Take A Look Inside The Virginia Ranch Designed By Jackie Kennedy

The court of Camelot extended beyond the White House. Take a look at this fancy ranch.

By Annette Barlow September 29, 2016
Photo courtesy of Architectural Digest

[otw_shortcode_dropcap label=”W” font=”Bowlby One SC” color_class=”otw-black-text” background_color_class=”otw-no-background” size=”large” border_color_class=”otw-no-border-color”][/otw_shortcode_dropcap]ith the reality that one of the two least popular candidates in election history will soon become POTUS, it’s natural to look to their respective spouses to bring a degree of likability to the presidency. But then you realize your choices are limited to a lusty former President and an unashamed plagiarist who was daft enough to marry a human circus peanut, and you decide once and for all to move to Canada come November.

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First Ladies proving more popular than their husbands is not a new phenomenon, and no one is a better example than the devastatingly stylish Jackie Kennedy. She is well known for eclipsing her (beloved but philandering) husband’s favor and becoming a bona-fide legend in her own right—an untouchable, enduring fashion icon for decades to come.

Photo courtesy of 2016 MRIS

Which makes the news that the Virginia ranch she designed is on the market very exciting indeed. Nestled on Rattlesnake Mountain, near Middleburg, VA, the 5,055 square-foot home was completed in the early 1960s, Jackie’s original vision—extensively detailed via magazine references and scribbled annotations—brought to life by local architect Keith Williams.

Nicknamed the “Wexford”, in honor of the Irish country where the Kennedy family traced its roots, the home is modestly stylish in true Jackie fashion. Luxurious amenities—a swimming pool, stables, tennis courts—flesh out Jackie’s light designer touch, as original parquet floors and elegant floral draperies take center stage in each room.

Its current residents have added some of their own touches, of course—the electric blue carpet in one of the guest rooms, for instance—but the bones of five-bedroom, one-story, stucco-clad house remain the same, the light filled, generously proportioned rooms remaining true to their designer’s vision.

Photo courtesy of 2016 MRIS
Photo courtesy of 2016 MRIS

Costing just $100,000 to build, the ranch is currently priced at $5.95 million—$2 million less than its 2015 asking price, and $5 million less than its 2013 listing of $11 million. Indeed, the 166-acre property—complete with sweeping views, rambling pond and mysterious underground bunker—designed for secret service personnel—has been on and off the market over the last few years. Both buyers and sellers seem unable to reconcile the historical (and kitsch) value of the presidential home. The fact that the property’s design—largely untouched since it was conceived—is dated and in dire need of a facelift, might be making it a bit tougher to move.

“It’s the only house that Jack and I built together,” Jackie is reported to have said. “I designed it all myself … I don’t want it exploited and photographed all over the place, because it was ours.” Sadly, the family only managed to spend two weekends at the property. After JFK’s assassination in 1963, Jackie retired to the home in mourning. She would sell the place within the year.

Annette Barlow



Annette is freelance editor, sub-editor, journalist and proofreader with a fierce love of all things feminist, food and music. She is a regular fixture on the arts, culture and feature desks at The Guardian, and her words have appeared on NME, Great British Chefs, The Fly, The Line of Best Fit and Australian Times.

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