List Price: $2.15 million
Sold Price: $1.725 million
The Property: This 15-room house in western Lake Forest is an almost-exact duplicate of a house in the nearby Conway Farms subdivision. The primary difference is the high ceilings, says Tracy Wurster, the Prudential Preferred Properties agent who represented the sellers in a deal that closed last week. “Everywhere you could get [higher] ceiling height, they did,” says Wurster. “The office goes up into the turret, the master bedroom and the great room go up, and even the basement has tall ceilings.”
In 2002, Frank and Colleen Grilli—he is the vice president of store operations at Walgreen’s—spotted the Conway Farms house and commissioned Wellington Homes to duplicate the home on their 1.4-acre lot a mile or so east of there. The house has five bedrooms, five-plus baths, lots of interior detailing in natural stone, a four-car garage, and a basement theatre.
The Grillis have moved to Florida; Frank Grilli now works in Walgreen’s Tampa offices and could not be reached for comment. The buyers are not yet identified in public records of the sale.
Price Points: The house was custom built for the Grillis in 2003; there is no public record of what they paid, beyond the $680,000 they spent for the 1.4-acre lot. In mid-2006, the couple listed the property for sale at $2.649 million, with Colleen Grilli as the agent (she was with Baird & Warner). The house had been off the market for some time in February 2009, when the Grillis listed it with Wurster, at $2.25 million. Within a few weeks, a comparable house around the corner came on the market at $2.195 million, and another house in the same subdivision that had been priced much higher cut its price, also to $2.195 million. Wurster says that she and her clients decided to drop below those two in order “to be the first to sell.” They cut the price to $2.15 million on March 20th, and seven days later, they had a contract. The sale closed May 19th.The other two houses both have contracts pending.