I’ve got a pile of books about houses: Virginia & Lee McAlester’s A Field Guide to American Houses. Tracy Kidder’s House. Ann Patchett’s The Dutch House.
I’m not quite sure the appeal. My mother would have said it’s because I’m a Cancer, the most domestic of signs, but I think it’s because houses stir my imagination.
Houses tell stories.
They also have stories, architecturally speaking. There’s a theory that the word “story” derives from the medieval practice of painting scenes from historical narratives on each tier of a house. I like the notion — because what is a house but a visual record of our histories, of choices made in both life and architecture, with the two inextricably linked?
All this is to say I loved putting together the Winter 2020 edition of dRTB’s annual Real Estate Issue, coming soon in digital and print. Inside you’ll find a plethora of houses with stories to tell, from a venerable Hyde Park mansion to “the most beautiful home in Belleair,” from a waterfront estate inspired by Frank Lloyd Wright to a renovation that rescued a residence stuck in the ’80s to a suburban ranch home steeped in literary history.
Then there are the new developments in Midtown Tampa and Water Street, building story upon story to create a vision of our future. It’s a great moment to consider our changing urban landscape, when countless eyes will be trained upon us during the Super Bowl.
Also in this issue, you’ll find tales of travel to a remote island (and to hotels that encourage escaping with your pet); Valentimed hints about what to wear and what to give; news about new restaurants, good wines, the new Escalade and a new(ish) indie film house, as well as best bets in arts and entertainment and the generous souls of People Helping People.
Maybe, in this time when even the act of leaving the house can be fraught, these stories will provide a bit of refuge — and trigger your own imagination.
David Warner, Editor in Chief, duPont REGISTRY Tampa Bay
PS: The digital edition of the Real Estate Issue will be published on the dupontregistrytampabay.com site tomorrow, and the print edition will be appearing next week in mailboxes and coffeetables near you.