Bridgewater Estates Coming Into its Own As Luxury Neighborhood

by Talk Business & Politics ([email protected]) 7,243 views 

Bridgewater Estates is impressive. Approaching the 29-lot subdivision from the west or from the north, the rooftops of some of the largest and most expensive homes in all of Northwest Arkansas loom on the horizon. There’s no guardhouse and no gate, and no golf course and no social club. Just mansions of brick and stone, one after the other, on big lots nestled in a rolling, pretty corner of Washington County.

Fittingly, one of the region’s most ambitious homes — a colossal, 13,000-SF Medieval manor and guest house in Bridgewater — just went on the market for $2.9 million. If it were to sell quickly, it would be a major feather in the subdivision’s cap, but certainly not the only one. Known as the subdivision where many of the high-profile University of Arkansas head coaches live, Bridgewater is blessed by its scale and opulence.

To live there is to live in an estate with all the amenities — privacy, computerized climate control, gourmet kitchen and wine cellar, home theater, fireplaces, a sunset porch and a shimmering pool.

But while Bridgewater bestows comfort and status, it can also test patience, because when and if it’s ever time to sell, homes there have been known to sit and languish on the market for more than five years. Competing with turnkey subdivisions like Clear Creek in Johnson and Pinnacle in Rogers, Bridgewater is not the only place to buy a $1 million home.

Still, Bridgewater has plenty of luster, and if anything, the subdivision is in great shape and improving by the day. Last year, two homes there sold, and three homes were built, including that of UA basketball coach Mike Anderson, who declined to disclose the square footage and value of his sprawling Mediterranean villa. Four homes are now under construction, and when they’re finished, only four undeveloped lots will remain.

Though a team of investors brought the Bridgewater property to market a decade ago, the subdivision is widely regarded as the product of deceased Fayetteville entrepreneur Bob Gaddy. Soon after Gaddy’s death in September 2008, his interests came under siege from the likes of Pinnacle Bank, First State Bank, Metropolitan National Bank and the fearsome Gary Combs.

Bridgewater, however, was one of Gaddy’s sweet deals and was not part of the legal morass that consumed some of his other ventures. One of his business partners and a Bridgewater co-founder, Fayetteville realtor David Mix of Bassett Mix and Associates, said Gaddy would be pleased with what Bridgewater has become.

“I’m sure he’s looking down from heaven, saying, ‘Job well done,’” Mix said.

 

Comfortable Coaches

Bridgewater Estates was born in November 2002, when the Gaddy Investment Company conveyed 74.2 scenic acres to a group of investors organized as Bridgewater Estates LLC. Composed of Bob, Linda and Jeff Gaddy, builder Mark Foster, attorney Greg Jones, banker John Rownak and Mix, Bridgewater divided the acreage into 29 residential lots and two for common space. The first homes were built there in 2005.

Bridgewater was originally planned as an equestrian subdivision, but buyers were more interested in large lots and large custom houses than they were in horses and stables, so the equestrian aspect of Bridgewater was shelved, Mix said.

In accordance with the covenants, homes there had to have at least 4,000 SF, an exterior of at least 80 percent brick, stone or stucco, and a landscaped lawn. What developed was an exclusive neighborhood of peace and quiet, a meandering nook between two-lane roads in unincorporated Washington County. Located east of Fayetteville off of North Gulley Road and Bridgewater Lane, the subdivision offers the comforts of country living but is still within a 10-minute drive for essentials and entertainment.

That combination was very appealing for those who could afford to live there — particularly the Razorback coaches.

“Location has a lot to do with it,” Mix said. “It gets them out of the limelight, but they are still just seven minutes from downtown Fayetteville.”

The list of coaches associated with Bridgewater speaks for itself. Former UA football coach Bobby Petrino and former UA basketball coach John Pelphrey lived there while coaching the Hogs.

Current coaches Anderson, Dave Van Horn (baseball) and Bret Bielema (football) call the area home.

Bridgewater’s association with athletes and coaches began in 2004 when both Van Horn and Tom Pagnozzi, a Major League All-Star and Gold Glove-winning catcher for the St. Louis Cardinals, bought property there. Both of them built homes in 2005. Pagnozzi eventually sold to former Razorback track standout Mike Conley, who went on to win Olympic gold and silver in the triple jump.

But coaches aren’t the only ones who live in Bridgewater. John Roberts, president and CEO of J.B. Hunt Transport Services Inc., lives there, as do a host of doctors, a Tyson Foods Inc. executive and a UA professor of accounting. According to Washington County property records, real estate magnate and gridiron hero Jim Lindsey bought property there in 2010.

Mix, who currently has a listing in Bridgewater, says the neighborhood’s present standing speaks well for its future.

“It’ll remain one of the premiere neighborhoods in Northwest Arkansas,” he said. “There are still people who want to be in Fayetteville due to the lifestyle.”

 

Benton County Barrage

As handsome as the homes of Bridgewater are, they are far from the only estates in Northwest Arkansas, and when one of them goes on the market, it faces stiff competition from homes in Clear Creek, Pinnacle and Talamore in Bentonville, said Whitney Morgan, an agent with Coldwell Banker Harris McHaney Faucette, who has a listing in Bridgewater.

While Bridgewater does not have a gate or a golf course, it is also located on the other side of Fayetteville from Interstate 540, making it much less convenient to get to and from than its competitors, Morgan said.

As well, a home in Bridgewater is a one-of-a-kind. Buyers with enough money to purchase a pre-existing home there can also afford to build from scratch and get exactly what they want, Morgan said. It all adds up to a tough sell. And information from the Northwest Arkansas Multiple Listing Service says as much.

Morgan’s $1.2 million listing at 4752 Maywood Road, an 8,668-SF house with six bedrooms and 10 bathrooms, has been on the market for more than three years. Morgan got the listing in May after the house did not sell under Meza Harris, one of the state’s top residential real estate agents with Lindsey & Associates, who had the listing from November 2010.

But it’s the third listing that promises to test the limits of Bridgewater’s appeal. The largest home in the subdivision, the 11,000-SF manor and adjacent 2,000-SF guest home at 3487 Horse Meadow Drive, just went back on the market for $2.9 million after a year on the market in 2012-13. While the exterior is finished, the interior awaits the imagination and bankroll of the next owner.

Built of limestone in 2010 by Donna Sexton, owner of Fort Smith-based Rental Management Inc., the manor and guest house feature seven fireplaces, a third-story observation deck, a shaft for a three-story glass elevator, three kitchens and a dazzling mountain-and-sunset view. Pre-plumbed for a pool, the house also has a spiral staircase and vast suites on both the first and second floors.

“No expense was spared,” said Mix, who has co-listed the house with wife Jana Buckley. 

While the number of buyers for million-dollar homes has always been slim, Bridgewater, and Fayetteville in general, is facing a larger issue, Morgan said. These days, a lot of the action in real estate is instead taking place in Benton County. According to the MLS, in the last two years homes from $1 million to $2 million situated on less than 7 acres are selling faster and at a more affordable rate per square foot in Bentonville and Rogers than they are in Fayetteville.

And among the total listings of $1-$2 million homes in the last two years, those in Rogers and Bentonville are newer than those in Fayetteville. In sheer volume, the Bentonville-Rogers luxury market is much larger, with 39 total listings there compared to 25 in Fayetteville.

All this points to a trend that probably won’t change anytime soon, Morgan said.

“In times past, Rogers-Bentonville took a backseat to the Fayetteville market when taking the more expensive homes into consideration,” he said. “However, over the past decade, and especially within the last five years, there are now more $1 million-plus homes in Rogers-Bentonville than before and that has served to adversely affect the Fayetteville market’s sales. I see nothing on the horizon to change this trend and expect that it may strengthen as times goes on.”

Here is a look at the homes in Bridgewater Estates. The profile numbers correspond to the actual lot numbers.

 

1. J & S Greer Trust

5055 E. Maywood Drive

The 1.96-acre lot appraised for $135,000 in 2010. The lot was folded into the trust in January. Jared and Sarah Greer bought the lot for

$125,000 in September 2012 from John and Tracy Pelphrey. Pelphrey purchased the lot in June 2008 for $160,000 from the developer.

 

2. Carl H. Shipley Living Trust

5001 E. Maywood Drive

The property appraised for $1,250,200 in 2010. The home was folded into the trust in December 2011. Shipley bought the property for $1.7 million from John and Tracy Pelphrey in October 2010. Pelphrey bought the home for $2 million from Legend Builders Inc., which built the 5,693-SF home in 2007. The builder bought the lot for $210,000 from Robert and Pamela Stanley in May 2007. Stanley bought the 2-acre lot from the developer in December 2005 for $187,000.

 

3. Stephanie D. Rosenfeld

(House Under Construction)

4977 E. Maywood Drive

The lot appraised for $135,000 in 2010. Rosenfeld bought Lots 3 and 4 from John and Tracy Pelphrey for $311,000 in February 2012. Pelphrey bought Lot 3 in June 2008 for $186,000 from Salvatore and Maria Noto, who bought Lots 3 and 4 for $365,000 in January 2005 from the developer. Both lots combined are 4.1 acres.

 

4. Stephanie D. Rosenfeld

(House Under Construction)

4959 E. Maywood Drive

The lot appraised for $180,000 in 2010. Rosenfeld bought Lots 3 and 4 from John and Tracy Pelphrey for $311,000 in February 2012. Pelphrey bought Lot 4 for $175,000 in October 2010 from Elmer and Gloria Vazquez, who bought the lot for $145,000 in March 2010 from Salvatore and Maria Noto. Noto bought Lots 3 and 4 for $365,000 in January 2005 from the developer. Both lots combined are 4.1 acres.

 

5. Bret and Jennifer Bielema

4903 E. Maywood Drive

The property appraised for $1,143,950 in 2012. Bret and Jennifer Bielema bought the 5,723-SF house in March 2013 for $1.5 million from Elmer and Gloria Vazquez, who bought the 2-acre lot in November 2010 for $90,000 from Pagnozzi Properties. The house was built in 2011. In January 2005, Pagnozzi Properties bought Lots 5, 14 and 16 from the developer for $523,000.

 

6. Shu-Fang Chen and Ching-Whan Ko

(New Construction)

4835 E. Maywood Drive

The 2-acre lot appraised for $180,000 in 2010. Shu-Fang Chen and Ching-Whan Ko bought the lot in April 2012 for $133,000 from John Knight Construction Co. LLC, which bought the lot from the developer for an unrecorded amount in January 2005.

 

7. Jason H. and Leigh Ann Pleimann

4789 E. Maywood Drive

The 2-acre lot appraised for $180,000 in 2010. Jason and Leigh Ann Pleimann bought the property for $873,000 in April 2013 from Riggins Construction Inc., which bought the lot for $150,000 out of a foreclosure by First Security Bank. The bank got the property from Frederick and Donna Robertson, who bought Lots 7 and 10 from the developer in October 2005 for $329,000.

 

8. Joe and Brandy Goddard

4721 E. Maywood Drive

The property appraised at $872,250 in 2010. Joe and Brandy Goddard bought the 2-acre lot in May 2006 for $197,000 and built the 5,190-SF house that same year. The Goddards bought the lot from GL Resources, which bought the lot for $160,000 in November 2004 from the developer.

 

9. Madhu Kalyan Trust

and Suguna Madaiah Trust

3490 Horse Meadow Drive

The property appraised for $766,600 in 2010. The property was folded into the Madhu Kalyan Trust and the Suguna Madaiah Trust in November 2009. Madhu Kalyan and Suguna Madaiah bought the property in January 2006 for $746,000 from James Wetwiska. The 4,415-SF house was built in 2005. Wetwiska bought the lot from the developer in September 2004 for $165,000.

 

10. Michael and Marcheita Anderson

(New Construction)

3446 Horse Meadow Drive

The property, consisting of Lots 10 and 11, appraised for $234,000 in 2010. Michael and Marcheita Anderson bought the property out of a First Security Bank foreclosure for $160,000 in January 2012. The previous owners, Frederick and Donna Robertson, bought Lots 7 and 10 for $329,000 in October 2005 from the developer. Lots 10 and 11 were joined. The Anderson’s built the house in 2013. The total size of the combined lots is 3.8 acres.

 

11. Michael and Marcheita Anderson

(New Construction)

3414 Horse Meadow Drive

Michael and Marcheita Anderson bought Lot 11 from Danny Nutt for $120,000 in May 2012. Nutt and wife Carla bought the lot for $160,000 in September 2004 from the developer.

 

12. Woody and Janice Rogers

3433 Horse Meadow Drive

The property was appraised at $1,191,650 in 2010. Woody and Janice Rogers bought the home from Travis and Kristi Freeman in November 2012 for an undisclosed amount. Freeman bought the 2.97-acre lot for $210,000 in September 2005 from the developer. The 6,450-SF home was built in 2006.

 

13. Janet and Gary Anderson

4518 Bridgewater Lane

The property appraised at $1,630,050 in 2010. Janet and Gary Anderson bought the property in June 2012 from Robert and Rebecca Petrino for $1.7 million. The 8447-SF home was built in 2007. Petrino bought the property for $2.2 million in March 2008 from Justin and Susan Salter, who bought the 2.8-acre lot from the developer in July 2005 for $205,000.

14. Donna Sexton

(House Under Construction: Interior)

3487 Horse Meadow Drive

The property appraised at $1,732,600 in 2011. Donna Sexton bought the 2.5-acre lot in September 2008 for $250,000 from Pagnozzi Properties. In January 2005, Pagnozzi Properties bought Lots 5, 14 and 16 from the developer for $523,000. The 11,023-SF home, which has an incomplete interior, and 2,000-SF guest house, which is complete, were built in 2010.

 

15. Vernon and Connie Richardson

3541 Horse Meadow Drive

The property appraised at $1,383,750 in 2010. Vernon and Connie Richardson bought the 2-acre lot in February 2005 for $193,000 from the developer. The 8,400-SF home was built the same year.

 

16. Christopher and Ulanda Terry

(New Construction)

3597 Horse Meadow Drive

The 2-acre lot appraised at $180,000 in 2010. Christopher and Ulanda Terry bought the lot in April 2012 for $93,000. The lot went through a succession of ownership in 2011, which included GFB Investments LLC and Core Investment Strategies LLC. In January 2005, Pagnozzi Properties bought Lots 5, 14 and 16 from the developer for $523,000.

 

17. Michael and Julie Ralston

(House Under Construction)

3599 Horse Meadow Drive

The 2-acre lot appraised at $180,000 in 2010. Michael and Julie Ralston bought the lot for $110,000 in September 2012 from John and Patti Ervin. Ervin bought the lot in December 2004 for $162,000 from the developer.

 

18. MAC II Enterprises LLC

(Michael Conley)

4670 E. Maywood Road

The 2-acre lot appraised at $144,000 in 2010. Edmond Blake bought the lot for $144,000 and conveyed it to MAC II Enterprises LLC in July 2011. Blake bought the lot from Tom and Colleen Pagnozzi, who in January 2004 paid the developer $310,000 in a package deal for Lots 18 and 19.

 

19. Michael and Regina Conley

4670 E. Maywood Road

The property appraised at $1,350,000 in 2010. Michael and Regina Conley bought the 8,800-SF house for $1,395,000 in June 2010 from Tom and Colleen Pagnozzi, who in January 2004 paid $310,000 in a package deal for Lots 18 and 19. Pagnozzi bought the lots from the developer and built the house in 2005.

 

20. David and Karen Van Horn

4708 E. Maywood Road

The property appraised at $1,171,550 million in 2010. David and Karen Van Horn bought the 2.1-acre lot from the developer for $160,000 in January 2004, and built the 6,200-SF home in 2005.

 

21. William Garrison

4752 E. Maywood Road

The property appraised at $1,446,000 in 2010. William and Joana Garrison bought the 8,668-SF home in October 2005 for $1.4 million from Neill and James Kimberly, who bought the lot in January 2004 for $161,000 and built the home that same year. Garrison was listed as the owner of the lot in 2003, and before that, the lot was owned by the developer.

 

22. John and Tamara Roberts

4804 E. Maywood Road

The property appraised at $1,557,450 in 2010. John and Tamara Roberts bought the property for $1.4 million in November 2009 from B Triple E LLC. The limited liability company gained title to the property in July 2005 through a conveyance from Barry and Erin Bridges, who themselves gained title to the lot from Evergreen Management LLC, a company owned by Barry and Erin Bridges and Brandon and Linden Siems. The 7,492-SF home was built in 2006. Evergreen bought the 2.8-acre lot from the developer in November 2004 for $214,000.

 

23. Lot 23 LLC

4850 E. Maywood Road

The property appraised at $1,370,500 in 2010. The property was conveyed to Springdale-based Lot 23 LLC in July 2005, a day after the property was conveyed to Brandon and Linden Siems. The Siems interest gained title to the property through a conveyance from Evergreen Management LLC, a company controlled in part by the Siemses. The 6,996-SF home was built in 2006. Evergreen bought the 2.7-acre lot from the developer for $184,333 in November 2004.

 

24. Mark and Wendy Moss

(House Under Construction)

4906 E. Maywood Road

The 2-acre lot appraised at $180,000 in 2010. Mark and Wendy Moss bought the lot for $190,000 in August 2010 from the Franklin P. Keel Living Trust and the Desiree S. Keel Living Trust. Keel bought the lot for $177,000 from the developer in May 2005.

 

25. William and Angela McArdle

4964 E. Maywood Road

The property appraised at $1,199,100 in 2010. William and Angela McArdle bought the 2-acre lot for $190,000 in March 2006 from the developer and built the 7,209-SF home in 2007.

26. Jerry D. Sweetser Trust

and Sharon J. Sweetser Trust

5038 E. Maywood Road

The property appraised at $1,244,450 in 2010. The Sweetser trusts bought the lot for $225,000 in September 2008 and built the 6,800-SF home in 2009. The Sweetser trusts bought the 1.9-acre lot from Chambers Bank, which had taken possession of the property in a December 2007 foreclosure with James and Mary Ellen Torraco. The Torracos bought the property from the developer in June 2006 for $175,000.

 

27. P & L Homebuilders #2 LLC

(Jim Lindsey)

3517 N. Gulley Road

The lot appraised at $135,000 in 2010. P & L Homebuilders #2 LLC bought the 1.6-acre lot in December 2010 from Chambers Bank, which had taken possession of the lot in a September 2010 foreclosure with John David Lindsey. Lindsey bought the lot in October 2005 from the developer for $165,000.

 

28. Kevin and Dawn Rogerson

3545 N. Gulley Road

The 1.6-acre lot appraised at $126,000 in 2010. Kevin and Dawn Rogerson bought the lot for $75,000 in November 2010 from Signature Bank, which had taken possession of the lot in a July 2010 foreclosure with John David Lindsey. Lindsey bought the lot from the developer in June 2005 for $180,000.

 

29. Eric and Rachelle Sale

3581 N. Gulley Road

The property appraised at $1,338,700 in 2010. Eric and Rachelle Sale bought the property for $1.3 million in May 2013 from the Richard A. Greubel Jr. Trust and the Ellen M. Greubel Trust. Greubel bought the property for $1.5 million in March 2007 from John David and Amy Lindsey. Lindsey bought the 3.1-acre lot for $232,091 from the developer in December 2004 and built the 6,500-SF house was in 2006.

 

30. Bridgewater Estates

Property Owners Association Inc.

Common space of 1.3 acres.

 

31. Bridgewater Estates

Property Owners Association Inc.

Common space of 1 acre.