On the Market: Elizabethan Tudor in Historic Ambler Heights District ~ 2178 Harcourt Drive, Cleveland Heights, Ohio

2178 Harcourt Manor, Cleveland Heights, OH 44106 | Karen Eagle Real Estate Group  | m: 440-773-6187 o: 216-831-9310

8 bedrooms, 6 baths, 7,422 square feet, NEW PRICE: $649,000

Harcourt Manor offers unmatched architectural beauty, close proximity to Cleveland culture and impressive historical significance.

He was a renowned Cleveland builder.

She was the president of the Garden Club of Ohio.

They hired the best architect of their day.

This magnificent estate is the result.

A true Elizabethan Tudor style home, Harcourt Manor has reigned among the palatial estates of the Ambler Heights Historic District in Cleveland Heights for 100 years. Constructed in the European manor with walls of quarried rock and floors of hard wood, Harcourt Manor and her neighboring structures were built by the sons and daughters of Cleveland's Millionaire Row.

“This home was built to last 1,000 years. At 100 years old, we’re just getting started,” says Jim Herget, whose family has owned the home since 1954. "This home was built by hand, taking five years to complete. It has walls and floors three feet thick...yes, three feet thick."

Built in 1915 by Kermode Gill, the builder of the Terminal Tower and Central Union Station, Harcourt Manor was designed by renowned architect Frank Meade. Mr. and Mrs. Gill set out to create an arts and crafts masterpiece that would not only stand the test of time, but would host countless festivities and witness the evolution of Cleveland into one of the premier cultural districts in the world. With just two owners, Harcourt Manor has been lovingly maintained to honor the original character and time period of the home.

Located in the Ambler Heights Historic District, Harcourt Manor is within walking distance to Case Western Reserve University and minutes from University Circle, Cleveland Clinic, Severance Hall, The Natural History Museum and numerous institutions of arts, culture, higher learning and medicine. Harcourt Manor is 15 minutes from downtown Cleveland.

Home Tour: First Floor Offers Spacious, Comfortable Rooms

From the grand front entrance, the home opens to a wide foyer laden with exquisite woodwork where an open, impressive staircase ascends to the second and third floors. Four spacious and inviting rooms branch off of this foyer: the morning room, living room, dining room and library. Beyond the dining room lies the breakfast room, butler's pantry and kitchen area.

To the left of the foyer is the morning room, which is aptly named because morning sun pours into this room making it an ideal space for exercise, reading or meditating. Reminiscent of a Roman courtyard, this peaceful room features Italian marble, original fixtures, a working fountain and plaster ceilings that have been carefully restored to their original grandeur. 

From the morning room, two leaded glass doors with security features connect to the screened lower porch where beautiful views of the lower-level garden await. This Asian-inspired lower garden features an octagonal Tea House with a wood-burning fireplace and a Mediation Walkway that weaves through and around the garden. Also within view from the lower porch is the upper-level garden, which is a Western-inspired proper English garden with a pergola, swimming pool and lily pond with the garden's original water lilies. The home's two acres of gardens feature perennials dating back to the early 1900's.

Adjacent to the morning room and the foyer is the home's main living room, a spacious room anchored by a fireplace and framed with crown molding, wide windows and French doors. While both the living room and dining room are two distinct spaces, they easily flow into one another creating an open and inviting area for entertaining. 

The dining room, which is octagonal in shape, has a fireplace, exquisite molding and coffered ceilings with intricate detailing. The dining room walls have been restored to their original state, which is a gold leaf design made of aluminum. According to Mr. Herget, this decorating technique was all the rage in the early 1900's. French doors lead from room to room and are stained to match the woodwork of each room. 

Gail Caskey Winkler, PhD FASID of Winkler & Moss, an expert on 19th century American buildings, advised the Herget's about proper paint colors and materials during renovation and restoration projects. Dr. Caskey Winkler also assisted nearby Stan Hywet Hall staff with restoration projects.

Adjacent to the dining room is an octagonal breakfast room, which has been known for generations to have the "best seat in the house." The breakfast room is a cozy space with original furnishings, a fireplace and plenty of natural light. Tall windows in this octagonal room provide calming views of the property's wooded lot and the Asian-inspired garden. A butler's pantry, conveniently located next to the breakfast room, provides abundant storage, as well as a sink and a vintage warming cabinet.

The bright and spacious kitchen also features abundant storage, a cozy nook area and a specially made, bull-nosed granite island. Also in the kitchen is the home's original ice box from the Jewett Refrigerator Company in Buffalo, New York. This large ice box has been motorized for modern convenience. The real crowning glory of the kitchen, however, is an AGA range, which was installed in the home 20 years ago to complement the home's early 1900's decor. This top-of-the-line appliance would command $18,700 if it were on the market today. The kitchen's authentic tall cabinetry, the ice box and the AGA range come together to provide immeasurable character in the kitchen. In addition, the AGA range provides a constant radiant warmth, while the ice box stands ready to serve chilled beverages, as it is currently being used as a wine cooler.

Just off the kitchen is the cook's office, a small room with a door that is perfect for organizing and hiding away paperwork and technology necessary to run a household. Continuing on past the cook's kitchen is a hall containing the back service staircase and the home's original locator, an early intercom device used to locate family members throughout the house. From this location, telephone calls could be transferred throughout the home. Of course, the home is now equipped with modern phone lines; but this original space remains in the home as it was in 1915. 

Also in this area is a service staircase leading to the former servant’s quarters, which could serve as a guest or nanny suite. These quarters, which are on the south side of the home, feature a living room, bedroom, study, bathroom and a kitchenette. Additionally, there is another apartment with a kitchen. Both of these spaces can be used as guest quarters or for rental properties.

The Second Floor: Spacious Bedrooms, An Office and the Upper Porch

Ascending the grand staircase in the front foyer leads to the main living areas on the second and third floors. The second floor has a master bedroom with a his and hers bathrooms. "His" bathroom is comprised of a marble wash stand and a shower that "dials up" the exact temperature of water desired, a feature that was custom ordered by the home's original owner. "Her" bathroom has a claw-foot soaking tub and marble fixtures. Views of the Terminal Tower are visible from the master bedroom on a clear day. From the master bedroom, French doors lead to the second-floor porch which offers commanding views of the property and gardens. This screened upper porch has cathedral ceilings and offers a peaceful spot to have tea or refreshments before retiring for the evening. 

Also on the second floor are the second and third bedrooms, which share a bathroom. The fourth bedroom has a wide window seat that overlooks the home's front walkway, as well as its own bathroom with marble features. An optional fifth bedroom, which is currently being used as an office, has French doors that also lead out to the upper porch.


The Lower Level: A Grand Ballroom and Access to the Gardens

From the front entrance of the home, a separate door in the front foyer leads to a staircase that descends to the walk-out lower level, which features a grand ballroom with parquet flooring, plaster ceilings, two fireplaces, views of the gardens and access to the rear yard overlooking the ravine and Cedar Hill. Used for parties both extravagant and intimate, the ballroom can be partitioned off for special events. All of the woodwork has been brought back to its original state. Also on the lower level is a preserving area, laundry area (there is also a laundry area on the second floor), a coal room and a converter room that houses the original Westinghouse electrical system. 

Third Floor: Abundant Space for Guests

The main staircase leads up to the third floor guest suite where, according to Mr. Herget, back in the day business guests would stay "so you could see what they were really like." The third floor has a trunk room (which can be "hidden off" as a secret room), four rooms and a bathroom. There is also a bonus room on the third floor, which can be accessed through the service entry. With some tender loving care, the third-floor rooms could serve as an impressive guest suite.

Notable Events, Guests and Neighbors

Harcourt Manor has been used as a backdrop for an American Greetings holiday photo, in the 2013 filming of "Captain America: The Winter Soldier," and the soon-to-be-released "Dog Eat Dog" movie starring Nicholas Cage. Harcourt Manor has welcomed dignitaries, hosted fabulous parties and continues to reign as one of the most beautiful homes in the Ambler Heights Historic District. 

Directly across the street on Harcourt Drive stands the Halle House, which is now owned by Case Western Reserve University and is where its president resides. Built for the Zerbe family, notable celebrity photographer Jerome Zerbe references his charmed childhood growing up on Harcourt Drive, as well as his friendship with Kermode Gill's son, Billy, in a 1952 piece titled "Curtain Call." Jerome Zerbe is known for photographing hundreds of celebrities, including Katharine Hepburn, Greta Garbo, Cary Grant and Jean Harlow. He served as a photographer for Town & Country Magazine and published several books. After the Zerbe family moved, Samuel Halle bought the home and the neighborhood became a hot spot for leaders in the arts, fashion, business and world circles. The Halle's hosted many distinguished guests, including author Sinclair Lewis, explorer Admiral Richard Byrd, and composers George Gershwin and Cole Porter. Winston Churchill was an overnight guest in 1932. 

Several furnishings original to the home will stay, including:

  • An RCA Victor radio, one of the first remote-controlled radios
  • A Drucker Square Grand Piano from 1867, which predates the Baby Grand piano. According to the home's current owner, these pianos are rare because they were bought and destroyed when the Baby Grand Piano hit the market. 

Excellent Schools Nearby

Located within the Cleveland Heights-University Heights School District, Harcourt Manor is within close proximity to these excellent private schools: 

Hathaway Brown School – girls, preK-12, Shaker Heights
Hawken School – co-ed, grades preK-12, Lower & Middle School in Lyndhurst, Upper School in Gates Mills
Laurel School – girls, grades preK-12, Shaker Heights
University School – boys, grades K-12, Lower & Middle School in Shaker Heights, Upper School in Hunting Valley
Cleveland Montessori School – co-ed, grades PreK-8, Cleveland’s Little Italy neighborhood

Montessori High School at University Circle – co-ed, grades 9-12, in University Circle neighborhood of Cleveland
Ruffing Montessori School – co-ed, grades K-8, Cleveland Heights

Archbishop Hoban – co-ed, grades 9-12, Akron

Beaumont School – girls, grades 9-12, Cleveland Heights
Communion of Saints (formerly St. Ann) – co-ed, grades K-8, Cleveland Heights
Gesu – co-ed, grades preK-8, University Heights
Gilmour Academy – Catholic, co-ed, preK-12, Gates Mills
St. Dominic – co-ed, grades K-8, Shaker Heights
St. Ignatius – boys, grades 9-12, Ohio City neighborhood of Cleveland

Agon School – co-ed, grades preK-8, Beachwood

Fuchs Mizrachi – co-ed, grades preK-12, Orthodox Jewish day school, Beachwood

Gross Schechter Day School – co-ed, grades preK-8, Pepper Pike
Hebrew Academy of Cleveland – co-ed, grades preK-12, Cleveland Heights

Additional Information

  • For information about the quarry under Harcourt Manor, please visit the Bluestone Heights webpage. Scroll down through the page to the heading "Kermode Gill House."  
  • Complete home specs for Harcourt Manor are available here:
  • The owners of Harcourt Manor have addressed all Cleveland Heights Point of Sale concerns and are awaiting pending verification.

About Karen Eagle, Realtor 

Karen Eagle is a real estate executive with 20+ years of marketing, sales, publishing and branding experience. Her clients value her discretion, marketing savvy and exceptional client service. 

Karen uses strategic marketing to expose properties to the greatest number of qualified buyers. Using a mix of online / social media, (Howard,,, Facebook, and Pinterest) and print media, each property receives top tier treatment: including a unique property URL for each listing, a Broker's open house, home staging, Howard Hanna’s TV Showcase of Homes, and creative marketing and publishing components. Karen’s properties have been featured on Howard Hanna’s Homes of Distinction network, which showcase upscale properties and luxury homes.

An effective communicator and incredibly organized Realtor, Karen pays close attention to detail, making her transactions as efficient as they are rewarding. Karen possesses a unique ability to advise how to quickly stage a home while effectively creating optimal exposure for her listings. She goes the extra mile and uses her natural talents to make every sale and purchase a positive experience. 


  • Received Howard Hanna’s “Very Best of the Best” Award
  • Howard Hanna’s Homes of Distinction Accreditation
  • Affiliation with Christie’s International Real Estate
  • Mega-Million Dollar Producer Award
  • Received the OAR Ohio Presidents Sales Club Award
  • Accreditation Staging Professional status
  • Residential Relocation Specialist status
  • Certified Negotiation Expert

Specialties: Chagrin Valley, Ohio; Chagrin Falls; Gates Mills; Bentleyville; Greater Cleveland Real Estate

About Howard Hanna Real Estate Services

Howard Hanna Real Estate Services is the #1 real estate company serving Pennsylvania and Ohio and the 4th largest real estate company in the United States. The family-owned and operated real estate company specializes in residential and commercial brokerage service, mortgages, closing and title insurance, land development, appraisal services, insurance services, corporate relocation and property management. With 205 offices across PA, OH, NY, VA, MI, WV, NC & MD, Howard Hanna’s more than 7,000 sales associates and employees are guided by a spirit of integrity in all aspects of the real estate process.

View the video about Harcourt Manor created by Cleveland's WEWS Channel 5

Contact Karen Eagle: (440) 773-6187  e:

Karen Eagle Real Estate Group