Unique Homes & Real Estate

Unique Home: Former Donaldson Mansion for Sale in Minneapolis

It's Friday, a day to cast away seriousness and daydream a little. How about a $6.5 million daydream?

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This 1906 home was built for department-store magnate Lawrence Donaldson. Designed by Kees and Colburn, the same architecture firm that designed Donaldson's downtown Minneapolis office and the Minneapolis Grain Exchange building, the house at one time contained 10 fireplaces, a three-level carriage house with terrazo-marble floors and an ahead-of-its-time central vacuum cleaning system. Over time, the original gold-leafed ceilings had been painted over, the custom-made Tiffany light fixtures were auctioned off, and the once-sprawling yard had been subdivided.

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After a top-to-bottom restoration and more than 10 years of living in the home, Ron Beining and Mark Perrin have decided to sell. The 10,000-square-foot home at 1712 Mount Curve Avenue in Minneapolis, MLS # 4013426, is listed for a price of $6,500,000.

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Take a look at more amazing photos at our posted listing.

Check out our own historic listing, the former Vasa Children's Home in Vasa, MN .

Souce: Homegazing on a Kenwood mansion

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Tom Petters' Wayzata Home Sells for $5 Million

What may be the best-known house on Lake Minnetonka has been sold. After more than 400 days on the market, 37 showings and one rejected offer, the 9,300-square-foot, 7-bedroom home in Wayzata MN once owned by convicted Ponzi scheme operator Tom Petters sold for $5 million. That is down from $8.25 million when it first went on the market in January of 2009.

Court-appointed receiver Doug Kelley, whose office oversaw the transaction, said he was "very happy" to close on the deal given the weak market for high-end homes.

"This is just the second home in the last two years to sell for $5 million or more in the Lake Minnetonka area," Kelley said.

The property sits on about 1 1/4 acres, has 250 feet of lakefront, a guest house, a 6-car garage and an empty wine cellar. See the Star Tribune article to see a photo of the home taken from the lake.

Petters was recently sentenced to 50 years in prison for his role in the $3.65 billion Ponzi scheme. The conviction and sentence are being appealed.

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A Unique Home with Exotic Architectural Style: Mayan Revival

A house designed by famed architect Frank Lloyd Wright has landed on the market.  The 1924 concrete-block structure in Los Feliz known as the Ennis House is listed at $15 million. It has four bedrooms and 4 1/2 bathrooms in about 10,000 square feet. It sits on a 3/4 acre lot atop a hilltop with beautiful city and ocean views.

The home's design was based on ancient Mayan temples. The Ennis House, along with several other buildings by Frank Lloyd Wright, is sometimes referred to as an example of the Mayan Revival style. The strange look of this California landmark, which is listed on the national Register of Historic Places, made it an appealing location for filming movies. Horror film fans may recognize it as the outside face of the original 1958 "House on Haunted Hill."

The seller is the nonprofit Ennis House Foundation, which has spent about $6.5 million to restore the home after it suffered earthquake damage in 1994 and water-damage from torrential rains in 2005. The house needs more care than a small nonprofit can sustain. Even with the $15 million price tag, it is estimated it will take an additional $5 million to $7 million complete its restoration.

Read more about the Ennis House at Wikipedia.

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