Welcome to Sunnyside! The address is 25 Old Beach Road Newport, Rhode Island, at the corner of Old Beach Road & Sunnyside Place. Situated on an acre of land the main house spans 9,182 sq ft plus the attached guest house totaling an additional 4,500 sq ft. The fenced in back yard and lush greenery make for a perfect private setting to enjoy the large saltwater pool and patio.
If after reading this post you fall in love with this home (it's impossible not to) you should know that the property is currently listed for sale with Kendra Toppa of Lila Delman Real Estate!
Before I delve into this home's gorgeous interior, I must tell you a little bit about the history of the property. Sunnyside, an iconic piece of American architecture was designed by the acclaimed firm, McKim, Mead & White for Commodore William Edgar of the New York Yacht Club in 1885. The design and construction spanned from 1885 to 1887 and the cost to build the home was (drumroll please) a mere $42,870.
Now let me take you on a tour of this magnificent property!
Enter through the front gate and make your way down the driveway. Pull up in-front of this palatial home & climb the wide stone steps to the blue-stone paved terrace. Step under the portico, flanked by iconic columns and enter the home through the original 4 foot wide door decoratively adorned with festoons.
There have been a few changes made to the interior layout and use of space since 1886. What was once the servants quarters is now the guest house, and the drawing room was converted into a great room with kitchen to service the main residence. Aside from these obvious changes and the addition of a few modern day amenities, such as central air conditioning, the original interior architecture, millwork and detailing have been brilliantly preserved and beautifully maintained over the years.
Step inside and enter a grand space spanning 16 feet wide by 27 feet in length, this entry hall fills the length of the home front-to-back. the room is wainscoted in oak, originally covered in leather panels held by brass nails. Today the wainscot walls have a fresh coat of white paint, lightening and brightening the space. The original oak ceiling consisting of large beams and intricately carved brackets still remain. The fireplace is the focal point of the space, its grand scale and intricate detailing is a copy of an old mediaeval design and will surely wow everyone who walks through the door!
The first room to your right is the present day dining room. Originally used as the home's living room this space is 18 feet by 18 feet and includes the large circular bay window as seen from the front of the home that spans 13 feet. The original quarter sawn oak floors and marble fireplace are beautifully preserved as are the white painted oak walls. A lobby adorned with composite order columns connects the dining room to the great room.
The great room at 20 feet by 28 feet was originally the drawing-room and now features a modern kitchen, a dining space in-front of the grand 14 foot bay window, and a comfortable seating area centered around the fireplace. The scale and layout of this space is perfectly suited for casual entertaining. The highlight of this space is undoubtedly the coved ceiling, a masterfully preserved plastered and hand-painted trompe l'oeil design.
What would such a gentleman's home be without a library? And a beautiful library at that! Finished in cherry wood the wall surfaces are occupied by 9 foot high bookcases that enwrap the room. And sure to impress the most skilled craftsman is an arabesque carved panel that adorns the wall above the fireplace mantel, dentil cornice, fluted pilasters, ornamental caps, brackets and more.
Across the entry hall from the library was once the home's dining room. Today the space serves as a formal living room, and is my favorite room in the home. The original American oak ceiling, an antique that had been imported from Europe features intricate carvings and mini rosettes. The cherry paneled walls have been painted white, a stark contrast to and further emphasizing the dark cherry ceiling. The current decor includes a pair of sofas in a classic red, white and blue stripe fabric and a set of framed nautical flags. Surely this would have met the Commodore's approval!
Six well appointed bedrooms, each with an en-suite bath occupy the second and third floors of the residence.
Just incase the 9,182 sq ft main house doesn't provide quite enough space, there is also the attached guesthouse, which once served as the servants quarters, to provide an additional 4 bedrooms. With it's own entrance, courtyard and parking space the guesthouse could also be rented to seasonal visitors or year-round residents.