There are few cities in America that ooze with as much character as Boston. From clapboard farmhouses to glass-sheath skyscrapers, it is easy to understand why so many artists flock here; the architecture alone is inspiring. It is one of America’s oldest cities and has long been a melting pot of new ideas and old traditions. This diversity can be seen in the unique homes throughout this city. This is a place where you can drive to a new neighborhood every day, park your car, walk around marveling at the structure, and never get bored.
Probably the most unique home in Boston is the Round House found in the neighborhood of Somerville. This cylindrical building was built-in 1856 by Enoch Robinson. It has a wood frame, two flush stories, and a third story behind a series of embrasures and battlements. Inside is a gorgeous central rotunda finished with a glass skylight. There are four rooms on the first floor, six on the second, and four on the third.
111 Pembroke St.
Between Pembroke and Commonwealth, there is no shortage of multimillion dollar homes. This one is certainly not one of the more expensive ones, valued at only $4.2 million, but it is hard to pass up its rooftop terrace with billion-dollar views. This elegantly renovated brick townhouse in the South End has five bedrooms, six bathrooms, a two-level guesthouse, and a service elevator.
Paul Revere House
This North Square townhouse is the oldest building in downtown Boston and is designated a National Historic Landmark. What makes this wooden colonial home so unique is that although it has changed hands numerous times and has been completely restored, about 90 percent of the structure is original. Considering it was built around 1680, this is pretty impressive.
Thirteen Foot House
While other notable homes in the city are made up of multiple floors or vaulted ceilings with chandeliers, this house is famous for being only 13 feet tall. It is located at 50 Mount Vernon St. in Beacon Hill, Boston’s most famous neighborhood. Originally the building was three carriage houses that accompanied larger homes on the street. The original deed states that the roof may never exceed 13 feet, and the deed restriction is still valid.
Scarlett O’Hara House
Okay, so this is not an actual house, but at first glance, you might be fooled. It is a three-dimensional painting of a Greek-revival building that was placed to hide the unsightly concrete and brick wall 30 years ago. The detail is remarkable and residents hang a wreath on the “door” every December. It is tucked away in Beacon Hill right off Revere Street.
The Skinny House can be found at 44 Hill Street in Boston’s North End. This narrow four-story home spans only 10.4 feet at its widest point. It is said to have been built as a spite house. The legend is that an unnamed builder constructed it to block the air and light of a hostile neighbor. This may be the home to live in if you need the motivation to stay faithful to your diet, which is ironic considering the North End is saturated with Italian restaurants serving up the best pizza in the country.
If you are looking for more historic homes (not necessarily unusual) to view, Boston has many of them, including Otis House, John F. Kennedy House, Abigail Adams House, Nichols House, Orchard House, Gibson House, Longfellow House, Quincy House, and Olde Manse.