When Cincinnati soap company mogul Andrew Jergens (you probably know him better for his lotion) constructed a Gothic-style estate at the corner of Northside’s Hamilton and Bruce avenues, the intersection was home to the four wealthiest men in Cincinnati and dubbed, appropriately, “Millionaire’s Corner.” Catty-corner from Andrew’s house was company co-owner Charles Geilfus; across the street was his brother and vice president, Herman.
Andrew died in the 1920s, and four decades later his mansion (or castle, depending on who you ask—Andrew had a flair for the ultra-goth) was razed. The land went to Cincinnati Parks, and the home’s crown jewel, the Damascus Room brought back from Syria, was given to the Cincinnati Art Museum for safekeeping. There’s little on Millionaire’s Corner that looks the same today. But Herman’s more modest 5,700-square-foot home still stands, and features many of the same Aesthetic Movement finishes that made the intersection the envy of its Northside neighbors.
Stained glass windows, six original fireplaces, and a classic butler’s pantry give the space historic charm, but the nearly 140-year-old house is still thoroughly modern and spectacularly maintained. Depending on what the future owners decide to do with all that space, the main house could have as many as nine bedrooms. And, thanks to a zoning variance, the property could be used for anything from single-family residence to business.
The not-so-hidden gem of this former estate is the carriage house, where a once-humble outbuilding has been reimagined as a chic accessory dwelling with marble waterfall countertops, spa-inspired bathrooms, Scandinavian-inspired finishes, and a modern matte black color scheme. Find your way from the main building to the carriage house by trailing through an English-inspired boxwood garden thoughtfully peppered with fountains and woven together by cobblestone pathways that may as well lead to another era.