A Craftsman Gem at Queen’s Gap
Before the crash of 2008, many developments were under construction throughout these North Carolina mountains, and none was more bold than the one at Queen’s Gap, an equestrian and golf community in northern Rutherford County. Jack Nicklaus designed the championship course, and the owners built an ambitious Community Center to show prospective buyers their vision for the future. Now, with the development in bankruptcy and property owners left with almost worthless lots with no roads, that future couldn’t be more dark. What survives today is an amazing example of American Craftsman architecture, longing for the day that some visionary investor will once again see the potential for this forgotten paradise, and bring people back to this remote wilderness.
Sadly, the Craftsman lantern shown here was ripped away last year, and slowly, other decorative accessories are disappearing. My fear is fire! With no fire suppression systems functioning, the mostly wooden structure could be lost in minutes.
This was the center three years ago when it was still occupied. It always reminded me of the country house, Varykino, in the film, Dr. Zhivago. It sits among trees and rolling hills surrounded by glorious mountains.
What fate awaits this beautiful structure? Perhaps it will become a private research center, or an arts and crafts school, similar to Penland. The idyllic setting would be conducive for either. Someone will get a fantastic deal on a classic piece of design, and Rutherford County and North Carolina will be better for it.