This is not your average mountain retreat. Designed by Mack Scogin and Merrill Elam, the Atlanta-based architects whose exalted creations span from New York to Shanghai, this property's pedigree includes the 2005 National AIA Honor Award of Excellence — and that was for the guest house addition, built to accommodate tractors and dogs. This 5,000-square-foot modernist compound resides in Dillard, in the Appalachian foothills near the North Carolina border, about an hour and 45 minutes from downtown Atlanta. The primary living quarters, called simply "Mountain House," were finished in 1996 as a weekend retreat, with an objective of melding indoors with the outdoors in a state of equivalent bliss. The window frames are redwood, the doors mahogany and the floors Australian Sydney Blue wood, all set among towering poplars. The cantilevered roofs punctuate soaring ceilings. The glass never ends. And a few what-the-hell-is-that flourishes, like a floating sink, add elements of surprise. If the property lacks anything, it might be true mountain vistas, but the intent with these 21 acres was more immersion than perched sightseeing. The asking price is an even $1 million, which the listing agents notes is 33 percent cheaper than a recent appraisal. Huh?
· 10 Barkers Creek Lane, Rabun Gap [Sotheby's]