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What $ 1.5 million buys you in Illinois, Michigan, and California


This North Shore suburban home was originally owned by Leslie Goudie, a leader of the Chicago Teamsters union at a time when the organization was rocked by gang violence. Mr Goudie is said to have traveled in an armored vehicle with police bodyguards to avoid the fate of his predecessor, Patrick Berrell, who was killed by machine gun fire. Mr. Goudie died in 1944 of complications from a hernia operation. Since then, there has been only one owner of the house.

The property is half a mile south of the Highland Park business district, where there is a Metra station serving Chicago (the journey takes about an hour). Driving time along I-94 is approximately 35 minutes in light traffic. The Chicago Symphony Orchestra’s summer home in Ravinia is two miles to the south; the Chicago Botanical Garden is three miles to the south; and a public beach on Lake Michigan is a mile and a half east.

Cut: 6,477 square feet

Price per square foot: $ 231

Inside: The front door is located in a shallow central portico topped by a wrought iron balcony. It opens to a lobby with redone pale hardwood floors, light teal walls with ivory moldings, a Murano glass chandelier, and a curved staircase with spindles and a wrought-iron banister. To the right is a 30 foot long living room with the same surface materials and the same pallet; it includes a bay window and a wood-burning fireplace with a decorative-style frame in carved wood inlaid with black marble. The decor themes continue in the formal dining room, to the left.

A swinging door opens from the dining room to a breakfast room with bay window and an adjoining kitchen with white, black and teal mosaic flooring, white tiled walls, original white metal cabinetry topped with stainless steel and up-to-date appliances.

Across the hall from the entrance is a closed hallway with a pair of cupboards, a make-up vanity and, at the back, a powder room. The dominant color is a pale shade of raspberry.

The master suite is at the back of the ground floor. It focuses on a 27-foot-long room containing a kitchenette with a fridge, freezer, and dishwasher. The room connects on one end to a den with large built-in bookcases and on the other to a lighted patio. The private bathroom has original Art Deco tiles and includes two sinks, a roll-in shower and a walk-in closet with mirror and vanity unit. Next to it is a 6 foot by 11 foot closet.

A second en-suite bedroom is upstairs, to the right of the landing. It has pale green walls, a trio of wardrobes, and a walk-in closet with three additional and built-in wardrobes. The vintage private bathroom is fitted with a separate shower and bathtub. Two back-to-back bedrooms to the left of the landing share a bathroom down the hall with vintage pink tiling and a combined tub and shower. The fourth bedroom, at the rear of the house, has a corner ceiling and built-in desks and wardrobes. It is next to a 24 foot long second office and leads to an approximately 500 square foot deck with a hot tub.

A finished basement room with knotty pine paneled walls and a fireplace served as a playroom. It has a wet bar with a beer tap and stainless steel sink, and is adjacent to a room with a dining area, full kitchen, and pantry. There is also a powder room on this level.

Outdoor space: A spiral staircase descends from the upper aft deck to a stone patio at the rear. The attached side garage has double doors and direct access to the main level. The large grassy backyard is fully fenced. Additional lawns and paved seating areas can be found in front of the house.

Taxes: $ 20,209 (2019)

Contact: Gus Karigan, @ Properties, 847-732-6393; atproperties.com


This shingled vacation cottage on the east shore of Lake Michigan has been owned by one family (with seven children) since the 1950s. The listing agent described it as “rustic but well maintained,” with a roof that has been replaced in 2013. It is not insulated, but has electric baseboard heating and two wood-burning fireplaces to relax on out of season days. Set on a bluff with spectacular lake views less than 10 minutes south of Grand Haven, a lakeside town of 11,000 people, it sits just below the Rosy Mound Natural Area, a park with dunes, trails and a beach. Grand Rapids is 31 miles east and the drive from Chicago is approximately three hours.

Cut: 2,429 square feet

Price per square foot: $ 617

Inside: Knotty pine covers the interior walls and ceilings, and the floors are hardwood. The fireplace in the living room and dining room is surrounded by concrete and patterned tiles; the sash windows overlook the lake and the lightly wooded property. A basic white kitchen has an electric range and stainless steel sink and connects to the smaller of the two screened porches. (The larger one is outside the living room.)

One bedroom is on the ground floor, with direct access to a bathroom with shower-over-tub and a separate entrance from a hall from the kitchen. The master bedroom is on the second floor and includes a brick fireplace, en-suite powder room, and access to a large roof terrace from the larger porch. Two other bedrooms upstairs share a bathroom with a shower over the bath.

Outdoor space: The house is approached by a long shared dirt road. A wooden staircase of 60 steps leads you to the beach. The large properties to the south and the park to the north give a strong sense of privacy.

This house, located in a cul-de-sac in the Hiller Highlands neighborhood, was part of the redevelopment that took place after the area was destroyed by the Oakland Firestorm in 1991. The property is a short walk away. distance from the Grove Shafter Freeway, which provides direct access to San Francisco and Silicon Valley. It is about three and a half miles east of the Claremont neighborhood in Berkeley and three miles east of the Claremont Club and Spa. The 34-acre University of California Botanical Garden in the Berkeley Hills is six miles northwest.

Cut: 2,856 square feet

Price per square foot: $ 516

Inside: The stucco-clad house is entered through either of a pair of one-car garages, or through the front door between them. The three doors open into a foyer with a backlit glass tile ceiling, freshly painted walls, and refurbished pale hardwood floors (the latter two features are found throughout the main level) . The first door to the left of the central hallway leads to a breakfast nook with one of the property’s many new light fixtures. The room flows into a kitchen with wooden planks and ceiling trusses and simple wood cabinetry with quartz countertops. Beyond is a dining room with a wooden ceiling and sliding glass doors that open onto a terrace.

The sequence of rooms to the right of the front door begins with a powder room with a quartz-top vanity; continues with a family room with wooden ceilings, wiring for sound and a built-in shelving unit in a niche; and culminates in a living room with large screened windows and a wood-burning fireplace.

At the end of the corridor, between the open living and dining room, is a metal staircase leading down to the bedroom floor. There, the master suite includes a newly carpeted bedroom with direct access to a lower deck, two closets (one walk-in closet) and a bathroom with double sinks carved out of a long wooden vanity. A shower with a glass door and a bathtub are arranged side by side. A second carpeted bedroom also opens onto the lower deck. The third bedroom is smaller and has a double wardrobe with folding doors. The two bedrooms share a bathroom which contains a separate shower room with a chest of drawers. There is also a dedicated laundry room.

Outdoor space: The house has a two level deck that was recently custom built in redwood.

Taxes: $ 18,438 (estimated)

Contact: Ken Nwokedi, Toro Property Company, 510-220-2989; 59bayforest.com

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