January 04, 2021

A New Year, new Start, new Website, and a new Blog

 Happy new year everyone!

To document our ongoing journey in France I have created a new Website and Blog and I hope you will follow along as the story unfolds.


On the new blog I am picking up from the end of the sale of 227 North Street and bring you up to date. Moving to France during a pandemic, the ups and downs of living in another country, and Château shopping of course.

Thank you for your continued support of 227northsteet,
and we will see you all at the Château in France!

Facebook - at the chateau or atthechateau.france
Instagram - atthechateau.france
Twitter - atthechateau_fr

New blog post on www.atthechateau.com

December 22, 2020

A great amount of hard work, some fleeing and returning, and an enormous amount of waiting patiently

   As I write this it has been almost five years to the day that our Journey began. Five years filled with twists and turns, a great amount of hard work, some fleeing and returning, and an enormous amount of waiting patiently, or not so patiently as the case may be. 

   I am Mark and my Husband is Phillip, the Goffengels, a combination of our two last names Goff/Engel. Or as a dear friend once told us… You know, the fifth house at Hogwarts... the Gay one! Hufflepuff, Slytherin, Gryffindor, Goffengel, and Ravenclaw. Makes me smile every time! We are from the Wine Country of Northern California in the United States 

Our Great Adventure started in late 2015,
and yet truly began in March of 2009

   Stepping back for a moment, the end of 2008 found us living bi-coastal in our home in Studio City California (part of Los Angeles) and in an apartment on the upper west side of Manhattan. An apartment we rented almost four years earlier when Phillip's work required his presence in New York City. I being West Coast born and raised could not imagine living in NYC full-time, so a deal was struck – two weeks in Manhattan followed by two weeks in Los Angeles. As they say ‘wash, rinse’ repeat!’, every other weekend on an airplane bound for the opposite coast. Phillip had spent years living in the city including his years spent at NYU, and loved it, I on the other hand… New York city and I tolerated each other, and I really came to learn the differences between the two cultures, Los Angeles and New York City, while living there.

   In October 2008, two weeks at a time, we completed the work on our home in Los Angeles, and what do you do when a project is complete? Why sell it of course. It was the bottom of the financial crash of 2008 and we did not have great expectations, but the house really was fabulous; our real estate agent described it as – A Magnificent Mid Century Modern with Jetliner Views – Within two weeks the house was in contract with a twenty-day closing, and we were moving. 

The easiest place for us to go was the apartment

 in New York City… full time… I should have known better!


   We had been looking all over the country for a new home base...

Read more on atthechateau.com

December 13, 2020

So Much to Tell

Howdy to everyone! I have reactivated my blog in anticipation of filling you all in on our new life journey. There is so much to tell and I am currently writing it all down for you to read and enjoy. Grab a cup of spiked hot chocolate, get out your fur blanket, cozy up in an oversized chair next to a roaring fireplace and get ready for the read. 

As a small teaser, I am sitting at my computer in Carcassonne France!...

PS... don't forget the cake, you will need lots of cake!

April 29, 2018

Springtime, and we are ready!

The house is officially back on the market and we are ready. Ready as in the house is complete, ready as in ready to sell, and ready to make our move to Europe.

A few photographs of the house in spring were taken last night, and I want to share one with you...

227 North Street Healdsburg California - Twilight

And one more, the rarely seen, and surprisingly large, Back of House.

January 08, 2018

Happy New Year! It's time for a New Adventure!

All those rumors going around turn out to be true! 227 North Street is on the market.
As much as we love our home, we have decided it is time for a new adventure.
We have graced the halls of this grand old house for a little over eight years, brought it back from ruins, and loved every moment of it. But the itch has begun, a new place, a new existence, a new home.

Not being the timid or shy types, we have turned our sights to Europe. The South of France to be exact. A Chateau turned boutique hotel. We have spent a total of five weeks looking at properties between Bordeaux and Carcassonne, and have fallen in love with the beauty of the area. The properties available are incredible, and there are many to choose from. As this new adventure unfolds I will post further information.

September 15, 2016

Prepping for a Reveal!

Somehow Summer is almost over... what happened? It was Christmas and New Years just a few days ago! and we find ourselves on the verge of Fall. We are in fast paced preparation for a photoshoot here at the house on the 30th of September, just 15 days away.... EEEEK!
Madly working on details and unfinished thoughts and projects. The photoshoot is the final installment of a six week, ongoing restoration article about our adventure with the first instalment having gone live today at Curbed.com

Have a read of the cumulation of eight and one half hours of interview. Along with photos, old, new, and everything inbetween!


April 22, 2016

The first bloom of spring

It is Spring in the wine country and the roses surrounding the house are in full bloom. It is quite a spectacular show, and one of our neighbors told us they are practically causing car accidents!

I will be posting all that has happened in the past year very soon. Decks are finished, including the staircases, and the upper deck. Our ancient garage has been disassembled and rebuilt in our back yard. We gave it a makeover and it resembles a Creole cottage from New Orleans, we call it "the Summer House" and it is the perfect entertaining space on a warm evening. And finally the third floor of the house is under way, actual rooms with walls of hidden storage cabinets that will look like wainscoting. Add to all that a continued clearing and landscaping of our yard, and two trips to Europe to look at property in France (oops, did I say that outloud?) all in all it has a very busy year!

February 18, 2015

What do you do when the weather is rough?

Why, a home tour of course!

The Junior League Holiday Home Tour, to be exact. Is participating in a home tour something everyone should offer up their home for... absolutely not! No offense ladies, but imagine a group of "the ladies who lunch" meandering through your home and voicing their opinions on everything. Of course there are upsides also... you get things done! Our master bathroom received its finishing touches, including mirrors! a wonderful invention those mirrors are, except for the bald spot showing on top of my head in the mirror behind me... where did that come from??? And our laundry room inherited it's sink, a good old fashioned janitors sink that we rescued from a neighbors back yard.

The line began about a half an hour prior to admittance 

An attendee by the name of Lindsey Albrecht, an interior designer in Napa county, took quite a number of photographs of the house, and I hope she does not mind if I share a few with you.

A sink and a work cabinet. Cabinet salveged, still not sold on it

One side of the Master Bathroom, still needs vent covers

And a festive dining room set for Christmas dinner

All in all it was fun day, with lots of really nice folks who wanted to see the house. Best part of all was that the Junior League raised more money during this Home Tour than they ever had!

February 06, 2015

It never rains in California...

It is, again, pouring rain. But wait... it is never going to rain here again, we must save our bath water to wash our clothes, and save that water to water the garden. December found Healdsburg deluged in water, our "way back" yard held over a foot of water at the height of the storm. For that couple of days our property value went through the roof... "Lake View"!  January was incredibly gorgeous, perfect weather for getting the garden ready for spring, and I did get all of the front and the two sides of the house done. But, here we are again in the pouring rain. The News says yat another 100 year storm, I even heard that CBS news sent their cameras to the Safeway parking lot yesterday in anticipation of Storm-a-gedon, so as to catch the kayakers cruising around after Foss Creek floods again.

If you haven't noticed, when you own a house of this age, 145 and counting, you hate rain!

On the up side, we finally made the jump a couple of weeks ago, and bought something we have been putting off for years due to the high cost...


So Exciting, and seems to have solved our water issues, but we are still in test phase and time will tell.

This shot is out of one of the windows, white gutters, and bi-color downspouts. I would love to have a photo for you of the wood gutter with its copper down spouts that is on the front of the house...
But it's raining out there! I love you all, but I don't want to get soaked for the sake of a photo.

February 02, 2015

A new Year, a new opportunity for a catch up

Yes it is true, I have not been writing, I have no real excuse. So much has been going on that life seems like a whirlwind! Our summer was spent re-trimming the back of the house in preparation for paint. Scaffolding everywhere, plywood frieze boards pulled down (how they got there I do not want to discuss, lets just say it was one of those last straw moments), sixteen inch wide redwood went up in it place, moldings, moldings and more moldings, casings and top trim went on windows and doors, columns were erected on the deck, and all corners of the back of the house were finally trimmed out.
Let the painting commence. The house is ninety nine point nine percent painted, and is looking fantastic! I will follow soon with some photographs of the back of the house.

Last June we went to New Orleans for a long weekend to celebrate our sister in-law's unmentionable birthday. We both adore New Orleans and actually spent a week there in the summer of 2005 looking at real estate. We indeed had picked out a house and headed back to Los Angeles to put our house on the market and prepare to make an official offer... Katrina hit a few weeks after our home hunt visit, and although the house we were looking at fared very nicely, the hurricane took the wind out of desire to live there.

Astrid's Birthday party was an excuse to run away for a few days and visit a place we love. While there we had some time on our hands so we went shopping. Salvage! New Orleans is a great place for salvage, but we were just looking... or so we thought. If you will remember back ,we had cut one of the kitchen cabinets due to cost (take a quick refresher look at this post from October 2012). Although the cabinet we had rescued and placed in the breakfast room was interesting and did the job, it was never quite right. While at "The Bank Antiques" in New Orleans, we rounded a corner and were presented with this... ooooooooooooh, I wanted it so bad!

Just the look and feel we wanted, and she measured out as a perfect fit. Salvage in New Orleans is so amazing, everything you look at is stripped of all paint and just begging to be taken home, sanded down, shored up, and installed. The down side... shipping cost. So we passed on it and went home. But the cabinet kept haunting our thoughts. Two weeks later I called, it was still there and I bought it over the phone and planned a road trip. Onto a plane, a few days with family in the Big Easy, and then into U-haul, ready for the trip home.

We took an entire week driving across the country, junk shopping all the way, and filled up the truck with treasures. Louisiana, Arkansas, Oklahoma, Texas, New Mexico, Arizona, and California, following route 66 all the way. There are lots of stories, but suffice it to say the journey was a lot of fun. There are other treasures purchased in New Orleans, but I will hold back on those until a future post.

Our cabinet arrived in Healdsburg and went through days of sanding, glueing, nailing, and an almost complete hardware change. We chose to leave it raw, and not put a finish on it, and she is a beauty.

So it is a new year, and I promise to be more diligent about posting. I have a lot of things to show you all and stories to share. Spring is right around the corner, the days are getting longer, and I am not so grumpy anymore.