So many people this spring have been confined in dense urban and suburban areas. Not so here in Sun Valley. Here, we’ve been able to enjoy this valley with its many opportunities to get out and enjoy life every day. The result? As the economy’s engine restarts and local restaurants and stores have reopened for business, more and more people are considering moving to the mountains.
As people realize the ease of telecommuting, they now want to make their second residence their home base. Some are making the move out of the city that they’ve contemplated for years, while others are looking for a refuge in case they are ever asked to isolate again. The broad Sun Valley market, and others like it nationwide, are now more attractive than ever before.
One local development company is especially bullish on the future. VP Companies, Inc. is launching two new residential developments, one in the heart of Ketchum, the other high in the rolling hills of Elkhorn in Sun Valley, both with mountain contemporary design and the sleek sophistication expected by today’s discerning buyer. These projects were conceived and launched over the last year based on the emerging second and primary mountain home market that was already coming to Ketchum/Sun Valley, and now that market is even stronger.
WEST KETCHUM RESIDENCES: LOCATION | LOCATION | LOCATION
For West Ketchum Residences, it is all about in-town living, which is all the craze in the current Ketchum market. Whether it is the empty-nesters selling their mid-valley homes and downsizing, or young couples opting for the benefits of a pedestrian lifestyle, or families wanting the fun of being in the middle of the action, with restaurants, schools, skiing, and entertainment close at hand, more and more people are choosing to live in town. West Ketchum Residences is easy walking distance from both Main Street and River Run base area and ski lodge. VP specializes in amenity-driven developments and here, the location is the amenity.
Designed by local firm Bliss Architecture, West Ketchum Residences includes ten townhomes, in a five-duplex configuration. They all feature three bedrooms, three bathrooms plus a powder room, and two-car garages. Expansive 13-foot ceilings in the great room and dining areas create a sense of light and air, with flowing spaces ideal for entertaining. On the lower level, both of the guest bedrooms have ensuite bathrooms, and there is ample space for a laundry room and mudroom that handles all the trappings of outdoor pursuits. Utah’s Alder & Tweed brings sophistication to the fixtures and finishes through the homes, as they have put their final touches on many western resort communities, including the Yellowstone Club.
CROWN RANCH RESIDENCES: VIEWS | VIEWS | VIEWS
On the other side of the north valley, in Elkhorn, VP is debuting Crown Ranch Residences, which speaks to a slightly different audience and fills a different niche, one demanding new single-family home construction in an established residential community. Robert Parker, Vice President of Asset Management, says, “These ten homes offer the perfect combination of location and views, all with the benefits of the Elkhorn amenities. We only choose premium locations and Crown Ranch provides just that.”
Designed by Brunelle Architects, another local firm, these homes sit on an elevated and sunny ridge, and enjoy spectacular Boulder Mountain views. One of the most appealing features naturally derives from the way the homes nestle into the surrounding topography. The entrance, garage, main living area, and master are all on the top floor, with the access road on the uphill side. This essentially results in true single-level living, with guest bedrooms and generous multi-purpose space on the lower level, which can adapt to each buyer’s preference.
Crown Ranch Residences offers two different home designs on its ten sites, one measuring 2,600 square feet, and the other 2,880 square feet. Both feature three bedrooms, four bathrooms plus a powder room, generous flex space, and attached two-car garages. The larger home also includes a den or office on the main level. The design is clean and contemporary and the finishes, again from Alder & Tweed, elevate Elkhorn architecture to the next level. Their location, at the south end of Elkhorn with easy access to the Elkhorn loop, makes the drive into Ketchum for groceries or a trip to River Run a breeze.
One of the great things about buying at Crown Ranch Residences is the resident access to the Elkhorn amenities. Owners enjoy access to the Harker Center with its pools and tennis courts, as well as the Village pool, and have priority access and preferred pricing on the Elkhorn Golf Club, which showcases a renowned Robert Trent Jones Jr. and Sr. layout and some of the best mountain views anywhere in the valley.
The purchase process itself at Crown Ranch Residences is cutting-edge and offers the benefits of a custom home without the hassles inherent in a custom build project. These homes are being sold on a “single-close” contract, a collaborative approach to home purchase wherein the buyer commits to a site and a plan prior to construction. This process produces inherent savings, which is passed on to the buyer. A new, beautiful home in a great location is very appealing, especially at a preferred price. This approach gives the buyer some level of customization, allows for staggered purchase deposits, and gives them the reassurance of being integral to the process without it taking over their lives. After “move-in,” the association will maintain all the landscape and building exteriors, adding to the concept of simplicity and preserving precious time with family and friends.
“These ten homes offer the perfect combination of location and views, all with the benefits of the Elkhorn amenities. We only choose premium locations and Crown Ranch provides just that.”
–Robert Parker, Vice President of Asset Management, VP Companies, Inc.
WHAT BUYERS WANT
One of the keys to successful development includes a level of foresight, of understanding market dynamics, assessing where the demand lies, and offering the product that best fills that niche. Since its establishment in 1992, VP has done just that, with a broad spectrum of successful development both in the local market and elsewhere in the western United States. Early work specialized in private golf communities, starting with The Valley Club here in the Wood River Valley, and has since diversified to include residential and master-planned communities of all types.
Both of VP’s new developments are designed to meet unfulfilled demand for new construction and contemporary design, with a mix of townhomes and single-family homes. As David Hutchinson, VP’s President, puts it, “We designed these two projects knowing we were giving people what they wanted, and now we have the pre-sales to show it. We listened to prospective buyers.”
The execution team for both is the extension of an established relationship between VP and Magleby Construction, the award-winning builder with operations in Idaho, Utah, and Montana. Honored in 2006 and 2016 as the Custom Home Builder of the Year by the National Association of Home Builders, Magleby has a legacy of excellence and fine craftsmanship. Their most recent collaboration–Thunder Springs Residences, on “the saddle” next to Zenergy Health Club and Spa–set a new benchmark for quality of construction and price point in the townhome market over the last several years. TSR is basically sold out, with only one residence still available. They have now turned to fulfilling townhome and single-family demand in two very special locations in Ketchum and Sun Valley, each touching on trends specific to their setting.
NOTHING LIKE A NEW HOME
“I’m fortunate to work with a developer who had the foresight and confidence to move these projects forward even during uncertain times. Now we are in the right place at the right time, and new homes of this quality are already very scarce.”
–Sonya Johnston, Broker,
Thunder Spring Real Estate
Both West Ketchum and Crown Ranch Residences are running relatively parallel tracks in terms of initial completion, with the first homes delivering in the summer of 2021. The initial market response has been compelling–within a week of the soft debut of West Ketchum Residences, four of the ten homes were already under reservation. The Crown Ranch Residences launch is imminent, and there are many interested parties waiting for marketing materials and contracts.
Sonya Johnston, broker of Thunder Spring Real Estate and listing agent for both, is excited to be part of this emerging trend. She says, “The real estate market here is stronger than ever with families realizing they don’t just want to vacation here, they want to own a home here. With more flexibility to work remotely, many city dwellers are gravitating toward a haven like Sun Valley. I’m fortunate to work with a developer who had the foresight and confidence to move these projects forward even during uncertain times. Now we are in the right place at the right time, and new homes of this quality are already very scarce.”
For more info, visit wkresidences.com or crresidences.com