What’s better than opening up a stunning multi-million dollar home to showcase its best features?

Doing so at one that epitomizes Charleston charm and elegance on a tree-lined, idyllic street downtown, at the end of the day – with a magnificent celebration.

“Maison launched earlier this spring with a group of seasoned real estate veterans, “ said Leslie Turner, Broker In Charge and Founder. “We are a woman-owned and woman-run boutique firm. We wanted to give a big thank you to our friends and clients at this beautiful listing we have – to celebrate the fall season – we call it our Fall Fete.”

The group of savvy females obviously knows how to buy, sell and market for their large portfolio of clientele. They also know how to host the perfect “fete” — a full catering staff offering guests an impressive variety of aperitifs, cocktails and Charleston-inspired fare.

“Fete” – a celebration or festival that honors and entertains someone lavishly. Maison Real Estate’s Fall Fete was all that and much more.

The 200 plus guest list came out to view the home and the mood was most assuredly festive.

The home and celebration

Walking up to the home, I was struck by not only its statuesque presence but also by the mood it evoked. Think genteel galas where Charlestonians gather to socialize during twilight hours. Friendly faces. Gracious hosts. A welcoming ambiance where guests sip wine or cocktails on the front piazzas and trays of elegant edibles are served. Inside a full spread of delicious fare was displayed just so and music played -- creating the absolute perfect setting for a wonderful evening.

A gated garden area off the home offers an expertly manicured lawn. Bluestone and brick hardscape leads to a stand-alone carriage house that was designed by architect Glenn Keyes – perfect for a studio, office or she-shed. It has a half bath, TV and sound system. A black pergola frames the black-trimmed windows and doors. A porch with seating is underneath the pergola.

As I walked through the home, I imagined how many other “fetes” similar to this one were held on the piazzas and inside the home.

The pink-hued home was built in the 1850s. Double piazzas, creamy white moldings, wrought-iron gates and lush landscaping decorate the exterior. Its Italianate style has been lovingly preserved with precision and care while introducing modern elements.

The front door introduces a vestibule with grey and cream marble tile on the floor. Vintage wallpaper of birds and bamboo in the same hue immediately set the elegant tone of the home. The front door has original stained glass insets and a transom, stained-glass window. From here a double set of doors lead to a hallway and the set of stairs lead to the second level.

The owners spent the last three years marrying modern updates with the home’s historic architectural features and finishes. The high ceilings in every room, beautiful stained glass windows, double-French doors throughout and original moldings are perfection, set against distinctive lighting, dramatic wallpaper and thoughtful and opulent renovations.

The downstairs’ dining and living spaces flow into one another and each has a fireplace. Floor to ceiling French doors and windows bathe the rooms in natural light. Off the dining room is a space comprising custom cabinetry with copper pulls and a copper sink – a bar area with a roomy wine refrigerator and plenty of storage.

From here, the gourmet chef’s kitchen is a wow factor. Windows, windows and more windows are here, plus a Subzero refrigerator, white La Cornufe range with brass trim, KitchenAid beverage center and Asko dishwater. There are custom cabinets galore and a family space right off the kitchen on the other side of an original brick, free-standing wall.

Upstairs are three bedrooms, each of them generously sized with French doors leading to the upper piazza. Each bedroom has its own unique, completely renovated en suite baths. Gray and white marble, black and white tiles, penny tile and custom finishes make appearances in these spaces. The master bedroom has a large bank of windows directly opposite and behind the bed. Herringbone wood floors flow through here and into the elegant en suite bath. Spa-like, with floor to ceiling widows, a large soaking tub sits in front of a gorgeous marble-tiled wall. A separate shower and double vanity complete the room.

The laundry room is upstairs, as is floor to ceiling cabinetry, offering ample storage. The original hardwood floors creak just enough. The renovations are in perfect harmony with its classic and timeless design.

The Historic Charleston Foundations cites it as being “an excellent example of masonry Charleston town house of the mid-nineteenth century…”

We're starting a weekly newsletter about the business stories that are shaping Charleston and South Carolina. Get ahead with us - it's free.

As part of Charleston’s Historic District, it has been described as “high-style architecture,” with “fine Charleston style.” It remains so, with even more striking details representing stylish integrity, grace and the true spirit of Charleston living at its finest.

As of October 30, 2019, the three bedroom, four bath, 3,292 square-foot home at 12 Franklin Street listed for $1.995 million.



Leslie Turner

Maison Real Estate

18 North Adgers Wharf, Charleston