It's 2009 and a beautiful snow blankets Santa Fe. Lights twinkle on one of the many trees outside. The rosebushes are waiting to bloom come spring along with the yuccas and cholla cactus. A cozy fire burns in the kiva fireplace in the den. It is the New Year and my owners are ready to move on but have lovingly prepared me for a new family.
Let me tell you about myself. I am the home at 1901 Calle de Sebastian, located on Santa Fe's south east side in De Vargas Heights. One of only 3 or 4 homes in the neighborhood built around 1973 by ACE Contractors. I have a truly distinctive design. From the outside I boast a wraparound portal with vigas, arches and a "nicho" by the front door. Out back is an inviting walled-in courtyard with a fireplace, perfect for outdoor entertaining and very cozy with an evening fire. The corner lot I was built on was three quarters of an acre, but thanks to my current owners and a very thoughtful neighbor, I sit on an acre plus with lots of mature landscaping. More on how that occurred but first a little history.
In 1973 the population of Santa Fe was approximately 38,000. Bruce King was the Governor of New Mexico and Joseph Valdez was the Mayor of Santa Fe. In a small town it was as if everyone new everyone. Shopping downtown was a norm for the local people. Sears was on Lincoln Avenue. Around the Plaza were stores like Leed's Shoes, Pflueger's, Dunlaps, the dress shop El Pavon, Woolworths, Zook's Pharmacy with an authentic soda shop, and of course the Plaza Café and First National Bank which are still there today. Also right downtown was the Safeway Grocery Store on Grant Avenue, Kaune's on Washington and Cecil Sherwood's Chevron Station on Palace Avenue across from the Bokum Building. Dining downtown included The Palace Restaurant and Saloon, Raul's next to Burro Alley, and Johnny Komis' El Patio Restaurant across from The Lensic.
The Town Homes at De Vargas Heights located just off of Old Pecos Trail, were brand new and building of single-family homes was just beginning in the neighborhood. My construction is frame and stucco with an ample crawl space. My architectural features include archways, textured beams, open living spaces, a large kitchen with abundant cabinet space and 2 pantries, 3 bedrooms each with walk-in closets and an oversized two car garage. I had brown and tan carpeting in the kitchen and laundry room, and dark glazed tile in the foyer and den/bar area until the shag carpeting rage came to town.
As time went by, my owners decided to renovate the garage into an office space and family room with closet space for storage, a built-in floor to ceiling book case, a stone fireplace and sliding glass doors to the courtyard. Needing a garage, they added a second paved driveway, and built a three car heated garage and extended the asphalt to accommodate space for parking a boat or recreational vehicle. Life was good and got even better when they added a hot tub and dry sauna off the Master Suite. To make the addition fit properly they just had to create a huge walk-in closet bringing the number of walk-in closets to four. One in each bedroom and two in the Master Suite.
Around 1989 I found myself with new owners. They too, had children and there was always lots of activity in the house. They needed a little more space for a family member and they renovated one of the garage bays into a charming little studio apartment with a kitchenette and a full bath. Life changes always. The kids grew up and were off to college and I was ready for a new family.
My current owners bought me in November of 1998 and I saw a whirlwind of activity. The brown and tan carpet in the kitchen came out; the yellow shag carpeting in the foyer and den/bar area came out; the bar was taken down, and the dark glazed tile that was under the yellow shag carpet had to be taken out with a jackhammer. In came beautiful light colored ceramic tile with oak trim. All this, plus moving in furniture was done in a month just in time for their daughter's 6th Birthday Party. Next came the tree house. One of the trees just outside the courtyard had the perfect shape and the kids loved playing out there, but were still close enough for mom not to be worried.
Back to my increase in land; between the homes on Calle de Sebastian and Fort Union Drive from East Zia Road to Calle de Patricio is a large parcel of land shaped like a triangle with its point at Zia Road. This beautiful walking trail and open space was about to be ruined. The owners of the property had just enough room to build townhouses much to the consternation of all the homeowners. Fortunately, one neighbor was able to purchase the whole parcel of land from the would be developers and with the help of Realtor Gloria Garber from French and French, lot line adjustments were created between the neighbors each purchasing small parcels. That is how the lot I was built on became over an acre and the land is enjoyed by all peacefully.
Over the years my owners have continued with more upgrades. I mentioned the kitchen had an abundance of cabinets but it chopped up the kitchen/breakfast area. With plenty of space below the counter for storage, the overhead cabinets came out and recessed lighting was added making the space open and bright. The bath in the Master Suite had carpeting and only a shower, which was replaced by beautiful tile and a jetted tub. Most recently new carpeting was put in the guest room and tile in the laundry room thus removing the last of the patterned 70's carpet. I received a fresh coat of paint in the kitchen, bathrooms, Master Suite, hallway and den and outside I was given a lift with new stucco.
Alas life changes and my current owners are ready to move on. I have seen many children grow up here and I have had holiday parties, birthday parties, Super Bowl parties, as well as cozy and quiet nights. I'm ready for a new family, inside and out, so come and visit me at 1901 Calle de Sebastian.