1881 Second Empire – Little Rock, AR

Off Market / Archived
Posted December 2016. This home has been archived on OHD. The sold status is unknown.
Added to OHD on 12/2/16 - Last OHD Update: 8/8/18 - 39 Comments
1321 Scott St, Little Rock, AR 72202

Map: Street View











Villa Marre built in 1880 used as the home for the tv showing Designing Women. The home has a facade easement. Huge over-sized rooms, two parlors, dining room, large vintage kitchen, sweeping staircase, 1.5 baths, 3 bedrooms. Also included in the sale is a triplex- The triplex is three one bedroom apartments. Has been used as a private residence and an event house. Full basement. Slate room.
Last Active Agent
Tony Curtis, Tony Curtis Realtors      (501) 374-1221
Links & Additional Info

39 Comments on 1881 Second Empire – Little Rock, AR

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  1. Tracy says: 101 comments

    What an awesome place…

  2. Robt. W.Robt. W. says: 458 comments

    The seeming contradiction that a 1.5 story house, even one so highly articulated as this one, has such large rooms and high ceilings is appealing. Handsome interior spaces and original details, and the modern finishes in 19thC taste (paint schemes and stenciling) are nicely selected to emphasize the architecture. Great house.

  3. amanda upshaw says: 1 comments

    This was once upon a time my aunts house sadly I have never had the pleasure of going inside of it.. SO thanks for all the pictures

  4. Justin says: 1 comments

    You can view inside now as it is used for weddings, photography, etc 🙂 I was just there this weekend.

  5. Robert Curtis says: 1 comments

    What a lot of people don’t realize is that just around the corner is the Arkansas Govenors Mansion which was used as the outside of Susan Sugarbakers ( Delta Burke ) house on the TV series during the earlier seasons of Designing Women.

  6. Kelly, OHD adminKelly, OHD admin says: 8793 comments

    1901 Folk Victorian
    Chestatee, GA

    On the site in 2011, sold then and now back on the market. Some of the comments above are older.

    If you lived in the 1980’s you’ll recognize this from “Designing Women”.

  7. Sharon says: 46 comments

    That one image of the floors! The “show-off” floor. It makes me imagine a time of apprentices and master-craftsmen, of patience and details, of construction sites without electric-powered drills, saws, and nail-guns.

    The craftsman arrives in his horse-drawn wagon. And the owner tells him, “Here. In this room. This spot. I want to see everything you can do. Everything you’ve ever done. Everything!”

    “As you wish, sir.”

  8. RosewaterRosewater says: 3811 comments
    OHD Supporter

    1875 Italianate cottage
    Noblesville, IN

    Once again Little Rock stands a step above all other wildly exuberant Victorians. The crazy quilt parquetry is quite BEYOND anything I’ve ever seen. Whether everything we see is original, or possibly period correct later additions from the 60’s “restorarion” is hard to say, but the overall gestalt is SUPERB! Hopefully the new owner will respect the condition they find the place in and keep “Suzanne Sugarbaker” and her set far away! Heheheh..

    • John ShifletJohn Shiflet says: 4196 comments

      Jeff, I readily agree with your statements. I also find it interesting that the exterior historical narrative plaque indicates the house was restored in the mid-1960’s; a remarkably early date in the historic preservation movement because the National Trust for Historic Preservation was not established until 1966. The old darkened shellac finishes indicate they were probably never stripped. I concur with you that the Victorian “crazy quilt” pattern of inlaid patterned parquet flooring is unique but it is typical of the architectural whimsy of the Victorian era. Here’s a period flooring catalog showing the amazing variety of floor patterns available back then: (1893) https://archive.org/stream/interiordecorati00jwbo#page/n0/mode/2up By the way, I suspect the fancy flooring dates from the 1890’s rather than being original. (1880) Quite an impressive house overall in a stellar location which probably accounts for its pricing. I wish it were in my price range…

      • Robinjn says: 203 comments

        John, thank you for the link to the booklet. As a graphic designer and student of typography I could be ecstatic just to own that booklet.

        • John ShifletJohn Shiflet says: 4196 comments

          Robin jn, You’re welcome. You are probably aware you can download for free (and own it) the flooring catalog from the Internet Archive. If you or anyone else is looking for specific architectural or art/decor period archival publications, let me know and I’ll try to find them online. Many publications are still sitting in institutional libraries and collections but a surprising number have been made accessible online in recent years. (a trend that I hope continues for low budget research types like myself)

          • Susan McLaughlin says: 1 comments

            John, That’s fantastic! I’m with you, I’m always researching old buildings, from cottages to waterfront estates and this is a find! I just found the archives of a custom lighting fixture manufacturer, E.F. Caldwell, and was able to view my sconces and the work order for the house they were made for. As I drive around, seeing tear-downs on every street, I’m glad to connect with “My People” here.

  9. Jules2 says: 20 comments

    Gorgeous! That staircase. That woodwork. Those floors. Stunning.

  10. dkzody says: 249 comments

    I love looking at these old homes (a guilty passion) but rarely do I want to live in one. This one, this one would be the one. I would even consider moving to Arkansas to live in such a place. However, I would still need staff to take care of it.

  11. SueSue says: 1185 comments
    OHD Supporter

    1802 Cape

    What a stunning place. I am truly wishing I could have this home.

  12. RossRoss says: 2256 comments
    OHD Supporter

    1894 QueenAnneFreeClassic
    Emporia, KS




  13. Michael MackinMichael Mackin says: 1063 comments

    Stunning spaces and high ceilings! I love it!

  14. jeklstudiojeklstudio says: 785 comments

    To reply to dkzody above, I can’t imagine ever living in anything but an old house, LOL. My hub and I have only lived in old houses (except when living in FL accidentally for 4.5 yrs.) We love everything about living ‘old’ as we say and this house is no exception. Simply incredible. The artistry of the wood! The design of the rooms, the way the light comes in…*sigh*.
    I thought the façade looked familiar when I first clicked on it–the Designing Women connection….

  15. Robinjn says: 203 comments

    So experts, are those crazy quilt parquet floors common? That is just amazing craftsmanship. Not to mention the rest of the floors.

    There is not one single thing in this house I do not love. Exterior. Interior. Yard. the stenciling. The staircase. THAT FLOOR.

    • Robertcn says: 63 comments

      I think that the floor borders were sold by the foot and came in random lengths. Possibly these are the remnants from other rooms and quilted together. Remarkable craftsmanship!

      • John ShifletJohn Shiflet says: 4196 comments

        Robert, I think you are spot-on and the installer/carpenter must have had a sense of whimsy shared by the homeowner(s). However, although I have seen a sizeable number of patterned floors, I’ve yet to see another one like this example.

    • Danny Steele says: 1 comments

      My father was the Carroll L. Steele who is mentioned on the plaque listing those who were involved in the 1964-66 renovation of the home. I remember my father talking specifically about two things in the house, the staircase and the parquet floor (third picture from the bottom). He had to reconstruct the stairway using what few parts were left of the stairway plus making the parts that were missing. Unless you have been involved in the making of a spiral staircase, you can not imagine what is involved in doing so from scratch. The parquet flooring did not come in a kit. It was also made from scratch using a variety of different woods. He of course worked on other aspects of the renovation but these were the two parts I heard him comment about. By the way, I have the original Sugarbaker sign that was photographed for the opening scene on Designing Women.

  16. Kelly Johnston says: 1 comments

    More Villa Marre info here including the National Register nomination: http://www.encyclopediaofarkansas.net/encyclopedia/entry-detail.aspx?entryID=2108

  17. Carolyn E. says: 61 comments

    I love everything about this house! The rooms are beautiful even though they are empty. The staircase, the intricate floor design…is breathtaking! Would love to have friends over for luncheons, dinner parties, lovely evening gatherings, with everyone beautifully dressed and family and friends could stay as long as they liked, especially the grandchildren….wishful thinking.

  18. Paul WPaul W says: 575 comments

    Given the fact its fall into that “nationally known” category, what seems like a high price is actually probably going to be on the money. People would pay that just to say they own it. The extra income from the triplex helps offset the cost. The interiors are just perfect, not overdone yet period elegant, doesn’t get any better than this.

  19. Amanda says: 54 comments

    I think I am dreaming and need to wake up. I would buy it just for the light fixtures and wall decor. heaven. what a way to start the day! imagine having this as your forever home. oh how lucky someone is going to be… look at my floors!! look at my lights!

  20. Jenny says: 66 comments

    Not my style of house to live in, but I deeply admire the craftsmanship. The staircase and that quilted floor overshadow all the other handsome woodwork. As a ‘jack of all trades and master of none’, I can’t imagine being so perfected in a craft to put out that kind of work. It’s stunning.

  21. RossRoss says: 2256 comments
    OHD Supporter

    1894 QueenAnneFreeClassic
    Emporia, KS

    Amazing, half-buried house behind Villa:


    • Gini says: 20 comments

      My significant other helped to restore that house in the late ’70’s…sadly, she needs a refurbish now.

  22. pipa67 says: 24 comments

    I collect all ages of crazy quilts, I love the chaos..that picture of the floor is giving me ideas, I love it!

  23. dreamin'bout'oldhouse ownership ~Colleen~ says: 1319 comments

    Truly beautiful with a seperate rental unit to help with upkeep, what a treasure.

  24. Jennifer HT says: 799 comments

    Wow! Wow! Wow! What a stunning home. Those stairs, those floors, the attention to detail. I really quite love this and second empire has never been in my top styles. This home has me rethinking it.

  25. LorenN says: 102 comments

    Always wondered what the rest of the house looked like when watching “Designing Women” sitcom! Stunning home in every detail. I will say, for my own personal taste…I am not a fan of the very dark stain of wood in all the common spaces.
    Dark stain tends to show every dust particle; which, drives me nuts! That staircase, floors, lighting, exterior wrought iron, double entry doors etc. EVERYTHING is absolutely fabulous! Residual income apartments out back to help with maintenance, upkeep is a huge plus! A very lucky buyer, indeed!

  26. GoddessOdd says: 326 comments

    this house is so beautiful. the only thing I don’t care for is the juxtaposition of the green paint with the coral in the adjacent room, but the floors! I also love the wallpapered bathroom, the beautiful woodwork and the deep window nooks, begging for a lovely window seat for a cat to call home!

  27. EyesOnYou1959 says: 266 comments

    What a magnificent home! I would buy it for the staircase alone, lol.

  28. JimHJimH says: 3510 comments
    OHD Supporter

    My wife watched Designing Women religiously and I admit to enjoying it also. Like the show, the house is crafted of routine stuff (brick and concrete) but done with style and elegance that take it to a another level. Not all old houses are worthy of authentically detailed period restoration, but this one is and it would be wonderful to see what could be done here with a budget to bring it completely back to 1882.
    I’m curious about the corridor shown in the 2 photos after the stencil shots, with painted brick walls, exterior details, and what looks like a stair to below. I’m wondering if it was originally a transverse breezeway between the house and the kitchen?

  29. Sandra says: 332 comments

    I am thrilled with what the owners have and haven’t done to this house. It’s in such a beautiful state, restored but not remodeled. It’s not overdecorated either. Amazing.

  30. VictorianDreamingVictorianDreaming says: 18 comments

    Wow, gorgeous!

  31. Denise A says: 30 comments

    Beautiful home! I just wish they would have included a kitchen photo!


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