‘Dream house’ looks average outside, but has plenty of ‘wow’ inside

The five-bedroom, 5-1/2 bath home at 3540 Castlegate Wynd features just over 7,500 feet of living space.
The five-bedroom, 5-1/2 bath home at 3540 Castlegate Wynd features just over 7,500 feet of living space.

The house at 3540 Castlegate Wynd has average curb appeal. Of course the home is attractive, well-maintained and nestled in an exclusive private enclave, yet it’s not particularly remarkable to passersby.

“I drove by and was not impressed by the outside,” said current owner James Duncan, remembering his first glimpse of the home. “But the realtor told me I really needed to get a look inside. And when I came through that front door, it was ‘my god I can’t believe this.’”

There is indeed a wow factor.

“When you walk in, you know there’s something going on here,” said Duncan. “It’s just magnificent. One of my friends calls it a dream house.”

A curvilinear staircase with white oak treads rises with a dramatic swoosh from the polished white marble floor. Wrought iron railings trimmed in gold follow the stairway contours on through to the second floor bridge.

Stepping back into the openness of the great room, light pours in from a wall of windows that stretches up to the 20 foot ceiling. Above you are treated to crown moldings and an artful tray ceiling feature. Unique ceiling treatments are found throughout the main floor and no two are alike.

Outside, a beautiful private lake says take a deep breath, relax and enjoy the natural setting.

“Many years ago there was a Dr. Warren who owned the big farm that became this subdivision,” Duncan said. “Barrow Wood, The Woods, Taborlake, he owned all that.”

“This is a spring fed lake,” Duncan continued. “There’s eight houses around this lake. We all share in the maintenance of the lake, such as chemicals for algae control.”

One of those eight houses that surround the lake is the home of Ron Turner, better known to many Lexingtonians as the big white house on Chinoe Road with the extravagant Christmas light display.


The house was built in 1997, but comes replete with the kind of style and features that are showing up in new homes being built today.

The deluxe kitchen is a good example, where there are over 30 feet of black granite counter space. It is decked out with custom birds-eye maple cabinets, a double oven and a six-burner Dacor gas stove -- the kind of place where any chef would feel at home.

“Builders weren’t typically doing all this back then,” Duncan said. “Two sinks, two disposals, actually three sinks when you include the wet bar.”

There is also a breakfast bar and an eat-in area.

Adjacent to the kitchen is a back stairway to the second floor and a spacious laundry room. The laundry room has a handy laundry chute from the upstairs.

The first-floor master suite is another example of how the home has remained ahead of its time. The huge master bath has double vanities, whirlpool tub and a large custom walk-in closet.

Other luxury features of the  5-1/2 bath, five bedroom home include a main floor library with built-in shelves, central vacuum system, a heated driveway that melts the ice and snow, and an in-ground pool. The large skylights, office/workout room, useable floored attic and redwood exterior decking are also notable.

“My favorite things about the house are the high end finish work throughout,” Duncan said.

Duncan also has an appreciation for the three-floor wood-paneled elevator.

“If I go on a big shopping spree and have a lot of weight to unload,” he said. “I can drive into the basement garage, unload, and take the elevator to the main floor or to the second floor.”


“For 25 years, I was a wholesale distributor of licensed products for colleges, the University of Kentucky and the Kentucky Derby,” Duncan said. “I sold the business in 1997, and then I went to Paris for the first time in my life with my wife and some friends. I’ve been traveling the world ever since.”

“My late wife and I traveled the world and had a great time,” Duncan said. “We visited most of the major cities in Asia and Europe, 65 countries.”

“I’m a widower, just one guy in a 7,500 square foot house. I don’t need this much house.” Duncan said. “I’ll never find anything as exciting as this house, but I want to downsize. Then I’ll be back on the road. I’m looking forward to doing some traveling.”

This week’s feature home is listed with Realtor Liz Violet Newell of LexHomes Real Estate in Lexington.