A bachelor with "green fever" designs a home remodel on a Magnolia waterfront cove with green features, including a solar-paneled roof and recycled and locally purchased materials and services.
The owner(s): Ben Abrams, 31 (and arguably, his Rottweiler, Bronx). Abrams owns an exotic-car-detailing business and recently started a business developing land on which to build townhomes with green features.
The goals: To incorporate green features while balancing his design desires. Abrams said he feels a responsibility to the environment, especially given his resources. He also admits to being influenced by the Northwest’s “green fever.”
He coveted this Magnolia property the minute he saw its 60-foot pebbly waterfront cove peering out onto the channel that flows from the Ballard Locks to Salmon Bay. He loves the water and helped to design this home remodel with water features and water views in mind.
The remodel: Abrams bought the property in early 2005; he tore down a small dark cottage, and over a year-and-a-half rebuilt the main house into a contemporary two-story home that takes advantage of the wide water views upstairs and cozy, den-like areas downstairs for a theater, guest bedroom and open pool-table room.
Most Read Stories
- Melinda Gates' name listed on Seattle home deed ahead of divorce, but that doesn't mean she bought it
- After decades of neglect, old seminary at Saint Edward State Park reopens as $57M hotel
- Who gets Xanadu 2.0, the Gates family mansion?
- Can you have alcohol after the COVID vaccine?
- The end of the pandemic lockdown is closer than you think
The guy thing: With its dark color scheme, flat-screen TVs and downstairs retreat, this 2,800-square-foot house (including a 500-square-foot garage that he uses for part of his car business) oozes masculinity.
Though a bachelor pad — albeit a sophisticated one designed with a future family in mind — Abrams has softened the place with contemporary local art and Buddhist sculptures. He practices yoga twice a week, calmed and inspired by the water views.
Biggest rewards: Abrams painstakingly chose every detail in and on the house — down to designing the sleek raised dog bowls.
Quote: “It’s my dream home,” he said. “But as much as I like nice things, I’m really a simple guy who, I’d like to think, can live off of anything. I don’t let it define me. If I lost it all tomorrow, I’d be fine.”
Cost: He bought the waterfront property for $1.2 million and put another $1.2 million into the remodel.
Architects: Velocipede Architects, Seattle, specializing in ecobuilding.
Builder: J.L. Jordan Co., Seattle.
Colleen McBrinn is Home & Life Editor at The Seattle Times; 206-515-5655 or email@example.com. Benjamin Benschneider is a Seattle Times staff photographer.