Chancellor’s Rock Farm is Rappahannock’s most magnificent estate both in terms of its natural beauty and architectural design. Brilliantly sited on 446 acres in the foothills of the Blue Ridge Mountains in Rappahannock County, this remarkable farm was created with meticulous attention to detail. The buildings blend into the landscape with perfect harmony. Reflecting the talents of architect Richard Williams, interior designer Jose Solis Betancourt and several landscape architects, the estate is a marvelous blend of luxury and simplicity. Twice featured in Architectural Digest, Chancellor’s Rock is the ultimate private retreat.
Chancellor’s Rock Farm has four dwellings and a number of dependencies that display rusticity and elegance in equal measure.
Main House – Log Cabin: A three bedroom, three bath home built in 1981 from a 1760s log home moved from Maryland. The stone addition was built in 1990. A stone central core, built from stone found on the farm, has widened the original log home. All wood surfaces in the home are 18th Century chestnut. Bathroom floor tiles are 17th century French tiles. Local blacksmith Nol Putnam forged all the wrought iron hardware. The copper tub in the upstairs hall bath is 17th century from France. All systems are state-of-the-art and have extra capacity in heating, cooling, and hot water. The house is beautifully sited above the Rappahannock River.
Large Guest House: Two separate suites with a shared entrance. One half includes a large living room/dining/kitchen with an upper level bedroom and bath, while the other half is a large one bedroom, one bath suite with a Pullman (closet) kitchen.
Small Guest House: Built in 1990, this two bedroom, two bath house has a Pullman (closet) kitchen, a large sitting room and a wood stove.
Farm Manager’s House: This single story ranch style house has three bedrooms and two baths, large living room and kitchen and a farm office with a separate entrance.
Pool House: The classical Pavilion designed by architect Richard Williams and interior designer Jose-Solis Betancourt is made from local stone and 18th century reclaimed Chestnut wood. The brick outdoor flooring is made to drain and provide a non-slip surface and was patterned after Sienna brickwork. The fountain is a replica of that in Pienza, Italy. The kitchen has high end appliances and also includes wine coolers and a large wood-burning fireplace with roasting spit and coal pit. The dining room also contains a large fireplace, with oversized floor to ceiling windows which can be completely lowered into underground wells (and include screens which can be raised in their stead). A fully equipped exercise room/gym and full bath are found on the lower level. Two large changing rooms flank the fountain above the pool and have showers, and changing/sitting areas. The heated pool is 75 feet long.. A geothermal heating system (electric and underground) provides heat for the poolhouse and changing rooms, while a buried propane gas tank (1,000 gallon) supplies heat for the pool.
The nearby clay surfaced tennis courts are fenced at a discreet distance.
Chancellor’s Rock Farm is 446 acres of rolling hills, pastures, forest, streams and a large pond. Approximately 150 acres are open pasture (orchard grass, white clover, fescue and NZ grasses). Pastures are extremely well maintained and fenced and cross-fenced. Wells and other watering systems are found in all paddocks. Some paddocks are mowed only once annually to provide nesting sites for quail, meadowlarks, and red-wing blackbirds.
Approximately 300 acres have been left wooded. These woods form a roughly “U” shaped area on the west, north, and eastern sides of the farm. Woodlands are mostly mature hardwoods (Oak, tulip poplars, and other natives) and relatively few pines. Walking and bridal trails meander through the woodlands and follow streams and other natural landmarks. Chancellor’s Rock Farm is in conservation easement, and cannot be subdivided.
Paddocks, streams, fields, forest and trails are beautifully maintained to enhance pastoral views and the rustic ambience.
Flower Garden: Formal beds with boxwood edging and other evergreen shrubbery. Mixture of perennials, annuals, and spring bulbs, together with hothouse plants set out seasonally. A drip irrigation system services the three terrace gardens. Below the formal gardens are pathways to the river. There are naturalized daffodils, tulips, and rhododendrons along these paths.
Vegetable Garden: A series of irrigated raised beds and trellises in an attractive enclosed setting. All vegetables and flowers are grown organically (compost & manure from farm). The asparagus bed is well established (20 yrs). The garden was originally laid out by Shepherd Ogden (of Cook’s Garden fame). Three greenhouses provide flowers and vegetables year-round.
Front Gate: Stone gate-posts with wrought iron gates that are operated electrically via touchpad and phone/intercom.
Paddocks: All paddocks are maintained to the highest standards. Stone masonry surrounds livestock waterers (wells) in each paddock.
Fencing: Three board oak fencing with some high tensile electric and/or barbed wire, and some stone walls. All oak fencing has been left to weather naturally. Coops for jumping have been installed at numerous locations.
Driveways and parking court: gravel (yellow- river run).
Pond: nearly 1 acre with dock and island. Pond is stocked with catfish, bass, and hybrid blue-gills.
Garden Shed: A small log cabin near the main house, this shed is made of 200 year old chestnut logs.
Machine Shed: A large Machine shed with oversized garage doors allow for machine maintenance and storage in five large bays. Currently used for dog housing, potting shed storage, and other multi-purpose farm uses. The central bay is heated with electric heaters and also has a wood stove.
Main Barn: A five stall barn (oversized 16 x 12 stalls), which also includes a wash stall, office/tack room with full bath and washer/dryer, a feed room, and a large hay storage loft above. Flooring in the center aisle is custom-made brick.
Single stall shed: Small shed barn behind main barn currently maintained as a single stall..
Chicken Coop: Rustic “Palais du Poulet” for chickens. Enclosed runs for outdoor exercise near kitchen garden.
Greenhouses: Provide shelter for tropical seasonal plants, flowers and winter vegetables. Three greenhouses: 1) large – 18×36; 2) medium – 10×20; and 3) small -14×14 are all heated by propane on a separate heating system.
Haybarn/sorting shed/machine storage: Large multi-purpose barn that includes a sorting chute for cattle, storage for upwards of 300 round bales of hay, machine storage, and pens for cattle.
Run-in Shed: A three-bay run-in shed near the horse paddock above the kitchen garden also provides access to numerous riding trails through the forest.
Wells and Watering Systems: Two main wells service the farm – one for the main house, guest houses, manager’s house, barns, and gardens, while the other services the pool house complex and the front paddocks and hay barn. All lawns, gardens, and major plantings have irrigation and watering systems.
Livestock: The farm could support a sizeable cow/calf operation, and is equally suitable as an equestrian facility or other livestock use. Prior use was an organic cattle operation.
Telecom: There is an elaborate communications system on the farm which handles over 20 phone lines. Internet service is available through mobile broadband or satellite dish. Television is also via satellite. Cell phone coverage on the farm is available on the Sprint, AT&T, and Verizon networks.
Location: Chancellor’s Rock Farm is located on North Poes Road in Rappahannock County, mid-way between Rt. 647 (Cresthill Road) and Rt. 522 (Zachary Taylor Hwy). Chancellor’s Rock is a prime hunt fixture for the local foxhunting pack (Old Dominion Hounds). Chancellor’s Rock Farm is 13 miles from Rt. 66 (Marshall exit 27) or 17 miles (Ft. Royal exit). Approximately 65 miles from Washington, DC. Travel time to downtown DC is 1 Hour 15 minutes (in low traffic situations). Approximately 45-60 minutes to Dulles International Airport. 1 hour 15 minutes to Charlottesville. 20 minutes to Warrenton, 10 minutes to Front Royal.
Amenities: The nearby village of Flint Hill boasts three restaurants, 24 Crows, The Public House, and The Griffin Tavern. “Little” Washington, the county seat is the home of The Inn at Little Washington and shops and theater. Rappahannock County is a close-knit rural community with excellent theater, concerts, art galleries, wineries, and the Shenandoah National Park. Equestrian pursuits (fox-hunting, trail riding, dressage) are very popular.