“Look at this house!” celebrates wildly expensive and wildly enviable family homes the editors of Fatherly really wish they could afford. The real estate market being what it is, that’s not going to happen. But we can still ogle the hell out of these things.
There’s no shortage of waterfront property in Michigan. The state not only borders four of the five Great Lakes, but it also boasts a frankly excessive 64,980 inland lakes. One of those lakes sits behind this not-so-modest 8,664-square-foot family home in Kalamazoo County that looks like what would happen if you tried to interbreed a regional airport and a Beaver Creek ski chalet with the nicest middle school in Orlando — but, you know, in a good way.
The home, which was built in 2012 by someone who clearly had something to prove, features five bedrooms, six bathrooms, and two half bathrooms (yes, that comes to seven bathrooms). There’s a great room with 37-foot ceilings and large windows that look out over the five-acre private pond and in on a gigantic heating bill. There are also two separate garages at the end of a gated driveway that slithers through the woods. And, as if that weren’t enough, there are roughly 47 fireplaces, each nicer than the last. Would you be happier if you lived here? Probably. At the very least, you’d be better looking.
But the attraction here isn’t just the house; it’s Kalamazoo, a regional hub of 76,000 people with a borderline worrisome craft beer habit (seriously, Bell’s Brewery is a scene and a half). The school district is highly-rated and Western Michigan University is nearby, which means there are smart people around the place. There are also a lot of nature trails. Is it cold? You bet your frozen ass it is, but it’s lovely in winter. There’s pond hockey and hot chocolate.
The average home in Kalamazoo costs somewhere the $100,000 to $200,000 range. The home on the lake? $3.85 million. That’s serious dough, but it’s serious dough in service of a profound statement: “I have lots of money and my 12-year-old has a Ski-Doo.” I mean, just look at this gorgeous thing….
The centerpiece of the house is the great room that features 37-foot ceilings and panoramic windows overlooking the lake. Exposed beams run across the room, which has hardwood floors made of, of course, Michigan Oak.
An upstairs balcony overlooks the great room, dining area, and kitchen that make up the atrium.
Now this is a kitchen. The open area features a massive island with a high countertop that fits four barstools and a lower dining area that fits six, meaning you’re pretty much guaranteed to be the de-facto game night host.
The master suite is divided not by walls but by a fireplace, the asymmetry of which mirrors the one in the living room.
The master bathroom, located just behind the fireplace, has an enormous shower, soaking tub, and calming views of the lake. Oh, and there are heated floors because only schnooks have to deal with cold floors post-wash.
There’s walk-in closet just off the master bathroom that’s as large as some studio apartments. It features dark wooden shelving and —because why not? — a chandelier.
There’s a game room in the basement that’s big enough to fit an arcade’s worth of pinball machines, ping pong tables, video games, and VR rigs. Hell, it could be converted to whatever hell you want: Beer-making room. Tattoo parlor. Creamery. In any case, it opens onto the deck off the rear of the house.
Quadruple, built-in bunk beds and a TV area off from the living room make this red and white room a great place for kids’ sleepovers (or to shoot a White Stripes music video).
The garage (heated, of course) at the front of the house features translucent doors that let in tons of light and provide a more uniform look between the exterior and interior of the garage and the house. Because — who would live here with just one vehicle? — there’s also a separate two-car garage on the basement level.
Just a short walk from the house is a massive outdoor grotto complete with a pool spanned by a bridge, full outdoor kitchen, and an elevated seating area. Yes, if you live here, you will be the party house.
At the rear of the house is a terraced deck, small beach, and a large grassy area that juts into the lake and where epic corn hole and bocce ball matches will undoubtedly take place.
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