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Hope Glen Farm to build metro’s first treehouse suite

Early renderings of the Bushilla's honeymoon treehouse suite depict a multi-level lodge with a private deck and loft area. The couple is expected to begin construction yet this summer. (Submitted photo)

Guests of the historic Hope Glen Farm in Cottage Grove will soon have a lofty lodging option: a treehouse.

Owners Michael and Paula Bushilla were given the green light by the City Council last week to build an 800-square-foot, free-standing honeymoon treehouse suite.

“Oh my gosh, we are beyond excited,” Paula said. “We want to be the first place to offer treehouse accommodations in the Twin Cities.”

The inspiration for the unique suite came from Paula’s own childhood treehouse.

“My father built one for me when I was a kid and it meant so much to me,” she said. “And we built one for our son when he was younger and it meant so much to him. We want to bring that happy memory back.”

The honeymoon suite will be built on the northern back portion of the property and will have a number of amenities. Guests will have a full kitchen and living room, complete with a fireplace, a pull-down rope which will open stairs that lead to a loft, an oversized bedroom with a skylight, and a staircase that leads to a tower and private deck with a view of the Cottage Grove Ravine Regional Park.

“We are going to fill this treehouse with so much romance and surprise,” Paula said.

Along with the approval to build the treehouse honeymoon suite, the couple is also adding on to the existing corn crib. A 920-square-foot handicap accessible apartment will offer guests a full living room and kitchen, large bedroom and a “fun little loft feature,” Paula described.

The expansions come just two years after the operation was staring down foreclosure notices. However, Paula said when the word got out that the couple was in dire straits, one bride came to the rescue. She wanted the farmstead, which at the time was not a wedding venue, as her backdrop. The couple quickly worked with the city to secure permits and has been operating the venue ever since.

“We’re so grateful to the city and to the brides that want to make our venue part of their special day,” Paula said.

Last year, Hope Glen Farm accommodated 70 weddings. This year, there more than 88.

“(In 2015) every Saturday from May through October is booked,” Paula said. “And there are only seven Fridays left. We already have two weddings on the books for 2016 and we just had a showing for a wedding in 2017.”

The Bushillas said they expect to get footings in the ground later this summer so that construction of the treehouse suite and handicap accessible apartment can continue through the winter. Michael said he is optimistic that both will be fully operational by next May.

“We pay for everything as we go, so the timing might depend on the money,” Paula said. “But this honeymoon treehouse suite is such a great idea that somebody had to do it. And it might as well be Hope Glen Farm.”

Hope Glen Farm is located at 10276 East Point Douglas Road.