architecturally speaking

Architecturally Speaking: Living Large in Lake George


For forty years, a five-acre parcel positioned amidst the majestic mountains along the glistening waters of Lake George was enjoyed by countless people as the home of the Diamond Village Resort. 

The new owners of the property, the Rutherford family, knew they were going to have big shoes to fill. What they’ve created here exceeds expectations. 

“I just love the way it looks. It’s got every space I could ever want in it,” said Joan Rutherford. 


The property, which once accommodated a small nine-room hotel, a row of 28 cabins, and includes the mountain across from it on Route 9, is now home to the Rutherford family compound. 

Those aging buildings were removed and two houses were constructed here instead; one belonging to Mike and Joan Rutherford, and the other to Paul Rutherford, to create a destination where the family and friends can gather together. 

Denise Palumbo, co-owner of Plum & Crimson, designed the Rutherford’s 9,800 sq. ft. structure with an eye towards the substantial presence of its location incorporated into every detail.  


A 30 ft. wall of windows takes in every inch of the extraordinary views that are the hallmark of this two-story, 5-bedroom, 9-bath log home. 

The huge beams overhead and the large 8-inch-wide pine boards paneling the walls were arrested during turning and finished to preserve their light color, adding even more airiness throughout the open floor plan. 

A crane lowered in the giant 12 ft. long, 2,000 lb. slab of stone sitting at the base of one of the home’s two indoor fireplaces.  Rectangles of slate travel from the hearth to the ceiling, creating a refreshing symmetry of clean lines that balances the rustic with the modern in a way that is pleasant instead of overwhelming. 

“In each choice, I was mindful of this home’s location, so everything has weight to it,” said Palumbo.


Natural elements are combined with a color scheme and flowing features that evoke the outdoors.

In the foyer, a table has been crafted from petrified wood. There are fossils embedded into the kitchen countertop, a custom mural painted above the stove, and a live-edge dining table that seats 12.


Entertaining is easily extended outdoors and onto the patio with its dual fireplace and pizza oven.

As lovely as it is, this home is also practical. Motorized screens lower to keep out the bugs and chairs are covered with performance fabrics that resist water from wet bathing suits. 


The bedrooms are affectionately named for local outdoor destinations including Lily Pond Pad, Stepping Stone Creek, Bubbling Falls, and Shelving Rock Falls. Each features a complementary bathroom, built-in shelving, and one houses four murphy beds for additional visitors.

The lake house isn’t purely for summertime fun. In the cooler months, the family enjoys hiking, ice skating, and skiing.

“I’m very happy with the window seats we have now, instead of the balconies we were considering. I can sit there in the winter, read, and watch the snow falling,” said Joan.


The holiday décor that Denise chose for the Rutherford home continues to carry this feel of the outdoors inside.

The immense 8-inch ornaments won’t get lost on their lush 14-ft. tree. Pheasants, deer, and skiers live amongst evergreens and pinecones. The contrast of the snow on the lake is mirrored with glittering white bows and cozy stockings are paired with blue velvets and plaids for a coordinated look.

The custom iron branch banister upstairs offers the ideal spot to take it all in.

Here hangs a salvaged Diamond Village Resort sign, a reminder of the history of this lovely location on the shore of
Lake George, as well as how the tradition of sharing family fun will continue into the future.

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