At Home With Sheridan-MacMahon

Helen MacMahon.


It’s easy to be seduced by Middleburg, Virginia — the grand estates and horse farms, the mountain views, the history. How nice it would be, you think as you stroll down picturesque East Washington Street, to wake up to this every day.

The MacMahons know exactly how you feel. They live and work here too. Forty years ago, the matriarch of the family opened a real estate brokerage in Arlington, Virginia, and pretty soon was serving discriminating homebuyers from Washington, D.C., to Middleburg and beyond.

“This has always been a destination location,” explains principal broker Paul MacMahon, who along with his sister Helen, currently runs the firm. “But now, with the region’s accelerated growth, it’s even more desirable. You can commute to the Dulles tech corridor in about 35 minutes and — if the timing is right — you can get to anywhere you want to be in D.C. in less than an hour.”

But speed is not the major draw here. The pastoral cluster of towns in Sheridan-MacMahon’s trading area is known for its serenity and ease. “Once you pass through Aldie,” Helen adds, “your shoulders relax.” More important, strict conservation easements ensure that the landscape will remain forever pristine, untouched and underdeveloped; the “view shed” is protected in perpetuity.

Listings for the boutique firm “cover the countryside” and include traditional homes, farmland and commercial and equestrian properties. Every day is different and no two sales are alike. “It’s not a fast process. Sometimes it can take a few weeks, but in many cases it can take up to a year or more,” says Paul.

And every house has a story to tell — whether it has seen many owners (like Mount Gordon, which once belonged to a sister of Fred Astaire) or only a few (e.g., an estate once owned by John Mosby). “It’s not unusual for us to represent the same families, their kids and their kids over generations of transactions. We know them. We know their ponies and their dogs. It’s personal.”

In Middleburg, everyone may know your name, but privacy is paramount. “It’s a nurturing place to live, but you can be as social or solitary as you want to be.” It’s where people go “to get away from cookie-cutter communities,” traffic and the always-on life. And if you’re lucky, it’s where the MacMahon family may welcome you home.

Sheridan-MacMahon is located at 110 E. Washington St. in Middleburg, Virginia. For information, contact Paul MacMahon at 703-609-1905 or; or Helen MacMahon at 540-454-1930 or Visit the firm on Instagram at @sheridanmacmahon.

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