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An Uptown Cottage
Furnished With a Bit of Theirs and Hers
The kitchen’s sleek gray and white arrangement is illuminated by abundant sunlight from floor to ceiling windows and a pair of painted iron chandeliers.
With her two children grown, Elizabeth Boh was thinking of downsizing and relocating from Old Metairie to Uptown, but the prospect of moving from a home where she’d spent 13 years seemed daunting. That is, until she found the perfect cottage.
“I fell in love with the house the minute I walked in,” said Boh, a certified financial advisor and member of the civic-minded family that owns Boh Brothers Construction. “I wasn’t even sure I wanted to be Uptown but I knew I wanted a master bedroom downstairs because I wanted to stay a long time.”
The house, which wasn’t yet on the market when Boh found out that it would be soon, had a master suite on the first floor and much more.
With approximately 2,900 square feet (compared to her previous 4,800 square foot home), three bedrooms, a newly renovated kitchen and baths, a pool, good classic bones, and a prime Uptown location, the 100-year old cottage had everything going for it. In fact, the ink had barely dried on her offer when a neighbor asked to buy the house from Boh, who politely declined.
Boh’s transition to the house was as smooth as the house was ideal. The neutral paint palette, as well as the pink shutters on the exterior, was a keeper, the appliances top-grade and key areas had already been updated. Even the retro Hollywood glam wallpaper in the master suite’s vanity area delighted the new owner.
“I didn’t change a thing,” said Boh, who’s one big purchase was a generator. “The house really resonated with me. It was in such perfect condition, I loved the style, the exterior and interior, the master suite downstairs and the pool. I wasn’t looking for a pool, but now that I have it, I really do enjoy it and I’ve used it a lot.”
The sellers, a Memphis couple who graduated from Tulane and used the house as a second home, had hired a Memphis decorator to furnish the house with a polished mix that also appealed to Boh. She wasted no time purchasing some of the contents, all of which were for sale. Because the move was a downsize, she sold some of her own belongings at an estate sale and kept others that made the cut for the move. “This house is a mix of what they had along with pieces from my other houses,” she said.
With the help of designer Rivers Spencer, Boh blended “theirs” and “hers” and made a few new acquisitions to fill in the gaps. Contemporary art works by artists such as George Dunbar, Luc Leestemaker, Kevin Gillentine, Andrew Bucci and Michael Schulteis are integral to the pleasing effect.
The final edit, a sophisticated blend with a dash of shine and glamour, is so harmonious it’s hard to believe it’s a combination of multiple persons’ tastes – including the owner who preceded the Memphis couple. That owner, a local decorator, renovated the kitchen with timeless gray and white surfaces, Bosch appliances and playful white chandeliers. She also turned one wall of the hall leading to the kitchen into a fabric-covered bulletin board that Boh loves and uses.
When at home, Boh spends most of her time in the comfort of the family room/casual dining room next to the kitchen. It overlooks the pool and a thick wall of bamboo. “I like the sound the bamboo makes at night when it rustles against the trellis on one end of the porch,” she said.
Yet every area of the house gets used. Upstairs, there are two bedrooms for visiting children and other guests. Outside, the pool and patio, which Boh had freshly landscaped, offer a private oasis for one or many. “The family who lived here entertained a lot and said it was a great party house,” said Boh, adding yet another attribute to the house’s long list of selling points.
Having lived in a cottage as a young adult, she is happy to have rediscovered the comforts and charm of a cottage once again. “I’m glad I was able to downsize enough to be in a cottage,” she said. “It’s so much cozier.”