ACHRNEWS

Historic Florida Mansion Renovated with Ductless

April 23, 2012
In 1885, famous Philadelphia hat manufacturer John B. Stetson came to Florida and built an 8,500-square-foot home on a 300-acre orange grove in the small town of DeLand, Fla. Designed by architect George T. Pearson, the Stetson Mansion is widely recognized as Florida’s first luxury estate. The mansion was one of the first homes worldwide to be designed and built utilizing Edison electricity and is now recognized as a national historic property.

Case Study Ductless 1Curious as to what was going on, Sutherland pulled into the driveway to investigate and was welcomed by JT Thompson, the mansion’s new owner. Sutherland shared his enthusiasm for the historic structure and the two developed an instant rapport as they both had an affinity for the preservation of the historic residence.One day, local air conditioning professional Tod Sutherland, who had been driving past the Stetson Mansion for more than 35 years, watching it fall into disrepair, noticed new construction activity on the previously neglected property.

When Thompson realized that Sutherland was in the HVAC industry, he immediately took him around the grounds to discuss heating and cooling solutions for the mansion. His first concern was to condition the original schoolhouse that Stetson, one of the wealthiest men in America during his lifetime, had built on the property for his children’s education. The challenge — to condition a unique historic place with a dramatic curved Polynesian ceiling that prohibits the installation of ductwork — seemed daunting. The owner insisted that the original architectural integrity stay intact, requiring that any air conditioning additions look tasteful, and not like an added piece of modern existence.

“In my opinion, you could use an LG system for your schoolhouse,” said Sutherland. “They have an air conditioning unit that looks like a piece of art and does not require any ductwork whatsoever.”

Sutherland, who is an experienced installer of LG’s products, further referenced LG’s ductless unit as a noninvasive solution for the structure’s lack of air ducts.

Thompson followed up by researching the product and reading reviews while discussing his options with peers.

He eventually selected the ArtCool™ unit to do the job. Controlled by remote controllers, the ArtCool unit combines high-end style, through artwork or photography, with the smart technology of a ductless air conditioner, providing an all-in-one solution. Two ArtCool units have since been mounted inside the schoolhouse, and two more have been installed in the adjacent carriage house.

Thompson said he decided to go with the LG system after learning of the company's reputation. He added, “These LG units are unique and perform so well for me that I have already told 8,000 people about them as I give tours.”

The ArtCool units operate at just 29 dBa, which is less sound than is typically generated in a library, which registers at 40 dBa.

“I tell everyone about the ArtCool system. It is the No. 1 item in which people inquire about on the mansion tour,” said Thompson. “They can’t believe that a piece of art can also provide air conditioning. People are amazed at this system.”

For more information on the Stetson Mansion, visit www.stetsonmansion.com. For more information on LG’s ArtCool, visit www.lghvac.com.

Publication date: 04/23/2012