Apr 20, 2015
(NAPLES, FL) The Dow average is doing wonders for luxury home sales around the country, including Naples where the Naples Area Board of Realtors gave their annual take on the state of the local housing market recently. And Naples, they report, is so hot it is about sizzle. Home prices have begun to rise above 2005’s peak prices and are stabilizing as well. Million-dollar sales and location are driving the surge. "Neighborhoods broken down by ZIP codes seem to make a lot more sense than when it's broken down by price range," says Cindy Carroll, vice president and manager of the residential division of Naples-based Carroll and Carroll Real Estate Appraisers and Consultants. "It's about location, not price range, it's how close you are to the beach, which drives your value." Single-family homes have benefited most, with condos (still feeling the effects of foreclosures) lagging. But as home prices continue to stabilize, they expect the condo values to come back.
Apr 17, 2015
Hot Tee Times
(WICKENBURG, AZ) Everyone loves swag. And golfers at Wickenburg Ranch’s newly opened golf course outside Phoenix scored well during the opening months of play. The course has sold out every available tee time since opening on February 7. During that time, Arizona residents can play golf course for $85 per player, including a free polo shirt and performance pullover. That promotion ends April 30, but from May to September, Arizona residents can play for just $55, and still receive the polo. The community's centerpiece is the Trilogy neighborhood, which debuted in February along with the golf course. Over time, the community is expected to include amenities beyond golf, as well as the potential for additional neighborhoods. For now, we’ll take the free stuff along with the modest green fees.
Apr 15, 2015
(SUNNY ISLES BEACH, FLA) If you’re the type who loves to bargain shop, the new trend in branding homes and condos with designer labels may not be your thing. But if you happen to be an international jetsetter with more money than you know what to do with, it seems you’ll happy pay a big premium to live in home branded with a haute label like Porsche, Armani or Fendi. From the Toronto Star, “For the designers and builders, the partnership offers dual rewards: The brands gain a revenue stream and enhance their caché. The developers and owners benefit from the allure of a treasured name and logo.” The concept certainly seems to have worked at Porsche Design Tower. Mostly sold out even though it won’t be finished until next year, the tower offers residents car elevators that “can whisk a convertible up 60 stories and then slide it into the owner’s personal steel-reinforced garage.” All without the driver ever leaving their seat.
Apr 13, 2015
A Pure Golf Experience
(BLUFFTON, SC) With two Tom Fazio core golf courses, a 45,000-sq. ft. Jeffersonian-style Clubhouse that inspires Gatsby-like visions of the good life, and a Golf Learning Center that encompasses over 30 acres, we’ve long considered Berkeley Hall one of the best private communities for golf. Even the wood and leather bedecked locker room, outfitted with every imaginable luxury, has been recognized among “America’s 50 Greatest Golf Locker Rooms.” Well, now, even if you aren’t ready to move here, you can enjoy a golf membership under their recently announced National Membership Plan. Available to non-residents, this Membership gives families unlimited use of facilities and guest privileges with no minimum spend. One very cool aspect of the membership is the Summer Reciprocal Program May 30-September 1) which lets you play some of the area’s finest private courses, including Long Cove, Wexford, Colleton River, Oldfield, Belfair, Secession CC, Chechessie Creek, The Club at Indigo Run, Old Tabby Links, Sea Pines Country Club and Haig Point. Annual dues will run $6,600, but right now they are waiving the $5,000 initiation fee. If interested, you can call Berkeley Hall’s Bob Ring at (843) 815-8423 to learn more. But don’t wait too long, as of this morning there were only nine spots left.
Apr 10, 2015
Spieth’s Spacious Mansion
(DALLAS, TX) “Turns out Jordan Spieth has great taste in real estate,” proclaims Dallas’ CultureMap website. Indeed. The 21-year-old Dallas native plunked down $2.3 million for a 7,378-sq. ft. mansion in the swanky Dallas neighborhood of Preston Hollow, home to Mark Cuban, among others. The massive home should have plenty of room for the bachelor. The listing for the home gives all the luxurious details: “Magnificent Old Preston Hollow beauty with exquisite amenities including … art niches in hall, arched doorways, two 12 ft. stone islands in chef’s kitchen, beautiful family room open to kitchen with views of pool, 288 bottle wine closet, media room, gameroom, 5 bedrooms have private baths, office with 2 story ceilings and paneled doors leading to computer work stations. Lovely master has private sitting area, fireplace and gorgeous bath." With only a half-acre of land, Spieth won’t be building a Tiger-like short game area. After the first round at Augusta, looks like he doesn’t need the extra practice anyway.