If there is one lane that has proven it is the preferred Lake Geneva lane, it’s Basswood. You wouldn’t be wrong if you suggested Snake to be that road, or one of the many Lake Shore Drives that ring this lake. Those are indeed fine roads. Dandy roads, really. But the market has, time and time again, placed importance on Basswood. Need proof? Consider just this fall two marquee properties have sold here. One, my sale for $7.2MM of a property slated for a major renovation. The other, a property for $4.6MM that will likely, and soon enough, host a wrecking ball and backhoe. The road with this power isn’t Snake. It’s Basswood.
In a similar way, there are terrific architects in our market that are busy making our lakefront scenery better. Jason Bernard of Lake Geneva Architects does a terrific job. As does Wade Weissmann from Milwaukee. Morgante Wilson Architects planted a sophisticated design on the south shore last year, but it’s another Chicago area architect capturing the imagination and attention of the lakefront market on Geneva Lake. Michael Abraham has managed to blend farmhouse contemporary with lakehouse modern, and the result is an intensely stylish home that is at once modern and sleek but traditional and comfortable. His imagination has been tapped to build several lake houses on Geneva, and now, for just the second time, one of his designs is available for purchase. Enter W4484 Basswood Drive.
The story of this property starts in the early 1990s, when I mowed the lawn here. As a side note, I also mowed the lawn at the other Basswood home I just sold, which makes it sound like I was mowing lawns all around the lake when indeed I only had three lawns on the lake to mow and two of those happened to be on Basswood. But I’m kidding, because the real story here only begins in 2008 when the now owner bought the ranch that sat on this beautiful 2.6 acre lot. In 2009 Michael Abraham was hired to design the perfect lake house, and in 2011, after nearly two years of construction, the home was complete.
Why a home like this takes two years to complete isn’t understood until you visit this home and experience the detail in person. Here you’ll find what you expect, high end everything, but in this home, everything means more. A De Giulio kitchen with Sub Zero and Wolf and Miele covers the west side of the home, with a two story family room separating the kitchen from the lakeside, bluestone patio and covered porch. If you recognize the Holly Hunt light fixture hanging over the Quartzite island, I applaud you for your keen eye.
Sea grass limestone and white oak floors (with a slight break for wool carpet in a guest suite or two) run throughout the more than 11,000 square feet of this home. The exterior is protected by mostly indigenous stone, with Kolbe windows, a true slate roof, and a unique steel atrium entry. A main floor master suite on the east end of the home is warmed by one of the home’s five masonry fireplaces. If you sit in the great room, your gaze isn’t quite sure where to wander. You could find the fireplace, with it’s cut-limestone surround. Or you could look to the obvious, through the huge lakeside windows and onto that divine lake. Or up, to the white oak walls and douglas fir balcony, with a pit-stop to appreciate the De Giulio sconces. Or back, away from the lake and the fire, and onto the serene driveway side, with that steel atrium and the custom light fixtures that illuminate. In spite of these views, this home isn’t really something you see as it is something you feel. $10,995,000, available for private tour beginning 12/2/19.