A tidy gravel driveway ushers visitors from a delightful country road, through woods and over a small bridge, under which a pretty stream runs. The scene then opens to include a gently sloping meadow, a dramatic barn and a smaller one beside it, and finally the elegant white facade and imposing stone chimney of the home itself. The house was built on this special, private spot around 1880 and gut renovated down to the studs in 2015. A great room was added on, virtually seamlessly, combining light and views with natural elements of stone and wood, to create an exceptional homestead of understated elegance in an incredibly scenic, rural setting.
A lot of thought went into the redesign of the spaces, starting with the addition of a mudroom, accessed via a side entrance to the house. It features bluestone flooring and space for your gear, and adjacent bathroom with deep farmhouse sink and sprayer for handling all manner of dirt and mess. Tucked behind the solid wood sliding barn doors is storage on one side, and washer/dryer on the other.
Down the hall is the dramatic great room, which lives up to its name. The owners like to entertain, so the open plan configuration was important to them so the cooks can still be part of the fun. The twelve-foot, custom-made dining table can accommodate a crew but doesn't feel too formal, while soapstone counters, seven inch wide plank oak floors, stone fireplace and hand-hewn beams that accentuate the pleasing structure of the room, reinforce the natural elements theme that reappears throughout the property. The Sub-Zero refrigerator is integrated into the clean Shaker-style cabinetry.
A corridor, accented by an exterior door, leads to the original portion of the house (where the original fir or oak floors remain) including the master suite, which was once the home's living room. The spacious room features French doors, a large walk-in closet, and a dreamy bathroom with luxurious soaking tub and modern tiled shower.
Upstairs are three guest bedrooms and another beautifully-appointed bathroom with tiled shower. These bedrooms, and in fact every room in the house, are graced with abundant windows, so the bucolic scenery is ever-present.
The covered porches that wrap around the entire house really link the house to the surrounding grounds beautifully. They are currently used as popular lounging and an al fresco dining spot, with eye-popping views over sweeping meadows, where the birdsong is plentiful. A stream carrying the waters down from Anawanda Lake runs through the property, and the calming sound is frequently in evidence.
And that barn! The primary barn still has the milking parlor downstairs, while the huge two story upstairs space is begging for a farm to table dinner or a little square dancing! The other barn could serve as a garage, and has an upstairs space that could be finished and used as a studio, rec room or other use. The house and the barns are served by the generator, should there be a power outage, and both barns have running water.
A fenced garden, featuring numerous apple and pear trees, runs along one side of the house, and has running water for easy irrigation.
The sophisticated yet easy aesthetic of this property belies the tremendous attention to detail that has gone into the redesign and systems. Functionally, it is a new house. A full list of features and improvements is available upon request, but a brief rundown includes:
• New roof, Marvin windows, plumbing, electric
• Spray foam insulation
• Frost walls under the porches act as support, but also protect the stonework along the perimeter
• Spacious kitchen pantry, and the closets in two bedrooms, designed by California Closets
• Gutters drain into system that protects the foundation and lead water away from the house
• Cast-iron baseboard heat units are in keeping with the style of those historically used in the house
It should be noted that this property enjoys tax benefits from two programs: credit for the haying of the fields by a neighboring farmer, and a home improvement credit that runs over eight years (we are currently in year one). More detail available upon request.