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Unique Homes: A Medieval Palace In Downtown Minneapolis

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MINNEAPOLIS (WCCO) — If you drive by it you probably never even realized it’s a single-family home, but once up the drive-way you realize this home is something special.

It’s almost like a medieval castle or a sci-fi lover’s fantasy. It’s right off Washington Avenue, where metal wizards hang out of windows, a gated driveway and stained-glass would intrigue anyone to want to go inside.

“Virtually every piece was made by hand,” said owner Jeff Arundel.

From custom fireplaces to cabinetry, beamed Gothic ceilings and rooftop hangouts, Arundel’s imagination came up with all of it along with the help of a master metal worker Paul Tierney.

“Lord of the Rings meets Harry Potter as directed by Tim Burton,” said Arundel.

The original building was a 1911 blacksmith shop. In the 1980s, the house was owned by the late John and Sage Cowles. Jeff bought it in 2002.

“I didn’t know what I was doing and this wasn’t the epicenter and then within a year of me buying it you could see five cranes,” said Arundel. “Then they built places like the Carlye and the Zenith.”

Just like the changing neighborhood, he blew everything out, including ceilings and staircases. What was left in the 4,500 square foot, three bedroom, 3-and-a-half bath home were big, breathtaking rooms.

“My goal was to make these main spaces so there’s bedrooms, there’s this gathering room, there’s the kitchen, there’s where we watch the Vikings game and then there’s the music studio and roof deck, so there’s not a lot of cubbie holes,” said Arundel.

For 11 years, Jeff has made the home his. As a musician, he has a recording studio. He’s dotted the home with treasures. He’s also watched major changes to the neighborhood.

The new Vikings stadium is going up next door.

“In three years this will be even more centralized,” said Arundel.

Now the home can be yours for $2.695 million. Jeff knows it will either take a unique buyer or a developer. Jeff’s career is just as interesting as the house — as a musician, his first local hit was the 1995 tribute to a Twins legend, “Harmon Killebrew.”

The former president and CEO of Compass Inc., he launched and signed an exclusive distribution deal with Target for the “Lifescapes” label. He also owns the Aster Cafe in Saint Anthony Main.

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