One of our all-time favorite summer rituals is watching the late afternoon thunderstorms roll in from the cozy protection of a wrap-around covered porch—preferably sitting in a rocking chair with a classic summer cocktail. Sometimes you can see them for hours before they arrive. Now that we have a roof deck, we’ll add sky and stargazing to that list of favorite summer rituals as well.
This week, with two glorious and tempestuous months of summer to go, we’ve rounded up our favorite historic properties for sale with dreamy porches and other outdoor spaces to take it down a notch while sitting back and watching mother nature do her summer thing.
Museum Quality Victorian (San Marcos, Texas)
This museum-quality Victorian is one of our favorite properties both inside and out and offers porches galore! Built in 1889, this classic Victorian epitomizes period architecture, yet sensitively combines modern design elements throughout in all of the right places (check out the amazing kitchen). The current owners have lovingly and meticulously ensured that any modifications would not detract from the elegance or charm of the original design. When it comes to storm watching, numerous porches with gingerbread embellishments adorn various levels of the home giving its occupants multiple options and vantage points for watching incoming weather.
20 South Battery (Charleston, South Carolina)
You didn’t think that we could write an article on porches and not offer up a quintessential Southern front porch in one of our favorite cities, did you? This c. 1843 Second Empire mansion is one of the most iconic and premier Charleston residences, prominent for its waterfront location and long-standing presence as a historic and social landmark of the community. 20 Battery Street epitomizes Charleston grandeur inside and out, but it’s curb appeal is defined by its two story wrap-around porches that offer expansive views of Charleston harbor and the approaching storms sucking up the heat from the Gulf Stream. The only thing this porch is missing is me in a rocking chair and the ice-cold mint julep.
15 Hubert Street (New York, New York)
In Manhattan, a ‘porch’ is the closet sized entryway on the first floor where you take off your snow boots. A ‘roof deck’ is where you extend your living space inside to out, and become a true vertical resident of the urban environment. In this sense, there are only a few evolved Manhattan loft spaces like 15 Hubert. Nestled on a quiet cobblestone street with just twelve residences 15 Hubert is one of the last true loft-conversions in the uber trendy Tribeca neighborhood. With glimpses of the Hudson River and One World Trade Center you can certainly hang in style while stargazing at this plush and private residence–Cosmopolitan Martini anyone?
Hooper Mansion (Boston, Massachusetts)
If Boston isn’t waiting for the next Nor’ Easter it’s probably about to launch the fireworks for its next Superbowl or World Series championship. Is there a better time to have a private Back Bay roof deck? Built in 1889, Hooper Mansion is a luxurious blend of modern living with historic charm unlike any other property in the city. This stunning top floor condominium has been impeccably renovated and features elegant details using only the finest finishes. Located on Beacon Street in Boston’s prestigious Back Bay, this residence offers spectacular views of both the Charles River and the Boston skyline that you and your guests will be sure to enjoy when the lightening (or fireworks) start to roll in.
Exquisite Victorian (Sandwich, Illinois)
Hello Gingerbread. This exquisite 1850 Victorian exudes charm both inside and out, and the attention to detail and quality craftsmanship is evident throughout. The home retains many of its original details including leaded glass windows, marble bathrooms, original hardwood flooring, original fireplaces and ornate molding. In addition to possessing details galore, the home also has an amazing front porch where I would no doubt be relaxing on with a cold beverage during the warmer months and a hotty toddy in the cooler ones.