About the property
- House2500 sqft
- Half Baths0
- Minimum Stay3 - 5 nights
3 Bedrooms - 2 Bathrooms - Sleeps 6-8
This spacious 2 story brick home centrally located in Lexington’s Historic South Hill district is the perfect spot for Bluegrass area visitors. A unique home, built in 1908, it is registered with the Bluegrass Trust for Historic Preservation, and is an intriguing combination of private retreat with modern amenities and downtown convenience. The newly remodeled, completely fenced in back courtyard will keep your pets safe while providing an inviting, peaceful venue for relaxing, and grilling out – but one has only to walk out the front door to discover all that downtown Lexington has to offer. This charming home has lots of character with 10 foot ceilings, hardwood floors and six uniquely tiled fireplace mantles throughout as well as 1st floor screened in porch and 2nd floor balcony overlooking the courtyard and downtown Lexington. Both bathrooms were completely renovated in 2017. Other special features are a cozy seating area in the open, airy kitchen, a beautiful spa like bathroom downstairs, and another quaint seating area located upstairs. A wonderful get away after a long day of sightseeing in central KY!
The Martin House is a late Queen Anne "Free Classic" residence, and is a good example of this transitional period in architectural styles. Sophisticated in it's massing, simple in it's trim, it is balanced between the Queen Anne use of variety of surface and form and the Craftsman emphasis on simplicity.
Jesse Woodruff and his family lived on this block from 1864 through 1908, first next door and then, from 1893 onwards, on this site in a house whose one story footprint on the 1907 map is much different from the current building's. His relative, Thomas B. Woodruff continued to live next door through at least 1925. The present house was built between 1908 and 1911 when J. M. Martin, agent, Chattanooga Brewing Company, and his family acquired the property. They lived here through 1921.
A 1976 renovation moderinized the interior and the rear of the building while preserving well-cared for details. It served as a duplex until 1983, when it was returned to single-family use.
We acquired the house in April, 2004 and initially planned to return it to duplex form, using one for ourselves and renting the other. However, we fell in love with the entire home and couldn't bear to make those changes! So instead, we started renting it as a vacation home in September, 2005. We found this to be a great compromise as it allows us to share our home with visitors to Lexington, hopefully bringing them great enjoyment, while also being able to stay in and enjoy our home as well!
About our neighborhood:
The South Hill Historic District is a neighborhood of early residential homes adjacent to downtown Lexington. In 1781, Lexington's five-man Board of Trustees successfully petitioned the Virginia Assembly for 710 acres of land that was divided into half-acre and five-acre lots, according to a town plat. "The south hill" was made up of larger lots located outside of the town of Lexington that were soon subdivided. South Hill is so named because in pioneer days the area overlooked the Town Branch of Elkhorn Creek that once flowed through the center of the city. The homes in this district were built over a period of time spanning more than 100 years. The earliest homes were built during the early 19th century and are mainly Federal and Greek Revival styles. Most of the older homes are in the northern half of the district. The district also includes homes built after the Civil War into the early 20th century. Buildings designed by two of Lexington's greatest architects, John McMurtry and Cincinnatus Shyrock, can also be found in this district. The mixture of styles on each street is aesthetically compatible, of similar scale and placed on lots of similar size. However, the scale and lot size on each street differs, with the bordering streets of the district such as South Limestone and South Broadway containing larger houses on larger lots set further back from the street.
This district consists of many homes that were once owned by free African Americans at a time when slavery was still an institution in Kentucky. Prosperous whites lived alongside prosperous African Americans with many middle class citizens also living in the district. The oldest home in Lexington, the Adam Rankin House is located in this district on South Mill Street.
Despite the rapid growth of Lexington and the neighboring University of Kentucky, the South Hill Historic District has remained virtually untouched with some commercial infringement on the outer edges of the community. At one time located on the outskirts of Lexington, the neighborhood is now in the heart of the city.
- Response rate:
- Response time:
- within a few hours
- Calendar last updated:
- May 23, 2018
About Jeannette Bracken
We began renting our home in 2005, and have found the best thing about it to be helping visitors to Lexington have a unique, memorable experience in our city! We are happy to help with anything you might need in planning your stay, or with any questions that may arise at any time that need a local's input. Our number one goal is to have happy guests!
Jeannette Bracken purchased this House in 2004
Why Jeannette Bracken chose Historic South Hill
We have always loved downtown Lexington, and we couldn't resist this unique property when it came on the market. We love staying here, and really enjoy being able to share it with others that are visiting Lexington.
What makes this House unique
There are so many restaurants within walking distance of our home - you could eat in a different one each night! Also, our home is unique in that it is a 100 year old home with beautiful woodwork, located in the center of a historic district. We recently completed a remodel of our backyard and both bathrooms, so we now find it more charming than ever! :) - hopefully you will too!
Local Services & Businesses
Sports & Adventure Activities
Check-in: 4:00 PM
Check-out: 10:00 AM
100% refund if canceled at least 60 days before arrival date. 50% refund if canceled at least 30 days before arrival date. You must contact the owner directly to request cancellation.
It felt like home!!
The space was perfect for our family of 6 adults and 3 children. And the beautiful backyard was a bonus place to gather with family! The included amenities made our stay worry-free and comfortable! 2 off-street parking spaces and 2 on-street parking passes made parking easy. Location was perfect for experiencing the wonderful downtown dining and entertainment community!
Great homey house in an awesome location.
Visiting Lexington and we felt like we were home. Relaxing back Patio with a grill. Fullly stocked kitchen. Comfy all the way around.
Cozy and comfortable!
We had a wonderful experience at the Martin House. The owners were so attentive and went above and beyond to make us comfortable. We even had fresh cookies waiting for us upon arrival. The house is a beautiful historic home close to downtown and great food options.
Very cool and a bit quirky home in a great location.
Historic home in a great location. A bit quirky in the fact that we'd forget our way around the first couple of days. Given that it is an older home you got to be on the lookout for low doorways and low ceilings in spot upstairs.
The Martin House is a beautiful older home with lots of personality.
We booked the Martin House for a place to stay for our daughter’s wedding. There were 8 of us staying here and it never felt crowded. We walked all over town. Other friends and family were able to walk from their downtown hotels to hang out with us on the back porch and beautiful back yard. Would definitely stay here again.
We stayed at Jeannette's beautiful home while competing during finals at the Kentucky Horse Park. Their home was so perfect for our stay and in the best location. The home is very charming and has a beautiful backyard and screened in porch. We used the grill almost every night! The parking was totally fine. I was a little nervous reading the description of the driveway that my car wouldn't fit, but my Jeep Grand Cherokee was completely fine and I would say that there was definitely space for another one as well! There was also plenty of street parking right outside the house.
Everything we needed was either walking distance or just a 15 minute maximum drive. Jeannette was very helpful and accommodating when needed. They have plenty of information about the home and the area in a large book, and were very well organized for our stay. We had a small dog with us, which they welcomed without hesitation. It's always nice to have hosts who are dog friendly because sometimes it's hard to find homes that are.
My only complaint (which isn't even really a complaint) was getting used to the college vibe of the neighborhood as its just off the University of Kentucky campus. Since the house is older, it isn't quite as sound proofed as I would have liked, especially when we had to be up everyday at 5am. If a little noise doesn't bother you then I wouldn't worry about it. We got used to it after the first night and were totally fine during the rest of our stay.
We loved this house and would definitely stay here again on our next trip to Lexington!
Walking distance: University of Kentucky Basketball, UK Campus,
Transylvania University Campus, Kentucky Theatre, The Opera House,
The Civic Center, Children’s Museum, Lexington Farmer’s Market, Rupp
Arena, many fine restaurants and nightclubs Nearby: Keeneland, Applebee's Park (Home of the Lexington Legends),
Ky Horse Park, UK Arboretum, Red Mile Harness Racing Track, Raven
Run Nature Sanctuary, Commonwealth Stadium (Home of UK Football) In the region: Shaker Village, Woodford Reserve Distillery, Old Fort
Harrod State Park, Ky State Capitol, Red River Gorge
Rates & Availability
Additional information about rental rates
Minimum stay is 3-4 nights.