Old Boice office closes its doors
For everyone at Boice Countryside Realtors, the closing of Boice’s Donner Pass Road office comes with mixed emotions. Agents and staff at Boice’s new main office at the corner of Northwoods and Northwoods in Tahoe Donner appreciate the cutting-edge technology and added space the new building offers; however, many of them also have fond memories of the smaller Donner Pass Road building.
Located at 11836 Donner Pass Road (at Northwoods Boulevard), the old Boice Realty office building was witness to almost 30 years of Truckee history. Dart Industries, the original developer of the Tahoe Donner subdivision, built the Donner Pass Road office in 1974 to serve as a sales office for the 6,100 undeveloped home sites originally available within the subdivision.
In 1985, Boice Countryside took over the building after Dart had sold most of the properties in Tahoe Donner. Since that time, Boice has built a reputation as one of the strongest real estate agencies within the subdivision, and according to agent Don Schaller, Boice Realty currently has between a 40-50 percent share of the Tahoe Donner market.
Schaller worked in the old Donner Pass Road office from 1990-2000, and he says there are some things he misses about the atmosphere there:
“There was a feeling of camaraderie and kinship down there,” Schaller said. “When you separate out like we are here, you lose some of that … It was like we were a family. The philosophy is still here, but it was originated down there.”
Approximately 26 agents and staff occupied the old office whereas there are now 38 people working in the new building.
Becky Kerton is another agent who spent time in both facilities. “It was just a real exciting office because roads were getting paved, power lines were going in … It was just a really bustling little office,” she said of the first time she stepped into the Donner Pass Road office in 1979.
Kerton, who began working under the Boice umbrella in 1996, said that the circular layout of the old building fostered a lot of interaction between agents, staff and customers. She thinks that some of that interaction has been lost with the new setup, but she doesn’t miss the days when plugging in her portable heater would short-circuit the building’s power supply, causing everyone’s computers to shut off.
“This office is special because of the friendships that are here. And that has remained constant in both offices,” Kerton said.
Bill Whitehead, an owner and broker at Boice Countryside Realtors, is proud of Boice’s new main sales office. He too remembers the early days of the agency as an exciting time, and feels fortunate that Boice was able to take over the original Dart sales office on Donner Pass Road and play a role in shaping the Tahoe Donner subdivision into the resort community it is today.
“I feel very lucky to have the opportunity to understand the vision Lake World and Dart Resorts had for Tahoe Donner. It is an exceptional experience to have a full understanding of what they had in mind and to see the dream fulfilled,” Whitehead said.
Despite the memories that remain with the old building, Whitehead knew that the agency needed a larger, more modern office to continue to grow and to provide the level of customer service they offer.
As Don Schaller put it, “That which started as a seed down there has grown into what we are today.”
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