Ellen and Martin Gerst’s move to Las Vegas signified their “do-over.”
“It’s good to shake things up a little,” Ellen Gerst said. “It sets you on a new path.”
After living in Arizona for more than 50 years the couple attended a trade show in Vegas, spurring the decision to move. They were looking for a life change as well as a way to be closer to Martin’s late father, who lived in Summerlin at the time.
“Our children are grown and nothing was holding us in Phoenix,” Ellen Gerst said about the 2014 move. “So, we decided to try it.
“Martin didn’t believe that I was going to move,” she continued, laughing. “So, the minute we got home he started packing. We were here in six weeks.”
Ellen Gerst is a self-published author of more than 30 self-help books. Martin trades securities and grew up in Phoenix, living there most of his life. The couple met, were married and raised four children in Arizona.
“Personally, I like Arizona,” said Ellen Gerst, who moved to Phoenix in 1978. “But again, we were ready for a change.”
Upon arriving in Vegas, searching for their forever home wasn’t an easy task. They spent a year familiarizing themselves with the area, then the next year touring more than 100 homes.
“Between Ellen and I, we pretty much ruled out every home we looked at,” Martin Gerst said. “Up to the first 100 or so.”
Two years and more than 100 homes later, the couple discovered 10116 Summit Canyon Drive in Summerlin’s Bellacere community. They were introduced to the home through a friend who was a relation of the previous owners.
But the size of the home, more than 12,000 square feet, dissuaded the couple from looking at the property, initially.
“They told us for about a year that we should go look at it and don’t be intimidated by the size,” Ellen Gerst said. “We saw it and realized our friend was exactly right: How could you not live in this house?”
The property captured all the couple’s non-negotiables including a main-level master suite, subterranean movie theater, elevator and enough guest bedrooms for their four adult children to stay.
The three-level monochromatic features Ultrasuede upholstered walls, soaring tray ceilings, African Makore wood throughout and travertine flooring.
“The home feels so warm and welcoming,” said Austin Sherwood, Realtor, The Ivan Sher Group, Berkshire Hathaway HomeServices, Nevada Properties.
The home showcases six bedrooms including two master suites. Other features include 14 baths, a subterranean level with game room and wine cellar. Its stylish resort-like backyard offers a salt-water pool with exercise jets, spa, two barbecue areas, fire pit and fire wall.
Located on the TPC Las Vegas Golf Course, the 12,314-square-foot home is listed for $3.5 million through Ivan Sher owner/broker of The Ivan Sher Group, BHHS.
“You would never know you’re in the desert in here,” Ellen Gerst said about Bellacere. “The greenery is amazing.”
From the point of entry, the sightline captures the entire main living area while extending outside to the backyard oasis.
During certain times of the day, the upper stairwell windows cast colorful displays onto the main-level floor.
“When the light comes through these windows, we get these beautiful rainbows on the floor,” Martin Gerst said. “I really enjoy it. You see it twice a day.”
The open, 4,500-square-foot main living area’s layout is functional and comfortable. It encompasses a formal living room, cozy family room, formal and informal dining areas, all flowing out to the exterior through large sliding glass doors.
“The same flooring is inside and out,” Ellen Gerst said. “So, when you open up the doors all the way it’s all one area. It flows so beautifully.
“Even though there is a lot of square footage, it doesn’t seem like a lot of square footage,” she said. “It’s a very cozy, comfortable home. The main level is where you live and the upstairs is for guests.”
The private, 1,200-square-foot main-level master is just off the main entry. The room features ceramic tile flooring with the appearance of hardwood, access to the lush backyard through its expansive sliding doors, voluminous tray ceiling, Makore wood built-ins and 400-square-foot walk-in closet with mahogany built-ins and washer and dryer.
The spa-like master bath features granite counters and flooring, oval tub, walk-in shower and dual sinks with a makeup station.
The kitchen features double islands, granite counters, Makore custom wood cabinetry and professional-grade appliances including two dishwashers, coffee maker, vegetable steamer and warming drawer. An informal seating area provides casual dining.
“Our 9-year old grandson counted 48 electrical outlets and 50 feet of counter space,” Martin Gerst said about the kitchen. “If you want to make a big mess, there’s a lot of room to do that.”
The formal dining room between the kitchen and formal living room features two built-in Makore wood buffets with onyx tops. A Makore wood bar with seating for four separates the formal living and dining from the kitchen and family room.
The open floor plan allowed the couple to entertain and host several special events over the years.
“We’ve hosted a private wedding, several holidays with all the kids and grandkids here,” Martin Gerst said. “It’s pretty special.”
An avid walker, he developed an unusual workout when the weather outside wasn’t conducive for walking. He walks laps around the main living area which is equivalent to his daily 9-mile goal.
“One walk around this great room is 1/20th of a mile,” Martin said. “And if I do 20 laps that’s a mile. If I do 180 laps that’s nine miles.”
The upper level features a second master suite with large balcony showcasing views of the golf course, lush backyard and Spring Mountains in Red Rock National Conservation Area.
“The best view is off the terrace,” Ellen Gerst said. “It’s amazing.”
The upstairs also features an office with built-in bookcases and views of the exterior surroundings, as well as four additional en suite bedrooms.
A two-story casita with upper and lower living areas is set up as a gym on the upper level.
The subterranean level features a wine cellar, game room and movie theater. The couple’s two dogs, Jack and Arnie, are avid movie buffs.
“If you say, ‘Who wants to watch a movie?’” Martin Gerst said. “The dogs jump up and run downstairs. They have their own chair and blanket. They’re ready.”
“It’s our favorite room,” he said. “It’s so temperate. We never need heat or air conditioning.”
The property features smart home technology, integrated sound system, Lutron lighting and powered shades.
Ellen and Martin are selling the property, preparing for another life change. They plan to downsize into a home that provides them the ability and freedom to travel and see their four children and five grandchildren.
“I would say it’s time for us to have another do-over,” Martin said. “Because we want to spend more time with our grandchildren in Arizona and Colorado.”
“When your child asks you to move close to be involved in their lives,” Ellen Gerst said. “How do you say ‘No’ to that?”
Price: $3.5 million
Location: 10116 Summit Canyon Drive, Bellacere, Summerlin.
Size: Three-level estate on 0.44 acres, 12,314 square feet, six en suite bedrooms, 14 baths, four-car garage with work area and bath.
Features: Travertine flooring throughout the main level and outside deck, ceramic tile flooring with the appearance of wood, granite flooring, Ultrasuede upholster walls, subterranean movie theater and game room with bar and temperature controlled wine cellar, over 14-foot ceilings in the formal living area, large bar with icemaker, wine refrigerator and sink, granite counters, African Makore wood custom cabinetry and built-ins throughout the main level, two kitchen islands, granite countertops, professional-grade appliances, three laundry rooms, elevator, two interior fireplaces, two casitas, upper balcony, office, saltwater pool with exercise jets, fountain and spa, exterior fire pit and firewall, two exterior barbecue areas, views of mountains and TPC Las Vegas golf course, waterfall water feature in front of the home, Lutron lighting system, powered shades, smart home technology.
HOA fees: Bellacere community fees $657 per month and Summerlin North is $50 per month
Listing: Ivan Sher, Ivan Sher Group, Berkshire Hathaway HomeServices Nevada Properties.