Friday, June 21, 2024

Where We Live: ‘ArtWorks’ home really is a work of art

Where We Live: A weekly look at the homes in the Cape Fear Region

WILMINGTON — As the owners of the Port City’s “ArtWorks,” Betsy and Jim Knowles are no strangers to the imaginative. Their home is a direct reflection of that creative vision, and expresses it in natural, thoughtful ways.

This week’s “Where We Live” takes you inside the Knowles’ home, located at 6265 Turtle Hall Drive, off of Greenville Loop road. The home has been designed to entertain, and the Knowles have certainly made the most of it.

Built in 1988, the Knowles have lived in the Turtle Hall home for 25 years. Betsy said that they originally moved to the area to be close to the water for boating, as the community is on the Intracoastal waterway at Masonboro Inlet, but fell in love with the home after walking into the study.

A work of art

The bathroom in the "Pompeii" room is painted to look like a scene out of the "Jungle Book." Port City Daily photo/CORY MANNION)
The bathroom in the “Pompeii” room is painted to look like a scene out of the “Jungle Book.” Port City Daily photo/CORY MANNION)

“When we walked in, the realtor showed us this, and the study is painted in a ‘Trompe-l’œil’ style, so it looks real,” Knowles said. “It was totally painted by local artists, so the whole room itself was painted by artist Ellis Efird Furst, we call it our ‘Pompeii room.'”

The study and wet bar are painted entirely to give it a Roman fresco look, and the bathroom has been painted to look like a scene out of the “Jungle Book.”

“One of the things a lot of people really love about this home is the bathroom, there’s birds and bees and lady bugs, and she actually signed it, and tagged it with ‘faith, hope, and love,'” Knowles said. “We have a library and the wet bar, and we just love this room. We had no idea this was going to be here when we planned our move.”

Throughout the home various art pieces are displayed in unique and subtle ways. Many are adorned with their own placards, showcasing the artists and their work. The home features high ceilings and large bay windows, allowing for plenty of natural light, just like a modern art gallery.

The 3,695-sq. ft. home has four bedrooms and three and a half baths indoors. However, there’s another full bath located outside the home, in the Knowles pool house. One of the crown jewels of the home.

A natural setting

“When we moved here, our boys were starting middle and high school, so we’d been here eight years when we became empty-nesters,” Knowles said. “So, my parents had built a pool when we left home, and our children, their grandchildren just loved it. So, we figured if we built a pool, they’d all come back.”

Knowles said that when she was a child, her parents had a basement with a full bathroom/changing area, and fondly remembers her father yelling at them to "don’t come up here with a wet bathing suit!" (Port City Daily photo/CORY MANNION)
Knowles said that when she was a child, her parents had a basement with a full bathroom/changing area, and fondly remembers her father yelling at them to “don’t come up here with a wet bathing suit!” (Port City Daily photo/CORY MANNION)

Knowles said that when she was a child, her parents had a basement with a full bathroom/changing area, and fondly remembers her father yelling at them to “don’t come up here with a wet bathing suit!”

She said that she knew her husband Jim would be the same way, so they constructed the pool house to keep things neat and tidy. The pool house features an open design, with a bar and sitting area built right in.

“The real deal here though, is that we have a friend named Paul Hill, I was wondering what we were going to do in here for the counters since it’s going to be outside,” Knowles said. “So, I thought ‘I’m calling Paul,’ he’s a local metal sculptor. And he said, ‘what do you like Betsy?’ So, he came in and did these cabinets completely himself.”

The cabinets feature a wetland scene, cut from metal and adorned with glass pieces. Images of herons and turtles adorn the space, making for a tasteful yet natural scene around the pool.

The home features a large deck, as well as a flagstone porch built around the pool, perfect for a cookout. The Knowles have hosted many parties there over the years, including everything from weddings to live steel drum bands.

The home features many steel sculptures placed in a natural setting. Much of the work is done by local metal sculptor Paul Hill. (Port City Daily photo/CORY MANNION)
The home features many steel sculptures placed in a natural setting. Much of the work is done by local metal sculptor Paul Hill. (Port City Daily photo/CORY MANNION)

Knowles says that the natural beauty of the backyard was something they strove to uphold. The home has been featured in the “Azalea Garden Tour,” and Knowles says that the artists involved have enjoyed setting up in their backyard to paint.

One of the more “unique” features of the backyard is the Koi pond and waterfall, tucked away in the back corner of the yard. The pond features crystal clear waters, surrounded by gardens, and filled with lily pads.

“We don’t have any fish right now, but we have had them from time to time. I’m getting ready to put more back in, but we had one big old koi left last year, and Jim came out and a giant heron had the fish in his mouth,” Knowles said. “Luckily, once we put this heron statue in they’ve stayed away.”

Although the Knowles are moving out, it’s purely for the sake of downsizing. Jim said that with all the fond memories they have here, “another family needs to have this home.”

“It’s great for entertaining adults, and it’s also great for kids,” Knowles said. “We have adult children in four different states that are all great to visit, but they like to come here to bring everyone together.”

The home is conveniently located in the Turtle Hall neighborhood, just off of Greenfield Loop Road, offering easy access to Oleander Drive and Wrightsville Beach. The kitchen was renovated in 2008, and is attached to a two car garage via a large mudroom.

A boat slip is available through a separate purchase. The home is zoned for Bradley Creek Elementary, Noble Middle, and Hoggard High School. The house has been on the market for 89 days, and the asking price is $1,150,000.

Where We Live is a weekly feature looking at the homes and unique places to stay in the Cape Fear Region. Do you have a home, on or off the market, that our readers may be interested in seeing? Let us know at PCD@localvoicemedia.com.

For more information about this week’s home or to view the property, contact Craig Stinson REALTOR with Intracoastal Realty at (910)524-2679. For more details, visit craigstinson.intracoastalrealty.com.

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