It’s the best of both worlds — traditional Queen Anne architecture meets luxurious contemporary lifestyle in a home, located at 83 Oak St., New Canaan, and built in 2006. The choice New Canaan location is within walking distance of restaurants, shops, churches and the library in the heart of town. And it’s for sale.
After finding an ideal location, owners Bill and Kathleen Redman built their dream house, which was inspired by the seaside mansions in Cape May, N.J., where they often spent summers. “It was the Queen Anne style we particularly admired,” recalls Bill. “We saw architectural plans we liked, but they were all for a traditional square shaped house, and our property was rectangular.” The couple was fortunate to have Kathleen’s Uncle, New York architect Ron Rainone, take on the challenge. He was able to create a custom designed house with great flow from one end to the other that included all the modern features on their wish list, while maintaining the charm of a Queen Anne style home. “I also love how quiet the house is when we are inside. With all the modern materials used, when we close the doors, it’s like being in the country!” Bill says.
Not only did the Redmans get all the rooms they wanted, they also got high ceilings and generous proportions. The house has a stunning presence from Oak Street, with its wrap-around porch, turret, and architectural details. The flow of rooms results in no wasted interior hallway space, while the two-story front entry foyer opens to the formal living room, which leads into the family room with fireplace and soaring ceiling, and beyond, the informal dining area of the kitchen. A smaller doorway from the entry foyer leads to the gourmet kitchen designed by Christine Donner, including a coffered ceiling, center island, and a second sink and bar area with storage space for glassware. The adjacent spacious formal dining room has a large bay window.
Two turrets create charming interior spaces: A circular turret creates an extra seating area in the formal living room, and enhances the second floor master suite, providing a space currently used as an office for the lady of the house, while a second octagonal turret at the rear of the house creates an informal eating area off the kitchen, and on the second floor, it expands one of the additional bedrooms.
The rear of the first floor also includes a spacious and versatile study. With its full bath and sitting area with built in cabinets housing two Murphy beds, it can easily convert into a guest room. There is also a half bath on this floor.
Off the kitchen is a back staircase to the second floor and a small mudroom. A back door from the informal dining area leads to a deck, which accommodates a table for six, a grill, and a staircase leading to the large flagstone terrace below. The back yard is spacious, and landscaping ensures privacy on all sides.
On the second floor, the master suite has a fireplace and tray ceiling and there are four additional bedrooms with ensuite bathrooms.
The third floor features a large finished “L” shaped bonus room, 35 x 26 ft., and the walk-out lower level includes a fully finished basement with large recreation room, 36 x 17 ft., two small offices, a full bath, lots of storage space. and a two-car garage.
One of Kathleen Redman’s favorite parts of the house, which is currently on the market, is the front porch. “It’s an extension of our home where I love to relax and have a cup of coffee while catching up on the news or reading a good book,” she says. “Of course, I also use it as a central gathering spot to socialize with friends, neighbors or passersby, and connect with them on what is happening in their lives and in New Canaan … What happens on the porch, stays on the porch!”
Additional photos, courtesy of Steve Rossi: