Buckhead’s Spotswood Hall enjoys another close-up this holiday season

Some of Jack Markwalter’s favorite memories in Buckhead’s Spotswood Hall involve entertaining. In fact, he and his wife, Juanita, decided they wanted to buy the home, if it ever came on the market, while attending a holiday party there years ago.

“The lights were down low, and there were candles throughout the house. It was so magical,” he said. “(We) were really love struck by the beauty of the house, the history of the house and the aura of it.”

>> Click here to see a gallery of their home <<

The couple got their chance to own a piece of Atlanta history when they purchased Spotswood in 2002. Since then, the home, which is on the National Register of Historic Places, has hosted hundreds during fundraisers and appeared on TV. This year, it was on the 2016 Peachtree Garden Club Christmas Home Tour on Dec. 8.

As the Markwalters learned years ago at that holiday party, Spotswood shines when it opens its doors to guests. It’s as if entertaining was built into the home when it was designed in 1913. “It seems that the flow of the house absorbs people really well,” he said.


Residents: Jack and Juanita Markwalter. Jack is chairman and CEO of Atlantic Trust, a private wealth management firm; Juanita is active in organizations including the Alliance Theatre and American Red Cross.

Location: Buckhead

Size: About 7,000 square feet, five bedrooms, five full and three half baths

Year built/bought: 1913/2002

Builder: Shelby Smith, who was a Fulton County commissioner, road contractor and real estate developer

Architects: A. Ten Eyck Brown, the original architect, and Philip Trammell Shutze, who redesigned the interior and rear in 1933.

Architectural style: Neo-classical revival

Favorite architectural elements: The front entrance with the two-story, pedimented portico and the rear rotunda, which Shutze added with a mural by artist Athos Menaboni. The home’s “Landmark Building” designation gives it permanent protection and a preservation easement protects the facade in perpetuity.

Design consultants: Architects Norman Askins and Sheila Rogers, interior designers John Oetgen and Mandy Culpepper, and Dargan Landscape Architects

Renovations: Previous owners updated the home, and the Markwalters followed with a few changes, such as replacing a wooden porch with a sunroom and adding a Pennsylvania bluestone patio. “Then we connected that with another sunroom that had been completed in 1933,” Jack said. “The entire eastern side of the house is a long sunroom.” They remodeled the kitchen, with white marble countertops, white cabinets and subway tile backsplash, and updated the bathrooms.

Interior design style: Traditional

Favorite interior design elements: English and French antiques, which they purchased in London and inherited.

Favorite outdoor feature: The rose garden. “My roses love where they are, and I love being out there,” Juanita said. “It’s a beautiful part of our house. In the spring and fall, we usually have 100 roses blooming at one time.”

Resources:  Scalamandre and Cowtan & Tout wallpaper and antiques from Parc Monceau Ltd.

Reader Comments ...

Next Up in Private Quarters

Renovations, designer fabrics update traditional Marietta home
Renovations, designer fabrics update traditional Marietta home

Kim Harrelson mixed styles from her family — her grandmother’s classic decor and her mother’s whimsical florals — when she decorated her renovated Marietta home. “I like a little bit of formality and tradition, but I also want it to be fully accessible and lived in by my whole family,” said Harrelson, a mom of two...
Transitional urban chic blends with coastal cool in Roswell townhome
Transitional urban chic blends with coastal cool in Roswell townhome

Marcia Harvey’s new townhome is hours from the coast, but the architecture is inspired by historic Charleston homes and the community layout is reminiscent of a Florida vacation spot. “I was looking for something that would be a community versus a row of townhomes,” she said. “It reminds me of Rosemary Beach.” She and...
How flooding resulted in a Marietta couple’s dream home
How flooding resulted in a Marietta couple’s dream home

Julie Minton decorates with a light hand, making sure not to clutter her home. “I believe there’s beauty in simplicity,” she said. “It’s not necessary to overdecorate to create a warm and inviting space.” But when a water main broke in Doug and Julie Minton’s home in February 2017 while they were just settling...
Downtown loft owners geek out on movie art, PEZ collection
Downtown loft owners geek out on movie art, PEZ collection

Carrie Burns saw her future husband, Steven, for the first time at a party on the rooftop of her downtown Atlanta loft. A few years after they got married, they purchased another loft in the same Castleberry Hill building with views of the skyline and Mercedes-Benz Stadium. The couple uses the rooftop, which they share with neighbors, for entertaining...
No surprise: Ryan Gravel’s loft is near the Beltline
No surprise: Ryan Gravel’s loft is near the Beltline

Ryan and Karen Gravel’s kids roller skate and ride skateboards and scooters on the concrete floors in their intown Atlanta loft. When they want to take the action outside, they walk around the corner to the Beltline, an idea that Ryan birthed as a Georgia Tech master’s student. Living in a warehouse converted to work-live spaces is a departure...
More Stories