Bainbridge Island: Grimm’s Fairy Tale Estate


As we drive up the lane to visit this Rolling Bay Private Island Estate, I feel that dangerous, romantic drink-with-two-legs tingle that says these 5.57 acres with waterfall, pond, and cedar trees a-swaying could be mine. Bill is shaking his head. I’m just the driver, he mumbles patiently as I gush about the privacy and proximity to Rolling Bay services. This shingle-sided fairy tale abode hand-crafted in 1998 by island builder Bob Grimm has that I’m big but I’m not cheap big quality that cannot be denied. (The words “builder’s own home” are generally a plus in my book.)


The sitting room, with its lodge-worthy river rock fireplace with hand-carved mantle by artist
James Bender makes me want to abandon everything and sit like a blob with a cup of cocoa. I wonder if the listing agent has any Swiss Miss in his brief case. Would an elk head be wrong in this environment? Who cares that Bill and the tot are in the car freezing their tushies off reading Duck in the Truck while I linger by the crackling blaze! I don’t care that there isn’t any furniture in here either. It’s so darn cozy…all right…the rest of the house… (I’m amazed that there are any rocks left in Montana.) The family/kitchen/dining spaces showcase views of the property. The kitchen offers storage galore yet it’s not too huge. Lot’s of wood floors/wood trim in the house–for my money, Grimm went a little nuts with the flooring upstairs: one room has mixed wood floors that makes me feel like I’m in a can of Planter’s. There is a fun top story room they call an attic library–with a spiral staircase access–Bill questioned its lack of windows (why waste a third view opportunity?) but I envision this spot as a potential rainy day Barbie metropolis. Not wild about the laundry set up… I know chutes can be fun, people, but the basement level laundry room requires expedition gear to access. Looks like someone else didn’t like that either, since I see there is a hookup for a stackable in the master closet upstairs. Another perk: quaint old-style tub in master bath. This place makes me want to have a career do-over and learn how to create hunting-themed rooms and reupholster vintage ottomans. With the right financial resources (last year’s tax bill $8,666) and a lush decorating budget, this is my idea of a storybook Private Island Estate on BI.

11105 Hyla Ave. NE
NWMLS 26200587
4 br
3.5 ba
5.57 acres


  • Anonymous

    Please get your facts straight regarding this gorgeous Hyla Avenue property. On May 6th you wrote that the home did not sell and was place back on the market at a higher price and staged. This is totally wrong! This home sold on February 21st for 1,265,000 and unfortunately the buyer could not remain on Bainbridge and the NEW owner put it up for sale in April. It was not staged, the contents were the possessions of the new owners. I would appreciate it if you would correct the blog with this correct information instead of slandering this property and the people selling it. It is an incredible property well worth the asking price.

  • Anna

    I agree that 11105 Hyla is a fabulous property, in fact, one of the best properties on the market–beautifully built, in a gorgeous setting, as I said in both of my posts. Still, I was curious why? Why more $ for this house within such a short time? Thanks for offering your insight and clarity on the matter.