Saturday, July 20th, 2024

The Retreat at Harbour Cove and The Retreat at Western Branch Story


Luxury living for those 55-and-better in the heart of Hampton Roads

by Rob Lauer

Site Managers Laurie Williamson, Carolyn Hurtado and Donna Lakoski

Site Managers Laurie Williamson, Carolyn Hurtado and Donna Lakoski

When it comes to accessing the best Hampton Roads has to offer, the adjacent areas of Western Branch in Chesapeake and Harbour View in Suffolk are two of the region's most desirable locations. Restaurants, shopping outlets, entertainment venues, parks, and recreational waterways are plentiful here. Located in the heart of Hampton Roads, it is only a ten-minute drive to downtown Norfolk, Olde Towne Portsmouth, Hampton, and Newport News. It is here that Weldenfield and Rowe Custom Homes-one of Virginia's premier builders of 55-and-better communities-has built two of their newest communities: The Retreat at Western Branch and The Retreat at Harbour Cove.

Site Managers Carolyn Hurtado, Donna Lakoski, and Laurie Williamson enjoy introducing potential home buyers to The Retreat.

"Ninety percent of the time, people's first reaction is, 'Wow! These are so big inside. They don't look that big on the outside," Donna says. "The builder has created some stunning designs. The vaulted nine-foot ceiling on both levels and the open floor plans with so many windows make these homes much more spacious inside than people assume."

"People walk in and realize they won't have to give up everything to move here," Laurie adds. "But what's most impressive about these homes is the quality of the build."

The Retreat's builder has a 20-year legacy of developing and building over 1000 custom homes across Virginia. Here, high-quality construction, maintainability, and timeless curb appeal are on display everywhere one looks. Three beautiful floor designs are available at both Retreat communities: the Nansemond, the Shenandoah, and the Lafayette. An additional option is available at Harbour Cove: the Quads are four homes connected in one building. Each is a one-level ranch-style home with a spacious room over the garage.

The quality of the build is what first caught the attention of Randy and Robin Duncan. Convinced that downsizing should not mean settling for less, they checked out houses for sale in various neighborhoods. A visit to The Retreat changed everything. "It had by far better workmanship," Robin explains. "The paint, the woodwork, the different things that went into the homes were so impressive. Before you buy a home that looks good from the outside, make sure that you look inside at all the workmanship and the quality of the materials. The Retreat stands far above all the others we saw."

A finely crafted new home wasn't the only reason the couple decided to move to The Retreat. Because the neighborhood is professionally maintained, residents can enjoy an active lifestyle without yard work demands.

"Ninety percent of the time,
people's first reaction is, 'Wow!'
These are so big inside."
-Donna Lakoski

"They do a wonderful job maintaining the lawn, flowerbeds, and landscaping," Randy says. "To not have to do it myself is a real plus."

"Each week we hear the lawnmowers running, and it's like, 'Yeah! We don't have to do it anymore!'" Robin adds with a laugh.

To create a vibrant community atmosphere perfect for making new friends and enjoying life to the fullest, both Retreat communities include amenities befitting a vacation resort. The crown jewel of these amenities is the spectacular resort-style clubhouse. Its spacious great room, vaulted ceilings, fireplace, state-of-the-art fitness center, and expansive community kitchen make it the perfect place for parties and gatherings. The clubhouse's outdoor pool is ideal for swimming or soaking up sun. Neighbors can enjoy drinks and conversation around the cozy fire pits or entertain in style at the clubhouse's elegant outdoor kitchen.

"The clubhouse is the social hub for community activities," Laurie explains. "Residents who want to host a large family gathering or event but are concerned about having too many people in their homes can also rent the club for a minimal cost."

"I especially like the pool," Robin says. "I'm a teacher, and in the summer, I love to have that time to lay by the pool. I also love to ride my bike. If I can't ride outside, there's a bike right inside the clubhouse's workout area. I can get on, ride, listen to music, or watch TV. There are a lot of great amenities here that we love."

"There's an awesome dog park," Randy notes. "We have two dogs, so we can take them out and enjoy getting some exercise. There's a walking trail behind the pond with outdoor furniture where you can spend time in the sun or enjoy conversation with neighbors. There's a community garden at the back of the property that some of the residents really enjoy."

The sense of community found at The Retreat may be what residents prize the most. "My educational background is in social work," Laurie says. "For me, it's always been important for people to live together socially and feel part of a community. At the Retreat at Western Branch, our motto is 'Live life socially,' and that applies equally to the Retreat at Harbour Cove."

"Buying a home at the Retreat
was the best possible decision
we could have ever made."
-Randy Duncan

Robin agrees: "The sense of community is really awesome. They have book clubs, parties, card games, chili cookoffs, Superbowl parties-lots of fun things you can choose to be a part of. We really look forward to when we retire and have more time to get to know everybody and have fun together."

"That sense of community is so important," Carolyn notes, "that our builder holds quarterly social events at the clubhouse so that those in the process of building or buying a home can meet the residents and feel part of the community when they move in."

Given the popularity of both Retreat locations, many people, 55 and better, evidently want to be part of the communities. Since The Retreat at Western Branch opened in the final quarter of 2022, half of its homes have been sold. Since The Retreat at Harbour Cove opened last year, sales have been brisk,

"We have standing properties ready to move in within 30 to 60 days," Laurie explains, "but clients can also build a home from scratch on one of our available lots, choosing cabinets, floorings, backsplashes and making it their forever dream home."

"The sense of community is really awesome."
-Robin Duncan

"And because of our builder's background in custom home designs, people can also make structural changes to a design," Carolyn says. "They can add a bathroom, extend a patio, or modify an entertainment space. With Weldenfield and Rowe, the customer is truly always right. Our builder listens to our clients and goes out of his way to meet their individual needs."

When moving to the Retreat at Western Branch, Randy and Robin Duncan decided to custom-build their home from one of the available designs.
"When our clients are building their home, we walk them through the entire process," Laurie says. "It's a team effort."

"We had a great experience with the sales team, "Randy recalls. "They were very helpful, pointing out the different available options. We watched the process and got to know some of the people who were in charge. They were always very attentive and responsive to our needs. I could tell from the very beginning that the work was high quality. We love our home. Buying our home at the Retreat at Western Branch was the best possible decision we could have ever made."

Patricia Cruz feels the same about her new home at The Retreat at Harbour Cove. "My husband and I settled into our new home at the Retreat at Harbour Cove and love living here," she says. "There are great amenities, a beautiful clubhouse, and a pool. My daughter also loves the dog park when she visits with her fur baby. We have friendly neighbors, and we love not having to mow or weed-wack the yard. "We're thoroughly enjoying our new life here!"

Randy's and Patricia's statements give Carolyn, Donna, and Laurie a deep sense of satisfaction.

"If I sell you a home, I want you to be proud of it," Carolyn concludes. "I want to bring value to the lives of the people I serve. There's nothing more rewarding than when a homeowner you've worked with and spent time with is excited about their home. Their happiness makes me happy."

The Retreat at Harbour Cove
6808 Harbour View Blvd.
(757) 816-6777

The Retreat at Western Branch
4730 Mahogany Run
(757) 472-8058

Rose & Womble - The Retreat at Western Branch

Weldenfield & Rowe
Chesapeake, Va, VA 23321