Gibson Island chateau is fit for royalty

A French country chateau on a private island sounds like something from an episode of "Lifestyles of the Rich and Famous," but it can be found as close by as the Gibson Island community in Anne Arundel County.

Built of fieldstone in 1926 and sitting on almost 1.5 acres of land, the house at 803 Rackham Road is an impressive structure featuring a two-story turret and a three-story tower with panoramic views of the Magothy River and Chesapeake Bay.

"This house is an absolute treasure," said Ellie Shorb, listing agent with Coldwell Banker Residential Brokerage. "It's one of a kind; nobody builds houses like this anymore. There is a casual elegance about it. I think it's magical — you feel like you're in Cinderella's castle."

The chateau's main entrance opens onto a 35-by-20-foot interior space with a three-story wooden cathedral ceiling and a grand fireplace.

"Logically arranged, private rooms are located in the northeast annex, while the public rooms are located in the southwest annex, all separated by [this] great room and an adjacent solarium," co-listing agent Lorin Culver said.

The solarium looks out on an in-ground pool.

The chateau's public rooms include a formal dining room, large kitchen and glassed-in conservatory. There is also a paneled library off an adjacent hallway that has one of the home's four full bathrooms. At the other end of the home, there is a master bedroom, full bath and den, also paneled and filled with bookshelves. A spiral staircase leads to the second level in this wing, where a balcony overlooks the great room and the adjacent hallway leads to two more bedrooms and a bathroom. The staircase in the turret continues to the third-story tower room.

Additional features in this chateau include a wood-shingled roof, French doors and architectural details such as wall murals and interior spyglass windows. Most kitchen appliances are included, as are floral draperies in several of the rooms.

Beyond the chateau, Gibson Island has a relaxed feel, and the 1,000-acre community of 205 homes also offers a clubhouse, golf course, tennis courts, a croquet lawn, walking and biking trails, a yacht club, and fishing in both the bay and a 35-acre freshwater pond. As Shorb says, it's a "summer camp for grown-ups."

The specs

Address: 803 Rackham Road, Gibson Island, 21056

List price: $1,985,000

Year Built: 1926

Living space: 4,663 square feet

Taxes: $16,152

Listing agents: Ellie Shorb and Lorin Culver, Coldwell Banker Residential Brokerage

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