(Lots and Lots of) Room With a View
by Marta Tarbell
Mar 25, 2009 | 2122 views | 2 2 comments | 23 23 recommendations | email to a friend | print
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OLYMPIC PENTHOUSE – The centrally located three-story condo is accessed through its unassuming entryway on Fir St. (Courtesy photo)
A love of the outdoors is reflected everywhere in the 5,500 square-foot Olympic Penthouse, the three-story more-house-than-condo just behind Telluride Sports, on Colorado Ave. and Fir St., built by longtime Telluride residents and lifelong outdoor sports enthusiasts Sam and Marilyn Siegel.

“We tried to think of every amenity somebody could possibly want,” said Marilyn Siegel, of the condo for sale. The longtime interior decorator thinks for a moment when asked to describe her work on this project. “Everything you can see,” she said thoughtfully, once inside the front door.

The Fir St. entry is unassuming – a few steps down from the sidewalk that runs along its rock-exterior Fir St. façade (how well it blends in with the scenery explained by the fact that the rock comes from just a few miles away).

Once inside, a visitor’s eye lands first upon a walnut and goncalo alves foyer bench by Matt Downer, of Rico, then wanders to the antique Chinese pine cabinet with hand- painted, pen and ink country scenes (circa 1880) subtly etched on the front of every drawer, one, which, Sam explains, a dead-ringer for Telluride’s own near-mythological Valley Floor, and yet another for Bridal Veil Falls, marking the end of Telluride’s box canyon.

It’s beautiful yet subtle, as is the Feature Wall – the textured wall of wall-to-ceiling slate, layered horizontally – that greets visitors upon exiting the elevator on the home’s main floor.

Then come the views.

“Oh, wow!” this visitor exclaimed, upon coming into the living room, where, using binoculars, one can imagine scanning for loved ones on the day’s final run down Coonskin.

But upon sitting in what the Siegels call “the Reader’s Chair,” the view through strategically placed windows now moves to the east to feature Ajax Mountain and Bridal Veil Falls.

Living room chairs (but not, thankfully, the 99-inch B&B Italia sofa) are on casters, Sam points out, for easy movement when tracking just about anything from early-evening alpenglow to storm clouds to a rainbow from this comfortable perch.

The dining room features a custom black-walnut slab table, from San Bernardo master-woodworker James Guest, its natural edges fluidly jagged, atop rift-sawn oak legs, flanked by saddle-leather Cassini “Cab” chairs (designed by Mario Bellini) and lit by a Moooi chandelier.

On the Sleeping Floor, the Bunk Room – two built-in bunkbeds, linked by ascending steps, and a wall-full of enough storage for an army – invites order from its inhabitants, thanks to more than a dozen drawers and cubbies, four Ipod/cellphone plug-ins and a large bathroom where the Water Closet boasts frosted glass for privacy.

More than 800 square feet of outdoor decks (heated for easy snowmelt!), linked by a spiral staircase, are ideal for viewing everything from Fourth of July fireworks to sunsets; they’re wired, as well, for barbecue, fire pit and hot tub.

The home, built by Telluride-based Ranta Construction; even the art is local, Marilyn explains, from Telluride artist Jane Taylor’s up-close and vividly colored flowers to black-and-white photographs of the mountains of other continents, by Frederic Ohringer.

It all comes together to let you forget you’re smack in the heart of downtown Telluride – made easy to do, Marilyn explains, by the sound-reduction glass used in all the bedrooms reducing noise levels by 93.75 percent, and the remote-control operated high windows and shades in the living area – until a glance out the window serves as a reminder that you’re literally a stone’s thrown away from the yin-yang of Telluride amenities, from stunningly urban (movies, music, dining, galleries, theater) to all that backcountry that’s right outside the door.
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marta tarbell
April 04, 2009
we ran the following correction, after receiving a phone call saying the woodworker had been misidentified; I have not been told of other mistakes, by letter or otherwise, but please encourage any letter writers to send them to editor@watchnewspapers.com.

thanks for your close attention.

Olympic Penthouse Correction

The one-of-a-kind custom black walnut table in the dining room of the Olympic Penthouse written up in last week’s edition of The Telluride Watch was designed and built by master woodworker Joseph Lawton.

April 04, 2009
Just curious if you plan on fixing the facts in this article. I know of two letters to the editor that were never printed relating to this story.