SACO – The private drive to this property on the Saco River is quietly dramatic – long, and closely lined with trees. It heightens expectations. They are not disappointed.

Revealed before you, on an acre-plus lot that seems larger, is a wonderful retreat; a family compound, if you like; an ideal venue for entertaining, and also for events (several good-sized weddings have been held here).

Established in 1980, when you could build much closer to the water than is permitted now, the property has rare qualities. One mile downriver from open-ocean access, it’s a boater’s paradise with 355 feet of frontage, and features a 285-square-foot “boathouse” that extends out over the water.

The boathouse is nicely finished as a three-season sunroom, with a porch; a cathedral ceiling; lightly pickled woodwork, and walls of glass that provide gorgeous views up, down, and across the river, where no houses can be seen. To one side of the boathouse is a large, waterside inground pool, surrounded by a huge patio overlooking the river and the passing boat traffic.

The clapboarded, cottage-style home – spacious at 4,302 square feet that includes 700-800 feet in a finished basement that has both a full bath and a kitchen – is designed to maximize enjoyment of the beauty of the setting. The main level is open-concept, with an updated kitchen (quartz counters, butcher block island, gas range, stainless French door fridge) that flows into a dining space, an extended living room with a gas stove, and a delightful sun room.

The first-floor has a cool office/den leading to a master suite that makes single-level living an option. Upstairs, there’s a central sitting room with a big bedroom, each with a full bath and a walk-in closet, on either side.

A key bonus: Above the detached two-vehicle garage is a well-appointed studio apartment that is perfect for guests/in-laws. It overlooks the river and can be rented for significant income.

The property at 551 Ferry Road, Saco, is listed for sale at $1,251,000 by Charlene Weinstein of Charlene’s Coastal Properties in Old Orchard Beach. Please contact Charlene at 207-937-8084; 207-632-3284; or at [email protected].