Upper Bear spec home part of luxury tour

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Local designers, builders and artists join forces

By Vicky Gits

A luxury timber-and-rock mountain home furnished by Evergreen designer Kay LaMontagne and built by Conifer custom-home builder Landmark Traditions is one of 27 luxury homes on the 2009 Denver Luxury Home Tour from June 5 to July 5.

LaMontagne’s challenge was to fill the home with just the right amount of furniture.

“At first there was too much stuff, and I had half of it taken away,” she said. The décor doesn’t take away from the interesting lines and layout of the home itself, which was painstakingly built around an ancient ponderosa pine tree.

What’s left is the perfect marriage of LaMontagne’s Mountain Home furniture store and the rustic carpenter-icon Jock Spence’s architectural ethic revisited. The north-facing façade is basically a wall of windows giving onto a mountain valley and unnamed peak.

“I would describe it as mountain contemporary, combining rustic with sophisticated, simple but not too cluttered,” said LaMontagne. “It’s a great showplace for local art.” There 50 paintings, sculptures and photographs arranged around two floors of the 7,000-square-foot home.

The downstairs game room has a bristlecone-pine pool table from Rocky Mountain Log Furniture and a selection of vintage psychelic art, band posters from LaMontagne’s private collection.

The house has a geothermal heating system, reclaimed barn wood white oak floors, hand-wrought iron pieces, and reproduction English antiques. Builder Chris Henderson of Landmark said the geothermal unit saves about $800 a month.

The home features the work of numerous local artists and home-furnishings shops, as well as items from Pangaea Carpets, Mountain Kitchen and Bath, and Rocky Mountain Log Furniture. Spirits in the Pines, Wendy Lami of Material Things, Stems and Budget Blinds also donated time. Custom bedding was created locally.

Assembled from artfully crafted beetle-killed timbers milled to suit in Landmark’s own sawmill and 120 tons of chunky granite pieces from the mouth of Clear Creek Canyon, the Evergreen home listed at $2.75 million still manages to be more unpretentious than a lot of trophy homes.

Interesting objects include a living-room coffee table made from an 80-year-old wooden trough, a log slab used by Turkish farmers to crush wheat, Tibetan chests and bedroom furniture from the Castle Bromwich of England reproduction furniture collection.

The Denver Luxury Home Tour is the 2009 version of the annual Parade of Homes, sponsored by the Home Builders Association of Metro Denver. The parade is usually held in a single community and features a collection of custom homes designed to suit one location. Last year’s parade was the Tuscany-themed Solterra in Lakewood.

The HBA decided to cancel the parade, which was to be held in Broomfield this year, and replace it with the more geographically freewheeling Denver Luxury Home Tour.

Tickets are $15 for adults, free for kids, and are available only online or at King Soopers. Houses are open from 11 a.m. to 6 p.m. Saturdays and Sundays only. Visit www.denverluxuryhometour.com for more details.

The Evergreen home is at 650 Golden Willow Road, 5 miles west on Upper Bear Creek Road.

Contact Vicky Gits at 303-350-1042 or at victoriagits@comcast.net.



Designer: Kay LaMontagne, Mountain Home

Builder: Landmark, Conifer, www.landmarktradition.com

Architect: Keating Partnership

Featured art: Betsy Buckner, Tricia Bass, Margaretta Caesar, Victoria Thomas, Mac McEldowney, Tom Ware, Laura Mehmert, Marin Dobson

Local stores: Spirits in the Pines, Wendy Lami of Material Things, Stems, Budget Blinds, Mountain Kitchen and Bath, Rocky Mountain Log Furniture, Pangaea Carpet

Tour info: www.denveryluxuryhometour.com

Tickets are $15 for adults, free for kids, and are available only online or at King Soopers. Houses are open from 11 a.m. to 6 p.m. Fridays, Saturdays and Sundays.