Randy Hopper and Paula Prahl preserved pieces of the past while building their 7,100-square-foot country manor on nearly 10 acres in Medina.
Today it’s hard to believe their horse farm was once the Creekside Dairy Farm, which was in operation up until the 1960s. When the couple bought the acreage in 1994, it still held the original farmhouse, which was homesteaded in 1840, a milkhouse, a machine shed and a century-old barn.
Medina’s rolling hills were reminiscent of the landscape in Tennessee where Hopper grew up.
“The views of forest, creek, pond and the lake were exceptional,” said Hopper, an attorney and managing partner of Robert R. Hopper & Associates in Minneapolis. “We bought it on the spot.”
He rode horses in his free time, and the farm offered plenty of pasture land for grazing. For stalls, he converted the old cow barn into a horse barn.
The farmhouse, however, became a long-term extreme renovation project. It was an American foursquare or “prairie cube” and had four rooms up and four rooms down. “Some of the home had been updated, but it had such good bones,” said Hopper. “A contractor said the foundation could support a 10-story building.”
In the early 2000s, the couple first built what today is the 2,400-square-foot guest house, and lived there during the construction of the new main house, which was designed by Minneapolis architect Allan Amis.
“It has a lot of history,” said Hopper. “So we kept some of the original farmhouse and designed around it.”
The multi-million dollar project included the new four-bedroom home with wings connecting to a pool house and the guest house. The new buildings, shaped by peaked gables, dormers and porches, echo the architectural character of the little farmhouse.
Inside, there’s more of an old-house vibe in the millwork, fireplace mantels and surrounds, coffered ceiling and light fixtures.
Martha Stewart’s Turkey Hill farm in Connecticut inspired the home’s interior courtyard configuration and the terraced stone walls, said Hopper.
The couple installed an in-ground swimming pool to liven up the fundraisers and parties — sometimes for up to 120 people — that they hosted for their charitable organizations and corporate philanthropy. Hopper also swims as part of his exercise regimen.
Beyond the home lie acres of wetlands and a pond bordering Krieg Lake.
Hopper and Prahl are heading toward semi-retirement and have decided to sell the home and property for $4.095 million.
“Creekside Farm was the right season for our lives 25 years ago,” he said. “Now it’s time for a change.”
• The bathrooms feature two Jacuzzi tubs, two steam showers and one sauna.
• Six of the seven fireplaces are wood-burning.
• Ralph Lauren-style home theater with wool plaid fabric covering the walls, surround sound and a kitchenette.
• The guest-house quarters are above a four-car tuckunder garage, connected by covered walkways.
• The pool house features a locker room, bathroom and cabana.
• Bluestone covers the walkways, terraces and porch floors.
• Ten-person hot tub on the pool deck and outdoor fireplace with a built-in gas grill.
• Grounds are planted with English country gardens.
• The fenced estate has a private entrance.
• The western suburb of Medina is close to Baker Park Reserve, Wayzata shopping and 20 miles to downtown Minneapolis.
• Property taxes were $22,182 in 2018.
Debbie McNally of Lakes Sotheby’s International Realty, 612-388-1790, has the listing.