Our First Write-Up!

Today, we had a great write-up in our local paper, The Whitefish Pilot

New building brings urban flair to Railway District

The Whitefish Pilot

Matt Baldwin
March 24, 2016

Every space inside the Railway District’s newest addition is as unique as its setting.

The bright red three-story building at 22 Lupfer Avenue rises up over the historic mixed-use neighborhood. The gentle rumble of the rail yard is within earshot of the entry and the bustle of downtown is just a few blocks away.

Local ceramic artist and painter Sherry Spencer has poured herself into the project since it broke ground more than 18 months ago. Working with architect Duie Millette and builder Randy Scott, her designs capitalize on the Railway District’s unique offering of commercial activity in a residential area.

The entrance to the building features antique cobblestone imported from Philadelphia. Two commercial spaces at street level are available for lease, with one currently occupied by the Whitefish Aesthetics spa.

Four separate luxury apartments available for nightly vacation rentals are on the upper levels.

Drawing from her artistic background, Spencer put her own stamp on each of the rental units that are about 1,200 square feet.

The two rentals facing Lupfer offer vaulted ceilings, one-bedroom and one-and-a-half bathrooms, and a full kitchen. Balcony views are toward Big Mountain and downtown.

The rentals on the backside of the building are two bedrooms with one- and-a-half bathrooms, and a full kitchen.

A roof-top patio and garden offers 360-degree views toward downtown and the slopes on Big Mountain. Spencer has created a ceramic mural for the rooftop inspired by mythological themes of Winter Carnival.

Spencer has spent most of the past decade living in Whitefish and calls it her second home.

She describes 22 Lupfer as drawing from “urban” influences, and says the old Whitefish fire house served as inspiration. The project is her first venture into building design.

“I thought this would be fun, and it really was,” she said Thursday at the building’s grand opening. “It’s something different.”

She looked at a number of locations in town before deciding to build in the historic Railway District. She hopes 22 Lupfer expands and diversifies Whitefish’s retail sector and contributes to the town’s identity as a vacation destination.

“I hope with having the retail spaces it will bring in nice energy,” she said.

With the nightly rentals, she’s betting on Whitefish’s strong tourism industry.

“People say rentals go quickly here — I hope so,” she said.

Millette said working on the buildings was challenging and fun.

“We pushed the limits a little bit,” he said of the creative freedom allowed in the design process.

Visit online at 22Lupfer.fish for more details about the vacation rentals.