These city dwellers loved their rowhouse, but it was too small. So they doubled it.
When they bought the house, Shah says, they weren’t thinking of raising kids there, but eventually they changed their minds. “We love the vibrancy of the arts and music scene in the area, as well as the diversity of the population,” Shah says. They liked the proximity to the Metro, playgrounds and shopping. And Shaw was, Shah says, becoming, arguably, “the epicenter of cool in D.C.”
The couple decided to stick with their little house. “We finally decided we wanted our dream house in the house that we already loved, but we knew we’d have to use every little part of the place to get what we wanted,” Ghosh says.
Today, after a renovation by architect Carmel Greer of District Design, the couple, now with two boys and two dogs, have a smart, kid-friendly home that has doubled in size and is full of modern, grown-up amenities.
Instead of a first floor with chopped-up rooms, there’s a big open space. The front door opens into a living area, followed by a sleek kitchen in the center of the home, defined by an 11-foot island, and then a dining table at the end. Greer had the dingy crawl space dug out to add a family room, wine room, full bath and office.
By adding a third story, Greer was able to give the family a master bedroom, a home office, generous storage and a spacious master bath, as well as a small roof terrace with views over the city. “Putting the master suite on the third floor provides additional privacy and a general sense of getting away,” Greer says. The reconfigured second floor holds the bedrooms of Rivan, 6, and Talin, 1, a guest room, and two full baths.
The house checks all the boxes for comfortable family living. Laundry areas were designed on two floors to give the family options. Storage cubes, made of reclaimed crossbeams from the house renovation, are hung on the exposed brick wall just inside the front door to hold keys, dog leashes and shoes. Two offices on different floors give each parent a space to work at home. Ghosh, 41, is vice president and chief medical information officer at Premier, and Shah, 39, is a lawyer at Epstein, Becker & Green. Having their own places to retreat with their laptops helps “accommodate the work-life balance,” Shah says.