The ads for Sarasota real estate tell a story of million-dollar homes and amenity-packed communities, but there's another side. All over town are charming, moderately priced neighborhoods that respect the past while offering housing for the new "creative class" so important to the town's future.
Tucked away on a meandering, oak-lined street bordering a picturesque creek, this 1930s cottage is a short distance from ultra-hip Ringling College of Art and Design. Extensively remodeled by its present owner, it offers a generous helping of nostalgia combined with luxurious touches unheard of back in the old days.
It's not large, just over 1,000 square feet. A rocking chair-worthy front porch leads to an old-fashioned living room, complete with wood-burning fireplace. There's a bedroom (or den) to the left, entered through French doors, and another porch—this one screened—to the right, which adjoins the kitchen and is perfect for al fresco dining.
Our favorite touch? The bookcase flanking the fireplace does double duty. It swings open to reveal a secret entrance to the master bedroom. The master, light and airy, features polished oak floors and an elegant bathroom, with marble countertops, a freestanding tub and separate shower.
The home is set on almost an acre, with a detached cottage, as yet unrenovated. With three buildable lots, there's plenty of room for expansion. Your neighbors will be artists, teachers and old-time Sarasotans who have been in the neighborhood for generations.
The current owners admit they went a little overboard while remodeling, with major structural improvements and high-quality handcrafted finishes. But the results place this cottage in a special category when it comes to successful renovation projects.
Interested? 1317 N. Riverside Drive, $299,000. Contact John Smith, (941) 587-0348, Coldwell Banker
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This article appears in the January 2014 issue of Sarasota Magazine. Like what you read? Click here to subscribe. >>