At 16th and Denny in Capitol Hill, a building stands out from its surroundings: an elaborately-designed church with multi-story stained glass windows. Once upon a time, this building was home to the First Church of Christ, Scientist—their name is still emblazoned across the door. The Beaux Arts building featuring a soaring atrium, columns, and stained glass, was built for the congregation in 1906.
In the mid-2000s, the church sold the property and moved to South Lake Union, and the historic church was converted into 12 townhouses called the Sanctuary, all surrounding the central atrium and stained glass skylight. While that involved some modern additions—open staircases, lofts, glass panels—most of the design was in service of the original building.
Townhouse number five, a two-bedroom, draws in many original features of the building. But the centerpiece is probably what’s now a formal dining space, where one of the church’s original stained glass windows stretches toward the top of a 35-foot ceiling. It gives “cathedral ceiling” a new meaning.
Two inner panels of the window slide out for a clearer view of the outside.
A kitchen is tucked under a loft.
Above, a sitting area opens to the central atrium, and maintains a view of the building’s center window through a skylight. On the other side, it still draws in the stained glass from the room below.
The whole central area of the home is topped by another skylight, visually lowered by a starburst of exposed beams.
Below, one bedroom loses that window view—but gains its own set of stained glass windows lining one wall.
On the lower level, a features both a fireplace and a wet bar for whatever makes you feel cozy.
A library doubles as a guestroom—and gains another view of the central atrium’s skylight.