This thing was ugly. Dangerous too. When we moved into our home, looming behind us was a behemoth of a Gothic New Orleans mansion. In its day, the Rountree house was a treasure, but through the years it became dilapidated- propped up with 2"x4"s and covered in blue tarp.
Think I'm exaggerating? Just read the articles below...
Over time, many people tried purchasing the historic home, designed by famed New Orleans architect James Freret. However, caught up in a divorce proceeding, the owners were never willing to sell. That is, until Andrea Bland came along.
Andrea is a true gift to New Orleans. She's spearheaded incredible Uptown renovations, bringing homes many thought were too far gone back to their original glory. She's been honored as Preservationist of the Year by the Preservation Resource Center. It was a hard-earned title.
When Andrea took on the 4,200 sq ft Rountree house, it was leaning a whopping 13." A strong wind could have knocked this thing down. Not to mention one of our famed New Orleans hurricanes. Andrea straightened the home and stripped it down to the studs. She then came back, carefully re-crafting every original detail, down to the ornate tin-lattice under the eves and the plaster medallions on the ceilings.
WGNO News reporter Deepak Saini followed her work on television. Uptown Messenger writer Owen Courreges documented the progress in print. Their research and storytelling weave an incredible tale. The images are breathtaking. Now complete, it's almost impossible to believe just how far Rountree... now Rountree-Bland... has come.
Read more (and check out BEFORE pictures) here:
Deepak Saini: Rountree Renovation: Preserving an iconic home
Owen Coureges: The slow, painful death of Josephine's leaning tower
Owen Courreges: The good, the bad and the ugly