Jun 08, 2016
Rescue Mission

(LOS ANGELES) Daren Metropoulos is living every 1960s-era, teenage boy’s dream. A few years back, the man who once served as co-CEO of Pabst Brewing Company saved Twinkies snack cakes from extinction when he purchased Hostess. Now comes word that Metropoulos has bought Hugh Hefner’s Playboy Mansion. There’s a catch, though, that certainly dampened the enthusiasm of would-be buyers for the mansion with a reputation for star-studded, salacious parties: 90-year-old Hefner gets to live at the mansion for the rest of his life. It remains to be seen how long Metropoulo will have to wait to enjoy the legendary mansion with its seven bedrooms, eight bathrooms, a wine cellar, home theater, gym, tennis court and swimming pool partially covered by a man-made grotto. And by the way, the listing says the mansion is one of a select few private residences in L.A. with a zoo license. Explains a lot.

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Jun 06, 2016
Million-Dollar Mundane

(SIOUX FALLS, SD) A million bucks, though nothing to sneeze at, just ain’t what it used to be. Especially when it comes to new home construction. Browse The New York Times “What You Get” feature in its real estate section and it becomes quickly evident that the million-dollar home no longer carries the cachet it once had. You want impressive, it’s going to cost you quite a bit more. You know the million-dollar letdown is hitting home when they are writing about it in South Dakota, where it seems the million-dollar home is less of a wow-factor than it once was. Builder Jarrod Smart tells the Argus Leader that the difference between today’s $1 million house and a $2 million house is the level of detail. And, of course, rising land prices and the cost of new construction. The National Association of Home Builders reports the average sales price newly constructed homes is at its highest since they started their annual survey in 1995. Still, if you’re in the market for a luxury home, there are about 20 houses (including one on Willow Run Golf Course) in the Sioux Falls area listed for sale between $1 million and $2.8 million.

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Jun 02, 2016
Panoramic Views

(LOS CABOS, MEXICO) Residents at the Copala community, in the heart of Quivira Los Cabos, already had it pretty good. The luxury residential resort community is situated at Land’s End on Mexico’s Baja Peninsula, with more than three miles of pristine golden beaches, picturesque desert cliffs, and panoramic ocean views. Then there’s that oceanfront clubhouse at Quivira Golf club and the Jack Nicklaus Signature golf course packed full of oceanfront holes. But now they’ve added a new clubhouse, exclusively for residents of Copala. Conceived as a focal point for the development, the multi-level, 60,000-square-foot clubhouse, featuring sweeping ocean views, is already proving to be an ideal gathering place for owners as well as their families and friends. Casual but comfortable, the Mexican hacienda-style edifice offers an infinity-edge pool with hammock overhangs, a children’s pool with splash fountains, gym and spa facilities, a movie theater, a deli/market, a fire pit with flexible seating, a casual indoor/outdoor restaurant with sports bar, and indoor/outdoor play areas for children. A clubhouse concierge is on hand to take care of all member requests.

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May 31, 2016
The $19,500 Faucet

(NEW YORK) Music-playing showers, 3D-printed faucets, and wine stations that can keep a bottle fresh for up to three months are all on display at Pirch’s newest store in Manhattan. The retail chain sells luxury home and bath appliances in showrooms that let you try before you buy. And at lofty prices, who wouldn’t want to give these appliances a test run before bringing them home. Tech Insider reports that “like Ikea, the products at Pirch are organized into small, life-like displays, called vignettes. Most items on display — from the showers to the pizza ovens — are fully functional, so anyone can turn on the appliances, watch them in action, and imagine them in their own homes.” What might you marvel at here? How about a dishwasher that opens when you knock on its door or a one-of-a-kind ‘60s-style oven that took a French craftsman four months to paint by hand. There’s a tub that plays music and a shower system that shines colored lights, emits smells, and plays relaxing sounds. You’ll probably need those relaxing sounds after shelling out $50,000 for an oven or $19,500 for a faucet. Take a peek at the link below. 

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May 27, 2016
Cape Cod Open House

(MASHPEE, MA) It’s Cape Cod weather. If you need another excuse to head to one of the most popular vacation destinations in the country over Memorial Day Weekend, three fresh, maintenance-free cottage models at New Seabury will be open for viewing. The Cottages at New Seabury evoke a simpler time and a return to the picket fence charm of old Cape Cod, but with all the modern conveniences you’ll want in a home. The Cottages, with open light-filled interiors and welcoming outdoor living spaces, are a short walk or bike ride to New Seabury's beaches. They are also tantalizingly close to the community’s two golf courses. The Ocean Course provides spectacular views of Nantucket Sound and Martha's Vineyard, while The Dunes Course presents a tough inland test. If you go, check out the plans for the new Athletic Club slated to open in 2017.

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