brandywine valley

Picture-Perfect Communities in Delaware

Montchanin_CourtyardMontchanin Builders is pleased to invite homebuyers to tour our picture-perfect Delaware townhome communities. From single family homes and estates to luxury townhouses and condos, the Montchanin communities have something for everyone.

If you’re from out of state and are considering moving to the area, you may be interested to know that Wilmington’s cost of living and average commute are both lower than the national averages. When you choose one of our affordable family home communities, you’ll love your beautiful, peaceful home nestled within a friendly community within easy reach of nearby attractions.

Darley Green

When you purchase a home in Darley Green, you’ll quickly realize that you’re getting much more than a house. Darley Green is a carefully planned community designed by lifestyle experts, architects, and landscape planners who meticulously arranged every detail – from the neighborhood gathering areas to the beautiful open views, to the tree-lined streets. Darley Green residents enjoy fine dining, shopping, and a recently opened, state-of-the-art Claymont Library within walking distance of their homes. Children growing up in Darley Green have a short walk to the prestigious Archmere Academy. Darley Green is also ideal for commuters; it’s just minutes away from I-95 and I-495, and it’s a short drive away from Philadelphia International Airport.

Shipley Road Estates

In its premier location within the Brandywine Hundred in North Wilmington lies the exclusive community of Shipley Road Estates. This Montchanin Builders community features luxurious single family homes. While modern in interior design, the stately elegance of these estates gives a nod to classic architecture. The flexible, efficient floor plans fit seamlessly into every family’s lifestyle. Shipley Road Estates is conveniently close to award-winning schools, shopping, and other amenities.

The Cedars

The single family homes at the popular Cedars community are the height of luxurious design. Perfect for growing families, Cedars homes are within the Red Clay School District and just a stone’s throw away from the gorgeous Brandywine Springs Park. Your new home in The Cedars can be personalized to suit your exact preferences. Choose the perfect stain for your birch cabinets and your new granite countertops. Choose from stately ceramic tile, warm hardwood, or family-friendly carpeting for your floors. Wake up at your cozy kitchen breakfast bar or relax under the gentle massage of whirlpool jets. Our customizable single family homes feature four bedrooms, two-and-a-half baths, and a turned two-car garage.

The Town of Whitehall

Montchanin Builders features elegant estate homes designed by the top home builders in Delaware at premier locations in Mapleton Village in the Town of Whitehall. The estate sites border spectacular views of nearby open spaces, including a pond. Our flagship home, the Salisbury, was designed by an award-winning new urban architect. The Salisbury features an open concept design with a gourmet kitchen, spacious first-floor suite, and upstairs recreation room.

With more than 60 years of combined experience, Montchanin Builders is your source for custom and new construction homes in Delaware. We are dedicated to providing unparalleled customer service to ensure your full satisfaction. Call 302.655.2600 to speak with a customer representative today!

Dining Options Abound in Wilmington & The Brandywine Valley

AmadaWilmington and the Brandywine Valley have long-been heralded for a rich culture, historic attractions and high quality of living. Brimming with expansive estates, grand theaters and quaint bed and breakfasts tucked amid miles of rolling countryside, this beautiful area has been a major trading hub since colonial times.

While visitors arrive in droves for outdoor adventures and cultural offerings, they’re also coming to experience the food.  The Wall Street Journal recently chronicled The Rise of Mid-Atlantic Cuisine, praising local restaurateurs and chefs who are staking their claim to culinary greatness. The region’s gastropubs, cafes and restaurants still showcase their local heritage, paying homage to bountiful fresh seafood. But diners are also treated to global fare and innovative twists on some of their favorite dishes (crab cakes or scrapple anyone?), prepared by talented new chefs.

Wilmington cuisine showcases creativity & passion

What sets these restaurants apart from the rest? For one, chefs shop locally and sustainably, sourcing locally-grown meats and produce from Delaware farms and waters, ensuring the freshest flavors of the season, not to mention a smaller environmental impact.

Farm-to-table traditions combined with modern culinary techniques are an integral part of many of these standout restaurants:

  • Ulysses American Gastropub – open for lunch, dinner and Sunday brunch, this Wilmington hotspot serves everything from smoked chicken wings to New England style lobster rolls and signature crab cakes heaped with tender chunks of lump crab meat. The star of their tempting brunch menu is their Scrapple Mac & Cheese – a rich cheddar fondue made with beer and crispy pieces of pork. Their draft beer selection is impressive, with a nice mix of hoppy ales, stouts and lagers from regional microbeweries.
  • River Rock Kitchen – Farm fresh ingredients reign supreme in this Riverfront restaurant that highlights produce and products from orchards and co-ops in the Mid-Atlantic region. Chow down on a perfectly grilled steak frites with truffle-scented fries, or savor steamed clams with hand-made lamb bacon, herbs and white wine. The menu at River Rock Kitchen includes a variety of small and large plates that are based on healthy, indigenous fare. Open daily for breakfast, lunch and dinner.
  • Home Grown Café – Tempura fried avocados, California Cobb salads and Power House wraps are some of the most popular dishes at this Newark haunt, which has won several awards for its inspired vegetarian cuisine. Their menu features homemade soups, amazing salads and some tasty non-veg dishes like braised lamb, Angus burgers and seared sirloin tips. Check out their weekly specials that spotlight the best in seasonal fare. They also have an awesome Happy Hour menu that includes favorites like Crabby Fries and Thai squash bisque with roasted pumpkin seeds.
  • Buckley’s Tavern– This popular Delaware tavern is a great choice for comfort food and cozy ambiance. Located in an old blacksmith’s shop dating back to 1817, Buckley’s serves much more than your traditional pub fare, and the owners are proud to support regional growers and farmers. Their menu boasts an eclectic mix of healthy salads, filling appetizers (panko-crusted onion rings, clam chowder, and roasted garlic humus to name a few), along with shrimp and grits, seared salmon and their special house made meatloaf served with gravy. On Sundays they even host a family-style Pajama Brunch, with a 50 percent discount for those who dine in their sleepwear!

It’s time to rediscover Wilmington

A vibrant culinary scene is just another reason why Wilmington is a great place to call home. Darley Green is one of the area’s newest master-planned developments, offering residents affordable luxury in the beautiful Claymont Renaissance District.

To learn more about Delaware condos and townhomes by Montchanin Builders, please call our sales office at 302-472-7213 or swing by for a home tour any day between 11am and 5pm.

A Longwood Christmas – Holiday Visiting Tips

longwood christmasFor a holiday outdoor experience like no other, Wilmington area residents flock to Longwood Gardens in Brandywine Creek Valley, where whirling fountain features, thousands of seasonal plants and sparkling snowflakes get visitors into the Christmas spirit.

The gardens, lakes and manicured paths are bedecked with a half million twinkling lights, making this a cherished destination for family-friendly fun and holiday cheer. If you’re planning to enjoy a Longwood Christmas with your loved ones this year, here’s a round-up of what you can expect and tips to make your visit more comfortable.

Exploring a Longwood Christmas

Visitors will be wowed by the holiday glitter and glow of the conservatory’s focal point: a 24-foot Fraser fir gleaming with silver tinsel lights and blown-glass icicles. Dance to your favorite melodies at the Open Air Theatre, where towering fountains are perfectly synced to traditional holiday tunes.

A stroll down the garden’s Meadow Boardwalk reveals a massive maple tree with shimmering roots, and the Conservatory dazzles with hundreds of trees dripping with icicles and fountain-inspired glass ornaments.

Longwood’s Display Design team worked extra hard this year to incorporate fountain-inspired displays into every facet of the sprawling grounds. The Italian Water Garden features a floating 20-foot tree form illuminated with thousands of lights, and a miniature G scale model train rumbles through the festive landscape to the delight of children.

This year’s holiday displays also feature a brand new fire pit at the Hourglass Lake Pavillion, open on Thursdays, Fridays and Saturdays. This is a cozy spot to sip hot cocoa and warm up after browsing the exhibits and displays.

Budding horticulturists will appreciate the garden’s spectacular winter blooms, which include Paperwhite Narcissus, Japanese Camellia, Poinsettia, Red-Hot-Poker and Scarlet-Plume.

Holiday visiting tips

A Longwood Christmas runs through January 10, 2016, and reservations are a must. Those who aren’t a member must purchase a timed admission ticket, which allows entry during a specific time.

Heed these tips for a hassle-free holiday visit:

  • Plan your arrival before 2:00 pm to avoid afternoon traffic
  • Go paperless and open your print-at-home admission tickets on your smartphone before arrival
  • Allow extra time for travel — rush hour traffic peaks between 3:00 – 7:00 pm.
  • Take advantage of free offsite parking that includes shuttle service to the gardens
  • Outdoor lighting starts at 3 pm every day and the fountain shows run non-stop all evening
  • Dress warmly for the winter weather
  • To enjoy some fine dining at Longwood’s 1906 restaurant, make advance reservations online.

Historic charm of the Brandywine Valley

The Brandywine Valley and greater Wilmington area are home to dozens of special holiday events and attractions that underscore the rich history and culture of the region.   If you’re planning to visit a Longwood Christmas this year and are considering a move to this vibrant area, we invite you to learn more about Montchanin Builder’s townhouses and condos in Delaware.

Whether you’re dreaming of a custom-built home or are looking for a move-in ready condo, our sales representatives are ready to assist. Call 302-655-2600 or contact us online at for more information.

5 Holiday Family Activities in Wilmington

Thanksgiving is fast approaching and the holiday season has officially arrived, which means extended school breaks for children across the country. Though it’s a time of general merry-making, food-filled festivities and long-awaited family gatherings, parents may be feeling a tad overwhelmed at the prospect of entertaining a house full of kids.

5 holiday break activities for the family

Fortunately, those who live in the Wilmington, DE area have nothing to fear, reports the Brandywine Buzz, which offers a round-up of 5 family-friendly activities for the holiday season. These cool and engaging holiday outings can spice up even the dreariest of winter days, and are varied enough to suit children of all ages.

Dino Days at the Museum

What child isn’t fascinated by all things dinosaur? This holiday season, the Delaware Museum of Natural History is hosting its popular Dino Discovery Days from December 27 through December 30. Every day explores a new dino-related theme, as kids investigate the rise and eventual extinction of dinosaurs, get facts and theories from expert scientists, participate in Dino-rific game shows and spend some quality time with modern avian relatives. Be sure to pack a snack or lunch, since there’s no on-site restaurant.

Ice skating at Riverfront Rink

During the holidays, Wilmington’s Riverfront Rink at Justison Landing Green transforms into a magical wonderland, brimming with thousands of twinkling lights, decorations and seasonal music. Ice skating isn’t just a fun winter tradition, it’s a fantastic way for restless kids to burn off some extra steam while getting some exercise.  The rink can accommodate up to 350 skaters and offers a cozy tent nearby, where families can warm up with hot chocolate. Skate rentals are easy on the wallet at just $8 per person and $5 for kids 12 and under.

Tax-free shopping at Christiana Mall

Everyone knows that Delaware is a haven for tax-free shopping, which is a welcome bonus during the gift-giving season. As always, the Christiana Mall will be hosting a slew of holiday’s children activities and events. Little ones will love some hands-on time at the train table or exploring the LEGO play area at Barnes & Noble. You can even reserve a visit with Santa online and avoid the long lines from November 12 – December 24.

Take a journey back in time

The picturesque Historic Houses of Odessa are a cherished destination for many Delaware families and tourists. Every year the village celebrates a seasonal tradition of interpreting scenes from classic literary works. This year, the houses will feature decorative vignettes inspired by Lewis Carroll’s, Alice’s Adventures in Wonderland. Enjoy this Newcastle County attraction, which is open to the public Tuesday through Saturday, from 10 AM – 4:30 PM and Sunday 1 PM – 4:30 PM.

Interactive science fun

The Delaware Children’s Museum has put the fun back in learning this holiday season. Situated in downtown Wilmington, this kid-centric museum features hands-on science exhibits and daily programming designed to interest and inspire toddlers through teenagers. This December, the museum will host an hour-long program on Winter Slime. Kids will explore the chemistry of goo, and make their very own winter version slime concoction.

Enjoy Delaware family fun year-round

The holiday season is a magical time to be in Wilmington and the Brandywine Valley area. To learn more about Delaware living at its finest, or for more information about Montchanin Builder’s beautiful move-in ready townhomes, we invite you to call 302-655-2600.

Favorite Autumn Destinations in Delaware

people riding canoe in Delaware RiverFor such a tiny state, Delaware carries a super-sized reputation among nature lovers for being one of the most beautiful states in America. Beach lovers of course flock to the 68 miles of ocean shoreline every summer, but every fall, Delaware reserves an extra special show for foliage fans.

Autumn aficionados love traveling through Wilmington and the Brandywine River Valley region where hundreds of pumpkin patches and apple orchards dot the hillsides with a stunning fall palette of reds, yellows, oranges, and browns. For sheer autumn spectacle, Delaware is near the top of every foliage hunter’s list of must-see states.

Scott Ciancio, Director of Marketing for the Greater Wilmington Convention and Visitors Bureau was kind enough to put together a guide to some of his favorite autumn destinations:

Delaware is known for its amazing city parks, and high on Scott’s list is the 100 acre Brandywine Park right in the heart of Wilmington. The Brandywine River runs right through the center of the park, and its banks make a perfect alfresco lunch setting for a break from the office.

Rolling hills, covered bridges and historic farms

If you like getting out of town, take an autumn drive down some of the prettiest roads in the Northeast on the Brandywine Valley National Scenic Byway. This is the land of rolling hills, red barns and silos, historic covered bridges, country estates, and of course, the gorgeous Brandywine River.

Aside from its city parks, Scott says to make sure to visit Delaware’s beautifully maintained state parks system. A great choice is Wilmington’s Bellevue State Park for hiking, horseback riding, biking and fishing under the canopy of splendid autumn foliage.

History buffs love autumn in the Brandywine Valley

For you history buffs, you’ll want to include a visit to Hagley Museum and Library deep in the countryside. Tour the DuPont Company gunpowder mill, the village where the workers lived, and the DuPont Family’s ancestral home. You’ll also want to stroll into the past down cobblestone lanes in historic New Castle, Delaware, a stunningly well preserved town of colonial homes, Federal-style mansions, and lush autumn gardens spilling over picket fences.

Enjoy the staggering beauty of Longwood Gardens

For a truly spectacular autumn show, be sure to make plenty of time for Longwood Gardens, a 1,077 acre public garden complete with soaring trees, meadows, fountains, sculptures, and a staggering collection of 11,000 plant species. Every fall, Longwood Gardens puts on an Autumn’s Colors display including the Thousand Bloom Mum, known in Japan as Ozukuri. It refers to a difficult and painstaking technique which originated in China for growing an extremely large Chrysanthemum, with a goal of producing the maximum number of flowers possible on a single plant.

Take a steam train through the countryside

For a special treat (that also gets you off your feet), the Wilmington and Western Railroad with its vintage steam locomotives, hosts an Autumn Leaf Special every fall. Go with a group of friends and family for either the 1.5 or 2.5 hour trip through the best fall foliage Delaware has to offer.

If you’re thinking of living in Darley Green, Montchanin Builders’ gracious master planned community in the Claymont Renaissance District, you’ll be among those who’ve chosen Wilmington and the Brandywine Valley for its exquisite multi-season appeal and endless seasonal activities.

To learn more about Delaware condos and townhomes by Montchanin Builders, we invite you to call 302-655-2600.

Memorial Day Weekend Happenings Around Wilmington

memorial day picnicTax-free shopping, picturesque state parks, fantastic wineries, and proximity to varied cultural and historic attractions are just some of the many reasons people adore Delaware living. The state is brimming with unique discoveries at every turn, whether you’re a nature lover, sports fanatic or history buff.

As the heart and soul of New Castle County, Wilmington is renowned for its world-class restaurants, corporate entities and performing arts spaces. By contrast, the nearby Brandywine Valley is one scenic country road after another, dotted with magnificent estates, botanical gardens and inviting spots for a weekend getaway.

Situated just five minutes from downtown Wilmington, the master-planned community of Darley Green has been growing by leaps and bounds as homebuyers take advantage of its central location and easy access to recreational activities. And with Memorial Day just around the corner, residents have plenty of events to look forward to!

Memorial Day weekend events

May 17 – Newark Memorial Day Celebration & Parade

Grab the kids and march to Newark’s Main Street for the annual parade and celebrations honoring our nation’s lost veterans. The event starts at 1pm and includes local and military bands, school drill teams and community organizations.

May 22-May 25: Memorial Day Beach Bash at Chaddsford Winery

Kick off summer with a bang at Chaddsford Winery with a fun-filled weekend featuring music, delicious eats (mouthwatering BBQ by Oink & Moo), ice cream and more. The festivities start Friday, May 22 with a rocking concert by Fair Trade. $15 admission includes one glass of wine. Bring your own picnic or enjoy one of many gourmet food vendors. Saturday and Sunday line-ups include performances by The MC Band, The Manny Trio and Alex & Shiloh. Don’t miss this extravaganza in the Brandywine Valley’s best-known winery!

May 23-25 – Memorial Day Camping Weekend

Get back to nature on a camping weekend at Lums Pond State Park, built around the state’s largest freshwater pond. The camping weekend promises plenty of paddling opportunities, music – and of course, a chance to set your tent up under the stars.

May 23- May 25: Brandywine River Museum Antiques Show

This Memorial Day event promises thousands of unique antiques from across the country. Browse glass, metal ware, rugs, fine furniture, ceramics, folk art and a variety of other English and American collectibles. $15 entrance fee includes museum entrance as well; all proceeds help support the museum’s Volunteers’ Art Purchase Fund. The show runs for 3 days from 9:30 a.m. – 5 p.m. 

May 30 – 2015 Wilmington Memorial Day Parade

Started in 1868 by New Castle residents who sought to honor those who lost their life in service, the Wilmington Memorial Day Parade has been a tradition for nearly 150 years. The parade starts from Delaware and Woodlawn Avenues at 6 pm continuing to the Civil War Monument at Broom Street.

Darley Green is all about location, location, location

If you’ve browsed condos for sale in Delaware but haven’t been impressed, we invite you to call or stop by to see the spacious yet affordable homes at Darley Green. Enjoy the look and feel of an old-fashioned neighborhood, but with all the amenities the modern homeowner craves.

Our model homes are available for viewing every day from 11AM to 5PM – swing by and discover for yourself what everyone is talking about! To speak with a member of our sales team, please call 302-655-2600.

Top 5 Spring Day Trips in Delaware

GPS Navigation in Travelling CarThomas Jefferson once called Delaware a “jewel” among the states for its strategic location on the Eastern seaboard. “The Diamond State,” as it’s nicknamed, is situated just a quick day trip from neighboring metros like Philadelphia, Baltimore, New York City, Washington D.C. and Atlantic City. Whether it’s tax-free shopping, enjoying the arts, outdoor recreation or house hunting, treasures await in Delaware.

“Some visitors love their day trips to Delaware so much that they decide to stay,” says Anthony Ruggio, of Montchanin Builders. “Our Darley Green neighborhood offers affordable townhomes and condos in a walkable community, right in the heart of Wilmington, Delaware — close to the waterfront and all the best Delaware day trips.”

1. Experience nature in Wilmington, DE

Hannah Doolin, associate editor at Time-Out Magazine, lists Wilmington, Delaware as one of the best “Spring Day Trips From NYC For Kids and Families.” In just two hours, New Yorkers can be touring the beautiful blooms at the Winterthur Museum, Garden and Library, which has several features for kids, including a tram ride and a “touch-it” room.

“Duck into the enchanting woods, listen for frogs by the reflecting pool and play hide-and-seek along the scenic wooded paths,” she advises. Next, a stop at Bellevue State Park allows for fishing and picnicking fun. Lastly, she recommends synching your trip with a family-friendly event like the Wilmington Flower Market over Mother’s Day weekend or the Great Delaware Kite Festival.

Distance from Darley Green to Winterarthur Museum: 20 minutes

2. Take a step back in time at Dover Days.

The Delaware Tourism Office recommends a May trip to Dover, Delaware. While historic walking tours are available all year round, history buffs won’t want to miss Dover Days, a festival that dates back to 1930. Walk streets lined with art while enjoying tax-free shopping, free musical performances, parades, maypole dancing, and a craft fair. The festival is capped with the Dover Days Pops Concert at the Schwartz Center for the Arts.

Distance from Darley Green to Dover: 1 hour

3. Explore history, culture and gardens with the Brandywine Treasure Trail passport.

The Brandywine Museums & Gardens Alliance presents access to 11 local attractions with a savings of $350 when you purchase the Brandywine Treasure Trail passport. Check out the world-renowned Wyeth family art collection at the Brandywine River Museum of Art and the largest collection of pre-Raphaelite art outside the British Isles at the Delaware Art Museum. View life-sized dinosaurs at the Delaware Museum of Natural History, partake in the wondrous 1,077 acres of Longwood Gardens, and much more!

Distance from Darley Green to Brandywine Valley: 15 minutes

4. Take a tax-free shopping trip at the Christiana Mall.

The Christiana Mall features a bustling Apple store that sells the most iPhones nationwide — not to mention robust anchors like Macy’s, Target and Barnes & Noble. Grab a memorable lunch at The Cheesecake Factory before hitting up shops like Armani, Williams-Sonoma, Urban Outfitters, Swarovski, or hundreds of other tax-free shops.

Other hot shopping destinations include Concord Mall and Brandywine Valley boutique shopping along the main drags of Centreville, Delaware City, Greenville, Hockessin, Newark, and New Castle.

Distance from Darley Green to Christiana Mall: 17 minutes

5. Hit the sand at Rehoboth Beach.

There’s always something to do at Rehoboth Beach, one of the nation’s “cleanest beaches,” according to the Natural Resources Defense council. May raffles and hors d’oeuvres kick off summer festivities. The Horseshoe Crab & Shorebird Festival provides fun for the whole family with arts & crafts and boat rides. Free concerts, bike rides, vintage car shows and beach bashes are featured all season long. Take your pick from the Rehoboth Beach events calendar!

Distance from Darley Green to Rehoboth Beach: 1 hour, 46 minutes

Save money in Delaware

Delaware offers relaxing recreation for visitors, but even more benefits – financial benefits – for its residents. State income tax rates are just 2.2% and there is never any sales tax. Furthermore, there is no inheritance tax and personal property is exempt. Taxpayers over 60 pay no taxes on their social security benefits and can exclude up to $12,500 in pension and investment income on their state taxes. Residents over 65 can exempt an additional $2,500 and make use of our many state property tax relief programs.

Add a tour of move-in ready townhomes and condos at Darley Green onto any Delaware spring day trip to learn more about the benefits of living in Delaware.