$2.6M Mansion in Ozarks Sells, Leases as ‘Dream’ Resort
This story was originally published as a Deal of the Week .
When a jaw-dropping, 7-bedroom mansion on a sprawling 33 acres of rolling hills in rural Northwestern Arkansas went on the market for nearly $3 million last year, it sat smoldering for some time, even during a white-hot housing craze. To attract a different cohort of potential buyers, a creative broker repositioned it as a commercial, income-producing property.
Now, just a week after the Decatur, Arkansas, property sold, it’s already nearly booked up for vacation and retreat rentals through the rest of the year. The listing agent said the sale is indicative of a trend in large estates being positioned as vacation rentals, at least throughout the Ozarks region in Arkansas.
The seller had hosted numerous nonprofit fundraisers at the estate — her private residence — over the years since it was built in 2008, including events that made use of the pool, as well as the home’s clubhouse, decks and patios, game rooms, spa, theater, “lookout room,” conference room, wine cellar and cattle barns.
“We just thought a good end-use for it would be as a bed and breakfast, and started thinking of it in those terms,” listing agent Misty Barnes, executive vice president of Coldwell Banker Harris McHaney & Faucette, told LoopNet.
“We were listed as both residential and commercial,” she added. A private buyer came along who had rented out one of his own residences in the past, also in Western Arkansas, to a vacation rental operator; he saw a chance to replicate that leasing model with this property.
An online search for the property, which sold for $2,650,000, shows that it’s now being leased to an operator, The Farm LLC, who is subleasing it as a short-term destination retreat. The property was on the market for 265 days and sold for a 7% discount from the listing price, at $265.34 per square foot.
The Farm, based in Danville, Kentucky, describes itself a provider of “curated American getaways” at luxury estates in Kentucky, Tennessee, Virginia and Arkansas.
Dubbed “The Arkansas Dream Estate,” this “14,500-square feet” manor is advertised as having 11 bedrooms, 10 bathrooms and a capacity to sleep 45. Some of the conference and other ancillary rooms were likely converted to make additional bedrooms, given what can be discerned online.
Though booking can be done directly through The Farm, the property is also listed on VRBO. A week-long rental through that website later this month is currently showing a rate of $5,556 with fees, before taxes.
“The Arkansas Dream Estate is also an idyllic spot for group retreats, special events, and weddings and can accommodate up to 750 guests for group gatherings alongside a four night or longer destination stay on the estate,” the listing reads. The Farm declined to comment for this story.
“A lot of large properties are selling for Airbnb purposes,” Barnes said. “Heated pools are essential in this market,” she said. In this sale, most of the personal property – such as the pool tables and sauna – conveyed. The buy-side party even expressed interest in keeping the cattle as well, she noted, but the transaction didn’t include the livestock.
A health and wellness group had also viewed and expressed interest in purchasing the property. Barnes said that operator was looking for a mansion where they could host culinary experiences and make use of the spa facilities.
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