ASHEVILLE: The expansive ― and expensive ― Deerhaven Gardens Estate, said to be second only to the Biltmore House in build cost for a private home in Western North Carolina, is on the market. The 14,000-square-foot South Asheville home was featured by the Citizen Times in 2015. The series of photographs showcases some of the estate’s many lavish amenities including an outdoor hibachi grill, two-story guest house, infinity pool and full-size tennis court. Marcus Katz, who commissioned the home with wife Pearl Katz, published an open letter to potential buyers in the hope of illustrating his passion, he said. He hopes that he will find a buyer who will love Deerhaven as much as the couple does. “In total we invested 4 years creating Deerhaven, which has provided us 12 years of special memories,” Katz wrote. “Be that as it may, as much as I love Deerhaven, my wife has convinced me that it’s time to pass the torch to a new family.”
During those four years of building, the Katzes employed a team of architects, landscape designers and even a local naturalist to help sculpt the grounds, including a mile of private hiking trails. These trails and the wealth of other pieces that make up the Deerhaven landscape are said to bring the value of the estate’s outdoor areas alone to over $10 million. With fire pits, waterfalls and acres of gardens and forested areas, it’s easy to see why. The estate currently employs three full-time landscapers to care for outdoor areas. Valerie Sowell, personal assistant to the Katzes, discussed with the Citizen Times the house’s listing, and what the Katzes are looking for in a buyer. “The owners are searching for a buyer who shares their vision of a private paradise, complete with personal walking trails, enchanting gardens adorned with thousands of exotic plants and a house seamlessly integrated into its natural surroundings,” Sowell said by email.
Both the estate’s website and Katz’s letter detailed some of the benefits of the location including the natural beauty of Asheville that they stress as such an important piece of the home, the city’s arts and music scene and its many historical landmarks. One aspect of the area detailed through site and letter alike is the mark the Vanderbilt family left on Asheville through the Biltmore Estate. “Asheville, probably best known for its music scene and a Mecca for those seeking a connection with nature, is also the home of the Biltmore Estate,” wrote Katz in his letter. “George Vanderbilt could have built his dream home anywhere. In fact, he searched for years before he made a decision. Incredibly, America is just now beginning to understand the many reasons George chose Asheville.” The Katzes reside on Fisher Island in Miami. The Asheville estate was built not as a permanent home but as exactly what the name claims — a haven.
“Marcus and Pearl built the house as a summer home for friends and family and grandkids,” Sowell said “They have had a fabulous 12 years and most of their grandkids are grown up and moved away, so now they travel to visit them and spend less time at Deerhaven.” For added incentive, qualified buyers can now apply through Deerhaven’s website to spend a weekend at the estate. Katz said in his letter that the cost of building Deerhaven today has been appraised at $40 million. While their asking price is $34 million, he added that the final price is negotiable. “I’m speaking to you today because we both believe it’s our responsibility to find just the right family ― a family who’ll appreciate Deerhaven as much our family and friends have over the years.” Iris Seaton is the Citizen Times News Reporting Intern.
Deerhaven Gardens is currently available for purchase for $34,000,000
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