2 min read.Updated: 31 Jul 2021, 08:27 PM ISTKATHERINE CLARKE, The Wall Street Journal
Designed to look like a ship, the house has an enormous prow-like architectural protrusion over the entryway
It spans roughly 12,500 square feet, has five-bedrooms and comprises concrete, steel, glass and reclaimed antique wood from the 1800s
The 12,500-square-foot property is made of concrete, steel, glass and reclaimed antique wood and has a prow-like architectural protrusion over its entryway
Dubbed the Sun Valley Starship due to its unusual aerial footprint, a quirky home about 20 miles south of the resort city of Sun Valley, Id., is on the market for $9.95 million.
Designed to look like a ship, the house has an enormous prow-like architectural protrusion over the entryway. It spans roughly 12,500 square feet, has five-bedrooms and comprises concrete, steel, glass and reclaimed antique wood from the 1800s.
The property includes a circular bar, a rooftop pool, a gym and a man-made reflecting pond with trout and exposed concrete and wood interiors. A 300-foot long driveway descends into a courtyard nicknamed the “gladiator’s pit."
The seller is Gary Engman, who works locally in the lumber and development business. While he is not the house’s original owner, his company coincidentally provided all the exterior siding for the construction, he said.
Mr. Engman, 70, bought the house for $1.125 million in 2019, he said. It was built around 2009 but the original owner fell into financial trouble and the house was taken over by the bank. When the bank was then subsequently taken over by the U.S. Government, the house was mothballed for about six years before selling to an investor, who flipped it to Mr. Engman. The original owner had more than $6 million invested in the project, but had not finished the interior, Mr. Engman said.
Mr. Engman added his own distinct touches to the project in the form of unexpected commercial artifacts, giving it an industrial flavor. On a set of doors by the circular bar, he installed a huge 12-foot-diameter sprocket that was made for use in copper mining in Montana. Mr. Engman said it would have been used to run cable to take miners down as many as 5,000 feet. For the entrance to the master suite, he purchased a set of 17th Century blue-green wood and steel doors that came from India, he said.
He said he drew inspiration for an old-school cage elevator in the home from one he saw in Paris a few years ago. He took pictures of it and then commissioned the construction of a replica made from antique reclaimed steel from a steel mill in Colorado.
At the top of the driveway, Mr. Engman installed two roughly 5,000-pound antique mooring buoys, in keeping with the ship theme. He said they were used in Lake Washington in the early 1920s for ships moored from World War I. He obtained them when he dismantled a salmon cannery on the Washington Coast a few years ago.
Mr. Engman said he has spent millions finishing the house. He is selling because he’s engaged to marry a woman who lives in Napa, Calif., and they want to streamline their lives. “I said, ‘Well, let’s flip a coin. Whoever loses the coin toss, then they have to sell their house," he laughed.
While the property is atypical, Mr. Engman said he is not concerned about finding a buyer, since the Sun Valley market has been extremely active in recent months. He also said he believes the property is more in style than ever.