In 1996, a friend told Ken Ellner about a real estate open house at 88 Polo Drive in Ansley Park. At the time, Ken, a dermatologist and native New Yorker who had moved to Atlanta after completing his medical training, was living in Park Place in Buckhead; and, although he enjoyed the amenities of the luxury high-rise condominium, he longed for a home with a yard.
Ken arrived a few minutes early but was allowed in to take a tour. “Almost immediately, I knew this was my house,” he says. Fifteen minutes later, he had made an offer on the charming Dutch Colonial home that overlooked the golf course.
Built in 1904, the 3,763-square foot house, once owned by famed Georgia Tech football coach Bobby Dodd, not only has an abundance of curb appeal, but also features well-proportioned rooms, architectural details, and lush landscaping. Moreover, it boasts a prime location within steps of Piedmont Park, the Atlanta BeltLine, and the Ansley Golf Club.
The four-bedroom, three-and-a-half bath house has a formal living room, a spacious dining room, a den, and a completely renovated kitchen with custom cabinets, granite countertops, a subway tile backsplash, and stainless appliances. There’s also a separate breakfast nook and a wet bar with a sink, a wine fridge, and an ice maker. The master suite has a fireside sitting area, a large custom Poliform walk-in closet, and a spa bath with marble floors and countertops.
Over the years, Ken has made a number of upgrades to the home, including replacing the HVAC system, waterproofing the basement, and adding a slate roof with copper gutters. He also removed the vinyl siding and restored the wood that was original to the house.
But the biggest upgrades were to the backyard. Several years ago, he hired a landscape architect and created an oasis complete with a resort-style pool, hot tub, outdoor shower, sitting area, and palm trees. He then added floor-to-ceiling windows and French doors along the back of the house for a seamless transition to the vacation-like outdoor escape.
Although Ken loves his house and the Ansley Park neighborhood, he travels often and wants fewer home-related responsibilities. “At this point in my life, I need a place I can lock up and leave at will,” he said. “This is a wonderful house, but it’s time for the next chapter.”