A dome home is rare. A double dome house is even rarer.
And it's not often one hits the market, hence the buzz around — and the curiosity to look inside — the engineering and architectural marvel known as the "Double Domes" home near Bryant Park in Eden Prairie.
Accessible from a long driveway and tucked behind trees, the expansive, 8,050-square-foot, six-bedroom, five-bathroom home sits on 2 acres of green space.
Not only is the double geodesic dome home something to behold structurally, but it's also a playhouse of sorts that includes indoor and outdoor slides.
"We just thought it was fun for our kids to live in an outside-the-box home. We kind of say this place is part 'Alice in Wonderland,' " said homeowner Sarah Kallal.
Listing agent Jason Zoellner said the home is two worlds colliding at its best.
"You'll have a room such as this front room with this elegance and architecture. Then right outside there's a slide," he said. "It's elegance and fun all in one house."
Sarah and her husband are the third homeowners.
The home was built in 1977 by doctors Gail and Roger Farber, who were fans of domed homes and decided to build two that connected.
Geodesic dome homes, touted for their energy efficiency and sturdy structure that can withstand extreme weather, were introduced in the United States in the 1950s. The style of home grew in popularity in the decades to come.
The Farbers' unique multistory, duo spherical structure, each emitting 360 degrees of natural light, even sparked the interest of Buckminster Fuller. The renowned American architect credited with popularizing the geodesic dome visited the abode.
When renovating, the Kallals wanted to update the beige and brown exterior as well as make contemporary upgrades with earth-friendly design choices.
Walk through the home and it's clear Dome One is the more composed part of the house.
It's the dome that houses the dining area and open kitchen with updated appliances, including a double oven. Oddly sized and shaped windows dot those rooms, as well as the rest of the home.
Within that dome is also a contemporary living room with a three-sided wood-burning fireplace. With its sizable, hexagon-shaped windows, it's Sarah's favorite room in the house.
"The formation and the windows allow us to be so close to nature. You can see deer, foxes and birds," she said.
Upstairs, the owners' suite features French doors and a walk-in closet. Look up, and skylights allow for sleeping underneath the stars and then waking up to clouds floating across the sky and birds zooming past. The en suite includes a European soaking tub. Just beyond, the Kallals took the flat roofline connecting the two domes and converted it to a walkout treetop deck. It's one of several outdoor decks on the property.
"It's become a place to do yoga, a place to chill," said Sarah. "In the fall, you can enjoy looking at the trees that turn these golds and yellows."
Focus on fun
Dome Two is all about fun and whimsy.
The second floor houses the kids' bedrooms, with plenty of windows for taking in nature as well as nooks and crannies for play. Each of those rooms has an upper loft with access to a tunnel that loops into a full circle around Dome Two — a play feature Sarah and her husband, who are entrepreneurs, came up with by blowing out storage walls.
"We play hide and go seek here like no other place," Sarah said.
Access to the ground floor amusement room can be made by way of a yellow spiral slide. (There's also a stairwell.)
There are two slides in the home, one leading to the amusement room and another that starts from atop a second-story deck and ends in the yard.
The Kallals came up with the slide idea.
"We just have these imaginations that make us feel there are different ways to do something," Sarah said. "We just think there's got to be more than one way to get from one place to another."
The amusement room also features a small stage for talent shows, an arcade-style basketball game and a kitchenette. Also on the ground floor is a home movie theater accessible via a secret entrance. A mini-golf course, a pingpong table and a workout area also allow for plenty of activities.
Outside, there are more options for activities as well as taking in nature. Amid towering trees and plenty of greenery, hostas, lilies, ferns, bleeding hearts and black raspberries line a paved walkway. The property also features a waterfall, stream and frog pond with lily pads.
"The [previous owners] planted perennials. So it's nice that you don't have to do anything and things still come back every year," Sarah said, adding that the property has access to well and municipal water. So, for things like running the stream and watering the plants, which run from the well, there are no costs involved.
Room for get-togethers
As far as gathering spaces, there's a grill area, patio, tiki bar, fire pit and lounge areas.
Of course, the property wouldn't have the Kallals' stamp on it if there weren't spaces to play.
After Sarah demonstrated how to shoot across a 200-foot zipline she had installed last summer, she highlighted a giant trampoline with a basketball hoop and ninja monkey bars in the yard.
As fun as it's been for the Kallals to live in the Double Domes home, they haven't spent as much time there as they used to. The past few years, they've been renting the place for events such as family reunions as the couple and their kids, ages 7 to 10, have spent more time at their other home in New Prague, where they've decided to settle permanently.
"This place will always have a piece of my heart. But we have four kids, and I want to spend as much time with them as I can," Sarah said.
She said the ideal homeowner would be someone who appreciates the uniqueness of the property.
"There's such a creative and unique vibe. It's not for everybody," Sarah said. "There are people who like this and think it's great, but would never want to live here. Others come and say, 'I never want to leave.' "
She added that it's a great place to raise a family, noting that the two previous homeowners also had four children. "It's great for kids. You know they're always doing something that is using their imagination."
Jason Zoellner (JasonZoellner@edinarealty.com; 612-900-6626) and Carrie Ledermann (CarrieLedermann@edinarealty.com; 952-237-8893) have the $3 million listing.