A good porch, with shade, views, and cool breezes, is the perfect place to spend a summer afternoon, hence their common association with antebellum Southern plantations, Gone With The Wind and all that. With the green movement putting pressure on homeowners to reduce the use of air conditioning, porches look poised to make an environmentally friendly comeback—provided they look good, like this classic stone-and-wood number in Concord, Mass. Beadboard ceilings, colorful plantings, and casual furnishings round out the broad porch, while the rest of 1895 house, currently asking $3.3M, is spacious and well-kept, with six bedrooms, 7,200 square feet, and preserved period details.
? Many of the summer cottages of Mount Desert Island, Maine, built for some of America's most powerful families around the turn of the century, boast impressively detailed porches, and the Fred L. Savage-designed L'Escale is no different. Built in 1890, the house has a covered section of porch, a side exposed to the sun, and apparently catches glimpses of gorgeous sunsets over Somes Sound. That said, the house looks a little run-down to justify a $5.3M price, and the lack of interior photos is worrying.
? Now, let's head down South for some of the region's old-school outdoor spaces, starting with the second-floor porch of this Savannah, Ga. spread. Overlooking Theus Park, the four-bedroom house features both the spacious second-floor veranda and a covered colonnade leading to the detached garage. Despite the aged appearance, this house was actually designed in the midcentury by noted local architect John LeBey; at $550K, it is certainly a cheaper porch than Maine had to offer.
? The citizens of Charleston, S.C., much like those of Savannah, have a deep affinity for the porch, and the multi-tiered one on this downtown number is sure to assuage any outdoor addiction. Each floor of the Jacob Motte House enjoys access to the three-story stack of verandas, but this was hardly some modern addition. In fact, the Motte House is one of the oldest in Charleston, dating to 1731. That impressive stat helps to explain another: the price, which is currently set at $2.47M.
? Another South Carolina residence, this one on Pawleys Island, combines the classic porch with some of the state's best coastal views. While not nearly as old as the Charleston house, this comfortable, modern build comes equipped with open porches, screen porches, and even a sitting area on the beach-bound boardwalk, all offering those impressive panoramas. Such Southern idyll comes at quite a premium, though: almost $4M for the 7,500-square-foot oceanfront manse.
· Classic Shingle-style on Nashawtuc Hill [LandVest]
· L'Escale [Knowles & Co.]
· Ardsley Park [Sotheby's]
· 61 Tradd Street [Sotheby's]
· 451 Beach Bridge Road [Sotheby's]
· All Outdoors Week posts [Curbed National]