Palm Beach Daily News

On the Market: A renovated North End house has showcased a collection of mid-20th-century furnishings

By: Christine Davis
Published: 7/6/2011Source: Palm Beach Daily News

When Helen Lipsett Boehm and her husband, Riccardo, of Massachusetts decided to buy a home in Palm Beach several years ago, they didn’t have to look far to find one they liked: They bought their North End home at 211 El Dorado Lane from its original owner, Natalie Kahn Lipsett Helen’s stepmother.

 

It seems the house had intergenerational appeal for this family. Built in 1956, it’s a simple modern-style house that stands on a street three blocks south of the Palm Beach Country Club. And as with all the original residences on El Dorado Lane, it was designed by architect Ames Bennett for the late Robert Gottfried, who developed homes across the island in the latter half of the last century.

 

Riccardo Boehm is among the dealers at Red Door Antiques on Antique Row on South Dixie Highway in West Palm Beach. He once studied design in college and worked in the shipping and trading business in the Far East, but today sells classic furniture and lighting from the mid-20th century and the decades bracketing that era. So it’s easy to understand his attraction to a home with an architectural style featuring clean lines.

 

As Riccardo says about himself: “Modern furniture is a passion that has turned this collector into a dealer.”

 

The Boehms — unrelated to the family of the same name that founded the porcelain empire — have furnished the house with pieces from their collection of modern classics by Le Corbusier, Verner Panton, Warren Platner, Eero Saarinen and Eileen Gray, Riccardo’s favorite designer.

 

Today, however, the couple plans to move to an apartment, because they want the freedom to travel more. Their home, with about 3,000 square feet of living space, inside and out, along with four bedrooms and three bathrooms, is offered for sale by the Corcoran Group for $2.15 million. The Boehms have listed it with Corcoran agent Doreen Danton, who also owns Red Door Antiques with her husband, Richard.

 

After they bought the home in 2006, the Boehms hired architect Pat Seagraves and Woolems Construction to renovate it and SKA Architects for the interior design.

 

The living room accommodates matching sofas by Gray and chairs by Platner. The ceilings, deep trays with contemporary lines, provide a backdrop for modern chandeliers by Arne Jacobsen and Verner Panton.

 

Entry to the house is through a courtyard with a pool and patios. The landscape architect was Morgan Wheelock, who was one of Riccardo’s classmates at Harvard. Wheelock planted a mix of palm trees, confederate jasmine and bougainvillea.

 

The entry itself has been reconfigured — the old entry is now part of a guest suite — and new front doors, set into two bays, today open directly into the living room, affording views of the gardens in the courtyard. Floors throughout the house are covered in whitewashed parquet.

 

The living room opens to the dining room, and to the west is the kitchen, which has been redone with Jerusalem limestone counters and professional-grade appliances. These rooms also offer garden views.

 

A media room stands to the east of the living room through French doors with glass panels.

 

The master bedroom is in the northeast corner, with glass doors that open to a private patio. A guest bedroom is also in this area of the house.

 

The home has a generator and is wired with smart-house technology.

 

As they prepare to leave their home, the Boehms’ decorating preferences illustrate how the clean-lined, simply styled homes of the last century — a staple of the North End — can, in the right hands, become showcases for classic furnishings of the modern era.

 

It’s a style with an appeal that runs in the family, notes Helen Boehm, who recalls a seminal moment involving her stepmother after the Boehms bought the house.

 

“Natalie was amazed when we moved our Saarinen chairs in, as she moved her Saarinen table out,” says Helen.

 

For more information about 211 El Dorado Lane, call listing agent Doreen Danton at (561) 310-1660.

 

RETURN TO PRESS PAGE