Beacon on a Hill 

Circa 1922 bungalow in Evergreen.

Bungalows are a little less fancy than some house styles and are usually quite cozy. Often, that translates into being a little bit dark. But there are exceptions. This bungalow, with its beautiful exterior of stucco and rough-cut stone, was built in 1922 and is sited on a rise. It's definitely brighter than expected, due to more and larger windows than found in the typical bungalow, along with a new, light color scheme inside and out.

The house was owned by the same family for the past 85 years. It's just gone through a year-long renovation from top to bottom. If you've avoided bungalows for the usual reasons, you should see what a difference a pale palette and a newly opened floor plan can make. The dining room, breakfast area, and kitchen have been united down the north side of the house to keep the kitchen — and the cook — in the center of the action.

The whole interior has been unified with a neutral color scheme set off by white trim and doors. Dark-stained kitchen cabinets are the only reminder that bungalow interiors often had the trim and doors stained dark.

The cabinets here are offset by lots of recessed lights and pendant fixtures hung above the new breakfast bar. The new kitchen floor and that of the rear mud/entry/laundry are a light travertine with an accent of dark slate. It playfully reminds you of the old white ceramic tile with black accents so common in Midtown kitchens and baths but in a very contemporary manner. The dark slate also ties visually to the deep-toned granite counters used throughout the kitchen.

This was originally a four-bedroom house with two full baths. In the renovation, one of the three bedrooms on the ground floor was converted into a master bath. Now, there is a spacious suite with two vanities, a huge shower, and a walk-in closet — not a bad trade-off. An elegant, old claw-foot tub was given pride of place in the main bath on the ground floor, and it feels just right there.

Bungalows often have a rear second floor pop-up (called an airplane around here) that usually holds one or two bedrooms. Here, those rooms have been updated as a second master suite, pleasantly removed from the activity of the ground floor. There's a large oak-floored bedroom, two big closets, one of which is cedar-lined, a bath, and a large sunroom that could be a sitting room or office.

In addition to the spatial changes, the house has a new, enlarged electrical service, new heat and air systems, new thermal wood windows, and even new exterior insulation. Don't let a preconceived notion of dark bungalows keep you from noticing this beacon on a hill. •

249 Avalon

Approximately 2,600 sq. ft.

3 bedrooms, 3 baths; $359,000

Realtor: Midsouth Residential, 507-4680

Agent: David Lorrison, 484-8663

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