America’s Most Romantic Homes
They are mansions of celebrities and romantics and homes where kings and presidents have visited... island hideaways, tropical paradises and homes that were the locations for some of Hollywood’s most romantic movies.
EDGE highlights three elite homes for sale - and if you’ve got a seven-digit salary, one of them can be yours.
Mary Hart’s Romantic Elkhorn Ranch
Warm brandy by the crackling fire in the log cabin, all snuggled up and exhausted from a day on the slopes. What could be more romantic? Well, maybe having that brandy in the warm bubbles of the hot tub surrounded by snow and views over your 160 acres to the twinkling lights in the valley below.
Mary Hart and Burt Sugarman’s Elkhorn Ranch in Big Sky, Montana is for sale this Valentines Day at a cool price tag of $26.5 million. Mary Hart made television history by breaking a Guinness World Record for the "longest serving entertainment news host" with her 29-year run as host of the ever popular celebrity gossip show, Entertainment Tonight. Even viewers with no interest in the celebrity world probably were compelled to pause while flipping channels to watch this beautiful woman with the charismatic personality. It is not surprising that the producers called her "the face of ET."
Hartman married the love of her life, film-producer husband, Burt Sugarman, in 1989. Sugarman is well-known for the production of The Richard Pryor Show, Celebrity Sweepstakes, as well as films Children of a Lesser God, Kiss Me Goodbye and Crimes of the Heart, among many others.
Ensconced inside the exclusive Yellowstone Club in Big Sky, Montana, the resort provides the ultimate in personalized service, private skiing and lift system with a Tom Weiskopf designed 18-hole golf course. Lodges offer fine dining and casual, yet elegant lunches, pool and gym facilities. The resident population is low which ensures exceptional service quality and uncrowded amenities.
The Hart ranch consists of three buildings on 160 acres, including the 7,000-square-foot, six bedroom, seven bath main residence and guest quarters above a four-stall horse barn and a hand-hewn, one room "wrangler’s cabin" with kitchenette and bath.
Built of log and stone, the buildings within the compound blend rustic elegance into the dramatic mountain landscape. A unique feature for this property is that the ranch has a trail that courses through the ranch connecting to the Gallatin National Forest and the Lee Metcalf Wilderness areas, allowing direct access to summer horseback exploration and hiking.
Brandon Plantation Circa 1607
One of history’s most interesting romances was between William Shakespeare’s youngest daughter, Judith, and her husband, Thomas Quiney. Thomas’ brother, Richard, was an original part owner of Brandon Plantation on the James River in Virginia where Judith and Thomas stayed while visiting in America.
Brandon Plantation has been in agricultural operation continuously with the earliest record of land tended traced to 1607 with uninterrupted operation until today, according to the National Register of Historic Places. In 1720, the plantation was sold to Nathaniel Harrison, in which family it remained until 1926. The Harrison family produced multiple governors and two U.S. Presidents.
In 1926, the farm was sold to Mr. and Mrs. Robert Daniel who undertook a total restoration of the plantation. The estate of their son, former Virginia Congressman Robert W. Daniel, Jr. who died in 2012, is the current owner of the property. Of the main house, it is said that the wings were constructed originally in 1765, and that later Thomas Jefferson designed the central section and wing connections as a gift to his dear friends, the Harrisons.
Located on 3.5 miles of the banks of the James River in Prince George County, Virginia, the expansive estate contains more than 4,500 acres, of which 1,600 acres are cultivated with soybeans, wheat, barley and corn producing high yields. The farm operation has 14 farm structures, including a horse stable, two-story brick mule barns, a dairy barn, wood and metal frame buildings for storage of farm equipment and three grain elevators. There are also 11 tenant homes on the property for staff or guests.
The main house consists of 7,700 square feet with seven bedrooms and seven baths and is in the Palladian architectural style of a Roman country house, positioned 750 feet back from the river. Having weathered the Indian Massacre of 1622 and both the Revolutionary War and Civil War, cannonball pockmarks in the rear wall of the center section have been retained for posterity.
The interior has been exquisitely maintained with much original millwork. English and American furnishings date to the period. Outdoor activity areas include a pool, tennis court and water sports or fishing on the river, in addition to game hunting. Although it is a private residence, Brandon Plantation has been designated a National Historical Landmark and the house and gardens have been open for tours.
For those who favor the romance of historic buildings with connections to William Shakespeare, Thomas Jefferson and America’s earliest settlers, the 4,500 acres of the original Brandon Plantation is now offered for sale. Priced at $20 million.
Own Your Own Island
Who would you most want to be stranded with on a deserted island? We’ve heard that question before but what about your own private island in the Florida Keys for the ultimate Valentine’s Day gift? It’s certainly more romantic than roses or a box of chocolates. This is where you want to go to kindle or re-kindle romance. If guests are coming to visit, you’ll have plenty of warning by the sound of their boat motor.
Imagine a lazy day of skin or scuba diving in sunny turquoise waters and then tying up at your dock to enjoy a rum and coke by the side of the pool while grilling your fresh caught lobsters.
Located on the Atlantic side of the Overseas Highway that runs the length of the Florida Keys, Melody Key is situated a half mile off Summerland Key and almost equal distance between Key West and Marathon. The island, which can be reached only by boat and was formerly owned by Nick Hexum, lead singer of the rock band 311, is completely self-sufficient.
Powered by solar with a state-of-the-art solar inverter and on-demand muted generator, there is also a desalination system for fresh water. In addition to the island, included is a waterfront lot with dock on Summerland Key. Not only can another home be built on this lot, but there is also plenty of room on six-acre Melody Key to expand if desired.
The beauty of the island stands out from every angle: From satellite, aerial photos, from the water and on the land. The main house measures approximately 2,800 square feet with three bedrooms and two baths and an observation deck from which to see the sun rise over the Atlantic and the sunset over the Gulf of Mexico.
The granite countered gourmet kitchen has all Viking appliances, and the grounds contain a swimming pool and spa surrounded by tropical trees and landscaping. Melody Island’s celebrity-level privacy and proximity to the Keys best restaurants, shops and nightlife, make this island stand out as the jewel in the string of pearls that is the Florida Keys.
Asking price is $5.995 million.