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Kingston Victorian, $329,900

I concentrated my search for Kingston property on places near Forsyth Park, a very sweet city park with a great playground and a lovely little nature center. Well, there wasn’t much under $400,000, unless you want a place on a very busy intersection or a late 60s ranch house, and — not to sound too snobby — that’s not exactly our cup of tea.

This Victorian-era house, however, piqued our interest. Four beds, two and a half baths, a quarter of a an acre city lot, the cutest little outbuilding. Needs some different decor, but the kitchen looks pretty nice and I love the arch above the stairway. This is a pad for the permanent NYC escapee, or other folks looking for a full-time residence in Kingston, N.Y. It’s been on the market almost a year, and has already had one $15,000 price cut. I’d take a few thou off for the vinyl siding alone. Stats on the jump.

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Pedigreed Victorian in Uptown Kingston for $395,000

There’s something bittersweet about seeing a home for sale that’s been in the same family for over one hundred years, such as this grand Kingston Victorian currently on the market. With any historic home, part of the appeal is buying a piece of history, but with this particular house, you’re also buying a century’s worth of one family’s heritage.

And what a heritage it is! According to the broker’s notes, this house belonged to Charles Grant Ellis, the foremost “Oriental Rug Scholar” of the twentieth century. Note the gorgeous rugs in every room as well as the antique-per-square footage ratio. To my taste, it’s just right. At least from these pics, the house doesn’t look bed-and-breakfast fusty or antique shop crammed. Rather, I get the sense that Aunt Edith brought over that chiffonier on the Queen Elizabeth, or that Cousin Fabian won that tapestry in a game of whist. And if only those rugs could talk.

Sadly, the house doesn’t come furnished. However, it does come with eleven rooms, including a library, and more moldings than you care to count. It’s on a corner lot, in desirable Uptown Kingston, in an area with similarly impressive historic homes. The lot is rather small, though, and without off-street parking or the space for a garage. Oh, there is only 1.5 baths—-in a house with six bedrooms! I’m guessing, though, that the person who wins this one will appreciate the house’s greater charms and hopefully, keep it in the family for another one hundred years. Fabulous pics and stats on the jump. Read the rest of this entry

Town of the Week: Kingston

A lot of Upstate weekend visitors overlook Kingston, the Ulster County seat and one time capital of New York State. Granted, many parts of Kingston don’t have that immediate postcard-worthy charm of smaller Upstate towns, especially if you’re coming to Kingston to do your shopping at one of the big box retailers or the mall.

The suburban sprawl you find once you leave Kingston’s lovely downtown area (more on that in a second) probably isn’t going to win any converts, but if you do end up moving Upstate, and you’re not planning on becoming a homesteader, you may find you want to be within a close driver of the bog boxes as you’ll eventually end up in need of them from time to time. (On a related note, I don’t think I could overpraise Kingston’s superb local supermarket, Adams Fairacre Farms on the 9W strip. Stocked full of local produce and products at very competitive prices, it also has suburban-sized wide aisles, a great garden center and amazing selection. For Adams alone, Kingston is worth a second look.) Read the rest of this entry

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