Landmark Victorian Mansion Restoration Projects
The Charles Hinkel House and Carriage House
280 Divisadero Street, San Francisco, CA

Nighttime exterior of 280 Divisadero Street - color design was done by Rodney Karr and Bill

Stick with Mansard Roof - 1886.

Architect Charles Hinkel spent $17,000 building his own home. Mansard roofs are rare in San Francisco, and the squared bays with stick strips, the classical portico with a balustrade, "doughnut-hole" gingerbread, and dignified appearance are Hinkel signatures. In the 1970's, a new owner saw through the years of grime, whitewashed-over wallpaper, and the four-inch slab of concrete poured over the hand-laid pine floor. He saw the hints of cherubs dancing around the rosette in the parlor, the whispers of stenciling on the ceiling.

The owner was delighted to find all the old window glass, front and back stairways, and brass hardware intact. Even the brass speaking tubes between the house, the basement laundry, and the carriage house still worked. He worked for many years to restore the home to the lincrusta and plaster-molding lined palazzo Hinkel had created.

More Recently, Rodney Karr and Williard Gersbach, owners of the Chateau Tivoli Bed and Breakfast in San Francisco, purchased the house and restored the exterior, painting the roof to give it a look of Georgia clay and black slate. Following the guidelines Roger Moss recommends in his book Victorian Exterior Decoration, they chose eight jewel tones: Empire colors of aubergine, turquoise, mustard, black pepper, navy, teal, clay and green to give their home a historically accurate, vibrant coat of many colors.

Daytime exterior of 280 Divisadero Street - color design was done by Rodney Karr and Bill