real estate

5 cool and unusual homes on the market

Vintage firehouse
Vintage firehouse | Photo courtesy of Judith Oudt, Latter & Blum

Vintage firehouse

  • New Orleans
  • $4.85 million

Originally the home of Engine Co. No. 7, this former firehouse has become a town house in New Orleans' French Quarter.

Built in 1907, it was gutted in a 4 1/2-year, $5 million renovation completed in 2010, says Judith Oudt, real estate agent for Latter & Blum.

"It was done with the finest of the finest," she says. "It's overwhelming."

It has polished concrete floors, reclaimed heart-of-pine accents, frosted glass walls, clerestory windows and recessed lighting throughout the lower level -- along with oversize stable doors from the original firehouse.

The 5,698-square-foot home can be sold as one town house, or the two levels can be sold individually as condominiums, Oudt says.

The first floor has two bedrooms, a study, 2 1/2 bathrooms and a brick patio with a heated saltwater pool. The second story has two bedrooms and 2 1/2 bathrooms along with a balcony, elevator and separate entrance. Each level has its own kitchen and living and dining areas.

The owner had "walked by the firehouse for years and always admired it," says Oudt. When he saw the "for sale" sign on it, she says, "he decided it was an extraordinary space, and he wanted to do this."

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