Lafayette Park has quite the notable collection of Mies Van Der Rohe buildings, ranging from low-rise multiple family dwellings, to the imposing Lafayette Towers. Fresh on the market today, this 1959 townhouse designed by the German American architect practically defines midcentury modern style. Mies Van Der Rohe, perhaps most famous for designing the Seagram Building in New York City, helped define the "less is more" philosophy of midcentury design. This 3-bedroom, 1.5-bath unit in Lafayette Park exemplifies Mies' style with open, bright common areas, window walls, and the hallmark clean, elegant lines.
The unit's handsome exterior should feel imposing with its matte black facade and aluminum trimmed windows, but the carefully curated landscaping and mature trees make the place look cooly inviting. Inside, the playful interaction of hard and soft continues, as the black dining room walls balance almost tenderly against honey-colored hardwood floors and a wall of windows with views of trees and hedges. The home's three large bedrooms have window walls of their own, and large closets. The living room, another huge, inviting space, has views to the backyard's refined, understated landscaping via another set of floor-to-ceiling windows.
The kitchen, a long galley with a full wall of glass-fronted cabinets, opens to the dining room on one end and the living room on the other, filling the space with light from those rooms' massive windows. The remodel here is a bit hit-or-miss—while the white tiled walls and glass-fronted cabinets are striking, the stainless steel countertops look a little sterile, and the electric-eye stovetops seem dated and out of place. They feel midcentury, but in a suburban, gut-remodel sort of way, not in a Mies way. The monthly HOA fee, a hefty $841, seems a little shocking, but breathe a sigh of relief—that fee includes the master mortgage and homeowners' insurance, as well as maintenance for the grounds and the building and property taxes.
The home, which last sold in 2013 for $129K, has a full basement, currently used as a laundry room and storage space. With the right planning, this area might make a great finished room, which would certainly come in handy given the house's compact 1400-square-foot size. Showings begin on July 16. See it while you can, because this one really does seem likely to go quickly.
·Mies Townhouse for $200K [Curbed Detroit]
·Lafayette Towers Offers Bribes for Yelp Reviews [Curbed Detroit]
·Mies Van Der Rohe's legacy [Mies Society]
·1416 Nicolet Place [Zillow]