June 7, 2002
Section: CNY
Edition: Final
Page: E1

Strathmore Tour Features Five Unique Homes

Linda Bien, Home & Garden editor

Old house lovers know that trying to find the right home can be a challenge. Imagine going through your search not once, but twice, and being successful each time.

That's the case with Elizabeth Grace of Syracuse, whose home, at 218 Strathmore Drive, is one of five on the ninth annual Strathmore by the Park Tour of Homes. The tour, from 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. June 15, is sponsored by the Onondaga Park Association. When Grace moved to Syracuse seven years ago, she knew she wanted a Tudor Revival.

"I had lived in a house very similar to this in Westchester (County). I came looking for the same thing," she says.

The home she found was built in 1928. Its original owners were Robert D. and Katherine E. Chryst, who lived there until 1960. Robert Chryst was managing editor of The Herald-Journal.

Grace says the home offers lots of "liveability." The 2,300-square-foot floor plan is quite spacious, so there are lots of places to display the work of Grace, a commissioned painter.

On the first floor, there is a large living room and an adjoining solarium; dining room, kitchen with breakfast nook, a bedroom and full bath. Upstairs, there are three more bedrooms and another full bath.

Throughout the house there are unique touches, including arched windows that feature built-in screens, and mosaic floors that are constructed of tile and concrete. Grace has added several more features, including two kitchen doors that she had built to incorporate pieces of stained glass that are from an old church on James Street.

Grace has also filled her home with several pieces of Asian art, which is also the style that the home is decorated in.

In addition to her home being on the tour, Grace's paintings are on display, too. She is one of 30 artists taking part in Art-on-the-Porches, which is at several homes along Ruskin Avenue, also in the Strathmore neighborhood. That event is sponsored by the Greater Strathmore Neighborhood Association.

Along with the tour and art sale, visitors can visit the Syracuse's city greenhouse, located on Onondaga Avenue. The greenhouse was built in 1917 and is the site where bedding plants for the city's parks and displays are grown.

During tour day, it will be filled with a display of plants available for purchase from Watson Greenhouse of LaFayette.

The four other homes on the Strathmore by the Park Tour of Homes include:

764 W. Onondaga Ave. This Queen Anne home, built in 1893 for businessman Oscar F. Soule, has been extensively restored by its current owner. It is several blocks from the other homes and parking is available in an adjoining lot next door. Highlights of the first floor include a generous foyer with a maple and cherry parquet floor; a restored staircase, which features interesting built-in cabinets and drawers under the first landing; and two Victorian parlors. There is also a formal dining room, restored kitchen and a living room/den. The home is owned by Brian Tarolli.

218 Stolp Ave. This brick Foursquare with Tuscan columns was built in 1913. The entry features an eight-light, paneled Arts and Crafts style chestnut door. Two parlors flank the entry hall. There is a French pocket door and a beamed ceiling in the dining room. Other highlights include original, early electric light fixtures. The owners are Michelle and Tom Montgomery.

626 Roberts Ave. This Colonial Revival home was built around 1932 and was owned by the family that built it until 1983, when it was purchased by Daniel and Sher Corcoran. Highlights include a Mission-style front door and staircase with original oak floors. The first floor includes a living room, dining room and an enclosed front porch that offers views of Onondaga Park and Hiawatha Lake. The master bedroom was remodeled and larger closets were created.

618 Roberts Ave. The English cottage home is related to the Tudor style, but is less formal in appearance. It was built in 1928 and features a view of Hiawatha Lake from the dining room. The kitchen recently has been renovated. The upstairs bathroom includes the original ceramic wall tile, in a brick pattern, and hexagon-shaped ceramic floor tiles. The home has had several owners, including Arthur Merriman, who owned and operated several neighborhood movie theaters, and lived there in 1942 and 1943. The home is now owned by Monica Sondej.

Copyright, 2002, The Herald Company

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