A Storied Old-World Masterpiece Remains a Sparkling Jewel Near Portland

PORTLAND, OR, December 07, 2018 /– Authentic historic homes are both an obsession and labor of love to that rare buyer who relishes the painstaking process of returning homes to their original magnificence. Yet in the case of the quintessential “Castle” Queen Ann home just listed in Forest Grove, OR, the immense restoration has been completed by two iconic visionaries, Valerie and Allen Warren, who, for the past twenty years, have lovingly rebuilt this registered historical masterpiece back to its brilliance of more than a century ago. While they have added contemporary nuances and upgrades to accommodate modern life, each room has been renovated with just the right period accents and antiques by Valerie Warren (a professional antique dealer) that gives one the feeling they are indeed in a grand, timeless era. With a passion for Victorian history and a zeal for top craftsmanship, the quaint Isaac Macrum became the ideal home to raise the Warren’s young family.

This residence boasts a third-story tower, new roof and drainage systems, 21 rooms, 10 bedrooms, 10 cast-iron fireplaces, five bathrooms, a sizable wine cellar, stained-glass windows, spacious decks, multiple 1st floor great rooms, a fully modernized kitchen, new carriage-house style two-car garage with a single bedroom apartment on the 2nd level, and literally hundreds of other upgrades over the Warren’s 20+ year tenure. The Macrum’ open floor plan typifies the Queen Ann style. Venerated Broker, Lisa La Centra, of Cascade Sotheby’s International Realty in Portland has just listed this property. To contact La Centra, please go to [email protected] or call: 503-789-6880.

While touring this gem, it tells its own story of varied reincarnations, such as being the first hospital in Forest Grove, followed by its life as a popular pre-school. Simply put, the sprawling 7,709 square foot home is a magical experience that was built for Isaac and Westanna Macrum in 1888. Macrum was an educator, lawyer and entrepreneur heavily devoted to community affairs.

When asked what it’s like to live in a true historical grand home, Allen remarked, “When we walked in the home November of 1996 with our three sons ages three, five, and seven, then owner Marti Warner immediately remarked, “I think it’s so [great] that a nice young family is going to live here again!” While Val was shaking with excitement about living in a historic home that we’d fix up and she’d get to decorate with her successful business flair of finding great antiques, I was shaking with utter fear thinking about the time and money it would take to renovate. But throughout the past 21 years, we’ve come to realize we were meant to have this home . . . to be the latest caretakers. . . to toil and labor in the renovation to its former glory. We hosted parties and let others enjoy it as much as we did, together with our intelligent, passionate and caring young sons. We’re so very fortunate to have been a part of this grand old home’s life, and we look forward to a new family getting the opportunity to experience the festivity and fun of being the next caretakers.”

The strong allure and mystery of Queen Ann Victorian homes are as potent today as they were since hitting their peak popularity in 1880–1900 England and began to appear in America shortly thereafter.

“Forest Grove is a close-knit town,” said Valerie. “Everybody knows everybody. And with us owning the home everybody still calls “Castle Preschool,” everybody knew us, and our sons. The boys all did great in school, and their teachers still ask about them when we happen to run into [them]. We walk our dogs two miles every evening, and can walk in the street. There’s just so little traffic.”

As to Forest Grove’s community life, the Warren’s added “The neighborhood is special and the schools are special. Whoever buys our home buys into a very warm and inviting city that has all the charm of days gone by.”