2541 Guilford Road (1980, 1986, 1997)
This California mission style house is one of the few examples of Spanish architecture in Cleveland Heights. While the style was popular in California from1890 on, in the eastern suburbs most of the homes in this style were built between 1905 and 1920. This beautifully kept example was built in 1911 for George Kreidler,1 who held various offices at Root and McBride, a local dry goods manufacturing company. Unfortunately, the architect is unknown.
The house has suffered many vicissitudes in the past. When the present owner purchased it in 1975, it had survived a major fire and was known in the neighborhood as the "ghost house." For some years there had been no running water or electricity, although the house was occupied. (One might prefer not to dwell on the consequences of that situation.) Today, after what was clearly an extensive renovation, the house is a model of tranquility and order.
On the first floor, one enters into a large reception hall, with oak-paneled offices on either side and an open staircase leading to the living quarters on the second floor. A patio and covered swimming pool fill in the original U-shaped floor plan.
On the second floor, a formal dining room and an informal kitchen flow together. It is here that a major structural change had taken place. A pass-through pantry and a staircase have been eliminated, and only the chimney, with its exposed brick, separates the two rooms. In the living room, a feature not to miss is the massive floor-to-ceiling mirror, salvaged from a local home. A comfortable family room/sunroom houses collections of Toby mugs and African sculpture, plus an antique model of a sailing ship. In the master suite, an elegant Jacuzzi is flanked by original paintings.
Of the many paintings and sculptures in the house, the most prominent are the Nakian sculptures, many of them abstract interpretations of Greek mythological characters.
1 The 1980 Tour booklet states: It was built in 1911 for Frank A. Scott, who rose in the ranks of Warner & Swasey Co. to be President and Chairman of the Board from 1920 to 1928. Additional information from the same source: Mission architecture proliferated throughout southern California and the Southwest during the turn of the century — the same period that the Georgian Revival was at its zenith on the East Coast — and this home presents its salient features: white stucco walls, low pitched tile roof, a semi-circular entry arch free of molding, a pyramidal tile roof on the right tower, and a complete absence of ornament.