Depending on your age, your aesthetic inclinations, and your tolerance for ironic appreciation, the thought of a home built in the 1970s can conjure thrills or horror. Sure, there were the sophisticated riffs on modernism, the free-thinkers of organic architecture, the agreed-upon masterpieces, and the rehabilitated reputation of brutalism. But the image that leaps to the minds of many when considering the homes of the time is that of a ranch-style tract house—one that features some watered-down tropes of midcentury-modern design, perhaps, gone formulaic and dreary.
Nevertheless, there are many ways builders and homeowners found to break up the sameness of the planned-development-style home. One was to incorporate more regional features—sometimes based on the actual older architecture of the region they’re in, sometimes randomly. Another was to go big, if the buyer could afford it, thereby avoiding common 70s pitfalls such as cramped rooms, low ceilings, and small windows admitting little light.
This spacious, Spanish-inspired home at 2902 Northwood Road in Tarrytown does a little of both. The two-story, stucco house, which has obviously seen some updates over the years, was built in 1970 and has such period features as arched doorways, Saltillo tile, and multiple fireplaces—including one in the master bedroom and the inevitable, carpeted downstairs game room.
What really makes the home’s period style work, though, is its setting. It’s been on its .33-acre lot long enough for the tropical and native foliage to mature around it, giving it a settled-in, oasis-type feeling. That feeling can be prolonged by its multiple outdoor decks, its patios, and certainly its pool with a rock surround, a waterfall, and large deck. The 3,515-square-foot home is listed by Realty Austin.