Wednesday, July 27, 2016

Celebrity Home Sale: Groucho Marx Slept (Joked?) Here

Arguably the funniest of the Marx Brothers, Groucho was known for his ever-present cigar, his crazy mustache and his potent one-liners (our fave: "I never forget faces, but in your case I'll gladly make an exception!). Adding "good taste" to that list wouldn't be out of place, judging by the casual elegance of this traditional style Hollywood Hills home he lived in throughout the 1940s and '50s. Of course, it's been revamped and updated since then, but the home's handsome bones are in full view, from marble-front fireplaces to window seats, crown moldings, built-ins and richly burnished wood floors (some herringbone, no less). Priced at $4.55 million (well, L.A. property prices are insane and this sits in the coveted hills just above Sunset Plaza), the 4 bed/4.5 bath house has 3700 square feet of unpretentious but elegant style; highlights include the kitchen's marble counters, humongous range, farmhouse sink and diamond glass fronted cabinets, as well as the sprawling master suite with large bath, office area and walk-in closet with a storage island (you know—for the baubles you'd own if you could afford this place). Outside you'll find a small but alluring backyard ringed by tall hedges with a brick patio, lawn and pool with waterfall and spa feature. You're gonna enjoy this one, so take a closer look HERE

Monday, July 25, 2016

Truly, Madly, Mid-Century in Marin's Mill Valley!

Just 15 minutes over the Golden Gate Bridge and nestled at the foot of imposing Mount Tamalpais, the laid-back town of Mill Valley is surrounded by hills, canyons and the redwood forests. "A Bay Area enclave that put 'mellow' on the map" is how Smithsonian Magazine described it, but don't let the post-hippie provenance fool you—this is one upscale hamlet, populated by laid-back millionaires and a sprinkling of celebrities (Bonnie Raitt, chef Tyler Florence, etc.) with real estate prices to match. Thus, the $1.595 asking price for this pretty property isn't surprising, even though that's for a 2 bed/2 bath 1400 contemporary just northwest of downtown. Built in 1951, the home's all light, bright and easy elegance with updates galore (note: can someone tell us the origins of those sublime kitchen counters?), a second story gallery overlooking the main living space, and walls of windows framing divine views of the surrounding hills. The outdoor spaces are even more impressive: a huge stone terrace, several side patios and decks (one beneath a leafy canopy, another with a firepit), and the unexpected surprise of a tiered garden complete with water feature, lawn and rose bushes. Would you be happy here? Take a closer look HERE and decide.

Friday, July 22, 2016

Foreign intrigue Friday: Beam Us Up Here, Scotty!

While we were happy to discover that real life doomed royal Mary Queen of Scots was born in the historic town of Linlithgow, we were thrilled to find out that Star Trek's favorite fictitious intergalactic engineer, Scotty, WILL be born here—in the year 2222! (A plaque commemorating this awesome event is displayed at the local Annet Museum.) Naturally, with the latest movie about the Enterprise's crew about to open, we went searching for a property in this bonny town that lies in the convenient green hills just 20 minutes west of Edinburgh and 30 minutes east of Glasgow. And, damn, look what we found!: a jaw-dropping 7000 square foot Victorian with sky high ceilings, stone and wood floors, multiple fireplaces, huge windows with interior shutters, arched doorways and some of the most ornate plasterwork and moldings we've ever seen. Although it retains most of its many vintage details, the 5 bed/3 bath home features pricey updates throughout (our fave: the kitchen, with a seriously ginormous Aga stove and unusual counter tops). The $2.4 million asking price includes 24 verdant acres with walled gardens, stables, courtyards and views of nearby Linlithgow Loch. Do yourself a favor and take a closer look at this property HERE

Monday, July 18, 2016

Mid-Century Modern Monday: Woodsy in Wasatch

Fun facts about Salt Lake City UT: it's the location of the first Kentucky Fried Chicken restaurant (!); the lake itself has an average depth of 13 feet and at 2100 square miles, is larger than the state of Delaware; and the average snowfall in the surrounding mountains is around 500 inches. So, obviously, this ski-happy city surrounded by white peaked mountains is where you'll find today's offering, a warm and woodsy 1961 MCM located just south of the city in the quiet, residential Millcreek area. Asking 4418.5K, the nearly 2000 square foot home has 4 beds/2 baths and lots of appealing original details like exposed beam ceilings and floor to ceiling windows (love the corner ones!), along with gleaming hardwood floors, updated kitchen and baths, spacious 2nd floor deck and attached 2 car garage. We're seriously enamored of the home's exterior spaces, especially the exceptionally private backyard with dining area, lounging patio, level yard and pretty landscaping. The fact that all of it, house included, is ringed by shady trees, just makes it that much more desirable. See why HERE

Friday, July 15, 2016

Foreign Intrigue Friday: Well-Heeled in Italia!

As much as we love a bargain, especially a European one, some properties are totally worth wiping out the bank account for—like this one! A former Norman fortress which then became the home of a Maltese knight in the 17th century, "Torre Pinta" is now a luxurious 4 bed/4 bath home on a whopping 12+ acres near the tiny town of Carpignano Salentino in southern Italy's Puglia region. (Far less touristy than, say, Tuscany or Umbria, the Salento peninsula on the eastern side of the country's "heel" boasts spectacular beaches, green hills dotted with orchards, and a sunny but temperate climate.) On the market for $1.95 million, the sprawling home has thick stone walls, limestone floors, vaulted ceilings, plus some of the most drool-worthy outdoor spaces we've ever seen—the ginormous solar-heated pool and many terraces within the walled courtyard leave us, as the Brits say, gobsmacked. Did we mention that it's surrounded by olive groves and has views of the nearby Adriatic Sea? Sigh. While we calculate the risks—and rewards—of bank robbing, take a closer look at this astonishing home HERE

Monday, July 11, 2016

Mid-Century Modern Monday: Pedigreed in Pittsburgh

One of America's many great, largely unsung architects, the recently-deceased Tony Stillson was born and raised in Pittsburgh, PA, attending school at Shadyside Academy and then earning an architecture degree from Carnegie Mellon. This 4000 square foot MCM style home, hidden away on 2 lush acres in the city's upscale Fox Chapel area, is one of Stillson's finest achievements, featuring ginormous walls of glass, vaulted ceilings, and original details like an eye-catching copper hooded fireplace and loads of built-ins. On the market for $1.1 million, the 4 bed, 3 full-, 2 half-baths home has the bells and whistles to justify that price, too: a master suite with two sitting areas, walk-in closet, private balcony and luxe bath with skylights; several outdoor areas such as a wrap around deck, stone patio, shady wooden deck, and lawns galore; and a lust-worthy kitchen with top o' the line appliances and stunning zebrawood and teak cabinets. Downtown Pittsburgh can be reached in about 15 minutes, the swanky Pittsburgh Field Club in about 5, and convenient Waterworks Mall in about 3. Sooo, like, what are you waiting for? Take a closer look at this awesome property HERE

Monday, July 4, 2016

Mid-Century Modern Monday: Stunning Bargain!

Hold on to your barbeque and beer, dear readers, as we interrupt your July 4th festivities for an extraordinary home that will dazzle you with its style and price! Built in 1961, this 2 story beauty outside of Cleveland, OH, was designed by the late, great John Terrance Kelly, the Harvard-trained architect behind many gorgeous organic MCM homes in Ohio as well as the fantastical 80 ton aluminum geodesic dome and headquarters of ASM International. Perched on nearly 6 acres of greenery, the 2200 square foot 3 bed/2 bath home features things like hardwood floors, loads of original built-in cabinets (including what looks like a rounded free-standing closet in one bedroom and unusual rounded wood-clad fireplace in another), concrete block walls, and glass walls absolutely everywhere. Yes, it probably needs some updating and/or restoration, but the fact that it's been so well-cared for is definitely a plus for architecture aficionados, as is the crazy-awesome asking price: $225K. Sooo, pick yourself up off the floor, call the bank and get to packing! Oh, and take a minute to see more of this remarkable home HERE

Friday, May 20, 2016

Foreign Intrigue Friday: Swede Dreams R Made of This

Two fun facts we discovered about the small town of Rönninge, Sweden: 1. there's a nearby, well-regarded science museum called Tom Tits Experiment, and 2. it's home to one of the leading all-ladies barbershop groups in the world, Ronninge Show Chorus, winners of the gold medal at the Sweet Adelines International Championship! Despite being a mere 30 minute drive from Stockholm, it's surrounded by lakes, woods and nature trails. All of which makes it somewhere we want to live, especially if we can do so from the confines of this resplendent 3300 square foot home, that comes with high ceilings, herringbone wood floors, stucco walls and details, paneling, bay windows, an honest-to-God tower room and several of those sublime tile fireplaces that you only find in Scandinavia. Priced at $1.2 million, the home sits on a half acre just yards from a pretty lake and while we can't tell you exactly how many beds and baths it has—cuz even our handy Swedish-to-English translator couldn't find that info—we suspect it's around 5 beds/3 baths. But who cares about such trivial matters when there's a museum just down the road to explore and show tunes to practice? See more of today's real estate crush HERE

Wednesday, May 18, 2016

Family-Sized With Vintage Charm in Pittsburgh PA

We're back in Pittsburgh, one of the hottest real estate markets in the country, for this splendid 5 bed/3 bath 107 year old Dutch Colonial in the quiet East End neighborhood of Edgewood. Asking $544.9K, the 3 story 4500 square foot home has a warm, cozy feel despite its size due to rich wood floors, high ceilings, leaded glass details, multiple fireplaces, big windows and some of the loveliest moldings and mill work imaginable. We're particularly enamored of the bright mudroom and a comfy window seat on the stair landing. Outside, there's a sprawling wood deck, detached 3 car garage and mature landscaping on the property's half acre lot. While the area is leafy and residential, the location allows you to walk to the supermarket, shops, beautiful Frick Park, and family-friendly Edgewood Club for swimming, tennis and things like bocce ball! The city's thriving Google hub is a 10 minute drive, University of Pittsburgh and Carnegie Mellon's campuses just 15, and you can be downtown in a half hour. In other words, what are you waiting for? Take a closer look at this awesome house HERE

Monday, May 16, 2016

Mid-Century Modern Monday: Close to the Clintons

The upscale Westchester County hamlet of Chappaqua, less than an hour to midtown Manhattan via Metro-North, has a friendly downtown with independent shops, a handful of solid restaurants and a quaint gazebo where everyone gathers for summer evening concerts. It also counts super fun couples like Ben Stiller and wife Christine Taylor, as well as Bill and Hillary Clinton, among its residents. Sound like your kind of place? Then we suggest this stylish 4 bed/2 bath 1960 mid-century modern, which sits on a whopping 6.7 acres with a pool, on the market for $1.44 million. While it's obviously in need of some updating—you'll notice there are no pics of the baths and nothing up close of the kitchen—we find the realtor's suggestion that you can tear it down and build new alarming and appalling. We heart the nearly 2500 square foot home's details—the brick wall fireplace, wood clad ceilings, full length glass walls, and built-ins everywhere—and hope the new buyer will, too. Take a closer look at this genuine beauty HERE