Thursday, August 17, 2017  

Cedar Point
a unique waterfront equestrian estate

You are driving out of the city, leaving the city lights and bustle behind you. You love the city, with all its intensity, but you need a place to relax and find tranquility?

I-95 is busy. There are traffic jams, howling sirens, shopping malls and suburbs lining the interstate. Slowly the traffic thins out, it starts moving, a panorama of rolling green hills gently unfolds, the sun comes out, the skies turn dark blue, there are trees, farms, and open spaces on each side of you.

Once off I-95 you are alone on the road, surrounded by wide country side. Relaxation sets in. After some time, the city and all its intensity has receded. You arrive in Mathews County and turn onto a lovely country lane with grand entry ways and mysterious drive ways suggesting large waterfront estates. You even pass a private airstrip.

At the sign of “Cedar Point Farm” you turn into the 200 acre waterfront estate. You have arrived. On each side of the lane are lovely green fields, hemmed by woods. There is a large jumping field on your right hand, then woods again. You pass the covered 100 x 200’ arena with gorgeous plantings surrounding it, a lane turns off leading to the 15-stall barn, and barn sheds. There are horses everywhere now, happily grazing in the large fenced pastures.

In the distance water glimmers. The road leads you towards it. The house is half hidden by trees and shrubs. When you approach the overwhelmingly endless 180 degree view of shimmering water takes your breath away. To the left there is no “other side,” to the right you see the opposite side of the beautiful and wide North River. You enter the circular driveway in front of the brick colonial-style manor house of Cedar Point.

You get out of the car and marvel at the location of the house. It is situated on approximately five acres of manicured gardens and terraces. There is a beautifully located waterfront swimming pool overlooking the North River and the Chesapeake Bay, surrounded by glorious flowering bushes. You can imagine yourself relaxing there with a cool drink in your hand, watching the views and busy hummingbirds hovering above the flowers. There are mature trees, which will give you much needed shade in the hot summer days. You feel the constant fresh breeze from the Bay, what a wonderful place to be!

There is a new dock, and you can imagine your boat being moored there. You can stroll from the swimming pool down the path, to enjoy a cool boat ride. You stand on the dock and look into the water. You notice the wild oysters, suddenly it occurs to you that you could grow oysters under the dock. A fish jumps out of the water, bubbles appear on the surface of the water where the fish had just retreated. A crab is trying to climb up one of the pilings, another one follows. A lonely great blue heron sits immobile on the waterside. The ospreys are hunting for food to feed their babies, waiting in the huge nests built on the channel markers. These amazing birds suddenly drop from the sky into the water and reappear with a large fish in their beaks. You might see a bald eagle or two, perched on the branch of a lone tree. Four huge pelicans are bobbing on the water.

You have been told that Cedar Point has a half a mile of shore line. The waterfront is varied: there are beaches, rip rap to protect the land from erosion, and wetlands to absorb the higher tides. On the beaches you notice trails left from swarms of crabs and footprints of a raccoon or maybe even an otter.

You walk around the house; the waterfront side looks very different. What catches your eye is that the simple colonial style facade is embellished by a three story tower, which houses part of the kitchen, the master bathroom, and an observation room, all with 180 degree views! Moreover, there is a lovely English conservatory added onto the house, and a large waterfront sunroom, which was most likely the porch in olden days. Cedar Point is clearly a great place for parties, with its patio close to the pool, its outdoor fireplace and countertop with hot and cold water, the barbecue, and the bath house with a full bathroom to shower and change after a cool swim. The kitchen can be reached by a small stone staircase off the patio.

The 1940’s main house will exceed your highest expectations. There are water views from every room. It features all of the amenities you would expect in an estate of this stature.

You enter into a welcoming entrance hall with an elegant stairway leading to the second floor, and step into the elegant living room with Brazilian granite/Adam’s fireplace and beautiful oak floors with inlaid designs. Adjoining you will find the large sunroom. You will likely spend a great deal of time there enjoying the breathtaking water views in 3 directions. There is a study/guest room to the right of the living room. To the left of the stairway, you will find just the right-sized dining room for a grand dinner party with its Adam’s fireplace and lovely chandelier. Continue into the gourmet kitchen, state-of-the-art equipped with the brand names such as Sub-Zero, Thermador, and Gaggenau. Between the professional stove top, warming ovens, 2 sink areas, enormous fridges, and 2 dishwashers, cooking a lovely dinner for a large party, seems simple. You will notice the Brazilian granite counters, the light ash cabinetry with brass hardware and old glass, and panoramic views in all directions. Take a few steps down to the basement and you will find the 2000 bottle temperature controlled wine room, laundry/pantry room, and sauna. A few steps up from the kitchen and you will enjoy the paneled media-room/ library with fireplace, a wonderful room to spend your evenings reading or watching movies on the mega-screen. You can have your morning coffee in the adjoining English conservatory overlooking the Chesapeake Bay.

Mount the elegant stairway and you will find the master suite consisting of a lovely bedroom with fireplace and a dressing room with a Jacuzzi situated inside of a bay window, giving you a 180 degree panoramic view of the water. Imagine lingering here for hours watching water life. Or after your bath experience, climb up the steps to the spectacular tower sitting/observation room and watch the sun set. Later on you proceed to “her” luxury bathroom with Sherle Wagner fixtures, and continue into the walk-in closets to choose whatever outfit you fancy at that particular moment. “His” bathroom is on the other side of the bedroom. Another staircase leads the guests from the first floor up to their wonderful two guest rooms each with their own bathrooms and another fireplace.

If you need more guestrooms, there is a charming guest apartment above the two-car garage next door, which features two bedrooms with Bay views, full bath and a comfortable sitting room.

It is difficult to leave the house with its overwhelming views! But the horses are beckoning you. So you drive down towards the 15-stall barn, past the fields, and fenced pastures, where your four-legged friends are grazing peacefully. There is a lot going on this morning. A girl is busy getting the stalls cleaned, some riders are tacking up their horses in the special tack stalls, there are noises from the wash stall, someone is trying to wash a reluctant horse, the farrier has just started shoeing. The instructor is giving a jumping lesson in the lovely 100’ x 200’ covered arena with its mixed rubber footing, auto sprinklers, and lights. However the covered arena’s greatest asset is it’s open to all the Bay breezes. Some people are having coffee and cooking lunch in the clubhouse/office, which is air conditioned and heated. You can even take a quick shower after a good workout. Two riders are just leaving on a trail ride, through the woods, along the water, or cantering over the fields. Another is working with her horse in the 60’ round pen.

The barn and estate manager are discussing how much hay has to be ordered. They both live on Cedar Point Farm, as the estate has three waterfront dependencies, which could be valuable pieces of property in their own right. You get in your car again and drive up the country lanes. One takes you past fields and woods to a charming waterfront cottage, the residence of the estate manager. Another road takes you to the other two waterfront dependencies. You see water everywhere, how lucky the inhabitants are to live on such an estate.

How far is Cedar Point from the closest shopping area? You wouldn’t want to drag all your provisions with you from the big city. What happens if you forgot to bring milk? You ask the barn manager for directions to downtown Mathews. She explains that the county has approximately 9000 inhabitants, and the town of Mathews about 900. There is no traffic light in the whole county! You travel along that beautiful road again, and meander down route 14 to Mathews. Woods and fields line the road with, now and then, a few houses. You pass the local high school, some soccer fields, a park, a farm with horses, some more houses, a few diners, and a gas station. You turn right into Main Street and there you are. You will find quaint stores, the old drug store now turned restaurant, small business offices, the library, the art gallery, the Bay School of Arts, the second hand car dealership, some quaint restaurants, a fun boutique, but also Food Lion, Best Value, and the Post Office. Around the corner, on Church Street, you will find a family physician, a lawyer’s office, a land surveyor’s office, a small business center, another restaurant, and the old courthouse. The small town has a distinct rural, relaxed, but also cosmopolitan flavor. Look at the cars driving by, a mixture of middle-class cars, top of the line Mercedes’, and the trusted pick-up truck. No suits or high heels in sight, everyone is dressed in a very relaxed, casual way. There is nothing uptight about this town; it is completely true to itself, basking in its heritage of watermen and shipbuilding. You would wish you had more time to explore this “best kept secret of the Chesapeake”.

Returning to Cedar Point, you will drive up to the main house, the sun is just setting in the West over the North River. The colors and the deep silence of the early evening are magical. This is waterfront living at its very best!

Some practical information
Cedar Point can be reached by air via Newport News/Williamsburg International Airport, which is a 45 minute drive. Norfolk and Richmond International Airports are 75 minutes away, Dulles International 3 hours.

By car Cedar Point is less than 60 minutes East of Williamsburg, 90 minutes from downtown Richmond, 2.5 hours from Charlottesville, 7 hours from downtown New York, and 3 hours South/East of Washington, DC. The estate is located 15 minutes from downtown Mathews, and 15 minutes from Gloucester Courthouse.

About the Author
Diana Burton works with IsaBell K. Horsley Real Estate, Ltd., in the Mathews Main Street Office, VA. She and her Virginian husband moved to Mathews from The Netherlands 8 years ago. She has 30 years plus experience in real estate, as she co-owned a real estate company near Amsterdam, with 26 employees. She also has an MA degree in American Colonial History from the University of Leiden, The Netherlands. Since she started working in real estate in Mathews, she has amassed an impressive real estate portfolio. In 2007, she sold the Mathews landmark estates of Sutherland, Pine Hall, and Ravenswood.

Diana is also a dressage rider, competing in the higher dressage levels. Apart from loving the beauty and tranquility of Cedar Point, she has also great empathy for the equestrian aspects and possibilities of the estate.

Please call Diana at 804-725-8220 or email dgburton@villagepop.com for a brochure and more information, or visit her website at www.diana-burton.com, where Cedar Point is her featured listing.