2015 Newburyport Holiday House Tour

This past Saturday was a lovely one to take in the 2015 Newburyport Holiday House Tour which benefits the Custom House Maritime Museum. As I’ve written many times here, Newburyport is my favorite place in the world – I lived there for about five years and still miss it. Unfortunately, everyone in my life is located South of Boston and Newburyport is up near the New Hampshire border. Not a terribly far distance, but too far for easy get-togethers. Ah well, it’s an easy day trip and I get there as often as I can. I was running a bit late this year and only made it to four of the thirteen properties. The tour only runs on one day for six hours, so it’s hard to imagine anyone makes it to all thirteen homes. I usually try to get to six but fell short this year. Since I’m usually taking photos and posting some to my Instagram as I go along, I end up spending even more time in each place.

My first stop was actually a two-for-one which included two relatively new houses on one lot – a three story with amazing water views (called Oyster) and a cute little single level cottage for Grandma (called Pearl). Unfortunately, I was remiss getting exterior shots this year. The first image below is a process photo from the builder’s website (who is also the owner).

photo credit Plum Island Construction, Inc.

The architecture of the house was really smart for the location. The first floor is garages, the second floor is the bedroom floor which includes a private little deck complete with a day bed suspended from the overhand, and the top floor is the living space with spectacular views on all sides.



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The second property I visited was in Salisbury, which is just north of Newburyport across the Merrimac River.


The property sits right on the river and has spectacular views. Santa seemed happy… And yes, it was actually warm enough for a convertible.

A sweet detached barn made for a lovely vignette in the courtyard.


The cheery red front door.




The main level living room.


The landing near the staircase featured a lovely grand piano and a camera shy pianist playing holiday tunes.


I swooned over this window treatments. The embroidered fabric and header treatment are gorgeous.








The master bedroom with it’s spectacular water and marsh views.


The master bathroom is quite something. We weren’t allowed to go in, but the view from the door is lovely.


The daughters bedroom complete with sofa and luxurious faux fur throw – all with water views.



The next property was one of my two favorites. A Queen Anne home built in 1879, it was recently purchased by an interior designer and her husband and even though they haven’t been in the house for more than six months, they’ve really turned it into quite a gem. You can see the real estate listing here for the “before” photos.

exterior photo via Caldwell Banker

Two sitting/living rooms flank the front door. This is on the left and the larger and more formal of the two.



I liked the simple mantle treatment with the huge pine cones and the tiny ribbon on the wreaths.



And below is the smaller of the two sitting rooms.


And the views from one to the other. Unfortunately, I wasn’t able to capture the lovely color story of these spaces, but they flowed really well.


Below is the upstairs sitting/changing room off the master bedroom.


And me taking a silly selfie in the master bathroom.


Back downstairs is the formal dining room.


The sideboard – actually I’m not really sure what to call this piece – it is gargantuan and gorgeous.




And beyond the dining room is this lovely and warm kitchen space.

Look at those wide pine floors – some 18″-24″ wide – amazing!


A beautiful French scale graces the island.


The lighting in the house is a real standout. And it’s hard to judge the scale in the image below, but those original two-over-one windows are original and enormous. Probably 40″ wide each.


I’m pretty sure I’d never want to leave this room. And almost didn’t as I’d misplaced one of my shoes somewhere in the house. As usual with house tours, you’re required to wear booties or take off your shoes. It was so warm on Saturday I had a simple, very comfy pair of flats and no socks, so was barefoot. I realized as I was getting ready to leave that I was missing a shoe from my bag. Luckily someone was coming down stairs with my shoe in hand just as I started looking.


And finally, the back deck is graced by this gorgeous stained glass window in the privacy wall.


I’m saving the fourth house to share in a separate post because it’s currently on the market and I wanted to share some of the real estate photos along with it.

The hallmark of the Newburyport Holiday House tour are the houses themselves. To be honest, not all feature spectacular holiday decor, but they are all beautiful examples of local architecture of various styles and vintages – so always worth the trip.

xoxo Linda

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