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North End house with beach access has European feel

Posted On: 01-16-2015

By Christine Davis Special to the Daily News

When she was house hunting in 2003, Diana Abouzeid thought all she and her late husband, George, needed in Palm Beach was a cozy getaway.

After all, the couple already had an 8,000-square-foot family home at the Palm Beach Polo Club in Wellington when they began looking for a place on the island, where their youngest son, Andrew, was enrolled in Palm Beach Day School, today Palm Beach Day Academy.

“We wanted just a small house in Palm Beach to use during the week,” she explained.

But because she also wanted a newer home with storage space, an open floor plan and a yard, she ended up buying the late Judith Grubman’s house at 1072 N. Ocean Blvd. On the North End, it stands on an oversize parcel at the corner of Orange Grove Road, one lot west of the beach.

The Mediterranean-style house had been built in 2000 and offered a little more than 7,500 total square feet. So while it was larger than the Abouzeids had originally set out to find, it was otherwise exactly what she wanted.

“It’s a good location, quieter up here, and has access to the beach,” she says. “My husband said we’d sell the Wellington house, but we never did.

”Husband preferred beach

Between them, she and her husband had seven children and 18 grandchildren, so the Abouzeids opted to keep the Wellington house as a vacation home. But “George always loved Palm Beach, anyway,” said Diana, who splits her time between Palm Beach and Crans-sur-Sierre, Switzerland.

After her husband’s death in 2013 and with Andrew grown, she is downsizing. That four-bedroom, four-bath house is listed at $6.5 million through agent Carole Koeppel of Sotheby’s International Realty. The house has a two-car garage and comes with deeded beach access.

The exterior features stucco walls, a tile roof, a front patio delineated by a stone balustrade and second-floor balconies. A frontispiece surrounds the main entry, flanked by doors and windows with fanlights above.

Over the years, the Abouzeids modified the house. Her husband wanted an elevator, which they installed in the two-story foyer. Because Diana likes a European feeling, she replaced some of the heavy stone architectural features for wood. In the foyer, for example, she added wood moldings around an archway that leads to the living room.

“We moved the laundry room upstairs,” she added. “In the kitchen, we put in the butler’s pantry with stained-glass windows, and originally the dining room was a sitting room, and the dining area was in the living room. I just changed it back that way. We never went into the living room; it was so formal, and I thought, you know what, I’m going to use it more.

”Modifications made

Today the room still has an air of formality but also seems comfortable. The fireplace is fronted with a marble mantel that Diana imported from France, and the ceiling is coffered and beamed. In fact, she embellished many of the ceilings throughout and house.

Also featured in the living room are French doors that open to the loggia, where Diana installed a pecky-cypress ceiling.

Off the living room in the southeast corner of the house, the library can double as a guest bedroom because of its adjacent bathroom.

The dining room, just west of the foyer to the west, features windows with arches above that overlook the front drive. Diana’s additions to the room include its stone fireplace and oak coffered ceiling.

The center-island kitchen also was renovated with granite countertops, tiled backsplashes and custom wood cabinetry. In front of the bay window, she placed a table and chairs; and to add more dining space, she installed a projecting curved countertop nearby that accommodates pull-up seating.

The family room, in the northwest wing, has travertine floors, which are found in most of the rooms. French doors open to the pool area. A cabana bath serves the pool.

The master suite has two bathrooms and a sitting room. Doors from both the master bedroom and the sitting room access a second-story terrace that overlooks the pool and gardens. In the sitting room are a decorative tray ceiling and built-in cabinetry that includes a desk, shelving and a Murphy bed.

Two bedrooms on the second floor have bathrooms, and the one on the west side of the house has a sitting area.

The heated pool, meanwhile, is set in a travertine patio that Diana had installed. Making changes to the landscaping has been an ongoing project.

“The Realtor told me I have (so) many flowers,” Diana said. “I love flowers. I told her, ‘You should see my place in Switzerland.’

 

 

Source: Christine Davis, January 16, 2015, Palm Beach Daily News

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Zimmerman Douglas Elliman

340 Royal Poinciana Way, Suite 318
Palm Beach, FL 33480

Jacqueline A. Zimmerman (561) 906-7153 Direct jz@PalmBeachProperty.com

Adam M. Zimmerman (561) 906-7152 Direct az@PalmBeachProperty.com

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Douglas Elliman, Licensed Real Estate Broker | 340 Royal Poinciana Way, Suite 318, Palm Beach, FL 33480


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