The most expensive houses sold in Portland in 2015 were more than mansions. Each has a story and sky-high property taxes. Take, for example, the Pietro Belluschi-designed house at 2422 SW 16th Ave., which sold for $2.5 million in August. The listing agent was MJ Steen of Windermere Stellar. RMLS # 12079048. Photo provided by Windermere Stellar
The most expensive houses sold in Portland in 2015 were more than mansions. Each has a story and sky-high property taxes.
Once asking $5.7 million: One Portland house sold for a few million dollars, but even that turned out to be a great discount. Controversial business executiveAndrew Wiederhorn tried to sell the West Hills estate he called The Ivy in 2011 for $5.7 million, which he said was less than half what he put into it.
In April 2014, no bidders surfaced at a foreclosure auction, forcing the lender of the 19,609-square-foot custom house at 4311 S.W. Greenleaf Dr. to continue to hold the $4.3 million note.
Finally, the country manor-style mansion, built in 1930 on two gated acres, sold for $2,047,500 in October with listing agent Valerie Hunter of H & H Preferred Real Estate. That breaks down to $121 a square foot.
There are 10 bedrooms, 12 baths and nine fireplaces throughout the three-level house, plus many luxury perks: A full-size indoor hardwood basketball court that doubles as a ballroom and there's a detached, 2,000-square-foot pool house, the size of the average Portland house.
Annual taxes were $126,419.
$3.6 million: 2681 S.W. Buena Vista Dr. sold in April. The four-level Mediterranean-style house was built in 1930 on a third of an acre. It has five bedrooms, five baths and 7,088 square feet, which breaks down to $462 a square foot. Libby Benz of Windermere Stellar had the listing. Annual taxes were $25,616. The house in the Southwest Hills sold 10 years before for $2 million.
$2.9 million: 2111 S.W. 21st Ave. sold in June. The four-level Colonial Revival mansion was built in 1916 on a third of an acre in Portland Heights. It has six bedrooms, 5 ½ baths and "nanny quarters." At 8,117 square feet, the sale price breaks down to $373 a square foot. Annual taxes were $32,665.
The listing agent was Craig Weston of Windermere Stellar and the buyer's agent of record was Betsy Rickles of Windermere Stellar, who plays a part in 5335 S.W. Patton Road, another one of Portland's most expensive house sales last year (see below).
$2.5 million: 2422 S.W. 16th Ave. sold in August. This Italian-style house, built in 1938 on a third of an acre, was originally designed by the late architect Pietro Belluschi, who helped shape Portland's skyline and was renown for pioneering the Pacific Northwest midcentury modern style. He did, however, learn how to design classical residences at the beginning of his long career. Early on, he worked for A.E. Doyle's architectural firm, which was responsible for many of Portland's grand buildings.
The client here was Charles Francis Adams, who was chairman of the board of the Portland Art Museum. Adams and Belluschi had become friends when the architect designed the art museum building in 1932. The style of the two-story house was dictated by Adams. It has four bedrooms, five baths and 6,245 square feet (which breaks down to $407 a square foot). The listing agent was MJ Steen of Windermere Stellar. Annual taxes were $28,439.
$2.15 million: 2421 S.W. Arden Road sold in June. The two-level, English-style house was built in 1926 on a half-acre lot, which includes a guest carriage house, Japanese tea house, Hansel and Gretel treehouse, gardens and paths. The house has four bedrooms, four baths and 5,574 square feet ($389 a square foot). The listing agent was Suzann Baricevic Murphy of Where. Annual taxes were $24,545.
$2.05 million: 2558 N.W. Marcia St. sold in August. The modernist-style home was designed by owner/architect Ned Vaivoda, who co-founded Thompson Vaivoda & Associates, the firm responsible for the first and second phase of the Nike World Campus.
Vaivoda considered the neighborhood's historic landmark houses when selecting red brick as a main component of this residence in Nob Hill. The house was built in 1999 on an 8,276-square-foot lot on a cul-de-sac with only four dwellings. It has four bedrooms, 3 ½ baths and 3,982 square feet ($497 a square foot). The listing agent was Dan Volkmer of Windermere Stellar. Annual taxes were $13,441.
$2 million: Here's a happy story about a woman who lived in a custom house until she was 110. Elizabeth "Betty" Leadbetter Meier was the granddaughter of Henry Pittock and was accustomed to traditional-style houses, including Portland's French Renaissance chateau, the Pittock Mansion.
But she and her second husband, Jack Meier of Meier & Frank department stores, "jumped into a modern home," says granddaughter Rickles, a real estate agent who listed the property.
The couple, who wanted a Northwest Regional midcentury house with an open floor plan, floor-to-ceiling windows and living space on one level, hired architect Walter Gordon, who had worked in Belluschi's architectural firm.
The 1971 house is the rare time Gordon designed with brick instead of his signature wood exterior. Sitting on 3.4 acres at 5335 S.W. Patton Road in the West Hills, the house has 5,113 square feet on one level and 2,900 square feet of unfinished basement. It sold in May. Annual taxes were $24,675.
A list of the most expensive houses sold in Multnomah County in 2015 was compiled, at our request, by Escrow Officer Brooke Lahman of WFG National Title Insurance Co.
– Janet Eastman