Amidst the towering, old-growth cedar groves, Sierra Nevada peaks and meandering streams and water rights of northern California’s Mohawk Valley resides an expansive property know as “The Cedars.” The immense, riparian property with living accommodations in the main Cedars Lodge, carriage house, bunk house and stables with surrounding lots on 93 acres is now being offered by Sierra Sotheby’s International Realty for $25 million.
“The sheer magnitude of work that went into the design and integration of every detail, over the course of 20 years of construction, is astounding,” says Lexi Cerretti with Sierra Sotheby’s International Realty. “The recreational opportunities are endless here, and the amenities from the full spa with gym, to the four themed bars with grand entertaining space and the outdoor BBQ pavilion overlooking the grand swimming pond under the evening stars far surpass the many world-class resorts I’ve been to.”
The scenic property has been a place for dreamers since the 1800s, when miners panned the creeks and rivers surrounding The Cedars for gold. With natural springs and groundwater continually feeding the creeks, the land’s water rights date back to the 1870s, a feature not frequently found. Today, multiple structures and amenities inhabit the ample acreage comprised of meadows, orchards, streams, cedar groves and five ponds landscaped with Yuba rock—one trout-filled, another set up for fire abatement and emergency air service—allowing for wide-ranging opportunities.
“No one else in the area is afforded the privacy this assemblage offers,” says property owner, Bob Luciano. “It’s bordered by National Forest Service land with easy access to trails, wilderness and open space. The vision for Cedars Lodge was inspired by old growth cedar groves on the property, with custom interior design featuring the cedar motif incorporated throughout the main lodge and other buildings.”
Luciano is legendary in the gaming world as a leading figure in casino technology innovation. Bringing Cedars Lodge to life was a personal accomplishment among his many professional milestones, including being honored as the inaugural winner of the Gaming Technology Hall of Fame Award, leading one of the original teams at the now globally acclaimed International Gaming Technologies (IGT), developing gaming machines that are now standards in the industry and receiving dozens of patents for a vast variety of inventions.
“Bob engineered many components integral to the design in each building, with hand-picked master craftsmen carrying out his vision,” says Cerretti.
Designed by Truckee-based architect Dennis E. Zirbel, renowned for his alpine aesthetic and sustainable techniques, Cedars Lodge provides panoramic vistas from every room. Naturally, locally sourced materials line the lodge’s interior and exterior, as well as the surrounding structures. Hydronic geothermal and hydronic heat keeps the space warm sustainably.
Zirbel’s attention to detail is seen in the arched-timber entryways, custom designed hammered-iron staircases and handrails, exposed cedar and Douglas fir panels and beams, heated concrete flooring on the main level plus mahogany plank flooring in the upstairs living quarters.
Abundant use of bronze, copper and stainless for plumbing fixtures and hardware; custom surfaces and suspended lights; solid, eight-foot interior doors and windows clad with two-inch mahogany casing add to the structure’s timeless feel and mountain appeal.
In the main level’s open entertaining space, the Grand Hall features a piano stage where Tony Bennett once sang for a holiday event, which serves as a centerpiece surrounded by seating and dining areas. In the Great Lounge, a floating copper fireplace is an ideal spot for conversation and relaxation. An indoor-outdoor bar, three fireplaces—including a visually striking fire pit—dining hall and a capacious, commercial-style kitchen with top-of-the-line appliances expand from the main property’s center.
Some of Cedars Lodge’s most enticing features are its commercial kitchen areas, fully stocked and ready-to-serve buffet, intimate hidden meeting room with adjacent wine bar, recreation room, his-and-hers powder rooms, complete spa area with indoor whirlpool, steam shower, sauna, massage room, changing area with two showers, and a gym open to the patio with views over the ponds and meadows. Home systems include state-of-the-art lighting, A/V, sound and security with service and main elevators.
Several covered terraces and patios that wrap around the lodge with spectacular views and picturesque swimming ponds and landscaping surround the buildings. The large upstairs terrace off the buffet area features a pizza oven with two open barbecues, a propane grill, sink and dining area. There is a 20-foot-by-40-foot pavilion adjacent to the lodge with outdoor kitchen and portable grilling spit. An immense wine room with tasting area and bar, plus two wine caves with power and potential sites for vineyards make Cedars Lodge an oenophile’s utopia.
Upstairs in the main structure, rooms include two expansive master suites, open sitting area with library, kitchenette, full bath and loft for additional sleeping. The lower level offers two handicap accessible guest suites with kitchenettes, a hidden dining‐conference room, adjoining service kitchen, pastry kitchen, laundry, two staff powder rooms, exterior powder room, storage and two‐car garage. The property is available fully furnished, including stocked bars and equipment.
This compound is all about the outdoors; a large pond beckons for paddle boarding, swimming, fishing, sunbathing or nighttime star gazing on the beach with a fire pit to warm by. A tennis court features a ball machine and gallery seating, and additional outdoor enticements include a ground-level trampoline, horseshoe pits, a frisbee golf area and a powered RV pad.
“We have hosted so many memorable events, including a roller-skating party in the expansive wine caves,” states daughter Gina Luciano, who grew up through the course of nearly two decades of site development.
Grazing pastures welcome livestock, with additional agricultural land owned adjacent to the site. There are also adjacent individual house lots that are a part of Whitehawk Ranch available.
Other structures, all designed by Sikora Architecture and built by Shelp Construction, include a bunk house, carriage house, stables, round pen and maintenance building.
Uphill from the lodge, adjacent to the apple orchard, is the 5,512-square-foot bunk house with central kitchen, whiskey and tequila bars and large indoor/outdoor entertainment areas, that’s able to accommodate 18 guests within several sleeping quarters. Football star Aaron Rodgers spent Super Bowl weekend here one year while recovering from an injury, filming an Izod commercial with Colin Jost of Saturday Night Live.
The carriage house next to Cedars Lodge features full guest quarters, panoramic views and a two-car garage below with covered car port. This was the original structure built prior to the lodge, with a treehouse feel, windows on all sides, and surrounded by tall trees plus 360-degree views over the ponds, meadows and mountains beyond.
Downhill from the main lodge and carriage house is a stable and covered round pen that has a perennial stream. The stable has six stalls with paddocks, two wash rack cross ties, tack room with laundry, storage, office, two baths and studio apartment on the second level, with views. The covered round pen has a beautiful pine ceiling and 2,280 square feet of space to work your horse (or host a party) and hear the stream.
The Cedars also boasts an additional 2,744-square-foot maintenance building with office, workshop with six 11-foot metal roll-up doors and gas and diesel fuel pumps. There is also a small caretaker’s cabin on-site.
This assemblage is easily accessed by flying into jet-serviced Nervino Airport, 20 minutes away, and includes a private hangar. From The Cedars, a plethora of outdoor adventure is within reach, from hiking to horseback riding, to the Pacific Crest Trail, plus water and ATV excursions. Venture to the Johnsville ski area with a throwback to historic long-board skiing and an annual competition featuring skiers such as Johnny Moseley, who met his match when Gina Luciano defeated him in one memorable event. Quaint towns with events, dining and shopping such as Graeagle and Portola are nearby, and five golf courses are within minutes. Reno and Lake Tahoe are also just a short drive away.
For more information or to schedule a visit, visit TheCedarsLodge.com or contact listing team Breck Overall or Jeff Hamilton at 800-913-8172.