Laurie Brae & Kevin Kravets
Gift to the Street Award
An unusual spec house constructed in 1917 by master builder Martin V. Melhorn had been so "remuddled" that it took determination, grit, and historic photographs to know how to return it to its original design. This majestic, Prairie style house with a commanding view overlooking the street was endowed with unique architectural features, such as eight-sided turrets on the front and side elevations.Making this Inspiration Heights house even more captivating are its exotic "Oriental" features or Spanish Eclectic influences.
But awful stone veneer, the wrong stucco finish, barred windows and improvised metal porch railings muffled its grandeur. Different owners might well have been too discouraged to tackle such a large and complex house, but not our winners. This couple stuck with the challenging project even when they ran into expensive concrete foundation work and restoration of the clay tile walls. Real troupers, they even stayed in the house with their children as the work continued for years. There's a happy ending: The house was designated historic by the City of San Diego last November.
For their dedication to preservation even when the going gets tough, Kevin Kravets and Laurie Brae have earned the Gift to the Street Award.
Photo of award winners Laurie Brae and Kevin Kravets, and after photos by Sandé Lollis; before photos courtesy award winners
PAST PEOPLE IN PRESERVATION AWARD WINNERS