Hot House:  Scott’s Mill House, 1727 Western Run Road, Cockeysville, Md. 21230

Early American in the Quaker style, a three story, five bedroom, five bath, fieldstone farmhouse overlooking the widest part of the Western Run,  5,100 sq. ft.,  with new-built guesthouse and garage, landscaped gardens with pond, orchard and river frontage, 8.7 acres : $2.7 million

What: Historic home, built over a hundred year period, starting in 1770. This house has all the hallmarks of colonial-era architecture: wide plank pine floors, deep windowsills and lowish doorframes.  It has been impeccably and sensitively restored and modernized – it’s rare to see a house so old anywhere in such perfect condition.

Enter the center hall by either front or back door – both are equally inviting. Just one room deep, the house forms a telescope, with the oldest part in the middle. To the left is a cozy, well-proportioned living room with generous windows and a fireplace. To the right, vistas lead through the long, beamed dining room to the eat-in kitchen and on to a newly added sunroom. Kitchen has Viking range, Sub-zero fridge, brick floor and large adjacent mudroom/alcove. The sunroom has 180 degree views of river, pond and meadow, lots of wildlife.  Upstairs, four sunny bedrooms with plenty of closets and a master bedroom suit. Bathrooms are all modern. Outside, a new guesthouse and garage perfectly match the design of the old house. Guesthouse has another large bedroom and luxurious office/studio overlooking pond and meadow.

Naturalistic gardens link the house to the river, meadow, outbuildings, orchard and pond.  The rivers runs about 50 yards behind the house, visible through the trees. Owner is one of Baltimore’s favorite ice skaters — guess which one — moving to warmer climes. We will miss her, but she’s left a wonderful legacy in the restoration of this classic Maryland property.

Where:  If you’re looking for a real country house which is not a horse farm, this may be it. About 25 minutes from Baltimore, it’s an exceptionally pretty drive. Winding roads, horses, stone walls – everything you go to the country for. And proximity to Wegman’s.  83N to Exit 24 Butler/Sparks. Left off the ramp to Belfast Road. 1.6 miles then a left onto Tanyard. 1.4 miles, then left to Western Run. 1727 is on left, just past the horse farm.

Why:  Skating on the pond. Fruit from the orchard. Fish from the river.

Why Not: Ticks from the deer.

Would Suit:  Seeker of authenticity. Well, up to a point…

NB: No pool, but the river here is private (no tubing, no boating). Maybe you could swim in it?