For golfers there’s a nine-hole pro course; for horse riders a 14-stall stable, indoor arena and miles of trails. There’s a tennis court for hitting some balls, a glass-enclosed indoor swimming pool and no fewer than seven ponds on property in which fishermen can cast a line to their heart’s content. Plus, you can always take a boat out on Maine’s largest freshwater lake, the 75-acre Moosehead Lake, which borders the estate.
“Every activity you can think of, you can do here. And in the winter, there’s great cross-country skiing and snowmobiling,” John Scribner, listing agent with LandVest Sotheby’s International Realty, tells Robb Report.
Brambletye, as the estate’s called, was built back in 1938 by lumber magnate Louis Oakes as a wedding gift to his daughter. Oakes’ brother was legendary gold prospector Henry Oakes, who hit it big with a mine in Ontario, Canada that brought in a reported $250 million. It made him one of the richest men in the world and allowed him to share his wealth with his brother.
According to LandVest’s Scribner, the current owner bought Brambletye around 18 years ago as an idyllic retreat to raise his nine children and is only selling because they’ve all moved away. Originally the estate covered around 90 acres, but five years ago the owner was offered an adjoining 175 acres of undeveloped land and snapped it up, bringing the current total to around 265 acres.
Without doubt, the highlight of the estate is its classic English Tudor Revival-style main house which, with 15,470-square-feet of space, is just massive. Inside there are 17 rooms which include six en-suite bedrooms, large living and dining rooms and a multitude of entertaining spaces.
“The upkeep of the home has been a true labor of love. It has been completely restored and continuously upgraded. The kitchen makeover won an award for the best kitchen remodel in the state of Maine,” notes Scribner.
Period features include stunning wood-paneling, hand-carved millwork and newel posts, ornate fireplaces, stained-glass windows and towering brick chimneys.
Having been a family home teeming with nine kids, it’s also full of fun elements, like a secret “hobbit” door that opens into a cave-like space under the stairs. Plus, there’s a basketball hoop mounted on a wall in the high-ceilinged main living room/games room. “It’s perfect for kids to shoot a few hoops while the basketball game is on TV,” adds Scribner.
As for all those sporting activities, they start with the heated indoor swimming pool attached to the main house. It comes with an ornate, metal-framed glass roof which can retract on summer days. During a recent renovation, the pool floor was decorated with a ceramic inlay on the bottom showing the outline of Moose Lake.
Close by is the manicured nine-hole golf course which, according to Scribner, could easily be expanded to a full 18-hole course. Too cold in the winter to play? Inside the house there’s a high-def golf simulator.
For equestrians, the estate comes with its own 14-stall stable made from red pine and built using traditional post and beam construction. Adjoining it is an indoor riding arena, tack room and a two-bed cottage for guests.
With its $12.85 million asking price, Brambletye is currently the most expensive property for sale in Maine. Who’s going to buy it? Scribner says the owner hopes it’ll be someone who will fall in love with the peace, tranquility and astonishing local beauty—as he did—and want to raise a family there.
“But there are huge development possibilities here to maybe turn it into some kind of golf and tack club, or resort, expanding the golf course and the equestrian facilities. Greenville itself has long been one of the state’s best outdoor recreation areas and continues to grow,” he adds.
Check out more images of the estate below: