It’s surprising, yet delightful to find a lush pocket of greenspace like Williamsburg Estates within the confines of New Circle Road.
The six stately homes on the short lane off Parkers Mill Road are each situated on a few acres of gently rolling countryside.
Lannie and Betty Stegall imagined it the perfect spot to build their retirement dream home.
“We started planning and knew pretty much what we wanted,” Betty says. “Most of the living space needed to be on the first floor, and we also wanted a place to keep our 45 foot RV.”
The Stegalls are avid motorhome enthusiasts that have transformed their golden years into a golden age of adventure.
“We’ve traveled from Nova Scotia all the way out to San Diego, down to Key West, and all the way up to the Cascades and Canada,” says husband Lannie. “In 15 years we’ve logged 155 thousand miles in three different RVs.”
The master suite wing of the home they built at 2409 Williamsburg Estates Lane ties in nicely with their road warrior lifestyle.
Loading and unloading for travel is a breeze because you step right out of the master suite into a 52-foot-long garage where the motor coach awaits.
“Even though that garage door is 14-1/2 foot tall, we designed the roof line so the gutter line across the back of the house is the same elevation,” Lannie says. “So it doesn’t look like it’s got a big cavernous building tied to it.”
The convenient RV garage is an example of the many innovations throughout the home drawn from Lannie’s successful career as an engineer and inventor. (Shortly after retiring and buying their first motor coach, Lannie revolutionized the RV industry by developing an automated waste-emptying system, but that’s another story.)
“I love business and engineering and coming up with better methods for doing things,” Lannie says.
Even with over 6000 square feet of living space, the elegant home stays comfortable winter and summer.
“The livability of the design is really unique,” Lannie says. “We put soy-based foam insulation on the underside of the roof and all of the exterior walls on the front end of the construction. Even on the hottest days, the attic is probably less than 80 degrees. Our records show the economics of that insulation has given us great returns.”
ACCOMODATING SPACES AND FLEXIBILITY
The central hub of the home – the kitchen, dining and family rooms – are connected by huge arched doorways that symbolize community, strength, and support.
“When designing the house, we worked with the architect on the center space,” says Betty. “We’ve had many family get-togethers and parties, and it’s just an easy flow between those three rooms when entertaining.”
The kitchen is fitted with all high-end appliances including two large Electrolux convection ovens, 6-burner gas range, under-the-counter microwave and a sub-zero refrigerator.
A favorite space for Betty is the immense walk-in closet in the master suite.
“I have enough room there that I can exercise on bad days when I can’t make it to the gym,” Betty says. “I can turn on the TV and have a good routine with my elliptical, exercise balls and weights.”
The closet also has a hidden washer and dryer.
The innovations that the Stegalls built into the home for their on-the-go lifestyle will easily adapt to other uses. For example, the RV garage could be used for a boat, a horse trailer, or a small aircraft.
There are two additional garages – a three car garage on the main floor and a garage entrance to the basement that has nearly 5000 square feet of unfinished space and storage.
In addition to the four bedrooms on the main floor, the second floor has two bedrooms, each with their own full bath.
An elevator runs to all three levels, connecting the basement, main floor, and second floor,
“The house could accommodate a young family on the main floor, and a set of parents upstairs,” Lannie says. “Anyone unable to be totally mobile would be able to access the whole house. Or the second floor could be for college age kids that wanted to have their own entrances and space.”
ABE LINCOLN SLEPT HERE
Hidden in the tree line of the back yard, a rustic structure of timber and limestone tells a story – and it’s a whopper.
“Abraham Lincoln spent the night there in the 1800s when he came to Lexington to court Mary Todd,” Lanny says with a smile. “That’s what we tell our Yankee friends.”
The truth is that the structure is no older than the house and has more to do with Lanny’s sense of humor than history. The Stegalls utilize the structure as a bar-b-que area and as a fun hang out.
Another outdoor curiosity is the pickleball court inscribed on the driveway.
Lannie notes that pickleball is the fastest growing racquet sport in the North America and is great for the 55 and older crowd.
“Both of us used to play tennis when we were younger,” Betty says. “We started playing pickleball four or five years ago while we were in Naples and got hooked. Now we don’t have to wait until we go to Florida to play.”
These days the Stegalls are spending more time in Naples.
“We’re still trying to figure out what’s next,” Betty says. “We want to continue to travel and have fun, and we don’t need that large of a house anymore.”
The word retirement continues to have little meaning for Lannie. His latest project, a luxury travel concept that he describes as “basically a Marriott on wheels” is soon going into production mode.
He used the unfinished open space in the Parkers Mill house to tinker and develop his ideas.
“It’s a kind of unusually adaptable house,” Lanny says. “Anyone that would have the reason and the opportunity to live in a house of this size would be pleased to know that it’s as well-engineered and well-designed and well-built as we could possibly get it.”
This week’s feature home is listed with Pam Stilz of Bluegrass Sotheby's International Realty.