A Healdsburg Couple Updates an 1898 Queen Anne Home


Lisa Rhodes lives Every day with a deeply rooted sense of history.She and her husband, Michael, spent Three years to restore Queen Anne’s house in 1898, just four blocks from Healdsburg Plaza. It was a process to discover a layer of history and personality within the walls of the house itself. “If you go through a house over 100 years ago, you’ll find old moldings, knobs, doors, and more. What you want to keep,” explains Lisa.

These discoveries include a vintage ledger with a yellow page detailing 150-year-old commerce (“writing is just gorgeous,” says Lisa), a long-forgotten glamorous key to the gate, and a crumble. It contains a pile of newspapers, as well as part of a redwood wall, scribbled with blue chalk with the name of the original builder and the date the house was completed.

Michael and Lisa Rhodes in front of Healdsburg’s home. (For Irene Roche / Sonoma Magazine)

Downstairs, in what was once the basement of the house, Lisa stores a small museum with treasures excavated during the remodeling. And the memories they hold continue to tell the volume to the latest owners of the house.

“I didn’t know this would be our eternal home, but I’m very fascinated by her,” says Lisa. “I think the house found her people.”

Lisa and Michael didn’t expect to find an eternal home in Healdsburg. Michael, a lawyer, and Lisa, who has worked in the legal community and nonprofits, have a family in Southern California and raised two children, primarily in San Diego. “I grew up in Orange County. My husband grew up in surfing. We’re beach people and we’re always barefoot in the house,” says Lisa. “But like any other place we’ve ever lived together, we’ve been welcomed here.”

The collaboration between Lisa and the local non-profit organization Corazon Healdsburg has helped to establish couples within the community. “Our first office was in Campofina (restaurant). I said,” Sit down and see how we can help. ” Before we knew it, we were in the backyard there, brainstorming about our vision and mission. Corazon Healdsburg advocates disaster resilience and provides education, medical care, and direct financial support to needy local families, especially Latino farmers. It is a mission that my family resonates deeply with Lisa, a Latino American.

In the living room. (For Irene Roche / Sonoma Magazine)
Fireplace in the living room. (For Irene Roche / Sonoma Magazine)
The glass greenhouse area of ​​the house with the collection of Lisa’s fern and orchids. (For Irene Roche / Sonoma Magazine)

“There’s a sensibility here. Healdsburg is really unique,” ​​says Lisa. “I think it’s a landscape surrounded by these wonderful trees. There are sequoia and redwood, and we eat little by season. You can see the leaves spinning and falling. In our hometown. One San Diego — 70 degrees Celsius, which is warm all year round. It gets cold here and you can relax and turn on the fireplace. “

However, creating a comfortable space to relax was rather a job. Lisa and Michael bought the house from Nortons, one of the founding families of Healdsburg, who built the house in 1898. It took a lot of work because the house had no one to live full-time for years.

Neighbors in a well-known location were worried that the couple would change their homes or destroy them, but Lisa and Michael explained that they always intended to bring their homes back to glory. increase. Debris pouch.

With the help of contractor Ken Finley, they reconstruct the sagging beams and combine historically accurate shake singles with tongue and groove siding to restore the look with decorative wood accents. did. Lisa also moved the front door back to its original location and worked with stained glass artists to create custom transom and door designs that reflected a subtle contemporary update to the Victorian style. “We’re fortunate to still have craftsmen who can do this job, but as we move to the next generation, I think it’s going to get harder and harder to find them,” says Lisa.

Today, the front porch and front door provide a canvas where couples can embrace their love for the season. Pumpkins and pumpkins are on display in the fall.Lisa’s famous elaborate ofrenda, Or the altar, Day of the Dead in early November. Beautiful lights for Christmas. And all kinds of hearts for Valentine’s Day. During these quiet winters, it is also about planting gladiolus bulbs in raised beds and cutting gardens for winter greens, behind the large magnolias that dominate the view from the living room.

A painting by Bay Area artist Alberto Ibara. (For Irene Roche / Sonoma Magazine)
In the kitchen. (For Irene Roche / Sonoma Magazine)

Inside the house, a more modern and casual sensibility created in collaboration with architect Bill Eagan echoes throughout the space. “I told him how I saw things, and we worked together on how we wanted to live at home,” says Lisa. She and Michael knew that the dining area and other entertainment spaces were key, as her parents’ home in Lisa, where she grew up, was always a place to celebrate her birthdays and holidays. They enjoy the warmth of an open family room with a large fireplace and connecting to both the kitchen and dining room. Lisa’s tequila collection takes pride in Credenza under the paintings of Alberto Ibara.

Michael works hard at home in a crimson-painted office. Vintage paintings by Irish boxers and the vibrant Oaxaca coverings that Lisa had kept for years happened to fit into the space. Lisa’s office near the kitchen also has a sink for arranging flowers, shelves for storing vases and baskets, and files for design magazines. “I love looking at things and tearing magazines. My best friend throughout this whole process from start to finish was Pinterest. There’s definitely a very deep hole there. And suddenly dinner It’s time, “she laughs.

The new folding doors in the family room face a vast backyard and a large paving stone patio with towering 200-year-old redwoods. Lucas & Lucas, landscape architect of Heelsberg, creates a planting bed filled with Japanese maple and easy-care grass, and a small patch of pool and artificial turf for the couple’s French bulldog Guy. Integrated.

The couple’s three grandchildren finally arrive this summer, relaxing at the window seats on the second floor with a book or stuffed animal, having breakfast at the sunny pale pink breakfast in the corner of the kitchen, and with the bulldog guy. I was able to take a walk. Pool. Lisa and Michael say they look forward to years of memories at home with friends and family. And the house itself deserves its love and attention, says Lisa. “This is one of the last epic dams here in Healdsburg. I was attracted to her and she was attracted to me.”


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