Forget the man cave. Someone is about to become the new owner of a San Antonio-area home with its own Batman-worthy grotto.
Originally listed in July at $950,000, the home now has a pending offer after the price was slashed by $75,000 to $875,000. Aside from the four-bedroom, three-bathroom, 2,745-square-foot home, the property features a cave discovered in 2004 when the current owners were clearing the more than two-and-a-half-acre homesite. The home — at 24811 Creek Loop in the gated Seven Hills Ranch neighborhood, just north of Garden Ridge — was completed in 2006.
According to listing agent Lori Largen of JB Goodwin Realtors in Schertz, the owners’ cave adventure began after they noticed significant bursts of cool air were shooting up from a 1-inch-diamater hole in the ground. They later stumbled upon a second hole about three feet away and figured something must be lurking below the surface.
Subsequent tests conducted by geologists from Natural Bridge Caverns and St. Mary’s University, both in the San Antonio area, confirmed the existence of a cave.
Seven years later, in 2011, workers with a pool excavation company dug a six-foot-deep hole (the current entrance into the cave) where the blow holes were found. At that time, the entryway for a three- to four-foot-high, 15-foot tunnel was located.
In 2016, workers with an excavation company made the tunnel walkable by drilling through five feet of rock and connecting that tunnel to a 20-foot tunnel nearby, leading to the seven-foot-by-seven-foot upper room of the cave. The cave’s main room measures about 30 by 26 feet and contains nine-foot-tall formations. It’s suspected that a third room is located in the cave.
The most unusual formation in the cave is a floor-to-ceiling, curtain-like formation known as a parachute shield. In Texas, this kind of formation is thought to exist only in this cave and Natural Bridge Caverns. Other formations in the private cave include stalactites and stalagmites.
Caves in the area range from 100,000 to 2 million years old. The private cave, along with Natural Bridge Caverns and Bracken Cave Preserve — a 1,521-acre site north of Garden Ridge that’s home to the world’s largest bat colony — were formed by a collapse triggered when the ground shifted. Bats once inhabited the private cave.
Largen says the homeowners are “amateur geologists” who have taken advantage of the cave for “their own geological enjoyment.” They’re selling the property so they can move out of state and be closer to their daughter and grandchildren, she says.
While the cave is the star of the property — earning a coveted spot on the popular Zillow Gone Wild account on Instagram — Largen notes that more than 110 oak, magnolia, and mountain laurel trees stand on the fenced-in site. A huge Nature Conservancy-protected site surrounds the home.
“It’s like living in your own park-like setting,” Largen says.