Linda Lazaris, 208-866-1542
The Hopffgarten house is one of the last of the large, fine dwellings that once distinguished Boise Avenue in South Boise, making it significant to Boise's architectural heritage.
The small mansion's vintage interior is formal and welcoming in the public spaces on the main level, and tastefully relaxed in the private quarters upstairs. Outside, the grand facade is surrounded by landscaped grounds with two ponds, a statue-topped fountain and colorful flowering hedges beckon visitors to stop and smell the heirloom roses.
The residence started out as a simple two-story frame house built in 1895 by assay clerk Albin de Mary. Painter J.H. Hopffgarten purchased the house in 1915 and remodeled it in the Georgian Revival style to recall the elegant residences of his home state, Georgia. The Hopffgarten family resided in the house for 60 years, and it retains their name.
When the house was originally built, South Boise was an agricultural center occupied by pioneer families. Then, most homes were small and modest, although a number of substantial residences were built in the area. This house is a wonderful example of these more elegant buildings and is on the National Historic Register as a property of local significance.
The dwelling combines classical elements with modern updates that complement its genteel appeal. Its plumbing and electrical systems have been modernized, and the original radiators were recently updated with a $10,000 gas boiler to efficiently heat the interior.
The facade bears an impressive two-story pedimented portico supported by tall, round columns. A covered porch spans the home's front. Part of the porch roof doubles as a private balcony accessible from the master suite upstairs. Hints of the elegance contained inside start at the single-pane glass front door accented with a decorative transom and sidelights.
Inside, the rooms on the main level feature handsomely carved pine pilasters, wainscoting and wide trim around doors and windows that Hopffgarten painted a deep tone and cleverly hand-grained to imitate mahogany. The patina of 100-year-old oak floors glows underfoot. Genuine period light fixtures punctuate nearly every room in the house.
The first floor contains a formal living room with a brick fireplace, a small reading room with a stone fireplace, a formal dining room, a renovated kitchen and an elegant powder room. A soothing sage green palette warms the main level.
The formal foyer has an open staircase leading to the private quarters on the second floor. Upstairs are two small bedrooms and two large master suites. Each master bathroom is outfitted with an elegant vanity that looks like a fine bureau that has been repurposed and outfitted with a basin and lovely granite countertop.
The house sits on a lot that is slightly smaller than 1 acre in size. A thick screen of evergreen hedges surrounding the property creates a sense of seclusion and privacy. You'd never know that busy Broadway Avenue is about 200 yards away.
There are more than 100 rose bushes onsite that are more than 90 years old. A row of red roses lines the long pull-through driveway. Pink roses encircle a burbling fountain topped by a statue of a young lady. Paved paths meander through the expansive lawn and gardens beneath mature shade trees dotting the park-like grounds, and stone benches provide places to pause. The estate would make a lovely bed and breakfast.
Pros: Beautifully restored mansion and park-like property form a tasteful private estate.
Cons: Landscaping requires diligent upkeep.
Shown by appointment.