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Cozy Firehouse

A couple renovates an old fire station in North Carolina.

As native New Yorkers, Barbara and Ben Harris had always dreamed of living and working in the same building. When the 30-something couple heard a former fire station in Wilmington, N.C., was for sale three years ago they purchased the two-story, 4,300-square-foot building with great enthusiasm.

Barbara wanted a unique loft space upstairs that resembled life in the Big Apple and her husband, a dancer, wanted to finally open his own Pilates and dance studio on the ground level. During the difficult conversion, all of the building’s original wood floors were fully restored by the couple, a painstaking process for everyone involved. But in the end the couple managed to keep all of the original charm and details of the old firehouse.

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