A privately grand expanse in Redding
The pale sunlight illuminates a stand of winter birches. Above, a cool blue sky stretches like a canopy. Indeed it’s easy to imagine one has entered an Impressionist painting while standing on the back porch of “Deer Run,” a country estate that occupies more than 300 privately owned acres in Redding. Following the long driveway from the road to the house, one passes fieldstone walls, and open fields from which hay is gathered each year. If the sunlight were right, one might fancy these were the fields that inspired Vincent Van Gogh’s 1887 painting “Wheatfield With a Lark.”
Deer, fox, and wild turkeys roam the property. Red tail hawks and bald eagles are often spotted. However, according to local lore, the most unusual animals that ever grazed the land were PT Barnum’s pachyderms—the showman’s sister lived across the street.
The couple who own the property were attracted by the gorgeous and sprawling landscape. They created a place far removed from the madding crowds, offering themselves, family, and friends privacy. But now they are selling in order to move closer to their children and many grandchildren. Neumann Real Estate of Ridgefield represents the vast property, which was recently put on the market. The 16,000-square-foot home, built in 1989, is certainly large. Yet, each room has purpose; every nook of the house is used and lived in. Elements from outdoors make constant cameo appearances inside the home. Fieldstones gathered on the property were used to build the fireplace.
Inside the use of natural materials continues. Honey-colored wood lines the foyer. High wood ceilings are a unique characteristic of the home, with a different application of wood adorning the ceiling of each room—from the pantry to the ceiling above the front
hall’s curved staircase.
Architects Peter De Bretteville and Stephen Polyzoides designed the stone and shingle English Country Manor, said Jane Tullo of Neumann Realty who has listed the property. The home’s owners drew from summer homes of Newport, Rhode Island. Far from static, the roofline features high gables, a brick chimney reaching toward the sky, towers, and porches. Cedar shingles and stone cover the roofs.
Galleries of windows, large and small line the halls; each pane framing something different from the beech tree in the front court to the granite posts that comprise the pergola.
Avid walkers, the owners had a network of trails cut across the property allowing for vigorous hikes or meandering strolls. No matter the season nature surrounds “Deer Run,” be it the wisteria that frames a side door, the three umbrella pines that look like gumdrops, or the apple and pear trees located past a garden that would have enticed Monet to set up his easel. A fishing pond lies on the northeast corner of the property. Mirror Lake, upon which one can canoe or row, has a boathouse and dock. The streams feed into the aquifer of the adjoining conservation land and nearby Saugatuck Reservoir.
Most of the sprawling property is held in a ten-year trust as open space, Tullo says. Only the immediate surrounding property that includes the house, pool, tennis court, barn, and boathouse and some of the fields are not included in the trust. “The property offers nearly every means of sport that you wish: cross country skiing, ice skating, walking, running, hiking, hunting, fishing, boating, bird watching, horseback riding. There are some really nice ledges if you are into rock climbing,” Tullo says.