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For sale: An $11.3M Sonoma compound that used to be a nudist colony

By Amy Graff, SFGATE Updated 8:22 am PST, Tuesday, February 11, 2020

In the sun-drenched hills of Northern California’s wine country, a compound that once hosted a nudist colony is listed for $11.3 million.

The Sonoma property is vast and includes a 1905 farmhouse, a contemporary home and a car barn with an apartment, all set on 120 acres with views that stretch across the valley to the San Francisco Bay. A 10-minute drive to the Sonoma Square with shops and restaurants, the estate is kept private behind the gates of the Bartholomew Park Winery. Just before arriving at the property’s custom entry gate, you pass the Aglandau orchard filled with olive trees native to Provence.

“What’s amazing about the property is you have large acreage close to town,” said listing agent Maurice Tegelaar of Compass. “It’s very private. It has a lot of views. It’s currently used as a family compound, and I would see the buyer profile as being similar.”

The primary residence is the so-called Agave House, an ochre-colored stucco built in 2005 in a style inspired by Mexican architecture that blends a hacienda flavor with modern elements. The home has three bedroom suites, four bathrooms and two half-baths spread across 7,630 square feet.

The layout celebrates indoor-outdoor living with skylights, massive windows and walls of glass, taking in the views and opening to outdoor spaces. From the breakfast deck you can see San Pablo Bay, Mount Tamalpais, three bridges — including the towers of the Golden Gate — and the San Francisco skyline, where downtown buildings and Sutro Tower are recognizable. A covered loggia lines the length of the home, offering shaded areas for relaxing outside and next to the gardens and lap pool lined with blue glass tiles.

Below the home, a wine cellar is lined with stone walls and includes a dining area for up to 90 people and cellar storage for 350 bottles. It’s also an ideal space for curing olives.

A 115-year-old, wisteria-covered red barn dates back to a time when the former owners ran a small clothing-optionAL resort. “You could stay in the house and then use the pool down below,” said Tegelaar. Tegelaar said the nudist colony actually dates back to the 1800s but none of the earliest structures remain on the property.

The barn has been lovingly maintained and updated with modern conveniences and has an old-fashioned charm that Tegelaar describes as a style found in Martha Stewart magazine.

The modern car barn was designed to house a classic car collection and has space for six-plus vehicles. Above the barn, a 655-square-foot one-bedroom apartment has pitched, open-beam ceilings and French doors leading to a covered porch. A kitchenette and full bath make this a space perfect for guests or a caretaker.

Amy Graff is a digital editor with SFGATE. Email her: agraff@sfgate.com.