Tall French homes never go out of style, and the tall French home at 11905 Lake Estates Ave. in The Lakes at Highland is a perfect example. The home was built in 1999, but remains as elegant today as the day it was completed.

Built by Rusty Golden, this timeless residence has 12-foot ceilings, polished travertine floors throughout the first floor and a private courtyard retreat in back.

Everything about this builder's personal home is custom, from the hand-forged iron railing on the foyer stairs to the louvered doors on one end of the covered rear porch. Attention to detail becomes evident the minute you step inside.

The polished travertine in the foyer continues in the formal dining room to the right, where massive arched windows allow views of the manicured front yard.

On the other side of the foyer, two more arched windows are in a bedroom/office. Upstairs on either side of a centered balcony, two more matching windows complete the symmetrical look of the front exterior elevation.

The dining room has tall wainscot walls with faux-finished trim below ornate triple crown molding.

Separating the formal dining room from the kitchen is a long, granite butler's pantry with hand-painted porcelain tiles from Portugal and glass-front cabinetry. An icemaker and a wine refrigerator supply all the chilling needed for drinks.

Any cook would feel right at home in the gourmet kitchen, which comes complete with a granite island with a vegetable sink, a double stainless sink below windows, a 6-burner Viking gas cook top, a GE Monogram stacked double oven set and a GE Monogram refrigerator with panels to match the faux-finished painted cabinets.

A wide cased entry leads from the kitchen to a long breakfast room, which could also be used as a keeping room. Glass doors provide an exit from this room to the courtyard in back.

The living room, straight ahead from the foyer, has built-ins on either side of an extra-wide gas fireplace. In fact, built-in cabinets and shelves are plentiful throughout the home, including in bedrooms and passageways and other areas. Two sets of French doors in the living room lead to the rear covered porch and courtyard.

Meanwhile, an interior breezeway - that's one with no breeze - is the buffer between the home's public areas and the master suite. The carpeted master bedroom has windows as well as French doors to the courtyard. Double doors lead to the long master bath, where his surprisingly large vanity is separated from her much larger vanity by an exit to a private covered porch along the courtyard. Custom mirrors

hang over both vanities, a corner whirlpool tub sits below windows, and the glass walk-in shower has a big window of its own to the back yard. The only thing behind the fenced yard is Bayou Fountain, so privacy is not a concern in the big shower.

Near the base of the custom stairway is a powder room, which has a custom hand-painted sink.

The home also has a three-car garage with two storage rooms, and three bedrooms and two baths to go along with a sitting area with a built-in desk upstairs. Floors up here are made of durable bamboo planks, and for added convenience, there's also an upstairs laundry room.

Finally, the back yard is a lush, private retreat with a walkway back to a sitting area. An arched iron gate opens to another fenced yard overlooking the bayou. The covered porch has stained and scored concrete floors, louvered doors to the driveway and a beaded board ceiling.


--Address: 11905 Lake Estates Ave.

--Lot size: 81 x 146 x 105 feet

--Living area: 3,873 square feet

--Bedrooms: Five

--Baths: Four

--Price: $675,000

--Marketing agent: Robin Hebert, Coldwell Banker ONE

--Contact phone: 225-975-3434