When you imagine a traditional Maine cottage — shingle-style, prominently located, overlooking island-dotted waters — you’re describing Ed and Laurie Blain’s home on Bailey Island in Harpswell.
“We fell in love with its distinctive architecture, history and fabulous elevated views,” Laurie says.
Ed points out the deep-water dock on protected Water Cove, easy access to Casco Bay and Maine’s premier cruising grounds.
The couple purchased the four-bedroom, 3-1/2-bath home in 2004 and continued a previous owner’s renovations. Now family and business commitments call them back to the Boston area. The 3,958-square-foot house and attached 2-1/2-car garage on 1.86 acres with 319 feet of rocky waterfront, dock, ramp and float is on the market for $1.395 million.
“In 1900 the materials for this house came by boat because it predates the Orr’s-Bailey Island cribstone bridge,” says Ed, who is involved in an addiction-medicine practice centered in Boston. His wife, a retired clinical social worker, runs a dog rescue program.
During the renovations, the Blains retained the home’s hardwood floors, pressed tin ceiling, beadboard paneling and antique chandeliers.
The attached garage shelters the house from the street. A pergola-shaded walk leads to the main door, which opens into a three-season sunroom and easterly ocean views. Ed often has coffee there and watches the boats.
“Boats, from kayaks and lobster boats to yachts and sightseeing vessels, go through the cribstone bridge,” he says.
A sitting room adjoins the great room in the ”bow” of the house. Three picture windows offer a water panorama, making it seem as if you’re on a boat. Laurie loves to relax with a book in front of the Rinnai propane stove. The great room opens to a wraparound porch that connects to an open waterfront deck.
The adjoining dining room also has expansive views and porch access. In the nearby kitchen an island/table buffers the work area from guests who “always gather in the kitchen,” Laurie says. The newly updated kitchen has stainless steel appliances, granite countertops, natural wood cabinetry and a pressed tin ceiling and backsplashes.
One door opens to the porch (her favorite spot for morning coffee) and a summer kitchen with a grill. French doors access the garage through a sitting area with a wood stove.
Upstairs, above the great room, the pentagonal master bedroom offers panoramic views through three picture windows. The original Douglas fir floors, planked wood ceiling and exposed beams create a rustic charm, as do the black marble vanity and vintage lamps in the tiled en-suite bath. The three second-floor guest rooms share a full bath.
Skylights brighten a third-floor office. French doors open to a deck where the Blains often watch sunsets and the Portland Head Light beacon.
Flagstone patios adjoin the main house and guest cottage, which has a kitchen, a full bath and a second-floor bedroom.
A master stonemason restored the property’s stonework; Laurie replanted period varieties in the gardens. Stone paths lead to the dock and mooring on Water Cove.
The house has a propane heat pump with hot water baseboards, a private well and a septic system. Annual taxes are about $8,300.
This article originally appeared in the April 2016 issue.