A Contemporary Cornerstone

Arts patrons Tim and bring new life to ’s former Georgetown home.

By , AIA, LEED AP
Photography by

Shigeko, Skye, and Tim Bork in the drawing room of their R Street NW home. The sculpture seen inthe background is titled "Valiant Struggle #4" by Chinese artist Chen Wen Ling.

Shigeko, Skye, and in the drawing room of their R Street NW home. The sculpture seen inthe background is titled "Valiant Struggle #4" by Chinese artist Chen Wen Ling.

Originally designed in 1814 by architect , the eye-catching Georgetown residence of Tim and Shigeko Bork was once owned by Evalyn Walsh McLean, Washington socialite extraordinaire and owner of the famed Hope Diamond. McLean was known to slide the supposedly cursed gemstone across the floor of the drawing room during lulls in the lavish parties she hosted. The Dumbarton Tennis Club acquired the house (after it had expanded to the size of an entire block) but eventually sold it to then-U.S. Ambassador to Egypt . After the enormous property was subdivided into a series of separate mansions, the club’s pool became a back alley, the ballroom part of one house, and the main kitchen part of another. In the 1960’s, grande dame renovated her large section in the style of the time and her home remained largely untouched until 2001 when the Borks purchased it after her death.
 

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