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    Real Estate
    Sunday, December 04, 2022

    A community for generations

    The house and the two-car detached garage are sited on a 3-acre lot in the Hadlyme Historic District. Photo courtesy of Coldwell Banker Realty
    Homeowners, who returned to their hometown of Lyme to start a family, are now selling their 1800s-reproduction saltbox

    Jayme and Eric Bombaci each grew up in Lyme, Connecticut. They graduated from the town’s well-regarded public school system and went off to college and careers.

    “But we eventually reconnected after college and started dating,” Jayme recalled during a conversation she and Eric had with Welcome Home. “We actually got married right here on the property.”

    The Bombacis are selling their home at 9 Geer Hill Road, Lyme — the place where they married and started their family. They’ve enlisted Coldwell Banker Realtors Joe Rhodes and Judy Schaaf to present the home to buyers. The asking price is $949,000.

    “When we reunited and started dating and got married, we decided that we were only going to look for a house in Lyme, because we wanted to make sure that when we had kids, they’d have access to this school system,” Eric recalled.

    Their family has now grown, and they’re looking forward to their next home, but leaving this one will undoubtedly be bittersweet — for the memories they’ve made, and for the sweat equity they invested here.

    They’d bought the home, sight unseen at auction, when the property was in foreclosure. It had been uninhabited for some time, so both the house and the yard needed their attention and vision.

    Eric began by clearing much of the lot, which had become overgrown and imposing. He had some trees downed, which were past their prime and infringed on the house. He rebuilt some of the stone walls and pathways, reseeded the lawn, and pruned and perfected the gardens.

    The editing of the landscaping created not just a lovely setting for their new home, but a memorable special occasion venue for their nuptials.

    “Years later, friends still say, ‘Your wedding was the best outdoor wedding I’ve ever been to.’ It was ideal for that,” Eric said.

    The cedar-shake roof on the house revealed its flaws during the first heavy rain storm, so that was the most urgent improvement required — installing a new roof.

    The house has the character of an antique home, but it was built as an 1800s saltbox reproduction in 1975. Though the Bombacis aren’t certain about the provenance of some of the materials used to construct the home, it appears that some may have been reclaimed from vintage structures; for example, variable-width wide-planked floor boards and posts and beams framing the interiors.

    “We do know that the man who built this home spent a lot of time making it look right and authentic,” Eric said.

    The house has three bedrooms and three baths. The bathrooms also needed updating, so they invested in remodeling those, as well. They expanded the primary suite’s bath, which was smaller, with a confined fiberglass shower tucked into a corner, and carpeting on the floor. Today, interested buyers will find a much more luxurious and attractive bathroom experience, courtesy of Jayme, who works for a major tile manufacturer.

    She selected 3-by-6-inch Carrera marble tiles for the primary bath’s floor, laid out in a herringbone pattern. In other bathrooms, she chose tumbled marble in hexagon shapes and white subway tiles, so that each bath has a unique design, yet they’re also coordinated, she noted.

    Eric added his own signature to a guest bath, hand-crafting the vanity.

    The home has a total of five wood-burning fireplaces — three on the main floor, one in the primary bedroom, and one in the basement.

    The kitchen had been updated in 2003, and remains perfectly timely today, with custom cabinets finished in white, light granite surfaces, a Franke kitchen-sink faucet, and appliances by Viking, Sub-Zero and Bosch.

    The basement is partially finished, with a new floor in that bonus space. It also affords some storage space and a workshop big enough to accommodate a shop table Eric cleverly crafted out of an old bowling alley floor.

    He made a similar table for the pergola-topped patio, where wisteria flourishes and provides shade when the sun is high.

    Their family relished spending time outdoors, especially on the backyard patio.

    “It’s just so nice to sit out in the backyard and have nothing but a view,” Jayme said, noting the privacy and serenity.

    This property is part of the Hadlyme Historic District, and it sits across the street and south of Gillette Castle State Park. They’ve appreciated being steps from the park, which affords hiking trails and a small beach on the Connecticut River, where the couple enjoyed sunsets and wine from time to time.

    Back at the house, you can hear the distant sound of the Chester-Hadlyme Ferry navigating the river crossing and the whistle of the Essex steam train.

    “We walk from the house to the ferry and take it across the river to have dinner at the restaurants in Chester,” she added.

    It’s a mere 10-minute drive up the road to the private Fox Hopyard Golf Club.

    Geer Hill Road is a scenic route. “Just driving home from work is such a nice ride,” Jayme reflected.

    Property: 9 Geer Hill Rd., Lyme

    Bedrooms: 3

    Baths: 3

    Square Footage: 2,604

    Acreage: 3.0

    Asking Price: $949,000

    Sellers’ Agents: Joe Rhodes and Judy Schaaf, Coldwell Banker Realty, Old Lyme; Rhodes’ mobile: (860) 227-0921; Schaaf’s mobile: (860) 227-3688; joe.rhodes@cbmoves.com; judy.schaaf@cbmoves.com

    This charming and spacious bedroom is one of three at 9 Geer Hill Road. Photo courtesy of Coldwell Banker Realty
    The three-bedroom saltbox at 9 Geer Hill Road, Lyme, is listed $949,000. Judy Schaaf and Joe Rhodes, Realtors with the Old Lyme office of Coldwell Banker Realty, represent the sellers. Photo courtesy of Coldwell Banker Realty
    The house affords 2,604 square feet of interior spaces, including an open-plan design for the eat-in kitchen, dining and living rooms. There's bonus finished space in the basement, which would make a great "tavern room," the listing agents suggest. It has one of the home's five wood-burning fireplaces. There's also an expansive workshop in the lower level. Photo courtesy of Coldwell Banker Realty
    The primary bedroom at 9 Geer Hill Road has a wood-burning fireplace and a remodeled private bath with heated Carrera marble flooring. Photo courtesy of Coldwell Banker Realty
    The house was built in 1975, but with the character of an 1800s-era antique home. Photo courtesy of Coldwell Banker Realty
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