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Unique JeffCo Architecture: Historic Manor House at Ken-Caryl Ranch

Highest place within Ken-Caryl Valley unincorporated area, west of C470 • Owned by Michael Shinn • 303-973-8064


The historic Manor House is an American-Georgian, Southern-style mansion built in 1914 by industrialist and newspaper tycoon John Shaffer. It was built at the highest point of his 10,000 acres utilized for breeding Hereford cattle. Shaffer entertained dignitaries (including President Teddy Rossevelt) from around the world. He named the estate Ken-Caryl Ranch after his sons, Kent and Carroll. After the 1920s, ownership of the land and Manor House changed many times until Johns Manville Corporation acquired it in 1971 to build their world headquarters and develop a planned residential community.


After purchasing the Manor House in the 1990s, the Peterson family operated a restaurant-event center until Michael Shinn acquired it in March, 2006. Shinn plans to restore the historic 8,000 square foot mansion and add a 4,000 square foot rotunda on the north side to capture an extraordinary view of Denver framed by a saddle in the Dakota Hogback. He plans to build a heliport and restore the historic legacy of the mansion that entertained U.S. presidents and dignitaries. “I have deep respect for the Manor House. It is symbolic, perched on top of a hill. It represents the American dream of home ownership.” The 105-foot flagpole, originally battery operated, is said to be the tallest in Colorado. The assessed value of the property is $5.2 million.


Discovered photo - a 1917 Opera Party held on the grounds.


Many historic photographs discovered in the attic are now framed and on display.


Former chef of Jackson Hole restaurant, Larry Griewisch, is planning an “elegant local hangout” restaurant and bar. “We will bring hospitality back to the Manor House,” he said. “Guests can come in and enjoy a full course dinner or sit outside for a casual meal after playing golf, hiking, or riding horses. This is also a perfect place for weddings, receptions, family reunions, and business meetings.” The restaurant reopened October 3, 2006.


Shinn, a Wheat Ridge, Colorado native, completed a degree in business in 1969 and post-graduate studies toward an MBA in 1970. He developed the largest Century 21 franchise in the nation, with 400 associates by 1981. Shinn founded Insurance World and Red Carpet Corporations. He retired to Hawaii in 1986 and returned to Colorado to create Technology 2000. His entrepreneurial achievements have been featured in more than 100 publications in the past 20 years.


The second floor of the Manor House is now corporate headquarters for National Home Buyers Assistance, Shinn’s fast-growing, home-financing franchise company. It is a network of real estate investment professionals who offer a lease-to-own program for home buyers nationwide.



— Carole Lomond







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