Halycon days: Misspelled, but still true here

ADDRESS: 5029 Halycon Drive

ASKING: $749,000

SIZE: 3839 fin. sq. ft./ 669 unfin. sq. ft.



CURB APPEAL: 8 out of a possible 10

LISTED BY: Len Mailloux of Real Estate III


After living in the same place for several years, one begins taking the same roads, carving out shortcuts, and generally driving in a blur from one frequent destination to another. But then a blip in the routine makes formerly invisible things suddenly stunning. And so it goes with this house.

Dodging the foot traffic that has cropped up along with the renaissance of the ConAgra's building into the new headquarters of MusicToday (and painted in what looks like a semi-ode to UVA with walls of orange and gray) is about the most entertainment Crozet has seen in a while. But to the left, and away from all the development, a road leads off into the wild green yonder. A horse-training facility claims most of the land, its black fencing jumping over hill and dale and painting a very bucolic picture indeed.

This house sits squarely, perfectly facing the uninterrupted hills and, further beyond, the mountains. The owners decided on a Deck House, lamenting the paucity of modern architecture in Virginia (they're from the West Coast). Although the Deck catalogue contained no plan to fit the house site, the representative from Deck was also an architect and designed for them pretty much exactly what they wanted. And it's beautiful.

Unpretentious and welcoming, the interior layout is all about the view. Every room– even the laundry facility– lets one continuously watch the ever-changing kaleidoscope of colors courtesy of the Blue Ridge. The copious window units of this post-and-beam construction offer many advantages. The "Low-E" argon-filled double pane glass excludes summer heat but lets in winter warmth, all the while helping to maintain a constant year-round temperature. All of this thermal hocus-pocus is a small price to pay for panoramic view of the surrounding vistas.

Average houses usually offer a few pulse points where people and the mail collect, but here, the openness precludes such hot spots– it's eminently livable everywhere. The living/dining/kitchen combo that greets one upon entering is a soaring experience. Cathedral ceilings throughout, including in the downstairs bathrooms, keep one looking up.

Because the house was constructed with retirement in mind, downstairs includes a master suite with deck and a studio far enough away from the central living area to allow for two independent retirees to conduct their own affairs (so to speak).

Continuing to the second floor, a balcony over the main rooms gives the impression of a great music hall or theater. Function follows form upstairs, with two bedrooms, a full bath, and a nice screened porch along the back of the house– not big enough to imply corpulence, just enough room for children, grandchildren, or visiting dignitaries.

A full, mostly finished basement is another good spot to shuffle the kids should they arrive unannounced. In realtorspeak though, because of its access to outside, it's now euphemistically referred to as the "terrace" level. The area is huge, allowing for storage space, workshop, rec room, and a dormitory-style bedroom.

The original intent of the address– the street was named by one of the original owners of the land– came from the Greek term for prosperity and happiness, Halcyon Days. Unfortunately, two letters were transposed on the request form, and Halycon was born. No matter, the intent is clear. Whoever decides on this adaptable house can look forward to just what the Greeks had in mind. And the stunning views sure beat television.