Home Once Host to Prince Charles, Margaret Thatcher and Ronald Reagan to be Sold at Auction

As seen in the Kansas City Star and The Independent

Magnificent 9,000sf Penthouse Residence in “The Walnuts” — Sells to the highest bidder over $1.5M!

Magnificent 9,000sf Penthouse Residence in “The Walnuts” — Sells to the highest bidder over $1.5M!

Magnificent 9,000sf penthouse residence in “The Walnuts” will sell to the highest bidder over $1.5M! (Seller investment exceeds $6,000,000)

As you step out of the elevator into the home’s foyer, and the room illuminates to greet you, it’s unequivocally clear that this is a very, very special place. The elegantly paneled walls, the deep crown moldings and the striking floor of Calcutta Gold and Black Marquina polished marble are just a hint of all that lies beyond. A few more steps into the entry hall and you’re treated to hand-painted wallpaper and jaw-dropping views through silk-dressed, leaded glass windows. Socialites, dignitaries, and even royalty have had this same moment. Yes, you’ve arrived.

As Coco Chanel succinctly put it many years ago, “Fashion passes; style remains.” In recent years, Kansas City has become home to many fashionable new condominium projects. However, in 1929 a development called “The Walnuts” was built just south of the Plaza adjacent to Loose Park. Timeless Jacobean architecture blended brick and stone into parapet walls, corbeled oriel windows, terraces and balconies. Tudor and Elizabethan influences found their way into the stone masonry, diamond-patterned brick work, heavy mullioned windows and handsome arched entrances. Still today, the three stately buildings preside over a private 10-acre estate comprised of a lush treed park to the south and a perfectly manicured English garden on the north. Style, does indeed, remain.

Topping the signature center building is a 2-story, 9,000 square foot penthouse mansion of leaded glass windows, grand rooms, and open terraces. The opulently-appointed home was formerly owned by Kansas City diplomat and businessman, Charles Price. In dubbing Price “Ambassador to the World,” The Kansas City Star reported that “Ronald Reagan, Margaret Thatcher and England’s Prince Charles were among the overnight guests” at the residence. The Star also noted that “During the Republican National Convention in 1976, the couple hosted media superstars and political dignitaries in the Walnuts condominium penthouse near the Country Club Plaza. Time magazine called it the social highlight of the convention.”

The home’s current owner has invested more than $6 million in the acquisition and complete renovation of the stunning property which now boasts state-of-the-art amenities, silk fabric-covered walls, and gold-plated hardware throughout. Under his ownership the home has continued to play host to significant events while serving as backdrop for a stunning collection of antiques and fine art.

After moving out of state he listed the property for sale. With no immediate buyer, and in consultation with his advisors, he contemplated a professional auction as a more expedient method of sale for the unique property. His Realtor, Doug Wasson of RE/MAX State Line recommended Cates Real Estate Auction Company and his attorney approved. “I know Cates has successfully sold homes in this price point and I felt like this was the best way to get the word out and find the type of buyer a property like this needs,” said Wasson.

Wasson was right, according to Cates vice president, Greg Duncan. “We’ve sold ultra-luxury homes as well as upscale condominiums at auction,” he said. “This home is basically a beautifully built and stunningly appointed mansion with all the luxury lifestyle amenities of a world-class condominium community… plus the privacy and jaw-dropping 360 degree views afforded by its penthouse location.” The result, says Duncan, is a residence unparalleled in Kansas City or the entire region. (The star-studded pedigree is an added bonus!)

Beyond the entry hall noted above, Duncan describes a magnificent home lifted from the pages of Architectural Digest. “Not a single detail, in any room or down any hallway, was left to the ordinary,” he says. As examples he cites gorgeous black lacquered doors throughout the residence, each with tastefully ornate gold-plated knobs and hinges by Sherle Wagner. The bathrooms in the home are also fitted with coordinating gold-plated Sherle Wagner finishings.

Fabrics, too, play an amazing role in the character of the residence, he says, from sumptuous brocade “upholstered” walls and ceilings to exquisite silk window treatments with lavish trim. Floors throughout the home are a mixture of old world materials including dark parquet wood, terrazzo with brass and copper inlays, plush wool carpeting, stone, marble and granite.

Elaborate moldings and architectural elements feature prominently. Of note is the repeated use of the classic “Reed and Ribbon” motif which is found in crown moldings, gold hardware, and even the ribbings of the corbeled dome ceiling of the grand center stair.

Timeless leaded glass windows throughout the home are opulently dressed with fine silk draperies and frame astounding views in every direction. From small balconies to expansive patios, private open-air living options (with irrigated landscaping) also maximize the views. Capping the east wing, a large conservatory is prelude to an expansive 1,000 square foot rooftop terrace. An artful combination of brick and stone parapet walls dressed with decorative iron define the space which offers unending views to the north, east and south.

Cates listing agent, Chad Bender, points out that the auction marks a change in selling strategy for the property. “Our sellers have invested more than $6 million in the home. However, they are ready to sell and have set their auction reserve at only $1.5 million.” He adds, “This means an unprecedented opportunity for the right buyer!”

Detailed descriptions, documents and photographs are at www.CatesAuction.com/TheWalnuts, but Cates also encourages qualified buyers to call 816-781-1134 to schedule a private tour. (Prospective buyers must demonstrate proper qualifications to make a tour reservation.) Bring your decorators and advisors. Experience the stately character, examine the amazing details, take in the sensational views and visualize the exclusive lifestyle.

The property will be sold at auction on January 30, 2015. Admittance to the auction requires advance registration, proof of funds, and pre-approval to bid. Online bidding is available with the same qualifications required.




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I’m not even sure where to begin. Words cannot effectively express the thanks we owe to Rick Bradford and the entire Cates Auction team.  Rick is delightful and provided exceptional service!  My family and I cannot thank him enough for his time, effort, patience, knowledge and dedication in help…
Tammy Markham
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