- The Washington Times - Friday, April 12, 2002

The gated golf course community of Lake Manassas offers a resortlike lifestyle to residents who turn off Route 29 in Gainesville into a parklike setting of trees, flowers, green grass and, of course, some lovely homes.

Now that the Stonewall Golf Club has opened, residents can enjoy playing on the Tom Jackson-designed course that meanders through woods, around Lake Manassas and three man-made ponds. Canoes, rowboats and electric-powered boats are allowed on the lake, and fishing can be enjoyed in the lake and the stocked ponds.

Swimming pools, tennis courts, nature trails, basketball courts and the clubhouse are additional recreational amenities open to residents of this Prince William County community.

During Phase I of the development of Lake Manassas, only custom-designed homes were built. One of these homes, at 8050 Horse Shoe Bay Court, was built nine years ago and is now on the market for $589,900. This unique Colonial-style home features an open, contemporary design inside, with Palladian and transom windows to fill the rooms with sunshine. Recessed lighting has been installed extensively throughout the home.

The architect and owners clearly value time spent outdoors, as this home features a covered and painted wood front porch, two small flagstone porches, a spacious deck off the back of the house, two balconies off the upper level, and a flagstone patio off the lower level.

The main entrance to the home leads from the front porch through a set of double doors into the foyer. Most of the main-level rooms have pale hardwood flooring, and the foyer includes an angled powder room and closet on either side, each with a window. Straight ahead is a cluster of four columns that are gathered around a section of darker inlaid hardwood flooring to create a dramatic entrance feature.

To the right of the foyer is a sunken living room with a fireplace, 10-foot ceilings, and windows on either side of the fireplace that reach from floor-to-ceiling. The transom windows above the standard windows in this room and others add light and beauty to the rooms. French doors open onto a small flagstone patio from the living room.

On the other side of the cluster of columns lies the dining room, which also has two large windows with transoms above. A wrought-iron chandelier hangs overhead, and a doorway offers a glimpse into the kitchen.

At the back of the house is a spectacular sunny two-story family room with 20-foot ceilings, two ceiling fans, two sets of wide and tall windows with Palladian windows above, and French doors to the large wood deck. Partial walls separate the family room from a hall leading to the kitchen, and a 10-foot-tall wall on one side is overlooked by a loft reached by half of the split main staircase.

The loft features French doors to a balcony above the deck and columns that reach from the staircase to the ceiling. It has been used as a den by the owners. Future owners may choose to create a home office from this space, a library or simply a sitting room.

Back on the main level, the kitchen and open breakfast area are visible from the family room. The breakfast area includes a set of French doors to a small patio, and the dramatic kitchen offers a wonderful setting for entertaining casually. The kitchen has been placed on an angle so that when someone is cooking, both the family room and the breakfast area are visible.

An oversized center island has a white tile top, a curved area of open shelving, and a gas cooktop with a downdraft feature that rises at the push of a button. The rest of the kitchen is also all white, with white appliances, white Formica counters, and white cabinets with shiny brass knobs and a few glass fronts. Two hanging lamps over the island add warmth to the space, and a desk has been built into one corner. Beyond the kitchen are a large pantry next to the side-entry garage, and a laundry room with a sink, a window and extra storage space.

The main level also includes a "princess suite" or a guest suite, with a large double-door closet and a private full bath with a large shower and a pedestal sink. The owners used this room as a comfortable home office.

Upstairs, past the loft, the upper level features a curving balcony with a view out the windows of the loft and the family room. The secondary bedrooms are to the left of the balcony and share a full bath with a compartment containing the combination tub/shower and the commode, with another section for the vanity and sink.

The second bedroom includes two windows and a double-door closet, as well as a private door to the shared bathroom. The third bedroom has a ceiling fan, a double-door closet and a patterned, laminated wood floor. The owners suffered from allergies, so they installed the flooring in this room (used as a home office) and the master suite.

The master suite has an open space defined into two areas by a built-in entertainment center flanked by columns. To one side is the 17-by-17-foot bedroom, while to the other is a 22-by-10-foot sitting room. French doors lead to a private balcony off this bedroom and sitting room, and several additional windows provide abundant natural light.

Perhaps the most dramatic room of this unique home is the master bath, accessed through a set of French doors. On either side of the bathroom are deep walk-in closets, and at the center is a free-standing oversized shower with glass block walls. Throughout the bathroom are black-and-white ceramic tiles, on the floors, some of the walls of the shower, and surrounding the whirlpool tub, which sits underneath several windows.

The bathroom has a private compartment for a commode and a long double-sink vanity with plenty of drawers and cabinets.

The lifestyle and the resort, located 36 miles from the District, have attracted more than 200 families to Lake Manassas, which will eventually be home to about 600 families.

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