On a 54-acre field of grass with white asters blowing in the summer breeze, estate houses are in mid-construction. White Tyvek material covers the sides, and cutouts foreshadow windows. Workers in green vests walk the grounds with tools in hand, while prospective residents drive by inspecting lots.
This is Harmony Vista, a Craftmark Homes development that will offer 28 single-family houses outside Hamilton, Va., along West Colonial Highway (Business Route 7) in Loudoun County.
“It’s like you’re in the country but not secluded,” said Heather Moesle, property sales manager. The homes range from roughly 3,000 to 5,500 square feet on 1.25- to 5.5-acre lots.
“We have people moving here from Ashburn where they own quarter-acre yards. They want more space and more land, and that’s what they get with us,” she said. Buyers pick a site, then choose the size, model and options. Two spec homes will be ready for sale and move-in early August. Others will be built to suit.
Kristin and Blake Fellows along with Blake, 5, and Catherine, 2, are watching their house go up. “Because we’re so close” — they live six miles down the road outside Leesburg — “we drive by every day and get to see every little thing,” Kristin said. They anticipate moving in September.
Two staircases: Brick facades are standard, but hand-cut stone in combination with or instead of brick is an option. Stone is a signature feature of Craftmark. “It comes in big boulders, and masons cut it to fit the style and shape of your house. The stonework is an art,” Moesle said.
Nine-to-11-foot ceilings, oversized windows with 8-inch casements and generously sized rooms offer light, comfort and easy living. Combined living and dining rooms accommodate a rectangular table for 10.
“What’s nice about this arrangement is you can stretch out, seat a lot of family members and friends,” Moesle said.
Likewise, kitchen and family rooms are joined. A granite island, stainless steel appliances and 42-inch wood cabinetry convey luxury. Storage in the walk-in pantry, closets and adjoining mudroom is plentiful. The laundry room is upstairs, which is accessible via two staircases, one from the kitchen area and the other from the entry foyer.
The deep-brown stained oak stairway in the entrance hall seems to float up to the second floor. Four or five bedrooms offer space for children, guests, study or play. The master bedroom and bathroom are huge with oversized soaking tub, dual showerheads, double sink vanities and ceramic-tiled floor and shower.
Energy-efficient features include Energy Star appliances, low-volatile organic compound paint, 11 / 2 gallon low-flow shower heads, low-flow plumbing fixtures, compact fluorescent bulbs in 75 percent of the light fixtures and glass with high insulating capacity.
Wine-tasting and golf: The incorporated town of Hamilton is a rural locale that invites ambling and strolling. The main street is lined with mature trees that cast a shaded canopy over the two-lane road and the houses along it.
The Historical Society has organized a one-mile walking tour of 20 sites that capture the town’s history. The tour includes Harmony United Methodist Church. The structure, with an open belfry, is the former office of the Loudoun Telephone, the first post-Civil War Republican paper. A brochure and map are available from Harmony Vista’s sales office.
Loudoun County is renowned as wine country, and several dozen wineries nearby offer tastings and tours. Four clubs offer golf — Raspberry Falls Golf and Hunt Club, Westpark Golf, Lansdowne Resort, Four Streams Golf, and Goose Creek Golf. Several parks offer outdoor recreation — Lucketts Community, Temple Hall Farm Regional, Ida Lee, Balls Bluff Battlefield Regional and Dickerson Conservation.
Shopping: Down Colonial Highway is the multi-store Purcellville Gateway, which has a Harris Teeter for groceries, a cleaners, hair salon, spa, pharmacy, dentist, sub shop and pet store.
In Hamilton are the longtime shops Lowrey’s Crab Shack, Natural Mercantile, Progressive Automotive, Harmony Hairworks, Auto Link, Quail Run Signs, Hair Purrfect, Mosby Center and Sunflower Shack. “We like the small-town feel and the nearby shopping areas,” Kristin Fellows said. “We looked to build for a couple years. And when we came here, we knew it was the right location.
Transit: The community is about 50 miles northwest of Washington in western Loudoun County and is bordered by Route 7 between Purcellville, six minutes to the west, and Leesburg, 10 minutes to the east. It’s situated west of Clarks Gap — a pass through Catoctin Mountain. From Washington, it’s easily reached via Interstate 66, then Route 267 (Dulles Access Road), then Route 7 (Harry Byrd Highway). Weekday round-trip tolls on Route 267 are about $15; there are none on Route 7, but the trip takes longer. Dulles International Airport is 20 minutes away.
Schools: Kenneth W. Culbert Elementary; Blue Ridge and Harmony Middle; Loudoun Valley High.
Audrey Hoffer is a freelance writer.
17348 Harmony Vista Drive, Hamilton, Va.
The single-family houses range from $704,900 to $874,900.
Builder: Craftmark Homes
Features: The houses have 9-foot ceilings; partial two-story foyer; double oak staircases; and hardwood flooring in the foyer, kitchen, breakfast and powder rooms.
Bedrooms/bathrooms: 4 to 5/3 to 4
Square footage: 2,994 to 5,571
Homeowner association fees: $85 per month for snow removal, trash and recycling pickup and common ground maintenance.
View models: 11 a.m. to 6 p.m daily
Sales: Heather Moesle, 571-388-6423; or www.CraftmarkHomes.com