Are you, like many people, are inspired by the elegant living seen in British period dramas like Downton Abbey? Even if you can't purchase a great English country house of your own, you can still create the effect within your own new home. Here are five key elements you'll want to be sure to have.
Land for the Approach. One of the most impressive aspects of most English country estates is the long drive up to the classic house itself. This is where your property will create lasting impressions on its visitors. Look for a piece of land or plot where the home is set back from the front driveway entrance or nearby streets. People should have time to appreciate the home as they approach.
A Grand Foyer. The foyer is where you greet guests and dazzle them with your house's luxury. This area should be tall and open, perhaps leading to staircases to the second floor, and it should be well-lit with tall, imposing windows and doors. Look for a room that will make guests stop and look up to take it all in.
Architectural Details. The small details show that a home is really a work of fine craftsmanship. The specific details are up to your own personal taste, but they often include things like crown moldings, ceiling decoration, arches, pedestals for light fixtures, and tall baseboards. If looking at real estate, don't expect to see all these details already in place — but do look for a space in which you can add your own architectural surprises.
Statement Staircase. The staircase should be a key highlight of any large estate-style home. You want a staircase that adds drama and splendor to the property, preferably within an open space with amazing natural lighting options and room for dramatic art objects.
Room for Large Art. English country houses were built on a grand scale, and much of their decor and art had to be on an equally grand scale. Recreate this in your own luxury property by including space on walls for oversize statement paintings or photography. In addition, choose public area rooms where you can place other large art works — like sculptures, carvings, and paintings on easels — within the room's square footage.
If you choose a home that can serve as a base for drama and detailing, your own home will soon become your own private estate straight out of the pages of history. Start today by working with an experienced luxury home real estate agent in your area.