As you enter Mansfield through the most northern reaches of the city, you’ll likely be struck by several notions, not the least of which is this: “Wow, this would be a good place to settle down.” As you turn onto the drive that leads to William and Kathy Emmons’ luxurious home nestled in this part of the city, you’ll likely have another notion: “I should have added an exclamation point!”
Indeed, the Emmons’ dwelling is impressive, even before you get the chance to knock on the front door – or enter it to be greeted by spacious expanse, well-adorned walls that reach high above the floors and accent pieces that are museum-esque.
What you see even before you enter the home is breathtaking. And the view seems to go on forever. The photograph on the preceding page gives a pretty good idea about this setting.
Here are some numbers and facts that offer further evidence that, in fact, this home is exclamation-point worthy:
The Emmons’ 5,454-square-foot house sits on 7.5 acres, so there’s ample room to roam both outside and inside. Outside, there’s a pond and a pool – and trees that surround, accent and protect the estate.
Inside, there are four bedrooms and three and a half baths, plus an outside bathroom near the pool.
Kathy Emmons says that when the couple decided to purchase the home nine years ago, the beautiful property sealed the deal. At the time of purchase the house was 22 years old, and almost as soon as the contract was signed, the couple embarked on a nine-month remodeling job that produced much of what you see here.
Kathy calls the home’s style something of a “French country” look. Visitors eventually get around to admiring what the Emmonses accomplished during the remake. First, though, they generally tend to agree with the owners about the aesthetically pleasing property.
“I love our home, so it’s hard to say which part is favorite, but the outside is a lot of fun,” Kathy says. Consequently, she and William spend a lot of time there.
“Sitting outside with the fire pit and watching football games on the TV when it’s chilly outside is a lot of fun,” she says. “Of course, our grandkids would say running from the hot tub and to the pool via the slide and the treehouse with the zip line are their favorite things.”
As you might expect, William and Kathy often invite guests to their house. The list of regular visitors runs the gamut, from family and close friends to former coworkers (the couple is retired now) and members of various social and civic groups to which the Emmonses belong. “We have done quite a bit of entertaining in this home, from family events to charity events and even hosted a wedding and reception here,” Kathy says. “Having a built-in bar certainly helps, along with the open concept of the home, and covered and uncovered outside patios make it very easy to hold a large number of people. We had a medieval-themed dinner among the trees and have had dinner on our circular driveway around the putting green.”
As noted, though the estate was ample and elegant when William and Kathy bought it, they reveled in the notion of making it “theirs” once they moved in.
“As I stated, we spent nine months doing a remodel both inside and out,” Kathy says. “The exterior of the home was brick with green siding and spindles along the front the porch, kind of a Victorian look. We stuccoed over the entire home and added paving stones to the driveway and front porch. We also enlarged the back patio using paving stones.”
On the interior, they opened up walls and doorways to an 8-foot height and scraped the old popcorn ceilings. They added the rock to the fireplaces inside and replaced all the windows with Anderson wood windows and replaced all the doors, interior and exterior, with solid alder wood doors.
“We added all crown molding, base trim and door jams with alder wood, replaced all the floors with scraped wood and replaced the tile in the bathrooms with 16-inch travertine tile,” she says. “We also added granite counter tops in the kitchen, bathrooms and laundry room, replaced all the appliances, replaced all the lighting fixtures to solid wrought iron, and replaced all the plumbing fixtures. We added the wood beams to the living room, moved the staircase and redid the stairs and banister with wood and added wrought iron balusters. Of course, we repainted the entire interior and exterior.”
Outside, they replaced the entire landscaping, adding berms and flowerbeds among the trees and added the back patio with a fireplace and built-in grill. The pool, the tree house, the putting green and another patio sitting area were part of the remake, as was enlarging the pond and adding the landscaping around it.
“After a trip to Paris and visiting Monet’s gardens, my husband decided he wanted to give me my own Monet’s garden and came back and added the weeping willow trees and water lilies in the pond, along with adding some other flowers around,” Kathy says.
The sum of the parts – what was already in place along with the enhancements – is what you see here. “I love that it is a home, not a house,” Kathy says. “And our entire family loves hanging out here. It is comfortable for adults and kids of all ages.”