Even a brief sojourn to the Rockies may open a visitor’s eyes to a changed future. In Aspen, the future is glimpsed in towering peaks and untouched terrain, in fresh air and vast open space cradled in between ancient canyons and aspen groves. To those looking for an escape from city life, it may seem like a magical place right now, where you can walk outside your front door and hop on your bike for an early morning ride, connect to nature while hiking along the trails, or even let your kids freely roam and safely attend schools.
A changed future starts with daring to reimagine your present. A newly listed 9,200 square-foot contemporary work of art completed in late 2016 by New York-based interior designer David Easton and Dallas-based architect Rodney Austin offers you such an opportunity. Set on 1.19 acres backing up to protected Meadowood open space, the estate presents an unforgettable mountain getaway sheathed in city-style sophistication.
“It’s the best of both worlds,” explains listing agent Minette Stapleton of Coldwell Banker Mason Morse. “You’re only five minutes from downtown Aspen, the music tent, the Maroon Creek Club and the airport, yet you feel away from it all on quiet Heather Lane. The open interiors have gallery-like entertainment spaces that allow everyone the room they need to spread out. Comfort, style and location are in wonderful balance in this home. It’s the perfect family retreat.”
Ever the modernist, Austin has created a mountain contemporary residence that emphasizes light, open space and a visual connection to the outdoors. Inside, Easton keys off Austin’s pared-down perspective. Easton himself may have once been known for a traditional aesthetic, but he has since embraced more contemporary looks, dictated by what he calls “a clear view of the future through the sensibility of the classical past, its order and symmetry.” His view of the future is expressed in graciously appointed interiors that feel effortlessly timeless.
Light is a dominant theme of the home, with all rooms (except for the gym) being positioned above grade. It is apparent upon your first experience with the home, as you walk from room to room, marveling at how Aspen light changes throughout the day.
The main level was masterfully conceived for entertaining with voluminous, light-filled open spaces. The foyer opens to a dining room and bar/TV room, each space flanked by dual sets of French doors opening up to the front patio for an indoor-outdoor ambiance.
Meanwhile, the great room and kitchen offer stunning portraits of Shadow Mountain and Aspen Mountain, framed by soaring 15-foot glass walls and windows.
“The views are spectacular,” says Stapleton. “The best part? They are unobstructed, thanks to the adjacent Meadowood open space.”
The great room is the home’s grandest gathering space, where family and friends have the opportunity to find warmth next to the fireplace or break away for a quiet conversation in one of the lounge areas. Doors open to the extended back patio, where warm weather meals can be enjoyed in the fresh air.
The kitchen offers a minimal yet refined atmosphere with a large center island, Caesar stone countertops, integrated carved sink and Wolf and Subzero appliances — all meant to facilitate entertaining. There are also a convenient butler’s pantry and an impressive 800-bottle wine room with red leather floor and custom vertical display. The wine room and kitchen were designed by Bespoke Wine Cellars in Aspen.
A few steps below, an entertainment lounge keeps multiple members of the family entertained with a custom pool table, large card table, two high bistro tables, a large-screen TV with generous seating, a bar area and a full bath with shower. A wall of doors leads to a walkout patio, where a stone-clad hot tub awaits. Head up a few more steps, and you’ll also find a fire pit sitting area.
“There are so many opportunities and unique spaces for entertaining,” notes Stapleton. “This home can be enjoyed in all four seasons.”
Upstairs, five bedroom suites provide enough space and privacy to accommodate everyone. The luxurious primary suite beckons with soaring ceilings, plush furnishings, a Venetian plaster in colors of the sky, a gas fireplace, a sitting area and an exquisite dressing room. The generous spa-like bath features a double vanity, cosmetic counter, freestanding sculptural bathtub and European-style shower. In a testament to the extraordinary amount of detail that went into the home, the bath is lined in a striking, hand-honed limestone-and-onyx mosaic, which took six months to complete. French double doors open to a balcony overlooking the breathtaking Meadowood open space with head-on views of Shadow Mountain and Ajax.
Under Easton’s direction, a classically refined palette of bespoke furnishings, upholstery, carpets and area rugs brings enduring quality to the home. White oak plank flooring, sealed hand-honed limestone flooring and hand-raked Italian plaster provide design continuity throughout. Great thought was also paid to the location of art walls and custom art lighting, appealing to all levels of art collectors. A Savant whole-home control and audio-video system, including indoor and outdoor speakers, is among the many touches that create a seamless living and entertaining experience in the home.
A tranquil outdoor setting is made possible with several patio areas, as well as beautiful manicured lawns and gardens designed by Maria Smithburg of Artemisia Landscaping. Aspen’s abundant recreation is also waiting just beyond your door, whether it’s on your own acre of land or just beyond. In the summer and fall months, you’ll have direct access to Meadowood Open Space, with tennis courts and pond, where the kids can paddleboard or fish.
You’re also close to miles of biking and hiking trails and golfing at the Audubon-certified Aspen Golf Course and the Tom Fazio-designed Maroon Creek Club. In the winter, you can access the Nordic trails right outside your back door, too. Downhill skiing at Aspen Mountain, Aspen Highlands and Buttermilk is just a quick five-minute drive away. If you have school-aged children, you may also be comforted by the fact that you are within walking distance to the Aspen public school campus.
If you could find an escape that offered you all of the luxuries and open space you need for the present moment, could you dream up a changed future? When it comes to this exceptional Aspen estate, born out of the minds of some of today’s most talented designers, the future is not hard to envision.