4 Smith Street is a downtown jewel, a historic Charleston single with a contemporary metal addition complete with a barrel-vaulted roof. When LEED AP certified architect Alison Spear AIA decided to renovate and do an addition to the original circa 1860 home, she drew a line in the sand. What was old would be renovated and preserved, and the new addition would be modern, fresh, and use interesting materials. The result is a stunning harmonious marriage of old and new. The front is a traditional Charleston single style home with generous double piazzas. The main house has a lovely chartreuse colored living room that pops, elegant formal dining room, and upstairs sitting room/office (that could be used as a bedroom, with easy use of a nearby full bathroom). The primary bedroom iscozy and chic, with a walk-in closet, and luxurious master bath with dual vanities with marble countertop, soaking tub, large tiled shower, fireplace, and plenty of storage. The third-floor features two more bedrooms along with one full bathroom.
The elongated galley kitchen is the hyphen that connects the old house with the new modern addition. The kitchen, with high-end appliances and open shelving, features two sets of large metal French doors that open onto an outdoor room with elevated cocktail terrace, dining area, and lovely long water feature with koi and lilly pads. Sheila Wertimer designed the outdoor space with a series of rooms and large horizontal fountain, similar to the one at Theodora Park. The lot is unusually large for this area and affords a lot of privacy and room for al fresco entertaining. There is gated off-street parking for two cars, as well as a cool perforated metal storage shed that is used for bicycle and beach gear storage.
The contemporary addition is the true showstopper. With metal walls and a metal barrel-vaulted roof, the rear of the home features a reclaimed wood ceiling and a light and airy open staircase, also of reclaimed wood for a modern yet sustainable touch. This space features large windows and is currently used as a living room, with a beautiful private guest suite above with the fabulous convex roof and finely finished full bathroom with shower. Behind the built-in bookcases in the living room, it is plumbed and ready for a kitchen to be installed, so this area could be its own autonomous living space with its own entrance off the rear garden.
The home has been featured in Susan Sully's recent book "Southern Hospitality at Home". Located one block from Colonial Lake, this property is within walking distance to the best of Charleston and has a true neighborhood feel.