Real Estate

For $2.3 million you can buy an entire village of Swiss chalets, nestled in the Rockies

The historic Golden, B.C., property offers mountain vistas at every turn and has been sitting on the market for 600 days and counting
Aaron Hutchins

No one currently lives in Edelweiss Village in Golden, B.C., but don’t call it abandoned. The property’s owners—descendants of the Swiss mountain guides who first lived in the community—still tend to the plants almost every day, despite this unique property being up for sale for nearly two years now.

The original six historic homes on the 50-acre plot were built by the Canadian Pacific Railway in the early 1910s, and a seventh was added in 1978. Now, the entire village, nestled between the Selkirk, Purcell and Rocky mountains, is up for sale.

“A lot of people are looking and saying they can make some pretty awesome Airbnbs,” says realtor Eddie Leigan. “Others are saying each member of their family can have their own house.”

There’s also a grassroots crowdfunding effort to purchase the property at 370 Ottoson Road under way: “Saving Swiss Edelweiss Village,” co-led by Vancouver-based historian Ilona Spaar, aims to preserve it as a historic site and cultural hub.

“It can be described as one of the foremost birthplaces of Canadian mountaineering in the Rocky Mountains,” she says. But even history buffs might find the $2.3-million price tag a bit steep.

This article appears in print in the May 2022 issue of Maclean’s magazine. Subscribe to the monthly print magazine here, or buy the issue online here