That’s what Fred and Patti Kricher wanted most in their Williamsburg home. And that’s what they found with their Fairway Villas condominium townhome, which they came to consider their personal “retreat.”
Fred, who works in marketing, and Patti, retired from the salon industry, moved to Williamsburg in 2004. “We moved here for both business and personal reasons,” says Fred. “I knew Williamsburg was basically a nice, upscale area and would remain that way. Plus it’s equidistant from Richmond and the Tidewater area, which are the areas I travel to for work.”
The Fairway Villas community drew the couple partly because of its location within the Greensprings area. “It is far enough from the main drag, Richmond Road, that in tourist season it doesn’t get hit with the tourist traffic,” Fred notes. “It’s a convenient location, close to Colonial Williamsburg, but we don’t get caught in much traffic at all.”
The community’s lush, heavily treed setting also strongly appealed to the couple. “It’s such a nice, well-kept area,” says Fred of the community, which features wooded walking trails and a pond. “And it has a nice backdrop, with beautiful, mature trees like pear, crepe myrtle and evergreens lining the entire neighborhood. This used to be a wildlife refuge, and that’s why it’s aesthetically so pretty.”
Yet, for all its pastoral charm, it was the inside of the 2 BR/2BA, transitional style townhome that most impressed the couple.
“The first thing we fell in love with was the cathedral ceilings in three rooms,” says Fred. “They have so many different angles that are interesting.” Patti agrees, noting that even today, she enjoys looking at the ceilings’ “points and juxtaposed angles.”
Then there was the natural light. “Being on the second floor allows all this natural light to flow in,” Fred says about the end unit home. “There is a breakfast nook/ sunroom with a very large transom window that faces the front. We have a view of the beautiful trees in the summer, and in the winter we get good views of the pond, which has a water fountain.”
The nearly 1,200 square foot condo has an open concept, with a kitchen that overlooks the great room and the dining area, which, in turn, connects to the sunroom. The home offers valuable, unexpected storage space. In addition to the bedroom and linen closets – the master has a generous walk-in large enough to fit a bench—there is space in the attic (accessible via ladder from a hallway) that can be used for storage and more space in the laundry room next to the kitchen. “We created a lot more storage by adding open shelving in what is designated as the laundry room,” Patti says. “That is one of my favorite features.”
Natural Amenities. Fairway Villas offers such man-made amenities as a swimming pool with pool house, tennis courts, and a playground. Also, the community is located next to the prestigious Williamsburg National Golf Course, offering recreational opportunities for golfers. But it is the community’s natural attractions that appeal the most to the Krichers.
“Our pond attracts a lot of birds, including white ducks that tour the neighborhood,” says Fred. “They are a good conversation piece among the neighbors. We like to watch them as they make their way to a couple houses down, where there’s a family that feeds them.”
Mallard ducks also sometimes make an appearance, often taking a rest on top of a car. “They always pick the late-model cars; they’re very uppity mallards!” Fred laughs.
The Krichers hang a hummingbird feeder outside their private, ground-level patio entrance, drawing hummers right up to the couple’s favorite outdoor sitting space. Fred and Patti also enjoy walks along the wooded trail located just behind their home.
“If you are into bird watching and have some binoculars, you would really enjoy the trail,” says Patti. “We see a lot of birds.”
“We’ve seen everything on that trail behind us, from eagles and hawks to deer; it’s really extraordinary,” adds Fred. “Whether it’s for fun or for fitness, you don’t need to get in your car.”
Fairway Villas is also located close to the Greensprings Interpretive Trail and to the Virginia Capital Trail, a dedicated, paved pedestrian and bicycle trail that connects Virginia’s past and present capitals of Jamestown and Richmond.
Aside from their patio, which Patti has made charming with landscaping and flowers, the Krichers have other outside space to enjoy. “Plus, we are set way back from the street, so there is a large front yard,” Says Patti.
Social Living. Whereas many multi-family complexes have up to 10 or more units per building, Fairway Villas is a 4-plex design. Fred says that smaller configuration, combined with being on the second floor, makes his home “an enormously quiet” place. It also is conducive to meeting neighbors.
“We know all the neighbors in our unit; they are great,” Fred notes. “And we like that the neighborhood is so diverse in terms of age groups.”
The community offers planned social activities such as an annual barbeque. “We all get together at the grassy knoll near the pond,” Patti notes. “We also have garage sales once or twice a year. It’s fun to walk around and chat with neighbors.”
Sister Stays. The Krichers’ home has served as a comfortable stopping point for family members.
“Fred has two sisters who often go to the Keys in late winter and stop here for 2-3 days,” Patti notes. “My passion is baking pizza, so I bake pizzas and we have a lot of wine. I also make a lemon sorbet with buttermilk, and top it with raspberry sauce and a drizzle of limoncello. When the sisters stay, I make sure there is ample limoncello to go around!”
Fred’s sisters also enjoy the local sights, including the New Town development just minutes away. “My sisters say it reminds them of Georgetown [in Washington, DC],” Fred says. “Aesthetically, it’s very nice.”
Colonial Williamsburg, about 10-15 minutes away, is also a favorite.
“I think the surrounding area of Williamsburg is beautiful,” says Patti. “I love Colonial Williamsburg and Merchants Square; it’s such a nice place to hang out and enjoy– a wonderful place to take guests.”
Patti especially enjoys the Williamsburg Saturday Farmers Market and raves about the Merchants Square “Farm to Table” dinners. “In the evenings, I think in June or July, they put lights and long tables along the entire cobblestone street area of Merchant Square,” she says, noting that her favorite Colonial Williamsburg restaurants include Fat Canary and DoG Street Pub.
Reluctantly Leaving Their “Retreat.” Fred and Patti have decided to relocate from Williamsburg to northern Delaware in order to be closer to their families.
“This has been a wonderful place to be. I will miss it a lot,” Fred admits.
“I have to say that it was such a pleasant surprise when we moved here,” he adds. “Williamsburg can feel like it’s all big, country club subdivisions, so we thought it might be over our heads to buy here. But we were pleasantly surprised at how affordable condos here can be.”
The couple chose realtor John Womeldorf to help sell their Fairway Villas home after Fred did a little online research.
“Being in marketing, I just loved John’s handle, “Mr. Williamsburg,”” Fred chuckles. “And when I saw his write-up on Fairway Villas that told me he was really plugged into this community. I also noticed his listings have a range of prices, indicating a good knowledge of the area. We see him as the right choice for us.”
How will Fred remember his Fairway Villas home?
“It has been my retreat,” he says. “I work long hours, and it has been wonderful to come home to my quiet, peaceful home.”
Psst. I’m a Williamsburg/ Richmond and Hampton Roads VA real estate agent.
This post was authored by local resident and REALTOR, John Womeldorf. John is known around town as Mr. Williamsburg, for both his extensive knowledge of the Williamsburg/ Richmond/ Hampton Roads area and his expertise helping buyers and sellers in the local real estate market.
If you are a homeowner searching for someone innovative to sell your home I would love to share my thoughts on marketing. You can read some of the stories I have written about the homes I have sold here.
Additionally, I have helped hundreds of folks find their dream home/ community and would love to help you find yours in Williamsburg, Yorktown, New Kent, VA Beach, Chesapeake, Suffolk, Isle of Wight Poquoson as well as Richmond.
You can text/ call me by phone at 757-254-8136 or email John@MrWilliamsburg.com
I look forward to serving your real estate needs!