The 86th Georgetown House Tour kicked off on Wednesday night with the annual Patron’s Party held at the newly renovated home of Under Armour founder and CEO Kevin Plank. Kevin, who has family ties to Georgetown, and his wife D. J. have been renovating a home near Doyle’s DC Regional Office for almost two years. They plan to use the beautiful Federal home for corporate entertaining. I was last in their home several years ago, and since then have been frequently passing by waiting for an opportunity to see the changes firsthand and up close.
The 11,000 square foot house on 1/3 acre with lush formal gardens is no stranger to the media or famous residents. It has been featured in Architectural Digest and other magazines, and it was the former home of renowned Washingtonians Evangeline Bruce and Ambassador David Bruce. It rooms have witnessed many soirees through the years, and hopefully it will once again become central to the Washington social scene.
Interior designer Patrick Sutton’s signature style is evident throughout the home. Lush fabrics in dark masculine hues dominate the space. The renovation made use of luxe materials, high lacquer finishes, modern wood paneling, and lighting all to great effect. The marble stairway that greeted most of the guests coming in off the garden with its mirrored ceiling and modern hanging chandelier was just stunning.
Because of the home’s purpose as a corporate space, much of the art was reproduction. However there were a few surprises from artists that have familiar names at auction. Off the kitchen, in an airy den, was a Thomas Hart Benton print. Several years ago Doyle sold the Fath collection of Thomas Hart Benton prints, one of the most complete and extensive collections ever compiled. On a wall downstairs, hanging in a hallway outside the billiard and bar room was a Jules Olitski painting of such force and physicality, I was honestly surprised to see it there. Olitski is revered in my house, my mother studied printmaking under him at C. W. Post, and I am always excited to see his work in a private home or at auction.
The Georgetown House Tour is organized and hosted annually by historic St. John’s Episcopal Church, whose original church building was started in 1796 and completed in 1804. President Thomas Jefferson and Dolley Madison were among the founders and regular attendees along with Francis Scott Key, author of our National Anthem. Since the first tour in 1931, the House Tour has been an important part of enabling the mission of St John’s in the greater Georgetown community, raising funds for ministry and outreach such as Jubilee Jobs, Georgetown Ministry Center, Hyde-Addison Elementary and a host of worthy causes.
The Georgetown House Tour takes place tomorrow, Saturday, April 29 from 11am – 5pm.
For information visit GeorgetownHouseTour.com