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Compass T r av el ELITE ESCAPE With it’s sleepy history, culture-rich village, climate free of heat and humidity, and four true seasons, Firethorn is the residential community for South Floridians looking to escape to a unique second home just a day’s drive from Miami. TEXT BY SANDY LINDSEY Imagine driving from vibrant, sun-bleached South Florida to a mountain destination 4,000 ft. above sea level with endless views of in the Blue Ridge Mountains of North Carolina. That is Firethorn, a 150-acre gated community located in the quaint village of Blowing Rock, a town named one of the six best locations in the world for a summer home by Haute Living in 2014. The architecture at Firethorn is designed to exist in harmony with nature and offers breathtaking views of Grandfather Mountain and Flat Top. Hiking trails have been sculpted through the woodlands and around the cliffs, streams and meadows that homeowners share with local flora, fauna and wildlife. Homes range from 2,800 sq. ft. to 10,000 sq. ft. and reflect a modern splendor combined with the elegance of some of the oldest residences in the area built at the turn of the last century for the elite; FirethornBlowingRock.com. 34