and Trinity School is also in the area.
Angela Carll may be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org
About this House
Address: 1530 First St. in the Garden District
Living area: 5,800 square feet
Total square footage: 6,250 square feet
Lot size: 67 x 127 feet
Baths: Five full/one half
Extras: In-ground pool, cook top, double oven, dryer, dishwasher, microwave, refrigerator, washer, ceiling fans, security system, balcony, porch