Legacy of Noted Palm Beach Architect Byron Simonson Lives on in SoSo

Byron Simonson (1902-1972) may not have the universal name recognition of fellow architect Addison Mizner, but just like Mizner, he had a hand in shaping the architectural landscape of historic Palm Beach.

Once a protégé of both Mizner and Maurice Fatio, Simonson is perhaps best known for designing Palm Beach’s Colony Hotel and La Coquille Club in Manalapan, a modernist hotel frequented by jet setters that was ultimately demolished in the mid-1980s to make way for the Ritz-Carlton Palm Beach.

(La Coquille Club, Historical Society of Palm Beach County)

After establishing his own architecture firm in 1945, Simonson eschewed the columns and arches associated with Mediterranean style and adopted a Mid-Century Modern approach to design. While his work was lauded, few of his creations remain today. Many were destroyed in the 1908s when post modernism fell out of favor.

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“The Geckoes” at 6800 Washington Avenue in West Palm Beach

This is what makes “The Geckoes”, a 1956 Simonson home nestled in our very own Southend such a rare gem. Located at 6800 Washington Road, four houses off the Flagler waterfront, the house was constructed in Simonson’s “Bungalow Style” of design.

While the owners have updated the house’s systems, they have stayed true to the mid-century modern aesthetic by retaining the exposed beams and cypress ceilings and restoring the original built-in cabinetry.

Kitchen

An open floor plan provides amazing flow between the kitchen, dining room and living spaces and creates a great feeling of space that is perfect for entertaining. The home’s clean, chic and modern vibe evidences the talents of Simonson and makes one lament that there are not more reminders.

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Those appreciative of Simonson’s work now have the chance to own a piece of Palm Beach history. The Geckoes is listed for sale by Kiely Real Estate. Interested parties can reach Jefferson Kiely at (561) 371-8994.

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Kiely Real Estate
6319 S. Dixie Highway
West Palm Beach, FL 33405
561-655-1300

 

Just Listed: 7 Bedroom House on Garden Ave!

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Kiely Real Estate just listed this spacious home on Garden Ave. The home boasts a whopping 7 bedrooms, 4 full baths, and two half baths. That’s a lot of rooms for the price, $399,000!

Here is the listing description pulled from the agent’s website, kielyrealestate.comContinue reading

FHA Loan Limit Lowered for Buyers

The FHA, Federal Housing Administration, recently raised the required down payment on a home in order to qualify for an FHA loan from 3.5% to 5%. Now, homeowners will need to be able to pay a down payment of at least 5% of the cost of a home in order to qualify for an FHA mortgage.

As a result, these changes will affect the price of house buyers can purchase in the Southend. The maximum loan amount has been reduced from $423,000 to $345,000, around an $80,000 difference.

With an estimated median home value of $149,280 in the Southend, buyers interested in purchasing a home around this price range will now need to be able to pay a down payment of around $7,464, as compared to the previous $5,225, in order to secure a loan from the FHA.

The Southend: Home to the Least Expensive Ocean Access Home in West Palm Beach

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Listed at $585,000 by Kiely Real Estate, this beautiful home on 300 Arlington Road is the cheapest home in West Palm Beach that has ocean access. Built in 1963, this spacious 3 bedroom, 2 bath home is approximately 1,644 square feet. Continue reading

Real Estate Trends in the Southend

These days the current estimated median home value in the 33405 is $149,280. So, we’re doing a little better than the estimated median home value in the state of Florida, $145,140, and a little worse than Palm Beach County as a whole, with an estimated median home value of $179,480.

However, compared to the rest of Palm Beach County and the State of Florida, the Southend has seen a greater increase in estimated home values over the past year with an increase of 20.8%, compared to 14.8% county-wide and 13.4% state-wide. Things are looking up for property values in the neighborhood! Continue reading

Just Listed on Puritan!

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Kiely Real Estate just listed this beautiful home on Puritan. It’s a 3/3 listed at $342,500, not bad at all. Although it was built in 1945, it was recently renovated by the current owner.

It has all the charm and solid construction of a bygone era, with the modern conveniences of today. It has lush landscaping, a security system, privacy fencing, and a beautiful patio area.

If you know of anyone who is interested in this listing you can contact the agent, Jefferson Kiely, at (561) 361-8994. Continue reading