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The historic Stone House on Highway 12 in Santa Rosa wears many signs of its storied past.

A broad arch over heavy front doors was built with stones from nearby quarries and served as an entry way for the blockmakers the structure housed in the early twentieth century.

Dozens of wine glasses hang above the two-story building's hand-carved wooden bar, decades after the building housed a topless tavern. And a cafe table left by the previous owners when the building was an inn offers a chess set waiting to be played.

The Stone House, built in 1909, transformed from boarding house for quarry workers to a bed and breakfast that never fully blossomed, and now it is about to undergo another transition.

This time the mansion with its rough-hewn walls and mighty chandeliers will become a residential treatment center for women struggling with substance abuse.

California Human Development, a non-profit organization, purchased the building for $1.1 million from Pacific Western Bank in San Diego. It will use the building for its program Athena House, which currently operates a residential treatment program in three different buildings in Sonoma County.

The group plans to move into the building in December.

Moving will allow the program to consolidate under one roof and expand the number of women it can serve from 33 to 40.

"It's just set up perfectly for our needs," said Jenna McAdam, program director for Athena House. "When women are in early recovery, they're going through a lot of emotional issues, and sometimes it's difficult when they're right on top of each other."

Athena House, which has operated for about three decades, provides counseling, training and relapse prevention to women who are addicted to drugs and alcohol.

Christina Madden, 36, is a case manager at Athena House and graduated from the program six years ago. She said the program helped her end more than a decade of addiction to alcohol and methamphetamines and allowed her to reunite with her 14-year-old daughter, who lived with Madden's sister during the height of her addiction.

Madden now owns a three-bedroom trailer and holds down a job helping other women make the same wrenching transition.

"We were in a domestic violence situation," she said, describing the struggles that brought addiction and homelessness.

"I am able to use the stuff that I've learned and now and then mix in a little story about my experience."

Madden said she is excited that the program will be able to help more women. Many of the rooms at Stone House still hold grand four-poster beds, and each have bathrooms fit for a cushy executive suite. They will be shared, with most rooms hosting two women.

Clients, many of whom are referred through the county's criminal justice system, can live in the facility for up to six months at a cost of $1,500 per month.

McAdam said she's not sure whether the facility will be called Athena House or Stone House after the transition is complete.

"It's kind of ironic that we're going to end up having a drug program there, because I think it has a colorful history of substance abuse," McAdam said.

In addition to its past as a boarding house and tavern, the estate also was owned by Centennial Savings, a company that was dissolved in 1985 by federal regulators.

Broker Bill Severi, who represented California Human Development during the sale, said he thought of the idea after visiting the property and then watching the television show "Intervention," where people with addiction problems receive help at the urging of their friends and families.

"I thought, wouldn't that be a wonderful use for the Stone House ... to bring people in and have such a significant impact?" Severi said.

At the moment, John Way, communications specialist for California Human Development is hoping to sell the ornate furniture carved with metal inlays and to replace them with more modest fare. But the organization plans to retain most of the structure's unique details.

"This actually will have a great second life as a buffet counter," Way said of the stately wooden bar that he estimates was built in the 1920s. "We're going to keep everything we possibly can."

The rugged unpolished stone walls and curled iron railings tower next to tall, bright windows with views of ivy covered trees on the building's first floor, which mainly will be used for group counseling and shared meals.

"This building actually shows off, if you can be strong enough in your will, and willing enough to stand the test, then change will happen," Way said.