FERRIED FROM FINLAND
A log home is not unique in ski towns. But a custom-designed log home that arrives from Finland in a shipping container, right down to the window latches, now that's different.
The house at 205 Chiming Bells Court in Frisco, Colo., was built by Colorado Summit Log Homes to showcase the innovative technology of Honka, a Finnish company that manufactured 4,400 homes in Finland last year. Honka, which is just now extending its reach into U.S. ski country, takes architects' plans and manufactures entire homes in its factory.
Designed by Denver architect Doug Walter, the Frisco house is a combination of site-specific design and manufactured home construction. "It's a hybrid house," explains Walter. The middle floor was manufactured; the upper floor was stick-framed with log veneer; the lower level stick-framed with stone veneer.
The strength of the Honka system is that everything involved (except stonework and foundations) can be manufactured to order. In a typical log home, doors and windows don't come from the log supplier. Given the natural tendency of log houses to settle over time, fitting everything together can be a headache.
The Chiming Bells Court house (built last January and sold in June for $841,250) is designed as a skier's house, intended to accommodate large groups of people. This means a vaulted great room with many windows opening onto 270-degree views of four nearby peaks, and an adjacent open kitchen. The home has four bedrooms, 4 1/2 baths, birch floors, radiant heat and cultured stone fireplaces. (The upper part of the fireplaces are now foam painted to look like stone; when the building finishes settling in two years, the foam will be replaced with cultured stone.)
"Most people are blown away," says Dan Pins, the general contractor on the house and the general manager of Colorado Sum-mit Log Homes. "Some have said it's the nicest home they've ever been in. These are milled logs, and it's a gigantic, rustic look. We wanted to go for something elegant." That elegance includes extensive use of drywall on interior walls to keep the dark logs from overwhelming the space.
For more information call Colorado Summit Log Homes at (970) 668-9999.
Got a question for Mountain Property editor Hal Clifford? You can e-mail him at firstname.lastname@example.org.