Why Aspen's Riverside Properties are in High Demand

By Linda Hayes | June 21, 2017 | Home & Real Estate Feature

Today's buyers can't get enough of the Valley's Riverside Properties, which bring the high country experience from the peaks to the water.


Set on the Fryingpan River, which boasts a Gold Medal rating by the Colorado Wildlife Commission, 7738 Frying Pan Road is practically a custom, 5,013-square-foot fishing lodge.

Think Aspen, think mountains, right? Well, yes, of course. But there’s a water element within the glorious greenery of our landscape as well—the wonderful ribbons of rivers that run through it. And while most folks enjoy these natural waterways via sports like fly-fishing, stand-up paddleboarding, and kayaking, some go so far as to make the riverbank their home. Charles Cunniffe, principal of Aspen’s Charles Cunniffe Architects (970-925-5590), shares the story of clients who had their eye on a lot on the Roaring Fork River, near their primary home.

“They loved the river, and when the property came up for sale, they went for it,” he says. “It had a good connection to the water, perched on the shore, and yet there was a real sense of privacy, which they wanted.” To make the most of the site and connect Fourteen Sixty—their contemporary, new-build home— to the water, Cunniffe incorporated indigenous materials, such as Colorado sandstone, which flow inside and out. He also designed an ample riverside entertainment deck with an outdoor dining area and fire pit. “The owners use the deck as a part of their living experience,” he says. “It speaks to the river.”

Sixteen miles downvalley from Aspen, along the famed Fryingpan River, which is designated a Gold Medal fishing area by the Colorado Wildlife Commission, a home on Frying Pan Road ($4.495 million) is rife with potential. At 5,013 square feet and with six bedrooms, it features a great room with classic details, including high vaulted ceilings, French doors, and a wood-burning stone fireplace. Just steps from the river’s edge, there’s also a large fishing hole right off the flagstone patio. As it happens, Christy Clettenberg, listing associate broker at Coldwell Banker Mason Morse (970-920-7398), lives not far from the home.


Angler’s heaven: Anthracite Creek (with all of its rainbow trout) flows right through the property of River House.

“It’s so much more than a house,” she says about the riverside lifestyle the area affords. “It’s the feeling you get living there, teaching kids to fly-fish, or enjoying cocktail hour around the fire pit.” Further afield, on 146 acres along Anthracite Creek, a private trout stream on the road to Crested Butte (and 90 minutes from Aspen/ Pitkin County Airport), River House ($2.999 million) is a destination unto itself. Owners can enjoy the resort-like nature of the 9,282-square-foot, seven-bedroom log and stone homestead, which includes an ample great room for entertaining, an office, and gun storage for hunters, as well as a separate structure called the Sheriff’s Cabin.

Michael Latousek, a broker associate with Douglas Elliman Real Estate (970-925-8810) in Aspen, who is colisting the property with his brother, Tommy Latousek of Mirr Ranch Group in Denver, shares a personal take. “It’s as luxurious and gorgeous as it gets in a rural setting, just feet from the creek, perfect for fishing for rainbow trout, hunting, or recreating,” he says. “I look forward to no cell service when I’m there, and never want to leave.”


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