Meet Our Upper West Design Center Manager: Cynthia Kister

Ask Cynthia what makes a successful Design Center Manager and she’ll tell you it goes way beyond knowing color, texture, and composition. You also have to have an ear for design, which is to say an ability to listen, empathize and connect with people. In her own two words, it’s all about “serving and supporting” her homeowners, and putting in the work to understand their needs and desires on a deeper level. That’s how Cynthia takes her role to the Next Level at Upper West. Come on by and say hi.


Q: What gets you excited to come to work every day?
A: I feel very lucky because I definitely get to do the fun part of this business. Don’t get me wrong, helping people personalize their home and bring it to life with their selections and options, can be an emotional process. But when everything comes together it’s incredibly rewarding. People put a lot of faith in me to help steer them towards a vision that they will love. And that’s definitely what we’re going for here. Satisfaction is not enough. We want people to love their Miller & Smith home.
Q: What’s your best insider tip for enjoying One Loudoun?
A: I think people know we have a lot of great restaurants and shops, and the new Barnes & Noble and Starbucks are nice, but I like the little things that are truly geared towards locals like the farmers’ market. It’s a great place to bump into neighbors and mom-and-pop vendors from the area. Here at Upper West, we’re so lucky to front Central Park. I’m always amazed at how quickly you can get from the hustle and bustle of Downtown One Loudoun to a quiet bench in the park. It’s great.
Q: What’s your favorite design feature at Upper West?
A: Now this is a tough one because I really do believe these homes take architecture and design to another level in Loudoun County. It’s not one feature, it’s really Miller & Smith’s entire approach to home design. I love the mix of exposed-wood ceiling beams, steel-framed windows, and pale, wide-plank flooring. It’s layered and balanced, yet it creates a nice tension between rustic and modern that is really quite unique. The homes have an energy that you will definitely feel in yourself.
Visit Upper West One Loudoun today and tour 2 Next Level model homes just steps to Downtown One Loudoun. For more information, contact Mary Cochran at

Spring Cleaning in 1 Day? How to Make It Happen

There are many things to look forward to at your Miller & Smith home during the springtime: playing outside with the kids, firing the grill up, and longer days! But wait, we didn’t see spring-cleaning on that list! Too often, people think of spring-cleaning as a long, drawn out affair that takes days and involves too much stress. We’re here to let you know that spring-cleaning your Miller & Smith home can be done in just one day! Don’t believe us? Take some of our tips into consideration and we bet you’ll have a stress-free day of spring-cleaning ahead of you.



In order to be as efficient as possible, it is always wise to come up with a plan of attack. Figure out which rooms you want to focus on the most, and how long you will aim to spend on them. Now is also a great time to see what cleaning supplies you have and if you need to stock up on anything else. If you have kids or a spouse helping out, make sure that everyone knows their jobs ahead of time! Tip: if you have a family, give the most attention to the rooms that get the most use, such as the kitchen and great room. Plan out your spring-cleaning the day before you begin, and make fun checklist posters to track the progress!


Divide and conquer

There’s no need to fight over who is using the vacuum! While one person is using the vacuum or mop or anything else you may want to use, take the opportunity to do another task. Gather up all the trash from the trashcans, change a load of laundry, or wipe down the counters. You’ll get twice the amount of cleaning done in the same time period!


Be realistic

If you want to go on a marathon 8 hour cleaning spree, that is up to you! More realistically, you will get tired and be less likely to clean as much as the hours go by. Choose one or two really important tasks that you want to get done (clean the fridge, purge your closet, etc) and focus on those before you get to other things. Chances are, you’ll feel much better about spring-cleaning if you get your most important items done and out of the way!


Do everything in bulk

It’s easy to get side tracked by small tasks that pop up out of nowhere. However, if you focus on cleaning all of the same thing at once, it’ll be easier throughout the day. If you’re going to wash your sheets, wash all of the sheets from every bedroom as well. If you’re cleaning your toilet (no one’s favorite), then clean every toilet and get it over with. Tip: split up tasks between floors. Tell your partner that you’ll do all the bathrooms upstairs if they take the ones downstairs. Teamwork makes the spring-cleaning dream work!



There’s nothing like a reward at the finish line to make you cross it! For the adults that are spring cleaning, tell yourselves that if you get everything done by happy hour, you can unwind with a nice glass of wine or even a night out. If your kids are helping you, let them stay up late to watch a movie or go out for ice cream. And even if you don’t get it all done, that glass of wine is still a good idea!


Spring is not only great for getting organized, but also it is the perfect time to move into a brand new Miller & Smith home, so check out our website for more information!




Urbanfront and Parkfront Homes Designed from the Views In and the Rooftop Down

Ashburn, VA, (December 7, 2016) — Miller & Smith, an award-winning homebuilder and real estate development company, is pleased to introduce Upper West, Next Level Homes offered exclusively at One Loudoun.

A neighborhood of 69 new homes, Upper West is a first-of-its-kind concept for Loudoun County that offers homebuyers a next-level living experience with cutting-edge architecture featuring luxurious interior finishes, top-of-the-line appliances, floor-to-ceiling glass walls, in-home elevators, and smart home features including keyless entries and a central operating system.

The four-level homes from Miller & Smith offer over 4,345 square feet of open-air living space highlighted by natural light, sustainability, and a powerful sense of place. A 400 square-foot rooftop pied-à-terre sits atop each Upper West home, seamlessly merging indoor and outdoor living with unparalleled views that overlook the 85-acre Central Park and the Blue Ridge mountains.

Upper West is located in the heart of Downtown One Loudoun, where residents are steps away from shopping, dining, entertainment and local community events. Additionally, the close proximity to Route 7, the Dulles Greenway and Loudoun County Parkway, provides residents with easy access to Washington, D.C. and Washington Dulles International Airport.

“Our vision for Upper West was to blend the elements of classic elegance and contemporary lines,” said Dale Hall, vice president of operations at Miller & Smith. “The community’s unique attributes—an urban downtown blended in with a strong suburban area overlooking the Blue Ridge mountains—is unlike anything we’ve seen before in this market.”

The Grand Reveal of Next Level Homes at Upper West at One Loudoun will be in early January 2017 with the opening of the Next Level Experience Center in Downtown One Loudoun. These luxury homes will start in the mid-$800s. For more information on Upper West, click here or follow Miller & Smith on Facebook and Twitter.

Taking Luxury Living to the Next Level

Miller & Smith is about to take luxury living to the next level. Designed from the views in and the rooftop down, to live like nothing else from the ground up, these one-of-a-kind townhomes are exclusive to One Loudoun’s brand new Upper West neighborhood in Downtown. Both urban-front and park-front, all at the forefront of sophisticated home design unlike anything you’ve ever seen before.

Upper West’s Next-Level Living is located in the most sought after location in One Loudoun, perfectly interwoven between the urban edge of Downtown and Central Park. A location reminiscent of the brownstones that line Park Avenue in New York City or the Painted Ladies along Alamo Square Park in San Francisco, enjoy all of the peace, tranquility and amenities of the Central Park setting without sacrificing the instant access to the urban, cultural happenings of Downtown One Loudoun — shopping, dining, entertainment and more, are just steps from home.

One Loudoun is so much more than one thing. It’s everything you need all in one place. It’s an inexplicable feeling. It’s a confluence of culture and connectivity where everything works together in perfect harmony.

When you’re ready to explore beyond Downtown, the convenience of being at the intersection of Rt. 7 and the Loudoun County Parkway means easy access to Washington DC and minutes to Washington Dulles International Airport.

Upper West’s architecture is an unprecedented, cutting-edge, urban design. The open-air architecture fuses luxurious interior finishes with outdoor spaces by bringing forward every major living and entertaining space in a way that integrates stunning views of the park and even the Blue Ridge Mountains beyond. A 400-square foot rooftop pied-à-terre sits atop each home, larger than many studio apartments in the city. Inside, these stunning homes are up to 4,800 square feet with top-of-the-line appliances, elevators, walls of glass and extraordinary finishes requisite of inspired, sophisticated living. Prices starting in the mid-$800’s, The Upper West Collection by Miler & Smith brings Next Level Living to One Loudoun. Please visit for more information.