The Hiss Studio, one of the most famous of all the Sarasota School of Architecture homes, has come on the market. And it may be the most beautiful of all, with simple classic lines that put it in highest category of midcentury homes in the country.
It was designed in 1953 by Tim Seibert as a sales office for Phillip Hiss, the visionary entrepreneur who created the groundwork for the Sarasota School. Hiss was not an architect himself but had great taste and style. Without him our town wouldn’t have the great 1950s homes and buildings that it has, which draw so many visitors.
The Hiss Studio is located in Lido Shores, right next to Paul Rudolph’s equally famous Umbrella House. Designed as a glass box set on 14 slender steel columns, it was also one of the first air-conditioned buildings in town.
Its crowning glory is its grand library, an enormous room which occupies most of the second floor. It has the original oak shelving that contained Hiss’ enormous library of art books, along with amazing and original brass chandelier. The flooring is natural cork. And check out the curving stairway that connects it to the ground floor.
The home has been beautifully maintained by a succession of owners who have loved and respected it. It is bigger than it looks at first glance, with four bedrooms and four baths, set in 5,252 square feet. There are several walled courtyards and atriums and a new kitchen.
The Hiss Studio is unique. It’s one of Sarasota’s greatest homes and an icon of 20th century architecture. Here’s your chance to own a work of art, and a very livable one at that.
1310 Westway Drive is priced at $2.1 million. For more information, call Klaus Lang of Michael Saunders & Company at (941) 320-1223.