Woodworking happens to be a passion for this particular homeowner. While working for 40 years in a high-level corporate position, which included extended international travel, he would come home to his traditional Indian Hill residence and find himself going to his woodshop for a bit of stress relief.
Back then he would build cabinets, tables and “pretty much anything.” More recently his focus has been on rocking horses, cradles and high chairs for his eight grandchildren.
When empty nesting, retirement, and his wife’s diagnosis of cancer pushed the couple to simplify their lives a bit, the two looked to nearby Mariemont, specifically at the Tudor-style residences being planned by Greiwe. Their Tudor Revival architecture adheres to town planner John Nolen’s 1921 vision.
Unfortunately, three years ago, while in the preliminary planning stages for the new condo, his wife lost her battle. However, her positive outlook on the move helped guide him through the design and construction phase.
Inspired by the Tudor style exterior, the homeowner decided to carry that theme inside. Early on the list was a massive limestone fireplace in the living room made by one of Holland’s contacts—Tudor Artisans in Atlanta. The generous size of the mantles, trusses and beams are in proportion with the 14-foot tall ceiling.
It’s hard not to credit the craftsmen and their work as the standout stars in this home. For example, Phil Smith hand carved the oak mantle in the hearth room, along with the cooktop hood, beam corbels and the island legs.
“I’ve known Phil for a long time. My wife found him early on,” the owner says. “Phil’s one of the best artisans in Cincinnati that nobody—or very few people anyway—knows about.”
Distinctive curved arches in the hallways, beams, moldings, and cabinets in the reflection room were the result of countless hours of hard work by another Cincinnati artisan, G. Graham Wilson.
Putting the finishing touches on the woodwork—literally—was Bob Reuther. The homeowner had worked with Reuther before and knew he was the right person to do the tweaking of the finishes on the cabinets, beams, and oak mantle.
Without question, the woodwork is a feature the owner looks upon with pride. “The number of woods that we have blended together is incredible,” he says.
Another person who was heavily involved in many of the creative decisions including the design of the hearth room’s herringbone floor, the powder room’s limestone and wood parquet floor, and the placement of most of the artwork, was someone the homeowner began dating during the planning and construction phase of the home.
“It was her idea to make the doors curved to match the arches,” says interior designer Judy Holland, of Greiwe Interiors. “And, of course she was right.”
This creative collaboration of the minds—between developer, architect, craftsmen, designer, homeowner, and now, his fiancée all came together beautifully resulting in a well-built, well-designed, one-of-a kind home that has the bonus of being just around the corner from the Mariemont Theatre and Graeter’s.
“I love it. I absolutely love it. The neighborhood, the environment, the people I meet,” says the owner, adding, “Why didn’t I do this earlier?”