The first time Helene Roberts walked into the mid-century modern home at 2980 Eastland Blvd. in Clearwater, her mind whirled with design ideas.
The place was covered in kitschy brown paint and brick. But Roberts, a professional sculptor with a background in interior design, “immediately saw the potential.”
She and her husband, Guy, purchased the property designed by W.R. Ede – a student of famed American architect, Frank Lloyd Wright - for $475,000 in December 2019 and have spent the past two years making extensive updates – starting with a fresh coat of white paint. Now the house is about to go back on the market for $824,900.
The 3-bedroom 2-bathroom home was built in 1979 and is chock-full of distinctive touches like angled windows, vaulted ceilings, a sunken living room and a hipped roof.
The listing agent, Lance Williams said the house is a rare find for the area because it combines elements from several different schools of architecture including prairie-style, Bauhaus and mid-century.
“You have the best of Wright’s flight of fancy designed for a Florida environment,” he said.
Only one family had occupied the house before the Roberts and “they had changed very little,” said Guy Roberts.
When the couple moved in, they converted the garage into a studio for Helene’s art and quickly got to work on the rest of the house, designing it in a way that would juxtapose old with new.
“I wanted to keep the mid-century feel but bring it into the present,” she said.
They completely renovated the kitchen and the bathrooms. They added modern amenities like a soaking tub and closet space in the master bath, double ovens and a sleek concrete island in the kitchen. They also gutted an old entertainment center in the living room, turning it into a floor to ceiling bookshelf.
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The centerpiece of the house is the funky angular pool outside. Guests must pass through the courtyard to enter through the front door, so it’s the first thing they see on their way in.
“Once the weather cools down it’s where we spend most of our time,” said Guy Roberts.
Floor-to-ceiling windows in the living room and skylights scattered through the house create plenty of natural light and give the feel of indoor-outdoor living even during the sticky Florida summers.
Williams is hosting an open house from 1-3 p.m. on Sunday, July 10 . After that, tours will be available by appointment only.