387 Augusta Avenue
Deedee Abbott, Tim, Flora, and Finn Smith
Though “The Smabbotts” love the fireplaces, high ceilings, and other original historic touches of this 1904 Victorian Bungalow, their favorite thing about their home is the collection of treasures it holds. Original pieces from far and near include art by friends in the neighborhood, as well as Tim himself. Deedee’s grandfather, Gerald Bailey, was a woodworker and made much of the wooden furniture in the home. The large wooden chest in the hallway comes from Tim’s mother’s family and the pie safe in the same hall comes from Deedee’s great, great grandmother Ballard.
Tour-goers won’t want to miss the guest bathroom with the clawfoot tub and fireplace. The family added the master bathroom and the back patio and bar, but the stained glass, fireplaces, and pocket doors are all original. Something else unique to Grant Park homes: from their front and back porches, you can hear the lions roar from the zoo at dusk and dawn each day.
465 Oakland Avenue
Ilana McAllister and dogs Fiona, Harlowe, and Juliet
Believed to be the first house on the block, this 1905 Queen Anne Victorian was built by a family that owned a brick factory – hence the brick porch pillars, which were not so common for the time period. Notice the built-in Apothecary cabinet in the hallway, stained glass windows, fireplace surrounds, pocket door between the living and dining rooms, clawfoot tubs, and the restored front door. It was these original features, plus the heart pine floors and the tin ceiling in the kitchen that won over Ilana when she was looking to buy a home. She recently remodeled the master bath to include a modern shower. It was enlarged with space from the sleeping porch that had been converted into a laundry room at some point in the history of the house. She also added one of the tall windows and the antique leaded glass window.
Like so many of our old homes in Grant Park, it may inhabitant past residences as Ilana sometimes smells perfume in a certain area of the house!
471 Oakland Avenue
Nikki, Zack, Xander, and Libby Zimmerman
Built in 1905, this Folk Victorian Bungalow has a lot of quirky details according to the Zimmermans, but that’s part of what makes it the perfect house for them. They knew it almost immediately after looking for many months and settling here, only a few blocks from their first Grant Park home. Original features include the central hallway with transoms to all attached rooms; fluted corner trim pieces at the front of the house; living room pocket doors; fireplaces in the living room, dining room, and two downstairs bedrooms; the first floor baseboard, trim and picture rail; the light fixture in the front room; and the built-in china closet in the dining room. Recently the Zimmermans refinished the hardwoods on the first floor and uncovered heart pine hardwood floors in the central hallway, which required the removal of five layers of linoleum! Tour-goers won’t want to miss the “Secret Room” located on the second floor in the master bedroom, recently renovated to serve as a music and entertainment room/office.
Mirrored history: In 1910, William M. Gormley, a Southern Railway conductor from Ohio (the home state of the current owners), built a six-room house on this lot. When it was complete, he built the house next door (475 Oakland) reversing the floor plan but repeating many of the signature details in the moldings and placement of stain glass.
528 Park Avenue SE
Cristina, James, Fiona, Maxwell Stein, and dogs Beana and Gracie
James and Cristina moved into this 1920 Craftsman in early 2013, and they love how it’s grown along with their family every year since. A major renovation and addition in 2018 kept the original footprint while making way for a larger kitchen, pantry, mudroom, and reconfigured second floor with an additional bedroom. The renovation also included new window sash kits, a screened-in back porch, and fresh coats of paint inside and outside. Preserving the historic charm of the home, the remaining original features include four fireplaces, a chimney in the old kitchen (which is now the office), heart pine floors, and pocket doors in the foyer. They especially love the dining nook, where the family enjoys meals, works on school projects, and hosts late-night gatherings with friends. And now the sounds of Cristina’s family’s grand piano, James’s guitar collection, and the scratch of vinyl records regularly fill the once rarely-used formal dining room.
The Stein home was featured in the November issue of HGTV magazine and will appear in a scene of an upcoming HBO miniseries based on a Stephen King novel.
555 Grant Street
Carla and Dean Evans
Relocating from Texas, the Evans family chose Grant Park due to the great vibe and the close proximity to the park and the Zoo. Their home was built in early 1900 and was converted into a triplex, likely in the 1960s. The previous homeowner converted it back to a single-family home in 1996, just before Carla and Dean purchased it. The home originally had three fireplaces but they were taken out before the 1996 renovation. Carla and Dean reused the bricks from the original chimneys to build the brick wall, brick pavers on the path to the front door, as well as the wall in the basement pool room. The front door with its stained glass is original to the house. There is matching stain glass in the front room/office which can be seen from the street and front porch. The 13 ½ foot ceilings throughout the first floor have allowed Carla to incorporate several large tapestries and large format artwork, including a photo in the main hallway of the iconic NYC steelworkers building the Empire State Building.
The homeowners carved the basement out from a crawl space. The old rusty Coke Sign was originally on the building three doors down at Milledge and Grant Street. It is hand-painted and says “Fancy Western Meat.” Dean may or may not have acquired it legally.
603 Boulevard SE 30312
Amanda, Philippe, Gigi, and Julian Pellerin and dogs Bogart and Jack
Always a standout and favorite among the historic homes in Grant Park, this Neo-classical Victorian served as the Boulevard Pentecostal Church in the 1950s. It was built around 1897 and went through major renovations between 1924 and 1931 when the side porches and two-story portico were added to the main elevation.
The Pellerins made it their home in 2014, and a year later, they began a very intensive, historically sensitive renovation. Most of the windows were replaced with energy-efficient custom made windows and the interior spaces were reimagined to add three additional bedrooms, four bathrooms, and a family room. They completely renovated the kitchen to include handmade cabinets with glass that was reclaimed from the original windows of the house (notice the waviness); countertops of North Georgia marble; and a backsplash with tiles made from marble door thresholds. Original features include the restored front door and floors of heart pine and oak throughout the house. The carriage house was added in 2019 exactly where one stood originally.
Tour-goers won’t want to miss the hand-painted, 36-foot canvas wallpaper in the dining room by local artist Michael Colley, depicting elephants in India, as well as the Christmas Village, which Amanda starting building in middle school. See the Village Story that she wrote about it at twelve years old!
Katie and Grayson Flaim and dogs Samantha, Edward, and Bauzan
The Flaims couldn’t resist living in Grant Park and “being able to live among a great group of people who are passionate about retaining a sense of community and maintaining the historical significance of the neighborhood,” says Katie. Moving into a fully-refurbished home, the couple focused on re-designing and landscaping the front yard, designed a new front porch and a guest bathroom. All five fireplaces and the crown molding throughout the house are original. Notice the columns in the entryway that call attention to the 12-foot ceilings. Tour guests won’t want to miss the hand-painted fresco ceilings in the entryway and dining room, completed in the early 1990s by a local Atlanta artist. The “very odd painting” hanging in the dining room was a gift to Grayson’s grandfather in the mid-1960s. Upon receiving the gift rather uncomfortably, the painting sat in his attic until it was re-discovered by Grayson’s mom in the early-1990s. From that point on it has been a fixture in the family’s annual White Elephant gift exchange, with 664 Boulevard being last year’s winning home of “The Naked Lady.”
A favorite thing to do at their 1920 Bungalow is enjoying a glass of wine on the daybed swing and admiring the park just across the street. The backyard has a multi-terraced English garden which they and their dogs enjoy.
As she has done with other homes in the neighborhood, long-time Grant Park resident Elizabeth Zappa has certainly put her unique stamp on this house built in 1904 in the style of a Queen Anne Cottage. She loves the enormous hallway, which allows for cross-breezes throughout the house, the richly colored heart-of-pine floors, the “five-finger” millwork, original stained glass, the “treehouse” feel in the rear of the house, and all of the built-for-entertaining indoor and outdoor spaces.
Tour guests won’t want to miss the master bathtub filler, created by the late Christine Sibley, an iconic fixture on the Atlanta gardening scene for decades and the painting of musicians by self-taught Georgia folk artist Leonard Jones. The house is also filled with original art by family and friends, as well as unique antiques. Notice the 150-year-old Eastlake high chair Elizabeth purchased in Ireland which converts into a play center, having a ceramic abacus hidden under the bottom.
Renovations include adding the master bathroom by enclosing part of the front porch. The master closet was partitioned from the original foyer. A sleeping porch was replaced with the family room, and the kitchen wall was removed to add dining space as the original dining room has always been used as a bedroom. The house sits atop a terrace apartment, added almost 20 years ago. Original features include three of the four fireplaces, the stained glass and all of the millwork, some of which was curiously installed inside all the closets and was pulled to case the addition’s windows, helping to integrate the addition to the original house.
If you hear something unexplainable as you walk through, that’s (para) normal. Elizabeth and her family have witnessed loads of unexplained activity in the house, including heavy objects dropped loudly on the floor, as well as disappearing and returning items!