Home Tour | A European-style Family Compound in the Mesilla Valley - LasCruces.com

About This Home

Square Feet: 10,000
Bedrooms: 5
Bathrooms: 6
Currently Offered At: $1,595,000

Features:

Secluded location surrounded by established pecan groves and mature landscape. Huge covered and open outdoor living spaces, fenced-in yard, and tennis/pickleball court. Exercise room has a hot tub and sauna. Wide-plank wood flooring in an elegant library. Multiple kiva fireplaces, European-style baths. Furnishings negotiable. 6 Full Bathrooms and 2 1/2 Bathrooms.

Listed By:

Duane Jokinen and Bill Carpenter
Better Homes & Gardens Real Estate | Steinborn & Associates
575-522-3698

`

Every now and again a home comes on the market with a certain je ne sais quoi that is hard to describe but easy to recognize — you know it when you see it. Such is the case with this elegant European-style family compound in the heart of the Mesilla Valley.
Snow Road runs long, flat, and quiet, a perennial favorite of cyclists. As you head away from town, new developments and old homes give way to pecan orchards and alfalfa and onion fields. Just past Apodaca Road you find the entrance to the property.

An Old-World sensibility and stillness surround you the moment you turn down the long gravel drive. Dignified rows of pampas grass and Italian cypress stand guard, serving as orderly escorts to the main house.

As you park, the scale of the property is not immediately apparent. The understated entryway is in a curved and shaded nook, itself a nice spot for reading the paper with a steaming cup of coffee. When you step inside, what is immediately apparent is that this home was designed not as a showpiece, but built to be an oasis in the desert where a family can thrive.

The solid construction of the home was meticulously planned, and even that was a family affair. According to listing agent Duane Jokinen, “The home was built to the specifications of Ernst and Winifred Lucks, who had moved here from Germany. Their son Bernd oversaw the construction of the home, which began in 1998.” How solid is this home? According to the homeowner, “This home is German engineering at its finest, with two-foot-thick exterior walls that moderate the temperature year-round.” Solar panels add to the home’s efficiency.
Since purchasing the property, the homeowners added on a library, another bedroom, and doubled the three-car garage to a six-car garage.

Originally on 20 acres, the 10,000-square-foot home now sits on 2.5 secluded park-like acres, and is adjacent to well-tended and long-established pecan orchards. The vegetation surrounding the home is a mix of deciduous trees (including a proudly maintained eucalyptus), a massive saguaro cactus, and native and adapted desert plants that provide year-round interest and attract wildlife. A handful of fruit trees are “no work at all;” the only job is getting the fruit before the birds do, according to the homeowner.

The home’s interior is grand yet casual in an old-money sort of way. Massive carved beams along 20-foot ceilings in the formal areas, a wide-planked wood floor in the library, rough-hewn tree-trunk beams in the family areas, heavy doors with intricate cut-glass windows, hunting-lodge-style light fixtures, and arched entryways are warm and comforting rather than intimidating. Radiant under-floor heating keeps bare tootsies warm, and a walk-in wine “cellar” keeps favorite beverages well in stock. Five kiva fireplaces mean you’ll have lots of options about where to put a sofa and get cozy.

The home has surprises, too. The elegant library with its bank of carved Mexican bookshelves and wall of windows was recently the venue for the wedding of a friend of the homeowners. Yet, pull on the bookshelf right-of-center and you discover a sunny “secret” room full of windows that can be used as an office, storage space, or meditation area (game of Clue, anyone?).
Ornate Tibetan doors and shutters add a mystical and international decorative touch, and all of the bedrooms have European-style en suite bathrooms with a separate enclosed toilet (one of which features a bidet), adding to the home’s comfort. The exercise room even has a sauna.

Curved lines create a graceful flow in places where straight lines are usually the norm. The main living area itself is circular, with a central kiva fireplace and windows that allow in plenty of light (or the blinds can be lowered to create the ultimate cocoon). Another example is the curved tree trunk handrail that leads you up the wooden staircase. (To get it to bend, the trunk was soaked in a pool to make it pliable.) In the kitchen, an exquisite curved granite counter seats six comfortably for casual dining or keeping the cook company.

When asked who the next homeowner might be, the current homeowner thought for a minute and said, “A passionate entrepreneur with a big family full of kids and critters!” Asked to elaborate, the homeowner continued that this home could suit someone who was intensely focused on both work and family and deeply invested in living “authentically.” The homeowner noted, “This house was meticulously built and will attract an owner who appreciates its craftsmanship. It wasn’t put up in a hurry. It was built thoughtfully and with care. That shows in the original layout and design, and we did our best to be equally careful and thoughtful with our additions.”

The homeowner also noted that with 10,000 square feet, there is plenty of space for everyone — the kids can invite lots of friends over and have privacy while staying safe, with plenty of options for indoor and outdoor activities.

This home boasts a tennis/pickleball court, an exercise room (with a sauna and a hot tub!), and a media room that provide ample opportunities for an active family to play together. A fenced-in yard affords plenty of safe space for the kids to run with the pups. Large upstairs balconies are perfect spots for house concerts, open-air dance parties, sleeping under the stars, wildlife watching, or stargazing. (No outside light sources make this property an amateur astronomer’s delight.) The homeowner notes that birds are abundant, as are squirrels, and even the occasional coyote or javelina wanders through.

Duane says that he and his co-listing agent, Bill Carpenter, are willing to spend the time looking for the right homeowner for this unique property. Duane agrees with the homeowner that this elegant house is perhaps surprisingly family friendly. “The overarching feeling of the house is warmth and versatility. There are plenty of wide-open areas, but lots of intimate spaces, too, for a couple or small group of friends. It’s hard to describe the good energy of the home and property . . . the house was built with love and has been cared for with love, and that is palpable when you spend some time here.”

Many cultural contributions comprise Southwest living and Southwest style, and the timeless elegance of European influence adds a layer of refinement to this property, seamlessly blending local and international elements. The intentional and sophisticated design creates versatile spaces for work, play, and family — and for the joie de vivre that comes from life well lived.

Written by Elaine Stachera Simon

Photography by Donicio Madrid, Snappin Homes

Originally published in Neighbors magazine.

Posted by LasCruces.com