Blair House (the President’s Guest House Complex)

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Washington, D.C.

Client: General Services Administration

Project Type: Comprehensive Restoration Historic Structure Report; New Design in Historic Context

Blair House, occupied by members of the Blair family until 1942 when it was purchased by the United States government, consists of four historic buildings and a new structure joined together to form a single facility. The complex serves as a guest house for the President.

Under the direction of John G. Waite, the firm was responsible for the complete restoration and rehabilitation of the entire complex. First, a historic structure report was prepared that detailed the history of the complex, evaluated each building, identified problems of repair, and provided recommendations for future treatment. The firm restored all exterior facades and built a new 9,200 square‑foot building in the rear courtyard. Two major mechanical rooms were constructed beneath the courtyard, and new state-of-the-art mechanical, electrical, fire protection, accessibility and security systems do not to detract from the historic character of the buildings.