The 4,560-square-foot waterfront home at 129 Springline Drive in The Anchor gated neighborhood was the perfect place for Christopher and Loretta Long to raise their three children, who grew up with two boats docked behind their house and a wide riverine world to play in.
“My oldest son got his boating license when he was 11,” says Loretta. “All three of them loved growing up here, being able to hop in a boat and go fishing whenever they wanted to.”
“Boating is a great recreational activity for kids,” says Alex “Buzz” MacWilliam, who listed the 4-bedroom, 4.5-bath home for $1,995,000. “It is a good way for them to learn some responsibility, too.”
The Longs were introduced to Vero Beach while visiting Loretta’s parents at their vacation home here. They liked it so much they decided to relocate from New York, where they lived at the time. The move also had advantages for Christopher’s profession.
“My husband is in roofing and you can’t do that year-round in New York,” Loretta says. “He said, ‘If we moved here I could work 12 months out of the year and really establish myself,’ and it has panned out well for us.”
Christopher founded The Roof Authority, Inc. in 1993. It has since grown into a large commercial and residential roofing company with offices and warehouses on Dixie Highway just south of the U.S. 1 overpass.
The Longs moved into their Moorings home in 2005. Designed by architect Gregory Anderson and built by CAL Builders, it combines elegance and livability in an ideal waterside setting.
Besides the two boats, the Longs’ children, who were 6, 8 and 10 when the family arrived on Springline, had a swimming pool in their backyard and a park with tennis and basketball courts two doors down.
“The kids always have their friends here, so it is kind of a busy house,” says Loretta. “But that is good –we like it that way.”
Loretta says the home’s location on the bank of a deep-water cove in the gated Anchor neighborhood is one of the things she has enjoyed most about the house. “We are always out here,” she says, referring to the covered patio with gas fireplace and summer kitchen that overlooks the pool deck and dock.
She also likes the open floor plan.
“Even though it was built in 2004, that is still a newer house for The Moorings,” says MacWilliam. “It has a more modern feel and floor plan that suits the way people live today.”
The openness is apparent as soon as a visitor enters through the high, arched mahogany front door. The view extends from the foyer, which has a tile mosaic set into the stone floor and two niches for displaying artwork on the left-hand wall, through the formal living room, out a floor-to-ceiling bay window and across the infinity pool to the lagoon.
MacWilliam says he has a hard time moving people on from the foyer when he shows the house because they are so struck by the view. “They have a tendency to stop right here and stare.”
The foyer is open on the right to a large formal dining room that boasts a butler’s pantry and wine-room with attractive wrought iron door formed of metal leaves and vines.
“I come from a big family and we always have holidays here,” says Loretta. “I have often seated 25 or 30 people in this room.”
The 21-foot by 22-foot living room has a gas fireplace and the great bay window, which is formed of butted quarter-inch glass, meaning there is no frame to obstruct the view of the backyard coconut palms, swimming pool and cove.
The living room opens into the kitchen/family room area that is the heart of the house. The family room has a reverse-hip vaulted ceiling and another butted-glass bay window. Two other walls are taken up by French doors with side- and top-lights, linking the home’s interior with the sub-tropical world outside.
The home has a split floor plan with one bedroom in the back, beyond the family room, two bedrooms in front to the right of the entry hall, and the master suite occupying most of left-side wing.
It is really a split, split floor plan that gives everybody plenty of privacy,” says MacWilliam.
The back bedroom is a guest suite with a kitchenette and full bathroom. The two children’s bedrooms in front both have en suite baths as well. Beyond the children’s rooms are a laundry room and the entrance to the two-car garage. There is also an oversize one-car garage, which forms the other side of the front courtyard enclosure.
The master bedroom and bath suite is more than 1,000 square feet in total. It includes a second foyer, the bedroom – which has a vaulted ceiling and opens onto the pool patio – two walk-in closets and a luxurious master bath with whirlpool tub, walk-in, glass-front shower, dual vanities with lots of cupboard space and a separate water closet.
The home also includes a beautifully decorated powder room to the left of the foyer and a 13-foot by 15-foot bonus room that could be used as an office, studio or fifth bedroom.
Despite its heritage as a fun family home where kids have been free to run and play, the house is unusually elegant throughout, thanks to Gregory Anderson’s design skills and the craftsmanship of CAL Builders, with a variety of coffered ceilings, custom crown molding, and attractive built-ins.
The Longs’ oldest son is now away at college and their daughter will be heading off for higher education next fall so they have deiced to downsize, but Loretta says despite her family’s impending departure, The Anchor has actually become much more of a family neighborhood than it was when they moved in.
“Years ago, the Anchor was mostly older homeowners, with a lot of seasonal residents, but a neighbor was telling me the other day it is about 50/50 now, with lots of younger families with kids.”
With reasonable housing prices, close proximity to St. Edwards School and one of the nicest clubs on the barrier island, offering tennis, swimming, fitness, golf, boating and fine and casual dining, the trend toward younger, fulltime residents with children will likely continue, bringing new life to a classic Vero community.