Where would you expect to find a bay front single-family home in a quiet residential neighborhood, with a private dock five minutes by boat from the Absecon Inlet? The island of Brigantine immediately comes to mind. But if you're Stephen Fox, so does Atlantic City. His upscale three-story house is located in Atlantic City's secluded Venice Park section, which is close - but not too close - to the casino district. Fox, who lives year round in suburban Philadelphia, bought it brand new in 2006 as a vacation home and rental property.
"I liked the fact that Atlantic City was a seaside town that didn't shut down at the end of August like a lot of shore towns," he says. "I also liked that it was a great place to for boating and wave running, which is what I like to do."
Venice Park is actually comprised of two tiny but fully developed islands separated by a canal. Stephen's house is located on the easternmost island on the misnamed West Riverside Drive, which isn't near any rivers. It does however, run parallel to the Intracoastal Waterway. Stephen's house is just steps from the water. From his EP Henry paver patio a 200-foot-long aluminum walkway extends across the water to a deepwater dock with two boat lifts.
"You can take your boat right out to the Absecon Inlet to ocean," he says.
It's not necessary to be a boater to appreciate the house. Facing south, multiple decks and walls of windows provide soothing views of the bay. To the north, a second-floor deck features views of the towering windmills operated by the Atlantic County Utilities Authority. The nighttime view of the Atlantic City skyline to the east is also a sight to behold.
While Stephen is single, he's played host to family get-togethers that include lots of kids. And there's plenty of room for everybody - the 3,400 square feet of living space includes six bedrooms and 3½ baths and the house sleeps up to 14 people.
A covered front porch has a fiberglass deck and vinyl railings. An entry foyer is floored with 18-inch square ceramic tiles.
The kitchen features a large center island with granite counters and stainless appliances. Two sets of sliding glass doors open to a covered fiberglass deck overlooking the bay. An oversized family room with a tiled floor accommodates a living room with crown molding and a gas fireplace and a large dining room overlooking the water.
A staircase in the foyer leads to three second-floor bedrooms, two full baths and a laundry room. An open fiberglass deck with an elevated bay view can be accessed from both a guest bedroom and the master suite. The tiled master bath has granite vanity tops, a whirlpool tub and a walk-in shower. Another covered deck faces the front of the house.
A huge finished third floor has as vaulted ceiling and features a second living room, a full bath with walk-in shower, and three cozy bedrooms.
Other amenities include a built-in surround sound system, a camera security system, thermostats that can be controlled by phone or internet, and 9-foot ceilings with recessed lighting. The house is sided with Cedar Impressions vinyl shingles and many of the rooms have ceiling fans and there are two zones of heating and air conditioning. There's also a two-car attached garage.
Steve has fond memories of his shore house but has decided it's time to part ways.
"My family would come down and we'd enjoy barbecuing, boating and wave running," he says.
"But it's run its course for me. It's time to sell."
For more information on this property, which is listed for $599,000, call Steve Mento of Prudential Fox and Roach Realtors, 609-271-1953.
Contact David Enscoe: