Entryway to the Colorado log home

For the past 30 years, John and Nancy Heaney have traveled from their home in Centennial, Colorado, to Steamboat Springs to vacation in the splendor of this Rocky Mountain community. Nancy is a Colorado native, and her family had small log cabins where she spent her childhood, so it was just natural for the Heaneys to buy a log home for their family holidays.

They didn’t have to look far. “One day we were out driving and saw a log home that was being constructed,” Nancy recalls. “Just out of curiosity, we went inside. I knew the minute John stepped in the door that he fell in love with the house.”

Although the Heaneys already owned a 1970s log cabin in Steamboat, they were so enthralled with this new log residence that they made an offer. It was being built as a spec home by Steamboat Log Home Developers LLC, a joint venture between Honka USA president Pekka Laine, architect Jaska Tarkka of the TK Design Group Inc. and Steve Malacinski and Sean Sullivan of Sullivan Construction. “Honka USA has been endeavoring to increase its exposure in the Steamboat Springs area,” Jaska explains. “To that end, they asked me to design a four-seasons log home in the Scandinavian style that would appeal to owners with an active lifestyle.”

Set on one-half acre, the home has a panoramic view of Fish Creek Falls and several majestic mountain peaks. It is also situated near the Steamboat Springs ski area, the family’s favorite. Although the home was under construction, Nancy and John bought it early enough in the process to have major input into the interior layout.

The bedroom's fireplace in the Heaney home.

Nancy’s background as an interior designer helped the process run smoothly. Additionally, Nancy selected all of the finish materials for the home. “Some of the trends we are noticing among persons who are close to retirement and building log homes is their preference for small structures with the first floor master bedroom suite and walk-out basements,” Steve explains. “They would rather spend the money to have an interior finish that is impeccable than to have a large, rambling home that requires a great deal of upkeep.”

To this end, Jaska designed the home with space for both entertaining large groups and housing overnight guests. The 1,810-square-foot main level consists of the common areas, including the entry, powder room, great room, kitchen and dining room. A separate master bedroom suite is reserved for the homeowners. The laundry-mudroom with pantry is located in the breezeway between the main house and the two-car attached garage. An additional 1,555 square feet in the walkout basement includes a family room, three bedrooms, each with a separate bath, and a mechanical room.

There’s one more feature. “Honka is famous for their saunas,” Nancy explains. “Sullivan Construction installed a Finnish sauna in one of the lower-level bathrooms that is probably the largest in the Steamboat Springs area.”

Much more about this home ran in the November 2007 issue of Log Homes Illustrated.