House of the Day: A Psychedelic Mushroom in the Woods
Straight out of "Alice in Wonderland," the "Mushroom House" of Perinton, N.Y., is your well-heeled bohemian's dream home. Listed at $1.1 million, the home lifts its inhabitants halfway into the surrounding canopy of trees via five concrete, column-supported pods, which are actually modeled after stems of Queen Anne's Lace, not toadstools.
Designated a Town of Perinton Landmark in 1989, the psychedelic dwelling nestles in woodland adjacent to Powder Mill Park, and above a waterfall, stream and field of flowers. James H. Johnson designed the home in the early 1970s after a local artist asked him to fashion something "groovy," "open" and "full of nature," according to listing agent Rich Testa. (He describes himself as not your "typical agent," and the $1,000 that Testa's pledged to donate to Habitat for Humanity upon sale of the home seems to support his claim.)
The home, which Testa calls "the most visited house in western New York" boasts a fountain-furnished family room, master bedroom suite, guest suite and patio -- all contained within the home's pods -- which have interiors as far-out as their exteriors. Their sculpted, sand-molded walls and ceilings slope in naturalistic forms, and painted, variegated ceramic tiles (more than 20,000) decorate the house inside and out.
A subsequent owner asked Johnson to design an addition to the home, so the well-known architect created a family room carved out of a knoll below the pods, and which connects to them through a riotously-tiled tunnel.
Testa of RE/MAX Advance has the listing.
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