Gerald Ford's Former Ski Chalet Is Selling at Steep Discount
Luxury ski homes aren't uncommon in Vail, Colorado, but this one has a granite seal in the entryway, paying homage to the 38th president of the United States. Before he died in 2006, Gerald Ford owned the Bavarian-style chalet at 65 Elk Track Court. It's currently listed for $8.5 million after a big price cut this month.
When it comes to presidents and their vacation homes, Ford's was more than just a place to escape. According to the Denver Post, Ford loved Vail, and Vail loved him. "He was considered a friend and regular guy by many here, even while lending his name to innumerable local causes in his role as 'mountain royalty,' " the Post reported the day after his death.
Known as "Jerry," Ford is remembered locally as a guy who loved to ski. He flew down the mountain with Secret Service agents in tow, though he reportedly purchased his own lift tickets at the walk-up window just like any tourist.
Property records show that real estate investor Kevin Hayes purchased Ford's home in February 2007 for $6.65 million. He spent more than $4 million on renovations but was careful to preserve reminders of Ford, such as floor tile showing wear and tear left by the former president's favorite desk chair.
The home's upper level also features a "presidential master suite" with a commanding view of Beaver Creek Mountain and skiers riding the Centennial Express lift. The room also has a stately clawfoot fireplace with an engraved inscription by President John Adams, originating from the Lincoln Bedroom in the White House.
The seven-bedroom, 11-bath estate was first listed in 2008 for $14.9 million. In January of this year, the price dropped to $12.995 million and then $9.4 million. Tye Stockton of Ascent Sotheby's International Realty holds the listing.