Frank Lloyd Wright Apprentice-Designed Home Hits Suburban Chicago, Illinois Real Estate Market

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Arthur Dennis Stevens, the youngest and last Frank Lloyd Wright apprentice, designed suburban Chicago, Illinois home to embrace Midwestern setting.

Architect Arthur Dennis Stevens, the youngest and last Frank Lloyd Wright apprentice, designed the home at 7 Timberline Lane in Riverwoods, Illinois in 1980 as a retreat for present owner Joyce Marcus. The home has since been impeccably updated with acute attention to detail and in keeping with the original design aesthetic of the home, and is now listed for sale by Prudential Rubloff Properties.

Stevens designed the home’s exterior to enhance the property’s natural wooded setting. Situated on more than two acres amid award-winning landscaping, mature trees, and bordering the spectacular 561-acre Ryerson Woods, the two-plus story home of floor-to-ceiling windows, cedar and stone offers stunning visual appeal. Marcus wanted the shift from inside to outside to be smooth and visually uninterrupted. Stevens effectively accomplished this.

“The way Dennis Stevens’ design captured and embraced the beauty of this property is really quite impressive,” said Tracy Wurster, broker, Prudential Rubloff Properties. “Someone who relishes nature through all of the seasons here in the Midwest will absolutely love it.”

The home, built as a series of five pods, has a total of 5,700 square feet of interior living space and an additional 8,500 square feet of exterior space in the form of patios, decks and balconies. Aggregate stone and wood steps lead to custom carved wood double front doors. The entry of the home is on the second floor overlooking the dramatic living area.

The breathtaking two-story space of the main pod is expansive with floor-to-ceiling windows that seem to flow through to the outdoors. The 1,600 square foot space is completely open, but feels larger because of the two-story curved and vaulted cedar ceiling that rises 39 feet up to a vaulted skylight. This special roof beam structure is so unique it is patented. A 29-foot rubber tree, nestled among boulders, grows in the heart of the room. The comfortable living room, elegant dining room, custom kitchen, and upper and lower dens, radiate gracefully from the tree. Boulders and stonework are repeated elements both inside and outside the home. The Brickman Group, noted Chicago landscape design and construction firm, received a Gold Award from the Illinois Landscape Contractors Association for this work.

The stone and cedar steps of the foyer lead down to the main living space. The kitchen was updated in 2008 with top-of-the-line appliances and custom cherry cabinets topped with granite and Caesarstone. The adjacent dining room space easily accommodates intimate dinners or entertaining on a grand scale.

Like his mentor, Stevens designed some of the furniture for the home in the dining room, the living room and the master suite. His design for the dining room and living room also included built-in cabinetry, shelving and an entertainment center to provide ample storage. The “hanging” upper and lower dens each have a floor-to-ceiling stone wood-burning fireplace.

To the northwest off of the great room is the second pod with two levels of living space, each approximately 670 square feet. The top floor includes the master bedroom suite, with the same soaring curved cedar ceiling and skylight combination found in the main pod. Two walls of windows and an extensive balcony bring in the outdoors. Also included in the bedroom suite are a generous sitting area, two walk-in closets and a master bath with a skylight. The master bath was completely updated in 2008. Options are limitless for the first floor of the second pod which is identical to the top floor in size and contains an updated bathroom and two walk in closets.

The third pod, to the southeast off of the great room, has the same vaulted cedar ceiling with skylight, two bedrooms, two walk-in closets and a full bath. Floor-to-ceiling windows and a generous balcony occupy the upper level. The lower level includes a 2 ½-car garage, a laundry and utility room and storage space. Additional parking is available in a separate 2 ½-car garage designed to mirror the home. A parking pad offers even more vehicle space.

Built in 2004 by The Brickman Group, the gazebo complements the design of the home as well with vaulted ceiling and floor-to-ceiling screens that allow for easy viewing of the property. The surrounding patio and pond areas include a wildflower garden and appeal to all of the senses.

Beyond the home’s landscaped grounds, and almost an extension of the home’s backyard, is Ryerson Woods. The Edward L. Ryerson Conservation Area, which is part of the Lake County Forest Preserve system, includes expansive woods and 6.5 miles of hiking trails.

The home at 7 Timberline Lane in Riverwoods, Illinois is listed for $1,999,000. For details, contact Tracy Wurster, of Prudential Rubloff Properties, at 847.460.5460 or by email at twurster(@)Rubloff(dot)com.

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Liz Dominello
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