The developers of Alpine Mountain Ranch made a statement about their faith in the health of the local luxury market this week when they unveiled their new $4.45 million house on Bald Eagle Drive.

Photo by Tom Ross

The developers of Alpine Mountain Ranch made a statement about their faith in the health of the local luxury market this week when they unveiled their new $4.45 million house on Bald Eagle Drive.

Alpine Mountain Ranch unveils $4.45M home in Steamboat

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Local subcontractors

Alpine Mountain Ranch and Club used almost all local subcontractors on its new $4.45 million home on Bald Eagle Drive.

They include:

Advanced Garage Doors, Airtech Heating & Sheet Metal, All Tech Glass Services, American Drywall Contractors, Carpet Plus, Civil Design Consultants, Colorado Mountainscapes, Columbine Insulation, Connell Resources, David Chase Furniture, Emerald Mountain Surveys, Forest Concepts, Frontier Structures, Infinity Finishes, KRM Consultants, Light Works of Steamboat, Mac McAfee Fabricating & Welding, McPherson Hardwoods, Mountain Home Stove & Fireplace, Mountain Sky Closets, Mountain Window & Door, Nordic Excavating, Nordic Steel, NWCC, Paragon Technology Group, Performance Concrete Construction, ProBuild, RED Contemporary Fine Art Gallery, Rocky Mountain Staging, Safe Construction Company, TBH Plumbing & Heating, T.B.W., Thurston Kitchen & Bath, Western Security Systems, White Out Electric, Wilson Co.

— Andy Daly, of Alpine Mountain Ranch and Club, said Wednesday he’s cautiously optimistic that high-end buyers are more confident than they were a year ago, and he’s hopeful there will be significant interest in the $4.45 million home his company debuted to Realtors last week.

Daly said he thinks the early signs of large banks loosening up on seasonal lines of credit to business owners are an important development for multimillion-dollar homes in the mountain resorts.

“The buyer we see coming to Steamboat has been successful in business,” Daly said. “The high-end market is coming back more quickly” than moderately priced housing. “That’s an entirely different buyer.”

Daly, former president of Vail Resorts and a current member of the Vail Town Council, said until recently, high-end buyers have lacked the level of confidence in the security of their own businesses needed to make a discretionary purchase like an expensive second home.

“They’ve been waiting for greater confidence that every bit of cash they have doesn’t have to go back into their business,” he said. “Because the banks weren’t lending on seasonal lines of credit, you had to have other investors or your own resources” to feel confident in the ability of your business to access capital during seasonal lulls. “Now the banks are back in the marketplace.”

It was just more than a year ago that Daly and co-developer Bill Butler along with Alpine Mountain Vice President Bill Reid and consultant David Belin drew more than 200 local Realtors, bankers and builders to the Strings Music Festival Pavilion to share an optimistic view of what they forecast was an impending recovery in the mountain real estate markets.

Belin, a researcher for Boulder-based RRC Associates, observed in June 2010 that historically, average sale prices in mountain resorts began to rise no later than one year after the conclusion of a recession. With most of the markets having peaked in 2007 or 2008 and the Great Recession officially ending in late spring 2009, he said a recovery could be taking hold.

Daly was quick to acknowledge last week that the theory

has not proved out.

“The real estate market hasn’t returned as we hoped,” he said. “But the economy is showing some strength, not in employment, but manufacturing and exports have come back fairly well.”

That bodes well for Steamboat, where the high-end market is driven by entrepreneurs and highly compensated executives, he said.

Alpine Ranch has more than 60 lots to sell, but Daly said the amount of fully developed high-end homes on the market today is keeping a lid on those sales.

Investing in a spec house

Alpine Mountain Ranch and Club announced in 2008 that it would undertake a spec home to set the standard, and the home at Bald Eagle Drive is now complete. Corporex, a company owned by Butler, was the general contractor; it was designed by local architect Tim Stone, of Kelly & Stone Architects; and local builder Brian Beck was the project manager. A long list of local subcontractors were involved in building the home.

The views from the curvilinear deck on the west side of the house stretch from Dome Peak in the Flat Tops to the community lake at the ranch and club and then continue to Emerald Mountain and Sand Mountain before wrapping around to Thunderhead Peak.

The primary impression one is left with upon touring the home, beyond its success in defining a contemporary mountain style, is that all of the six bedrooms and six full baths (there are also two half-baths) are large.

The master suite is on the main level and has a shower big enough for the bridge club as well as a vanity topped with rare stone.

Visitors will arrive to a large, covered port cochere accessed via a circular drive. Upon entering the foyer, they’ll notice a window wall that admits light into a sleek office space.

The great room is an extension of the foyer, where David Scully, of David Chase Rugs and Furniture, who staged the home, has cleverly divided the space.

“I wanted to create several intimate conversation areas,” he said during a reception for Realtors last week.

The border between traditional Western and contemporary design can be seen in Kelly’s decision to reveal portions of structural steel beams in the great room.

Beck said the complexity of the number of beams in the home led him to seek and obtain approval to build the main level of the airy home with essentially true timber frame techniques.

His pride in the large deck, where his crews cut the curved deck rail out of a single three-by-six beam, was evident.

To reach Tom Ross, call 970-871-4205 or email tross@SteamboatToday.com

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