For the guys: Manliest homes in America

April 2, 2012 | Comments Off on For the guys: Manliest homes in America

Courtesy of DIY Network

NASCAR driver Jimmie Johnson had a $35,000 custom garage built for his dad’s Statesville, N.C. home. One of the more notable features is the underground hydraulic lift in the middle of the floor.

By Rachel Cericola, Men’s Health

For some guys, a house is just a pile of sticks. But others see where they hang their hat as an expression of their true identity. “Masculine design can be seen in textures, colors and materials used,” says Meg Caswell, host of the DIY Network’s “Meg’s Great Rooms.” In other words, it’s not just about that 60-inch plasma screen with the blabbedy-blah sound system and receiver. It’s about finding the right chair to match that custom-built oak mantle. Or taking pride in the contours of an archway. Or, to paraphrase the Big Lebowski, finding a rug that really ties the room together. See, men don’t just build. They create. For visual evidence, check out these modern American temples dedicated to testosterone.

The Corleone compound
Photo courtesy of Connie Profaci Realty

“The Godfather” was here.

Leave the gun, take the canopies. This $2.9 million home located in the Todt Hill section of Staten Island, N.Y., was used in the classic film “The Godfather” (in the backyard, you might recognize where director Francis Ford Coppola staged the famous wedding scene and Don Corleone’s untimely back garden demise). The layout of the Tudor home makes the place look like it’s part of a true Family fortress, with amenities that include a basement pub, butler’s pantry, four-car garage and two fireplaces. It also has an in-ground pool in case you want to sleep (or swim) with the fishes. And if that’s not authentic enough, when the home went up for sale in 2010, owner James Norton threw in Marlon Brando’s cue cards for additional bragging rights. Horse’s head not included. 

The Wright stuff

This 1,959-square-foot Cincinnati home is an architecture geek’s dream. That’s because it’s one of the last works created by design visionary Frank Lloyd Wright (Brad Pitt is a fan). With 10-foot-tall doors that lead out to a terrace that wraps around the house, “it’s hard to tell whether you are inside or outside,” says owner Chuck Lohre, “but that was one of Mr. Wright’s signature styles.” Known as The Boulter House, the structure falls under FLW’s “Usonian” moniker, meaning it’s simple, yet sleek. That said, it doesn’t skimp on unique extras, such as 24 feet of built-in seating and bookshelves, a suspended staircase, and 450 square feet of glass to gaze out at the surrounding forest. Purchased for $455,000 back in 2002, Lohre hasn’t messed too much with the master’s vision. The kitchen and carport have been restored, and Lohre also finished off a bathroom that was started in 1958.

The pimped-out treehouse

Situated on 31 acres on top of a ridge, this 4,300-square-foot Tennessee home is the ultimate boys’ club (without the girlie mags and secret passwords). To become one with nature, designer Brad Norris of Norris Architecture blended the design with its wooded surroundings. The living room and pavilion areas offer the visuals and openness of the great outdoors, while the office and bedroom cocoon inhabitants in a cave-like atmosphere. Almost every inch of the $1.99 million home is authentic, too, with actual cypress or western lodgepole pine trees throughout. “No fake stuff,” says Norris. “Real stone, real wood, real structure.” Real cool.

The high roller’s room

Photo courtesy of

No need to leave home.

You can’t spit without hitting something insanely fun in this 24,500-square-foot mansion located in Washington, Utah (and priced at $6.995 million). Previously featured on MTV’s “Teen Cribs,” the 10-bathroom home with an all-wood elevator features a two-lane bowling alley, two Cineplex-style home theaters, and a sports pub with four flat-screen TVs above the pool table for multiple viewing angles. “Having a bowling alley in your home says, ‘You’ve made it!'” says Meg Caswell, host of the DIY Network’s “Meg’s Great Rooms.” After all, Richard Nixon installed one in the White House. But does 1600 Pennsylvania Ave. also have a handcrafted solid wood slide, a six-car garage, and 3,500 square feet of patio and deck space with its own outdoor kitchen? Yeah, didn’t think so.



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