My mother, Mary Alice White, purchased this land with a small group of friends in 1995. One hundred and twenty eight acres in Southern Leelaunau County, eight miles east of Empire. She wanted to build a modest sized home, and eventually retire to living in Northern Michigan. I moved back to Michigan from Northern California, and with my partner Uta, built this 1200 square foot timber frame house. The house is a mile back in the woods at the end of a well maintained two track. It sits above and in sight of a small lake. My Mother moved here to live full time in 2000, and died seven years later, after a five year illness battling an auto immune disorder.

My mother designed the house with a woman architect, and chose a simple affordable design. The interior has a warmness afforded by lots of wood finish. Hard wood floors and wood ceilings. The kitchen cabinets were designed and built by my Uncle John Chipman, a master cabinet maker, and generous and loving brother.

My mother has a nice library of books. Being a Psychologist, there are many books on psychology, but she had a wide range of interests, and loved poetry. If you enjoy books, you will be at home in her house.

I call it an artist retreat in respect of my Mother’s style and sensibilities. The house holds her aesthetic and it retains her love of simplicity. She loved to cook and the kitchen is well stocked. Her favorite cookbooks are all available.

All combined, this is a nice home to help nurture and encourage a guest’s intention of a relaxing, peaceful retreat.

More about Hughthir’s Artist Retreat:

1 bedrooms, 1 full bath, 1 half bath, sleeps 4

Our retreat is located on 120 acres of beautiful wooded land in Leelanau county. To arrive you drive on a well maintained two track through a lovely woods. When you step out of your car, you truly understand the notion of ‘getting away.’

House is a 1200 sq ft timber frame, completely off the grid. We produce all our electricity using solar panels and wind generation. This retreat being ‘off the grid’ allows guests to experience living in an energy sustainable fashion, and requires a sensitivity to moderate energy use and a basic understanding of how alternative energy actually works. Guests will be given a simple explanation of how to monitor energy use versus energy gain.

We are located 9 miles to Empire Beach, and 18 miles from Traverse City. This region is renowned for its natural beauty, the spectacular sand beaches of Lake Michigan, the vineyards and cherry orchards of Leelanau County. The closest golf course is four miles away.

Empire is the gateway to the 70,000 acre national park, Sleeping Bear Dunes. No shortage of skiing, hiking, beach combing, canoeing, fishing and peace and quiet.

We are located only twenty minutes to Traverse City, which offers many fine dining possibilities as well as the newly renovated State Theater, home of the Traverse City Film Festival. An additional timber framed guest cabin is available, a stones throw from the house. Please inquire for details.

If you are looking for the peace and quiet of the woods, this is an ideal place to be. It is also a wonderful spot to experience off the grid, sustainable energy living.