In August, an unknown buyer purchased 185 acres of land on Edson Hill in Stowe for a whopping $33.7 million dollars.
The same piece of land, separated into three separate tracts and covering an expanse just northeast of the Stowehof, an inn and restaurant property, sold in August 2018 for $10 million.
The entity that technically purchased the land in 2021 at a 240 percent markup from its 2018 sale price was Five Roads Stowe LLC, a limited liability corporation established in Vermont just days before the sale.
The registered agent on the LLC is Ed French, an attorney with the Stowe law office Stackpole and French.
French did not return requests for comment on this sale.
The property, which is referred to in town documents as the “Newbury property” after a former owner, was sold to Five Roads Stowe by Wiessner LLC, whose only registered agent is Stowe-resident Barbara Gordon.
“It’s no one’s business,” Gordon said when asked to comment on the sale.
Before it changed hands in 2018, the property was owned by the Hirschfeld Vermont Revocable Trust with a listed trustee of Monya Hirschfeld, according to the Stowe grand list from 2018. Dan and Trudy Hirschfeld were also listed as residents at the property at the time, according to public records.
The property was sold in 2008 for just $3.2 million. Notes taken at the time described a 13-bedroom dwelling on the property built in 1955 as “very well built for the time.”
Pall Spera, whose real estate company participated in the transaction, declined to comment on the sale or the buyer’s identity.
“This is not one for the public arena,” he said. “In fact, if anything is, this should not be. I think that, too often, people come into town and there is a transaction and, on a slow news day, they get publicity about it. I don’t think it’s productive. I think it’s just a normal transaction that takes place.”
Does the unprecedented price tag on this sale have any real implications for the broader Stowe real estate market? Coldwell Banker Carlson Real Estate broker and owner McKee Macdonald doesn’t think so.
“That, obviously, is a significant sale for our market and I would consider it an outlier,” he said.
Macdonald isn’t privy to any of the specifics of the sale, but he doesn’t see it as any kind of market indicator. He does, however, see the real estate market in Stowe continuing to trend upward in terms of expense and downward in terms of inventory.
“Stowe ended up experiencing a pretty phenomenal two years in real estate,” he said. “We certainly moved the floor of being able to get into Stowe up quite a bit. We’re looking at a median home sale of just under a million, which is pretty significant. If you track it over the last five years, it’s gone up pretty dramatically. Stowe is having a sort of real estate Renaissance that’s been long overdue when you compare it to other similar luxury ski mountain towns in the country.”