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Retreat to Il Casolare, a Stone Cottage in Ulster County

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Photos courtesy of the Lillie K. Team at Four Seasons Sotheby’s International Realty

At Il Casolare, a dreamlike stone cottage in Highland, 19th-century Italian architecture meets tasteful modernization and pastoral views.

Address: 10 Loughran Lane, Highland

Description: Built in the late 19th century, this Ulster County property borrows design features from the epochal mountaintop cottages of the Dolomites. The homestead itself—dubbed “il Casolare,” meaning “the cottage” in Italian—resembles something of a life-size fairy house. The main building is framed by trees, with its stone façade is complemented by colorful shrubbery in the front yard.

The constituent materials from which the house is built appear to be an extension of the surrounding landscape; seamlessly, in the way of the front porch, the house begins where the verdure ends. Above, wisteria grows on the pergola; below, your feet will find a deck of stone. Before even entering the home, you’ll find yourself inclined to open a bottle of red wine and host a gathering of close friends.

At the nexus of the home, there is the kitchen with terra cotta flooring, a wood-burning fireplace, a countertop of teakwood, and ample cabinetry. The modern additions to the kitchen—new appliances, a suspended lighting fixture, and the snow-white finish to the cabinets—do not impose upon the rustic qualities which define the building, but rather accentuate their aesthetic connotation.

From the kitchen, you’ll walk through a stone threshold into the living room. While it’s unlikely you’ll want to leave the porch very often during the warmer months, this den serves as a cozy retreat for rainy days. The room receives a dousing of natural light and leads to the stairwell.

Upstairs, the main bedroom serves as a canvas for your antique furniture, artwork, and houseplants. The hardwood floors and soft hues create an atmosphere buoyant with light.

One wall has been appropriated for storage space; cabinets of various sizes surround one of the room’s two windows. Peering through either, you’ll appreciate the view of your 3.4-acre property.

While the bucolic aura of the home is a major selling point, the bathroom has undergone some renovation since the 1890s. A grayscale mosaic floor supports the all-white features, with a small window embedded into the wall.

il casolare

Ascend the stairwell to the third floor and discover a guest bedroom (or reading nook or playroom), which quite literally tops off this building in style. No matter what you choose to do with this cozy, private space, the windows on either end of the room ensure that there is no shortage of natural light.

il casolare

When you leave the main house—however reluctantly—you may retreat to the modern treehouse, which is presently being used as a yoga studio. Complete with a small wooden deck and a slanted roof, this satellite of il Casolare is the perfect painting studio, workshop, or writer’s retreat, promising peace, quiet, and quite the view.

il casolare

Asking price: $795,000

Selling points: Though it may appear that this property exists deep in secluded woodlands, it’s just 10 minutes to New Paltz, 20 minutes to Kingston, and 90 minutes to New York City. Authentic details include 18″ deep double stone walls, original wide plank wood floors, and a new cedar roof. All mechanicals have been updated within the last five years. The home offers a considerable volume of storage space and a hidden washer/dryer unit.

il casolare

Listing agents: The Lillie K. Team at Four Seasons Sotheby’s International Realty

Related: The Hollows Farmstead Is an Idyllic Haven in the Hudson Valley

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