The Writer's Retreat -- an Idyllic Escape in Nova Scotia(6 Reviews)
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- Minimum stay:7 nights
- Property type:House
- Pets considered:Ask Owner
- Wheel chair accessible:No
About the Property
3 Bedrooms + Convertible bed(s), 2 Baths, (Sleeps 6)
Nestled on a private 18-acre peninsula with sweeping views of Breen's Pond, St. George's Bay, and the Cape George lighthouse, this contemporary three-story home is an idyllic and inspiring retreat. Every room and deck has such a lovely view of sky and water, it's like living in a watercolor. And you're only four minutes from the village of Havre Boucher, where you can buy fresh lobster (in season) off the boat, ten minutes from Cape Breton with its famed Cabot Trail, Celtic Music Interpretive Center, whale watching, and Gampo Abbey, and twenty-five minutes from the charming university town of Antigonish with its fine restaurants and dining.
Outdoors, you’ll be welcomed by an extraordinary array of birds and wildlife that share this serene and unspoiled place–-bald eagle, arctic tern, marsh hawk, kingfisher, blue heron, rabbit, and deer, just to name a few.
Indoors you’ll be welcomed by warm birch floors, elegant furnishings, original art, and the stunning Nova Scotia sea-blue concrete countertops, hearth, and Celtic mural. The high-end kitchen has everything you'll need for entertaining–-even a wine cooler. The dining room seats 8 around the antique round pine table and lazy susan. The living room has a comfy fold-out couch (in case of overflow) and a glass-front Jøtul woodburning stove. Interior glass French doors lead to the bedroom on the main floor with its custom-designed birch four-poster queen-sized bed with lovely water views, a sunny window seat, a leather club chair and ottoman, a 32-inch flat-screen TV, and an en-suite bathroom with blue concrete counter tops. Sliding doors lead from the bedroom to the screened porch with its porch swing, glider, and a bistro table and chairs, all overlooking the water.
On the upper level, you'll find the spacious sky-lit master suite. The master bedroom has a carved Caribbean four-poster queen-sized bed and its own private deck. The master bath has a two-person jacuzzi with a gorgeous view. There's office space, too, and a large upper deck--the perfect spot to bird watch or count shooting stars.
On the lower level, the turquoise concrete floor flows to the third bedroom with its antique mahogany sleigh bed and dresser and walk-out water view. There's a fully-equipped laundry room on this lower level, too.
Inside or out, it’s a wonderful place to enjoy the surrounding natural beauty, entertain your family and friends, or just relax. In the morning you can sip your tea or coffee on one of the decks and watch the mist rising on Breen's pond or the lobster boats coming and going on St. George's Bay. In the afternoon, you can walk down the path to the water's edge where a kayak and canoe are waiting, or you can walk the private trails or out to Cape Jack Beach where the swimming is excellent. In the evening you can watch the fire, the sunset, the lingering twilight, the Cape George lighthouse, and the constellations overhead.
As our guests have said many times, it truly is a magical place.
Member since: 2009
- 2600 sq. ft.
- Vacation Rental
- Guests Provide Their Own Meals
- Children Welcome
- Non Smoking Only
- Wheelchair Inaccessible
Bedrooms: 3 Bedrooms, Sleeps 6, Beds for 6
Bathrooms: 2 Bathrooms
- Wine cooler, kayaks, canoe, hiking trails
- DVD Player
- Satellite / Cable
- Sight Seeing
- Wildlife Viewing
- Ocean View
Sports & Adventure Activities
- Cross Country Skiing
- Dining Area
- Seating for 8 people
- Clothes Dryer
- Iron & Board
- Linens Provided
- Living Room
- Deck / Patio
- Lawn / Garden
|Dates||Nightly||Weekend Night||Weekly||Monthly *||Event|
Jan 1 - May 31, 2017
7 night min stay
Jun 1 - Sep 30, 2017
7 night min stay
My Standard Rate
7 night min stay
Additional information about rental rates
- Refundable Damage Deposit $500
- Cleaning fee $175
Owner's cancellation policy:
50% refund for cancellations more than 30 days before check-in date.
100% refund for cancellations more than 60 days before check-in date.
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Year Purchased: 2006
About the owner: Hi, everyone, and welcome to the Writer's Retreat, a place I love--and love to share with others--and my darling maltipoo, Belle. I've done some of my best writing here (I'm the author of the memoir STIFLED LAUGHTER: ONE WOMAN'S STORY ABOUT FIGHTING CENSORSHIP, nominated for the Pulitzer Prize and winner of the inaugural PEN/Newman's Own First Amendment Award. My text CRAFTING SHORT SCREENPLAYS THAT CONNECT is now in its 3rd edition, and my novella A CHRISTMAS BELLE, written with my long-time writing partner, Matt Stevens, is a sequel to Dickens' A CHRISTMAS CAROL. And I have a new memoir coming out in October 2017, TAKING ROSS TO TEXAS: A MOTHER' & TEENAGE SON ON THE ROAD TRIP THAT RECONNECTS THEM. I'm a longtime member of the WGA and the founding faculty of the Florida State University Film School. I left the Film School to teach screenwriting at USC's Writing for Film & Television Division of their School of Cinematic Arts.
Why the Owner Chose Havre Boucher, NS, Canada:
I bought this private, unspoiled 18-acre peninsula and built the Writer's Retreat because I fell in love with the serenity, beauty, astonishing views, sunsets, and long Celtic twilights. The starry nights aren't bad, either. I love the peace and quietude and the many critters who share this peaceable kingdom--bald eagles, arctic terns, bobolinks, kingfishers, herons, ducks, deer and other wildlife. I also love the convenience of hiking the private trails and kayaking right off my backyard on Breen's Pond. And I love how close I am to Antigonish and Cape Breton (I love Celtic music!). But most of all, I chose to settle in Nova Scotia because the people in the Province are uncommonly kind, creative, authentic, and just plain wonderful to be around.
The Unique Benefits at this House:
Staying at the Writer's Retreat is like living in a bright, cheerful art gallery. In the morning it's such a pleasure to walk down the stairs and see the Nova Scotia sea-blue concrete counter tops in the kitchen and living room harmonizing with the Nova Scotia sea-blue water outside. The skies are spectacular, too -- like living in a watercolor! And I love the layered view from all the rooms and decks--the wildness of Eagle Island and the traditional houses and barns on Cape Jack, as well as the beauty of Breen's Pond, Cape George Beach, St. George's Bay, and Cape George and its lighthouse. I love entertaining, and it's such a great party house! Great flow through the house and onto the decks. I love all five decks, but at night my favorite is the upper deck where friends and I can watch the sunset and Celtic twilight and count shooting stars (there are plenty). I also love building fires in the wood burning stoves that make the place especially cozy on cool days and nights. And I feel incredibly lucky to be able to buy fresh lobster off the boat for roughly $5.00 a pound at nearby Havre Boucher during the season (May and June) or go whale watching in St. George's Bay. I'm crazy about Celtic music, so it's a privilege to be so close to Cape Breton with its world-famous musicians like Natalie MacMaster and the new Celtic Music Interpretive Center with its frequent ceilidhs, fantastic music, and great lobster rolls. I love being close to the theatre and restaurants in nearby Antigonish, or toodling to Halifax for a day in that wonderful city.
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The main deck with sweeping views of Breen's Pond and St. George's Bay
The living room with two leather chairs and water view
The dining room with views in three directions and lobster fresh off the boat.
The master bedroom's carved four-poster bed
The upstairs office/yoga space with big upper deck and water view
Welcome to the Writer's Retreat, with all the flowers in bloom!
The Celtic mural and high-end kitchen
The main floor bedroom with its four-poster birch bed and water view
The master bedroom's private balcony and serene water view.
A stunning sunset and Celtic twilight
This listing was first published here in 2009.
Date last modified - Tuesday, February 21, 2017
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