House Envy: Sterling Hall is like a smart home version of a European Castle

This West Paces Ferry Road estate includes a hair salon, massage room, fitness center, and a mini Fox Theatre

Sterling Hall, Atlanta’s own version of Downton Abbey, is palatial in every sense of the word. No expense was spared when building the opulent Normandy-style mansion, which is located in one of the city’s most exclusive enclaves.

Designed by Harrison Design architects and built by custom homebuilder Steve West in 2010 for Atlanta businessman and entrepreneur David Karangu, the 18,200-square-foot-home exudes quality craftsmanship and superior finishes—from intricate millwork and extensive limestone moldings to Venetian plaster walls and gold-plated faucets. “I wanted to make this house the finest possible,” Karangu says, noting that Sterling Hall is ideal for entertaining on a very large scale.

The seven-bedroom, 14-bath home has a dozen fireplaces, a large dining room, a mahogany-paneled study, and a gourmet kitchen with limestone floors, two islands, top-of-the-line appliances, and a butler’s pantry. The master suite features a spacious sitting area, two walk-in closets, and a large bathroom with marble floors and countertops, handcrafted tile mosaics, and a luxurious spa shower.

On the terrace level are state-of-the-art fitness facilities, including a gym, steam room, and sauna. There’s also a massage room and a fully outfitted hair and nail salon. For entertainment, there’s a billiards room, poker room, wine cellar, and bar. Then there’s the home theater—a replica of Atlanta’s beloved Fox Theatre—that even includes a box office.

Outdoor living spaces are as lavish as those inside and include a full kitchen, dining area, bar, and grotto—all overlooking a secluded back yard with formal gardens and a heated pool. The house also has two gated entrances, an elevator, and a four-car garage. Cutting-edge technology automates almost everything, indoors and out—including lights, window blinds, security cameras, gates, and audio equipment.

Karangu especially loves the three-story spiral limestone staircase with its ornate handcrafted wrought iron railing. “It’s the centerpiece of Sterling Hall and one of its most striking architectural features.” He says he hopes the next owner will value the artistry and attention to detail found throughout the home as much as he does. “Nothing has been overlooked,” he says. “This house really has it all.”

This Buckhead estate, located at 1001 West Paces Ferry Road, is on the market for $4,900,000. For more information, contact Ben Hirsh of Hirsh Real Estate– at 404-797-4912 or

Photographs courtesy of Hirsh Real Estate–