Victorian with eclectic style ready to shine on Grant Park tour

The wraparound front porch captivated Leon Kouters and Marty Simpson when they were searching for their next home in Atlanta’s historic Grant Park neighborhood. And it still does when they relax there and gaze at the park.

“The view from the front is absolutely gorgeous. That’s probably our most favorite room and almost sold us immediately on the home,” Kouters said. “We immediately saw ourselves living there.”

The neighborhood’s collection of Victorian residences includes their century-old, park-side property, which will be on the 2017 Grant Park Candlelight Tour of Homes, set for Dec. 9-10.


Residents: Leon Kouters and Marty Simpson, son Colin, and dog, Tanner, a chocolate lab. Kouters works for Fokker Services, an aerospace company, and Simpson works for Enterprise Holdings

Location: Atlanta’s Grant Park neighborhood

Size: About 3,200 square feet, five bedrooms, three baths

Year built/bought: Built between 1905-1910/Bought in 2017

Architectural style: Victorian

Favorite architectural elements: Front porch, 13-foot ceilings, bay windows, original pine floors, front door with original wavy glass, original fireplace and built-ins in front room study, French doors in the master bedroom

Renovations: The previous owner conducted a major renovation in 2005 with a kitchen, bedroom and bathroom update, as well as adding a second story. Once they bought the home, they just needed to paint the kitchen and revamp the front porch. Their next project is to update the yard.

Interior design style: Eclectic, clean and comfortable. “We have not overstuffed the house,” Kouters said.

Favorite piece of furniture: Church pew in the dining room, which Simpson found on the side of the road. The middle was cracked, but they were able to add supports, refurbish and paint it. “It’s always a piece that we always can talk about,” Kouters said.

Favorite artwork: Original paintings from artists in Paris, Amsterdam, South Africa, Key West, Florida, and Savannah. “Everywhere we go, we look at something that speaks to us. Then we’ll pick it up and take it with us,” Kouters said.

Favorite outdoor feature: Front porch

Decor tip: Keep it simple. To keep the room from seeming cluttered, they try to keep the focus on one or two items in a room. They said they tend to display art and special items from the countries they have visited over the years to create a homey feeling.

Resources: Furniture from Crate and Barrel, Scott Antique Market, Z Gallerie, West Elm, Pottery Barn and Martha Stewart’s line of furniture with Bernhardt.

Reader Comments ...

Next Up in Living

‘12 Strong’ infuses heart into war
‘12 Strong’ infuses heart into war

If you’re doing your job right in the U.S. Special Forces, it likely means no one will ever know. It’s a tough, elite and highly classified position, where acts of incredible heroism never get the ticker tape parade, and that’s kind of the point. These soldiers are supposed to slip into and out of secret missions without making the...
‘Forever My Girl’ doesn’t stray from Southern romance formula
‘Forever My Girl’ doesn’t stray from Southern romance formula

Romance novelist and screenwriter Nicholas Sparks cornered the market on a subgenre he essentially invented — exceedingly pleasant, Southern-set epic romances (between young, attractive, white, Christian, heterosexual couples). But this is a genre that overwhelmingly appeals to a female movie-going audience, so it’s about time female creators...
‘The Final Year’ of the Obama administration hard to watch
‘The Final Year’ of the Obama administration hard to watch

Maybe you think you had the worst 2016 election night party in America — you know, the one that ended early. But no, that distinction belongs to then-U.N. Ambassador Samantha Power, as evidenced in the new documentary “The Final Year,” about foreign policy during President Obama’s last year in office. Power decided that it would...
‘Den of Thieves’ kicks off bad-movie season in style
‘Den of Thieves’ kicks off bad-movie season in style

So this is how it works: In the fall, movies are intended to be good and usually are. In the summer, movies are intended to be bad but profitable, and they’re usually both. But in January and February, we get the special season. That’s when the movies are intended to be great but are horrible. But not normal horrible. We’re talking...
‘Film Stars Don’t Die in Liverpool’ shares last-gasp romance
‘Film Stars Don’t Die in Liverpool’ shares last-gasp romance

In light of a résumé skewed toward male-dominated thrillers, Scottish director Paul McGuigan might seem an unlikely choice to guide a fading-siren weepie from page to screen. Yet “Film Stars Don’t Die in Liverpool,” a real-life romance adapted from the 1986 memoir by Peter Turner, reveals an unexpected fontanel of sentiment...
More Stories