Northern New Hampshire has always been special to me, it is where my father grew up in a Francophone environment, inspiring me to learn French and where I met my now husband, Erick. We were young and fresh out of college, both teaching at a local high school in North Conway, nestled in the heart of the White Mountains. North Conway is a quintessential little ski town complete with covered bridges, outlet shopping, hiking and of course, great skiing. It often wins accolades for being the best vacation destination in New Hampshire, in fact, it was recently voted as the #1 Ski Town in America by USA Today.
While we lived there, I was lucky enough to find a furnished rental in a beautiful condo complex called The Linderhof, styled to resemble Swiss Chalets. That condo holds so many wonderful memories for me: my first real apartment, my first real job, many fun friends, lots of skiing and dinner parties, and the budding relationship with Erick. Although I eventually moved away from the area, whenever I returned to visit friends I would pass by the Linderhof and look with nostalgia and dream of someday returning. In fact, my friend Courtney, who also lived in a furnished condo at the time and who helped us immensely with the renovation, reminded me that when I moved 9 years ago I proclaimed that I would own one of the condos one day!
When we moved back from California to New Hampshire, we settled down in southern New Hampshire to be close to my family. Erick had wanted to live up North when we moved back, and would occasionally show me homes atop mountains. I was hesitant to live 2.5 hours away from my family, what was the point of moving back East, only to live far away from family? So, as we saved our money Erick continued to dream of owning something in the White Mountains. When Erick came to me and told me he had seen an interesting listing at the Linderhof, I was excited--my dream of returning seemed like an option! The listing was for a 650 square foot condo that needed work, but at a price point we could afford. It came close to it’s original 1970s state: complete with vintage appliances, furniture and green shag carpeting:
It was a Tuesday night when we saw the listing, and we made arrangements to go up North to see the condo that weekend. We drove up North that Friday, staying in a nearby motel and viewing the condo Saturday morning. To be honest, we were sold before we even saw it, having had the experience of knowing what these condos typically look like on the inside and the cozy feeling of living there. Driving into the complex, everything felt like home. We entered the dated condo that had most of the original work and appliances from when it was built in the 70s and couldn’t help but love it’s vintage feel. We looked around at the work to be done, and although we probably should have been overwhelmed (having no renovation experience and limited skills other than painting), all I could think about were the possibilities of this little condo. We put in an offer and were ecstatic when the family accepted it the same day. Our dreams of returning to the North Country were becoming a reality, and the work was about to begin. Click here to see some before and after pictures.