The mountains of North Georgia are a great getaway anytime of year, but particularly in fall when there is a chill in the air and the hills are cloaked in glorious fall foliage.
Compared to most localities, hotel rooms in north Georgia are few, but vacation cabin rentals are many. In fact, the Georgia Apple Festival is a major event on the annual calendar, and many people book log cabin lodgings long in advance.
Rental cabins run the gamut from basic to deluxe. It is easy to think, after staying in a rental cabin a time or two, that if you’ve seen one, you’ve seen them all. Not so.
For too many years, Georgia cabins were built the way Henry Ford built automobiles: you could get them any way you liked so long as they were pine. As a result, cabin rental properties tend to be sturdy, functional, but all too often uninspiring.
Today, there is a renaissance in log design and decor that is sweeping through North Georgia, all through Appalachia, and the entire Eastern seaboard from Florida to Maine. Ellijay, Georgia is at the epicenter.
There is no doubt that the Appalachian Mountains are the home of American log building. But just as country music can trace its roots directly to European folk origins in Ireland, Germany, Italy, and Spain, the log building traditions of Appalachia had to take a trip westward to the Rocky Mountains and return to reinvigorate the motherland and inspire a new generation of log home building.
All the pictures accompanying this article are new generation log homes built in North Georgia or nearby states. All represent the design and materials influence of Satterwhite Log Homes, located just north of Ellijay. All feature the charm of traditional Georgia log cabin construction, but all contain new materials from the Rocky Mountains, and introduce a phenomenal variety of beautiful select character woods from small boutique sawmills across North America. What a contrast from the monotony of pine logs, pine walls, pine floors, and pine ceilings!
Complete this sentence: Log homes are for ____________.
It is too easy to predict the top answers… “a second home” “a weekend getaway” “retirement.” And it’s also too easy to guess wrong.
All sorts of people build log homes for all sorts of reasons. Yes, the photos here represent second homes, weekend getaways, and retirement residences. But log homes are also built by newlywed couples, families with small children, as primary residences, places to entertain, and as family retreats. Not to mention an enormous range of commercial applications in small towns to major cities everywhere, either full log construction or rustic timber themed decor. Satterwhite materials are used in everything from rural barbershops to major restaurants on the Las Vegas Strip.
One way to wrap your head around these possibilities is to visit the Satterwhite Log Homes model in Ellijay. Here’s what to expect:
The model home plan, called the “Mountain Laurel” is three levels – two floors on a walk-out basement.
The upper two floors are the model home, fully decorated, featuring a large family room on the main level with open kitchen and dining, all very tasteful and stylishly appointed. A full master suite plus a laundry and utility room complete the ground floor level.
Upstairs, there are two bedrooms, two bathrooms, an office, and interior and exterior balconies overlooking the great room and the outside back respectively. All of these rooms are in a “loft” configuration – built within the roof structure of the Mountain Laurel. Roof gables add space to both the bedrooms and the bathrooms, helping to maximize square footage and increase spaciousness.
Unlike yesterday’s log construction, the Mountain Laurel abounds in a variety of materials and wall treatments.This introduces tremendous freedom to customize, decorate, and personalize that are hallmarks of Satterwhite log homes.
The basement level of the Mountain Laurel in the Satterwhite model is configured as offices, but even here, there is much to see. Each individual office is a showcase of different materials and design ideas. Satterwhite offers a breathtaking array of character wood species and wood products such as lumber, beams, posts, railings, spindles, etc. There are round stocks and square beams. All of these can be smooth finish or optionally hand-worked with draw knives or hewn with a foot adz for a beautiful rustic appearance.
Of course, the Mountain Laurel is not perfect for everyone. While at Satterwhite, pick up a catalog of plans and prices. Begin by exploring dozens of standard floor plans available from Satterwhite. There are actually two plan catalogs– one for conventional flatland applications, and another “Mountain Inspiration” catalog featuring floor plans that have been optimized for construction on steep ground.
Satterwhite’s published plans are simply a starting point. One beauty of the Satterwhite building system is flexibility. Custom plans and modification of Satterwhite standard plans is welcomed. Not only that, but Satterwhite is happy to explore options and help you estimate cost as you explore design ideas. As a company, Satterwhite considers itself a “log home lumber yard.” Satterwhite employees are builders first and salesmen second.
The company has a very easy-going, no pressure style. Customers are welcome to roam the model freely, to ask questions at will, to explore in whatever way they feel comfortable. Satterwhite culture is one of no surprises. As Sam Satterwhite, founder, says, “It is as important to me that people are happy with their log home 10 and 20 years down the road as they are the day it is completed.” To that end, customers can expect up-front, forthright answers because nobody at Satterwhite wants problems or misunderstandings.
If you enjoy mountain living, or have aspirations to escape big city life, are enchanted by the slower pace of rural areas, or if you have a special place such as a family farm or ranch that is calling you home, you owe it to yourself to visit Satterwhite Log Homes in Ellijay, Georgia. The Mountain Laurel model is a showcase of materials and design ideas, all presented in what many people consider the finest log home model in America. AC
Satterwhite Log Homes
14378 Highway 515N
Ellijay, Georgia 30536
800. 918. 6881
Hours: Monday – Friday 8am – 5pm
Saturday 9am – 2pm; Closed Sunday
Special hours may apply during the Apple Festival – call for info.
All the pictures accompanying this article are new generation log homes built in North Georgia or nearby states. All represent the design and materials influence of Satterwhite Log Homes, located just north of Ellijay. All feature the charm of traditional Georgia log cabin construction, but all contain new materials from the Rocky Mountains, and introduce a phenomenal variety of beautiful select character woods from small boutique sawmills across North Am