Noted poet, author and civil rights activist Julia Ward Howe, who is best known for writing “The Battle Hymn of the Republic,” owned the property from 1881-1910. The building was converted into five condominiums in 1989.
Living in Back Bay comes with an endless list of perks, not the least of which is the sensational location – moments to Boston’s legendary highlights such as the Charles River, the Esplanade, Copley Square and Newbury Street. Of course, the opportunity to reside in and among some of the most incredible architecture of the 19th and 20th centuries is another plus.
241 Beacon St., Unit 5, listed by Frank Celeste of Gibson Sotheby’s International Realty for $1,595,000, offers just such an opportunity.
This stately brownstone, which was built in 1868 as a single-family home, has an interesting history. Noted poet, author and civil rights activist Julia Ward Howe, who is best known for writing “The Battle Hymn of the Republic,” owned the property from 1881-1910. The building was converted into five condominiums in 1989.
This particular home – Unit 5 – with two bedrooms, two bathrooms and 1,154-square-feet of living space, is especially impressive. Beautifully finished oak flooring along with double crown molding, deep bump boards with extra trim, and detailed window and door casings are throughout the floor-through unit. All the windows, which are new and meet Back Bay architectural guidelines, have plantation shutters.
The open stairwell that has period newel posts and balustrades has the advantage of natural light. The source is a huge skylight/roof window.
The well-proportioned open living-dining room accommodates various furniture arrangements. The wide three-window bay and a wood-burning fireplace with a prettily detailed mantel (including mini bulls-eye trim) enhance the overall artistic focal points.
On either sides of the fireplace are niches. The left side has a built-in floor-to-ceiling bookcase for decorative displays with an enclosed base for storage. This unit could also doubles as a bar and/or server.
A desk (a.k.a. mini office) or a seating configuration fits comfortably in the alcove on the right side of the fireplace.
Despite its compact size, the kitchen reflects the design philosophy of the entire home. Here, form and function – plus a touch of understated elegance and beautiful finishes along with a surprise – are alive and well.
Elegance, for example, starts at the “door” – make that the eight-glass panel French doors – to this chic spot. In this kitchen, glass and cherry front cabinetry (with under-cabinet lighting) are complemented by black granite countertops and stainless steel appliances, including a Bosch dishwasher and a Samsung electric stove.
In fact, the room is so well planned that you are surrounded by countertops where ever you stand. This space even has a mini breakfast bar. And the surprise is a skylight that brings in a goodly amount of natural light.
A bright space, the sleeping chamber of the master suite is large enough for a king-size bed and nightstands. Classic features such as double crown molding and detailed window/door casings are standard, too.
The double closet, however, is very contemporary as it is fully customized.
The en suite bathroom has a tub/shower combination with a tile surround and glass sliding doors. The tile floor in this room keeps maintenance to a minimum.
Whether the second bedroom is used as guest quarters, an office (or both), one fact is indisputable. This is a large, bright room. Like the master bedroom, this room has a large double hung window with a detailed casing and a fully outfitted double closet.
A built-in floor-to-ceiling medicine/linen cabinet (it has a large cabinet topper over five drawers) is adjacent to a step-in shower in the second full bathroom.
In-unit laundry facilities located handily near the bedrooms include a full-size Bosch stackable washer and dryer.
This residence has additional surprises, albeit an enviable outdoor one.
A full-size staircase leads to an oversized three-tiered roof deck with separate conversation/lounging and dining spaces. The roof deck was painted and sealed in 2015.
Privacy is not an oxymoron on this roof deck, as a) there are no other decks near it and, b) the deck is well above many of the surrounding buildings. Views include the Prudential and 200 Clarendon as well as the captivating architecture of Back Bay.
Parking, as in a one deeded tandem and paved space, is another bonus.
There will be an open house from 11:30 a.m. to 12:30 p.m. on Saturday, May 12 and from 11:30 a.m. to 1 p.m. on Sunday, May 13.