Since the pandemic, interest in luxury ranch properties has hit an all-time high. Wealthy buyers are scooping up hundreds of acres of land, replete with equestrian facilities, guest cabins, rolling hills, and natural beauty. Not only can you stock your ranch with all your favorite outdoor (and indoor) pursuits, but a ranch is an investment in a legacy estate that can last generations.
So where else do you go to purchase 656 acres of land than to the biggest state in the continental U.S.? Texas, of course. The 656-acre Whitehall Ranch is located just an hour outside Houston in the city of Navasota and recently listed for a sky-high price that’s just a few thousand dollars south of $43 million. The property was completed in 2015, and the seller first listed the property in 2021 for $21.6 million, it was reported. Now, the increased price reflects the growing demand for Texas homes and ranch properties.
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Whitehall Ranch isn’t your ordinary rustic, cowboy-style ranch, however. To begin with, the massive compound features seven ultra-modern residences and cottages with open-concept layouts and stark white interiors and exteriors. There is what the sellers call the ‘Home Camp,’ which is a portion of the land that has the main house, a two-bedroom guest house, and a four-bedroom bunk house. Separate from Home Camp, there are three small cottages and one larger cottage called Gate House. In total, there are 15 bedrooms and 14 bathrooms.
“When the seller found this property, there was so much potential for it,” says listing agent Nancy Almodovar of Nan and Company Properties/Luxury Portfolio International. “He really made it a destination so his family and friends could enjoy it. It was built nearly 10 years ago, but everything looks brand new.”
The main residence spans a comfortable 4,308 square feet and has a spacious open-plan layout with polished concrete floors. The great room houses a living area with a suspended TV, a fireplace in the center of the home, a large modern kitchen with a waterfall island, and a dining area. Floor-to-ceiling sliding glass doors and vaulted ceilings with skylights let in plenty of natural light and make the space feel even larger.
Elsewhere, there’s a home office with a fireplace and sitting area, a games/billiard room, and spacious en suite bedrooms. An elevator brings you down to the lower level, which has a large movie theater with a projection screen, and a wine cellar.
Unique grass ‘stairs’ lead from the house down to the heated saltwater pool and spa. Alongside the pool is a pool house with a kitchen and lounge area, a full gym, a massage studio, and a sauna. There is also a covered outdoor kitchen with a grill and pizza oven.
Nearby the main house, the two-bedroom, two-bathroom guest house spans 1,600 square feet, perfect for family or friends seeking privacy, and there’s also a 1,600-square-foot, four-bedroom, four-bathroom bunk house. Separate from ‘Home Camp,’ there are three smaller cottages, each 961 square feet with two bedrooms and one bathroom, while the Gate House was completed in 2018 with three bedrooms and three baths in about 2,400 square feet.
Among Whitehall Ranch’s most notable elements is an 11-acre, regulation-size polo field—currently the only on-the-market property in Texas with this specific amenity. The ranch has hosted many 12- to 14-goal USPA tournaments, and several high-profile players have played on the field. The working ranch also breeds polo horses and cattle and produces hay. The stabling complex comprises two 10-stall barns that reflect the same modern design as the residences. There are tack rooms, feed rooms, and office space in the barns as well.
“You don’t imagine horse stables to be anything so fancy, but they’re so modern, beautiful, and clean,” she says. “You are wow’d by every part of the property. Everything was meticulously designed, from the landscaping to the architecture. It’s just a very upscale and secure compound.”
As if the property couldn’t get more impressive, there’s a stocked eight-acre lake, a skeet and trap range with its own clubhouse and kitchen, a stocked wildlife pond, a garden and orchard with two greenhouses, and a chicken coop.
“It’s also an hour away from Houston, and most ranches are not that close,” Almodovar says. “To be an hour out of the city where you can be in your own little paradise is amazing—especially being that Houston is the fourth largest city in the U.S.” And for quick trips into town, there’s a private helipad.
Ranch properties in the greater Houston area specifically and Texas in general are increasingly sought-after by wealthy folks and celebrities who seek plenty of land and privacy. Matthew McConaughey and his brother have owned a working cattle ranch near itty-bitty Mertzon for more than 20 years; Tommy Lee Jones’s ranch near San Saba spans more than 3,000 acres; Willie Nelson maintains a big spread on the outskirts of Austin; and Drake recently snapped up a ranch property near Chappell Hill outside of Houston.
Click here for more photos of Whitehall Ranch.
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