Say it upfront: a $10.95 million home with 109 acres is not a McMansion

This real estate story starts in an unusual way: readers are first told what the large home is not.

Don’t call it a McMansion. This classic, $10.95 million Connecticut estate is tucked away on 109 acres of countryside in Sharon. Known as “The Colgate Estate”, the house was designed by award winning architect J. William Cromwell Jr. for Romulus Riggs Colgate (not that Colgate) and his wife, Susan, in 1903. To add to the homes illustrious history, the late singer, songwriter and producer Paul Leka and his family purchased the property in 1978.

On the 109 acres, you can find the 12,000 square-foot-main house, a large front courtyard with privet and fountain, and an English barn with six stalls. There’s also a carriage house, a swimming pool, a 2000-square-foot reflecting pool, and staff quarters.

The 19-room main house was made with granite mined from the property, and features an entrance graced with four immense Corinthian columns.

The interior of the main house is described as being both spacious and intimate. Besides the living room and Great Reception Hall (which also doubles as a ballroom), no other room exceeds 23 feet in length. The majority of the original furniture and fixtures are still intact. There are marble fireplaces, oak and walnut wall paneling and woodwork, Fontaine hardware and Mott and Fish ironwork. The five full and three half-bathrooms also add to the overall grandeur of the home: They feature toilets with pull chains, tubs with feet, and porcelain handles on marble sinks.

This is a strange way to start this overview of “The Colgate Estate” as I’m not sure what the author is getting at. Is the point that this is a real mansion? Is the point that this is an older home? Does this home have more style and grace that more modern big houses? Does the price tag indicate that this is really a luxury home?

At the same time, I applaud this: too many extra large houses are called McMansions when they are clearly in the mansion category. If there is a 12,000 square foot house on 109 acres built in 1903 by an award winning architect, this is not your suburban subdivision McMansion. This home isn’t for the nouveau riche or white collar managers: this is for the truly wealthy.

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