1415 Lafayette Street - Alameda, CA 94501
5+ Bedrooms | 6+Bathrooms | 2-car Garage | .28 acre lot
If you’ve ever dreamed of living in Europe or perhaps returning to familiar Old World surroundings, 1415 Lafayette Street, Alameda offers genteel, Victorian-inspired living in the thriving, multicultural community of Alameda—the San Francisco Bay’s “Island.”
During the 1800s, wealthy San Franciscans began building their summer homes in Alameda’s sunny banana belt climate. These elegant, European-inspired mansions mimicked their Continental counterparts in artisanal excellence and superb craftsmanship, including the home of lumber tycoon James G. Wall, and his pioneering wife Mary J. Wall—one of the first American-born women to make her way to California.
Constructed in 1893 of local, old-growth redwood, befitting of a lumber baron, the Wall’s former home at 1415 Lafayette Street, features the grandest of entryways—all the better to welcome esteemed guests. An exemplary residence of its epoch, you’ll appreciate the impeccable woodworking and wainscot, paired with sublime stained glass and leaded beveled windows that cast magical rainbows throughout the home as the sun travels from East to West.
At some point in the life of this glorious property, the home was subdivided into four separate living quarters, each with their beautifully maintained, original architectural details, thankfully, left intact. 1415 Lafayette’s primary residence, Unit C (pis resplendent with exquisite period-perfect accents and finishes, many collected during worldwide travels. The remaining three apartments (not shown) are all exquisitely maintained and beautifully proportioned.
This plush residence with its opulent interiors remain true to the home’s classical style and historical relevance, offers an amazing turnkey solution for those accustomed to the finer things in life—like luscious silk window and wall treatments, Swarovski crystal, and Murano glass chandeliers, and a collection of bespoke and vintage furnishings* worthy of a Sotheby’s auction.
Unit C (shown in photos) is a three-bedroom, 2.5 bathroom home of grand proportions consisting of a first and second floor, while the surrounding apartments consist of a single floor. The original staircase, used by the household staff from long ago, connects the main residence to all four floors—from the finished attic space—to the unfinished basement, with a stop at the kitchen along the way.
An impressive living room features the original black walnut mantel fireplace, hand-painted box beamed ceilings, and exquisite wall and window treatments that rival the most elegant salons of Paris or London. You’ll be inspired to keep the snifters and Brandy nearby. A unique, rounded anteroom adjacent to the salon adds architectural whimsy to this stately home.
Superbly reimagined in the early 2000s, the home’s chef-centric kitchen will leave you breathless. Splendidly appointed, this inspiring “cuisine” transports you back in time with its elegant stained glass windows, redwood portals, birds-eye maple cabinetry, period-perfect finishes, and an eye-catching candy-apple red Murano glass chandelier.
Modern appliances, including a 6-burner Dacor dual-fuel range and double ovens along with a Viking dishwasher, are flanked by expansive countertops and a convivial island that keeps the cook in the middle of it all. Custom French doors with Rocky Mountain hardware lead to an outdoor deck—the perfect place for your morning Chronicle and a cup of Peets.
A Morrocan-inspired powder room off the kitchen provides convenience for the cook, the kids, and their friends. No matter where you look, the artisanal craftsmanship, tasteful elegance—and pride of ownership—are abundantly apparent.
Upstairs, the home’s personal living quarters are nothing short of fairy tale romantic. The primary, ensuite bedroom, is located in the home’s turret whose rounded walls envelop its inhabitants with a sense of snug security, especially on stormy nights when the winter winds blow. Rapunzel would approve. A spacious, walk-in closet is certain to appeal to the clothes horse, shoe devotee, or both.
A show-stopping, Italianate bathroom, ensconced in Carrera marble and natural light, reflects the vivid colors from its Victorian-era stained glass. Custom, mid-window Roman shades add privacy without obscuring the glass, above the fabulous “fin de siecle” clawfoot tub. A veritable spa-worthy experience, every day.
Two additional bedrooms, and a shared bathroom complete the 1,140 square foot unit, the larger overlooks a Tuscan “Room with a View” vista of tiled rooftops, while the third, and smallest bedroom has been employed as a home office.
As was the custom during the turn of the 20th-century, 1415 Lafayette’s formal gardens offer ever-blooming landscapes, and a spectacular array of wisteria, Japanese maples, succulents and cymbidium orchids provide a riot color throughout the year.
The home’s original carriage houses, once used for the horses and hay, the other for the buggy, now houses the family’s gardening supplies, but hold a wealth of possibilities and could be transformed into a guest house for visiting friends and family, a private office space, a home gym, an Accessory Dwelling Unit (ADU) or as a place for aging parents or an older child to reside. A historic home of unparalleled elegance, available for viewing by appointment only.