Kootenai Recaptures Turn-of-the-Century Luxury Lifestyle, Architecture
(Swan Lake, Mont.) – In the early 1900s, this tiny oasis outside Big Fork was the private playground for some of the biggest tycoons of its time. Names like Vanderbilt, Morgan, Astor, Carnegie and Rockefeller were just a few of the frequent visitors to this Rocky Mountain retreat.
They came as guests of Anaconda Copper Company colleagues Lewis Orvis Evans and Cornelius Kelley, who built one of the largest corporations in the early 20th Century. Today, some 90 years after the Copper Kings developed the former 2,700-acre Kelley-Evans Estate into a world-class lodge for the rich and famous, this turn-of-the-century icon is being restored as a private development called Kootenai.
The Kootenai, now a 42-acre second home community tucked away in northwestern Montana’s Flathead Valley on the crystal clear waters of Swan Lake, is being run by developer Paul Milhous. His vision:
“We wanted to restore a piece of Montana history and bring to life the original grandeur of this exceptional property,” said Milhous, a Florida publishing magnate and partner with the Milhous Group. “The Kootenai represents the melding of two distinct eras and offers the best of both worlds – today’s modern luxury with the essence and charm of a simpler time.”
The Kootenai Lodge on Swan Lake was a 20-building retreat patterned after the Great Camps of the Adirondacks, developed by Kelley and Evans in the 1910s and 1920s. In 1916, the same year Frank Lloyd Wright’s son John Lloyd Wright introduced Lincoln Logs, Evans Cabin was built.
Since Milhous and his brother/business partner, Robert Milhous, acquired the property, Evans Cabin has undergone a museum-quality restoration and is the first real estate offering at The Kootenai. Additionally, 10 cabins, a stately barn and a Great Lodge designed by renowned Kirtland Cutter have been painstakingly restored to exceed their original perfection.
Meanwhile, Kootenai will feature just 32 new homes designed in the spirit of the original structures. Of course, the heart and soul of the community is the fully restored 14,000 square foot Kootenai Lodge, which is listed on the National Register of Historic Places. In its heyday, the Lodge entertained the likes of John D. Rockefeller, Will Rogers, actress Jane Wyatt, Charles Lindbergh, and famed Western artist Charles Russell, who hand etched playful images into the concrete of The Lodge’s courtyard, which are still there today.
The 10 restored cabins and 32 new cabins, ranging in size from 3,800 to 6,300 square feet are priced from $2 million to $7 million.
Maytag Mountain Ranch Puts Luxury and Sustainability into Ranching Lifestyle
(Salida, Colo.) – For 30 years, Maytag Mountain Ranch has been a working cattle ranch, committed to sustainable ranching practices while preserving the Western traditions of natural grazing, healthy ecology and family participation in the ranching endeavor. Now, Maytag Mountain Ranch is offering a limited number of families the opportunity to be a part of this unique lifestyle by creating a residential community that incorporates an authentic western lifestyle with an environmentally responsible life.
Nestled on 3,000 acres at the foot of Colorado’s Sangre de Cristo Mountains, Maytag Mountain Ranch is a fully sustainable and ecological residential community and working cattle ranch. The Ranch offers expansive 100- acre homesteads and a vast array of outdoor recreational activities and ranch amenities. Owners can choose to participate in the daily business of the Ranch, raising certified organic produce and livestock, or just enjoy the Ranch’s gifts, from grass fed beef and milk straight from the dairy cow to seasonal produce from the Ranch’s one-acre organic garden.
Developer Russ Maytag always knew that ranching was his life’s calling. Having been involved in his father’s three ranches outside of Colorado Springs all his life, Maytag finally purchased 2,000 acres of his own in 1978. Over time, he purchased a total of eight parcels in Hillside to create the 2,968 acres that comprise Maytag Mountain Ranch today.
After 30 years of working the Ranch and raising his family there, Maytag decided it was time to do something different. He wanted to preserve the lifestyle and the sustainable vision of the Ranch, but he didn’t want to work it anymore. Instead, he decided to share his land with those who shared his passions for ranching, sustainable agriculture, wilderness and community.
“There has been significant development in this valley over the years, but much of it has been detrimental to the land and is ecologically degrading,” Maytag says. “I felt strongly that by thinking holistically, it was possible to have a development that would not destroy the land. I wanted to prove that agriculture and development can coexist by utilizing ecologically and environmentally sound ranching practices while also offering the luxuries and amenities that buyers want.”