Seattle is about to lose one of its few remaining farms. A cherished family horse farm in West Seattle is now on the market, and its long-time owners are preparing to say goodbye to their tranquil retreat.
The road to Falconridge Farm transports you to a place that's hard to find in this increasingly crowded city. It’s a pastoral hilltop nestled along SW Kenyon Street just minutes from downtown.
Dr. Jean Nokes' family started raising horses there in 1966 when it wasn't at all unusual to have so much open space in Seattle.
“There were no apartments. There were no houses. There was nothing here. It was just all barren land,” she said.
Now, for that very same reason, it stands out, and when Dr. Nokes recently decided to quit riding and sell her beloved farm, developers pounced.
“It has been amazing, amazing, from the moment we started to market the property, the interest was enormous,” said Boni Buscemi, Nokes’ real estate advisor with Realogics Sotheby's International Realty.
Falconridge Farm was once a kind of co-op for working women who loved to ride but led busy lives and couldn't leave the city to practice.
“I've probably had 25 or 30 letters from almost 30 neighbors, telling us what the farm has meant to them and how sad they are that it's leaving,” Nokes said.
She says she'd like to see a non-profit organization buy the property and start a community equestrian center, but developers have the money.
“That's our reality, that really is it. As much as we would dream for this to continue to remain this bucolic location and place, there's just too much demand,” Buscemi said.
With a listing price of $7.6 million, Dr. Nokes will profit handsomely from her family's investment, but that only dulls the pain of losing a haven she cherishes.
“The minute I walk onto this place or drive in, immediately there’s just a sense of calm,” Nokes said.