Dining Out: The Old Hotel

Twin Bridges, Montana, has a culinary treasure that every savvy angler should know about


Fiction: Fishing the Canyon by Charley Hester

Facing fear one trout at a time

The Idaho Club's approach to luxury living is to enhance the connections to place and people. The Lodge Homes are situated on the water and in a setting that encourages owners to get to know their neighbors.

Western Design: The Idaho Club

Reinventing the idea of luxury living

Written by Seabring Davis  

Seabring Davis

Other Contributions

Good Country Authentically Western A Home for the Ages Where the Living is Easy Music in the Mountains The Flight of the Hummingbird Living the Dream Integrating Nature Mountain Exposure Eclectic Parkitecture Uniting Color Historic Symmetry The Year Of The Horse A Yellowstone Club Retreat Hearth and Soul Building a Timeless Legacy An Uncommon Cabin in the Woods Timeless Fusion Mountain Tradition A Modern Vision Summer Camp Perfect Harmony Winter Getaway: Red Lodge, Montana Beyond the Cabin A Fine Balance Letter from the Editor: What is art? Dining Out: Holland Lake Lodge, Rustic Wonderful Letter from the Editor: The Secret Weapon Letter from the Editor: Fly Fishing for the Greater Good Western Design: Mountain Zen Western Design: Creekside Contemporary Living Big Sky on HGTV The Spirit of the West in Jackson, Wyoming Letter from the Editor: First Snow Dining Out: The Old Hotel Letter from the Editor: Signs of Summer Letter from the Editor: The Angler’s Sojourn Dining Out: Simply Good Food From the Editor: Hit the Road Making a Statement: Miller Architects Letter from the Editor: Winter’s Toll Letter from the Editor: Evolving Home Dining Out: Comfort Food Western Design: Cowboy Modern Western Design: The Idaho Club Letter from the Editor: Talking Art Dining Out: Conserving Montana One Table at a Time Dining Out: Cosmopolitan Cuisine at TEN Dining Out: Ranch to Restaurant Letter from the Editor: Waiting for Summer Letter from the Editor: Arts Economy Letter from the Editor: First Frost Letter from the Editor: Why Art? Letter from the Editor: Up Close and Personal Letter from the Editor: A Tradition of Talent Letter from the Editor: Winter Reflection Dining Out: The Taste of Whitefish Letter from the Editor: How Big is Your Bucket Letter from the Editor: Falling Short Western Design: Rustic Allure Dining Out: Fish Food Western Design: In the Studio with Painter Hugh Wilson Western Design: Home Base From the Editor Dining Out: Tradition, with a Twist Letter from the Editor: I Know Where the Fish Are Letter from the Editor: Big Sky Country Letter from the Editor: Forging Ahead Dining Out: Barn Dance Letter from the Editor: Like an Open Road Letter from the Editor: The Language of Fishing Letter from the Editor: Cast Again Editor’s Letter: The Passing Season Dining Out: Saffron Table Dining Out: Lone Mountain Ranch Serves Up a Sense of Place Western Design: Uniquely Rustic Western Design: JLF & Associates Letter from the Editor: Season of Possibility Dining Out: A Montana Tradition, Chico Hot Springs Letter from the Editor: Design Trends Dining Out: The Ranch at Rock Creek Redefines Montana Cuisine Dining Out: Seasonal Bliss Western Design: Refined Rustic Letter from the Editor: Winter Wave Letter from the Editor: Blending Seasons Western Design: A New Mountain Lodge Western Design: Historic Haven Western Design: In the Studio with the Viers Western Focus: Classic Connection: Miller Architects Western Design: Reviving the Barn From the Editor: Seasons of Simplicity Dining Out: Innovation Meets Tradition at Bisl Letter from the Editor: Staying Power
Photography by Karl Neumann  
March 2010

Bigger than Tahoe, warmer than Flathead and one of the largest lakes in the country, Lake Pend O’Reille (pronounced Pond-uh-Ray) is one of Idaho’s best features. Just ask the folks at The Idaho Club, where time spent on this alpine lake is a way of life.

“What sets us apart is Sandpoint,” says Brad Arnold, director of sales and marketing at The Idaho Club. “It’s a whole different culture — it’s a small town place that is down to earth, with people who are real, who share a common interest in just enjoying life here, on the water or the mountain, on trails or the golf course.”

Located near Sandpoint, The Idaho Club is reinventing the idea of a luxury club, by staying connected to community and opening its gates to everyone. Set    on over 900 acres and featuring four miles of coveted lakefront beach, an 18-hole Jack Nicklaus signature golf course, the club offers what seems like endless recreational opportunities to hike, bike, boat, ride and play. With 440 residential lots, ranging from smaller lodge homes to custom homesites, members buy in with a lake club membership after purchase of property and have other options for additional golf memberships. Homesites start at $325,000 for forest lots and go up to $1,275,000 for panoramic lake and mountain views.

Touting a lifestyle rather than exclusivity, the club offers public tee times on its landmark golf course and books the luxurious lodges for nightly vacation rentals. “A lot of luxury clubs end up being lonely and underused,” explains Arnold. “We wanted to make The Idaho Club very active, family-friendly and welcoming. We feel that we have a good hybrid model that keeps the private club amenities and quality, while keeping the dues down for club members. It’s a private, gated, master-planned community at its core, but it’s also a resort on top of that.”

Citing the stigma that exclusive, luxury clubs often generate by being separate from local communities, Arnold says The Idaho Club developers want to cultivate an inclusive philosophy that encourages connection to the place and people that make this location so attractive. So far 146 members agree and Arnold anticipates continued growth even in the recession.

Tiny Sandpoint, with a population of around 8,500 souls, has recently come on the radar as a four-season destination, thanks to Lake Pend O’Reille and nearby Schweitzer Mountain Resort, where the skiing is heralded as some of the best in the Northwest. In summer and fall, the town showcases lakeside living, with a lively arts and music community, impressive restaurant scene and walking paths along the water. During winter and spring, it’s a snowy wonderland centered upon alpine and nordic activities. All year long, it’s about recreation, healthy living and a simplified approach to the day to day.

Created in 2006 by Charles W. Reeves, Chip Bowlby and Thomas J. Merschel under the moniker of Pend Oreille Bonner Development, the project provided the opportunity to craft a club that is both a retirement destination and a multi-generational retreat. Most people buy a lodge or property at The Idaho Club as a vacation home to take advantage of the mild Northwest summers. Nestled in the northern portion of the

Idaho panhandle, the club is only 75 miles from the Spokane, Wash., airport and accessible to the Selkirk and Cabinet Mountains. The club worked with Hart Howerton, a land planning and architectural fir, to cultivate the existing lodge homes on the property. The lodges pe

rpetuate a sophisticated, mountain style with natural elements and colors, while maintaining sleek, modern priorities without clutter and with comfort in mind.

Setting a precedent for building within the club, whether it’s on the water or perched in the woods, each house retains a respect for nature and a way of life that puts the landscape as a central focus. The joke around Lake Pend O’Reille is that it doesn’t matter what your house looks like, all that counts is whether you have enough room to store all your toys — skis, boats, bikes, clubs — that’s why folks choose Idaho.

“When residents come to The Idaho Club, they are buying into a lifestyle,” Arnold reiterates. “This is a community within a community.”

Coupling contemporary design in a mountain setting, lodge homes are open, light and airy.

Clean-lined design in the modern kitchen sets the tone for comfortable living at The Idaho Club.