Boston Homes
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Big, bright and beautiful home has new owner
Big, bright and barely two blocks from Boston Common are only a few pluses of this grand floorthrough residence in the heart of Beacon Hill at 73 Mt. Vernon St. – on the South Slope – to be precise.

Another perk (and certainly not the least nor the last) in Unit 2 is that this brand new 1,623-square-foot home in a turn-of-the-century building underwent a complete renovation.

Originally listed by Paul Whaley and Iliyan Padinkov of Coldwell Banker Residential Brokerage, the new owners recently purchased this gorgeous home with two bedrooms and two full bathrooms for $2,550,000 through Dawn Beckman of Republic Real Estate.

The vibrant neighborhood has a fascinating history. Within five years after the completion of the State House, Beacon Hill was transformed to accommodate the growing population. Three peaks on the hill were shorn off. Where there was once water, land was filled in; where there were inclines, now there’s now flat land. These three regions of Beacon Hill became known as the South Slope, North Slope and the Flat of the Hill.

According to Boston Neighborhoods (, “The Mount Vernon Proprietors planned and developed the South Slope, creating an elegant residential community suitable for the aristocratic residents, dubbed Boston Brahmins, who purchased them. Between 1800 and 1850, although a few stately freestanding mansions were built on the South Slope, most of the homes constructed during this period were adjoining brick row houses, with either flat or bow fronts, built in the Federal style popularized by Bulfinch, or as Greek Revival Style homes, inspired by the interest in everything Greek that swept across America during the 19th century.”

Cobblestoned streets with charming brick sidewalks and gaslights were peppered with homes characterized by tall narrow windows, sometimes with purple glass, doors with elaborate brass knockers, wrought iron railings, flower boxes and beautiful hidden gardens.

Over the years, most of the Boston Brahmins and other wealthy residents moved away from Beacon Hill to the suburbs and other folks moved in.

Boston Neighborhoods points out that since the area was legislated as a historic distinct in 1955, concerted efforts have continued to preserve the area’s period architecture with great success. While strolling along the South Slope neighborhood, nostalgic feelings of being in a simpler, more elegant era arise.

Although the qualities of the beautiful turn-of-the-century buildings remain, many of those stately residences have been converted to apartments or luxurious condominiums. Both the building and Unit 2 at 73 Mt. Vernon St. fit those criteria with distinction.

Along with brand new state-of-art efficiencies such as a tankless hot water heater, air conditioning and a two-zone Nest system, Unit 2 has many other contemporary conveniences such as common storage space for strollers, bike, and other useful and fun items along with direct elevator access.

Taking the stairs to this easy oneflight walk-up is a short journey. It is also an attractive one as the entire stairwell has shadowbox-paneled wainscoting, just one example of the developer’s successful efforts to recreate classic 19th century features that honor the building’s splendid past. This detail, along with four-inch wide white oak floorboards with an espresso stain, continues throughout the home.

In the fully open concept main living/dining area, these beautiful elements are accented by 12-foot high ceilings flanked by extra-wide and triple crown molding that highlight three massive floor-to-ceiling windows with deep sills.

While the windows are an immediate interior focal point, the exterior views they provide are striking. Giving a nod to Boston’s “preserved” height restriction, people on the north side of Mt. Vernon Street can look “over” the stables - a.k.a. The Thirteen Foot House and admire the views of the Boston Common.

The gas fireplace, with a marble surround and handsomely detailed mantel that complements the wainscoting, is a beautiful counterpoint to the large kitchen at the other end of the space.

Chefs of every level of ability will be comfortable in this wide galley affair where elegance and function  blend seamlessly. Thermador appliances are standard in this kitchen and include a French door refrigerator with integrated panels to match the custom cabinetry, a five-burner gas stove (and hood), oven, microwave and dishwasher.

Three pendant lights sit above the oversized center island with a marble waterfall countertop that seats four comfortably. This well-planned spot has a wine cooler, an extralong stainless steel sink and pull-out trash barrels.

The two bedrooms and bathrooms are each private oases on opposite ends of the unit with complementing and pleasing amenities.

While the master bedroom with en suite bath is at the back of the unit, the guest room with nearby bathroom is at the other end.

Each nicely proportioned chamber fits all the pre-requisite furniture comfortably, a king-size bed for the master and a queen size for the guest room. Both rooms are filled with natural light from the large windows (approximately six-feet high with deep sills) that provide interesting views of the neighborhood.

In keeping with the meticulous attention to the home’s detail, the closets also have deep bump boards with attractive trim. The master features a huge (and extra-deep) walkin closet/dressing room while the guest room entertains a spacious lighted double closet. As an added bonus, a $2,500 allowance to customize closets was part of the deal.

Each bathroom is both large and luxurious. The marble surround (individual tiles are 18 inches wide by 36 inches long) is showcased in the step-in shower with the frameless glass enclosure. In addition to two niches for showering necessities, this spa-like spot has hand-held and ceiling mounted shower sprays. Each vanity sits on a unifying classic herringbone patterned floor.

An office/study/den (or even a nursery) off the hallway on the way to the master suite provides additional privacy.

As beauty and practicality go hand-in-hand in this home, a large hall/coat closet offers additional storage, and in-unit laundry facilities include an Electrolux full-size, stackable washer and dryer. The space is lighted and has a tile floor.

The location, of course, is spectacular in the midst of Back Bay and downtown, just moments away from the many eateries and shops along Charles Street.