There are places where being star-struck isn’t about a celebrity sighting, but the breathtaking expanse of a clear night sky: Welcome to the backcountry—the yin to urban’s yang. Betsy Wadsworth, of Four Seasons Sotheby’s International Realty in West Dover, Vt., covers territory including the Stratton and Mount Snow ski resort, where a steady stream of vacation homeowners from the metropolitan areas of New York and Boston come to “decompress.” These retreats are gathering spots to spend quality time with loved ones under one roof— an investment in family as much as in real estate.
The setting may be pastoral but it’s never boring. Snowmobiling, snowshoeing, mountain biking, fishing, and hiking keep people active year-round. Some properties have large grounds, while other plots are bounteous with wildlife.
When it comes to new builds, it’s not unusual for second-home owners to want to take risks, says Andrew Ashey, co-founder of AAmp Studio. “It’s wonderful to have a client willing to do something new and daring, especially with a property in a rural setting, because you have a blank slate.”
In Vermont, one of Wadsworth’s listings is a custom-built Adirondack-style residence in the town of Wilmington. Though just 20 minutes from the slopes of Mount Snow, it’s set on 12 acres with views of the Green Mountains. Walking trails lead to the undeveloped shoreline of Lake Whitingham, where bald eagles soar.
“The home itself is the perfect mountain retreat, checking all of the boxes,” Wadsworth says. Far-flung areas offer a way to detach from the world, but with greater connectivity and the ability to work from anywhere, many people are opting to stay put, becoming the last thing they expected to be— residents.
Iyna Bort Caruso is a New York-based journalist.
Just 20 minutes from the slopes of Mount Snow and Haystack and walking distance to Lake Whitingham lies this custom Adirondack-style home offering serene mountain and lake views. Log beams outline the living room and a stone fireplace provides that classic Vermont log-cabin feel, while leathered granite, state-of-the-art appliances, and views of the lake add that special touch of luxury. At the heart of this cabin is a three-seasons porch with built-in grill and unmatched views of the lake. Just a short walk from the property is access to an undeveloped lake for boating, fishing, paddle boarding, or even snowmobiling.