A Luxury Home on Lake Glenville

Have you ever lived in a custom home? Few luxuries compare to living in a home that is designed around your life, your habits, and your needs. Most custom homeowners find that once they’ve lived in a home specifically tailored to them, they have a difficult time going back to a pre-made one. One couple who found this to be the case is Gary and Kathie Gamble.

When the Gambles made the move from Montana to the mountains of North Carolina to be closer to family, they knew they wanted to build a custom home like the one they lived in out West, rather than moving into one that they had no hand in planning. Their research and design ideas led them to Sundog Homes.

Why Did They Choose Sundog?

What was it about Sundog Homes that made them choose us? “Trust and confidence,” according to Gary Gamble. He said they “Needed to [work with] a company that I could totally trust in two specific areas … financial trustworthiness and quality (not shortcuts). We achieved both.”


Mountain lots present unique challenges for builders, such as steep grades, erosion risks, and even finding flat surfaces on which to build. The ideal mountain home plan should take into consideration and work within the natural elements of the lot.

The lot on which the Gambles’ house was constructed was no exception and required a good deal of land planning and pre-construction work before it was ready for a 6,000 square feet house to be built on it.

Some of the pre-construction site work included building a boulder sea wall — a wall along the shoreline of their property meant to protect the shoreline from breakwater — because the home sits above Lake Glenville. Our team had to custom design an underground water drainage system for the home, as well. In fact, Sundog Homes did all of the land planning in-house to ensure that no detail of the difficult mountain build was overlooked – and that all of the homeowners’ needs were met, too.

The expansive back porch of the Gamble home offers a stunning view of the mountains and Lake Glenville, as well as plenty of room for entertaining.

Single-Floor Living in the Mountains

On top of the unique requirements demanded by the land, the Gambles themselves had some special requests. For example, a waterscape feature starts in the front yard, surrounding the house almost like a moat. It flows under the front walkway and around the back of the house with a series of waterfalls and ponds along the way. The Gambles wanted the primary living space to be all on one level, too. With 4 bedrooms, 3.5 baths, and nearly 6,000 square feet of living space, that was a pretty tall order with its share of impediments, so we had to be creative.

They brought us their own building plan, designed by Lucas T. Shad, the architect who designed their home in Montana. We worked with Shad through the entire process of building.

In addition to the main house and all of its custom touches, we also built the Gambles a guest suite above the garage. The suite is accessible via an elevator in the main house to a double-level covered breezeway that connects it to the home. Out-of-town visitors don’t have to rent a hotel room to get privacy, and we sprayed foam insulation to ensure guests aren’t rattled by garage noise.

The main living area of the home features high cathedral ceilings and custom brick and stonework.

“Outstanding” Results

Gamble said that Sundog’s “everyday on-site management of a very sophisticated building plan was superb throughout and their follow-up was outstanding”. We even met with Shad for site visits before, during, and after the construction of the home to make sure everything was on track, and everyone was happy.

In the end, they were very pleased with how their new lake mountain home turned out, and even more satisfied with the collaboration between Sundog Homes and the architect. Gary Gamble told us that he had found that “Most people who build in the mountains end up not liking their builder by the time the process is finally completed. We had just the opposite experience and would hire them again.”


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