Thursday, January 29, 2015

Hearth and Soul in San Bernadino County, CA

Seventy miles east of Los Angeles, the small city of Redlands is home to some of the state's most impressive late 19th century mansions and buildings, including the Smiley Library, an Moorish styled beauty built by twin brothers Alfred and Albert Smiley. And the reason we mention this is because this lovely 4 bed/3 bath home is in the city's Smiley Heights, a safe neighborhood with excellent schools that sits on a 200 acre tract that the brothers originally owned. Built in 1949, the pretty home has 2600 square feet of living spaces featuring hardwood and Spanish tiled floors, cozy living room fireplace, crown moldings, and an updated kitchen with quartz counters, attractive green-blue cabinets and breakfast bar plus adjacent formal dining room. The $599K asking price includes nicely landscaped .34 acre lot, separate 3 car garage with large workshop and several outdoor spaces including a divine, vine-draped covered outdoor patio. All things considered, we're positive that we'd be happy here, but today is all about you, so take a closer look here and see if this house rings your bells!

Wednesday, January 28, 2015

The Wasatch Wow Factor: Park City, Utah

Today, we've decided that if we can't beat 'em, we'll join 'em, meaning that if we have to endure piles of snow and freezing temps, then we'd much rather do so from a perch in the mountains that surround Park City, home of the Sundance Film Festival (currently running) and one of the world's best ski resorts. On the market for a rather reasonable (around here, that is) $2.895 million, this spacious 6100+ square foot contemporary—which includes 2.6 acres of privacy—is a refreshing discovery in ski country, in part for what it doesn't have: hordes of stuffed animal heads on the walls, Navajo-style rugs on the floor and furniture made out of horns. What the luxe 5 bed/5.5 bath home does have are things like soaring ceilings, airy multi-tiered living spaces, a daringly delicious lime green lacquered kitchen, spacious screening room with comfy red leather seats, master bath with granite tub and matching sinks, and so many fireplaces that the joint practically glows at night (we're especially fond of the one next to the hot tub outside). And we haven't even mentioned the radiant heat floors, 4 car garage, many decks, balconies and patios or the walls of glass that frame heart-stopping views. What more can we say except you'd better take a closer look at it all hereor else!

Tuesday, January 27, 2015

Historic Charmer for Heat Seekers in South Florida

We're up to our eyeballs in snow drifts, so the fact that it's in the low 70s today in West Palm Beach makes us want to pack up the pets and head south immediately! We're especially besotted with this revamped 4 bed/4.5 bath 1922 craftsman style bungalow in pretty Grandview Height, a centrally located neighborhood listed on the National Register of Historic Places. Asking $595K, the 2300 square foot home has been nicely updated (see the kitchen and baths), but has loads of original features like saltillo tiled floors, beamed ceilings, fireplace buttressed by built-ins, and burnished pine floors. The home actually includes a 2 bed/1 bath cottage with its own kitchen—perfect for that adult kid who's still sponging off the parentals, or well-behaved guests (like us—and, yes, we would love to come for a week at the end of February, thanks!). The property's many outdoor spaces are abundantly verdant and it's within walking distance of the fabulous Norton Museum, Florida's largest art museum and home to a spectacular Dale Chihuly glass ceiling. So: take a whiff of Bain de Soleil (or Coppertone, your call), grab your shades and then take a closer look at this home here

Monday, January 26, 2015

Mid-Century Modern Monday: Palm Springs or Bust!

There are few bargains in Palm Springs, the desert town less than 2 hours east of Los Angeles that's become a coveted second home destination for Hollywood types who like to say that they need the quiet, but know that gourmet dining and star-studded hot spots are close at hand. At $1.195 million, we wouldn't exactly call this home a deal, but it is extraordinary: a 4 bed/3.5 bath Alexander original (the Alexander Construction Company are responsible for hundreds of mid-century beauties in the area) from 1959, with a lusciously landscaped .3 acre lot that includes several patios, hot tub and pool. The interiors of the bright 1900 square foot home have been extensively renovated, so along with original features like the stone fireplace and beamed ceilings, there's a swanky new kitchen with quartz counters and steel appliances. Situated in the coveted Vista Las Palmas neighborhood—where legends like Marilyn Monroe, Dean Martin and Debbie Reynolds once owned homes—there are ravishing views of the San Jacinto Mountains nearly everywhere you look. See more here before some flush TV producer snaps it up.

Friday, January 23, 2015

Foreign Intrigue Friday: Mountainside in Japan!

In honor of one of our loyal readers who's holidaying in Japan (moshi moshi, Miss Kate!), today's offering is in that far off land, but instead of a multi-million dollar high rise in Tokyo, we headed high into the mountains near Nagano. While it overflows with blooming alpine flowers during the summer, the snow here averages 100+ inches between December and March, making the area ground zero for those who like to ski, snowshoe and skate. (It's also where you'll find real live snow monkeys, like the kind you see bathing in rocky hot springs on the pages of National Geographic!) Priced at $800K, this 3150 square foot wood cabin overlooking Chikuma Valley—which looks like something you'd find in Colorado—has 4 beds/2 baths and magnificent views. Just imagine coming in from a cross-country trek and having a little sake in front of the wood-burning stove while watching the sun set. Pure shifuku! Take a look at this house here

Thursday, January 22, 2015

Western Bling: Splashy Splurge-Worthy Spread in San Antonio

Answer: Six Fortune 500 companies, River Walk, Six Flags Fiesta Texas, historic missions, Randolph Air Force Base, the Spurs and the Alamo. Question: What are just a few of the things San Antonio has to offer? This thriving city in south-central Texas shows no signs of slowing down, either, with a steady influx of new residents taking advantage of a growing economy. If you're lucky enough to have a really good job there—or an offer of one—we suggest that you consider snapping up this spectacular 1934 French Chateau style manse in upscale Olmos Park just north of downtown. Priced at $2.85 million, the 8200 square foot home sits on a leafy .6 acre lot with pool and gardens and has enough room for a large family with 5 beds, 5 full- and 2 half-baths. We could rhapsodize about nearly every square inch of this property, but we'll confine our hysteria to a handful of our favorite things: wide arched doorways; endless pale stone floors; ginormous retro-industrial style kitchen; curving dark wood stairs alongside vintage-looking iron rails; tranquil pool with what appears to be an architecturally matched pool house. Buyers, take note: the current owners have sensational taste in art and furniture, so a concerted effort to negotiate some of it is strongly advised. Now, take a closer look at the home we're seriously obsessed with here

Wednesday, January 21, 2015

Southern Comfort: Country Living, City Adjacent

We adore a pretty property, especially when it's well-priced and well-located. Like, say, this one: An updated 2400 square foot '70s house perched above its own pond (perfect for summer swimming), with separate studio (including bath and kitchenette), workshop, garage, extensive gardens with two koi ponds and gazebo on nearly 13 acres of lush green land a mere 20 miles east of the thriving metropolis of Charlotte, North Carolina...OMG, we have to pause to catch our breath here...priced at a—are you ready?—ridiculously reasonable $400K! While the current owner's decor is a tad, er, fussy for our taste, a little paint (the burnt orange living room and cobalt dining room have to go) and de-cluttering (Too. Much. Wall art.) will let the airiness of the sunny, high-ceiling'd rooms breathe. After that, we'd need only retro-fit the chicken coop (too many feathers, not enough cute) for our heretofore imaginary herd of adorable pygmy goats in order to find bliss. But enough about us!see if your future happiness awaits you here

Tuesday, January 20, 2015

Timeless Tudor Tuesday: A Dutchess County Delight

Surrounded by horse farms, orchards, winding scenic roads and over 30,000 acres of preserved land, the handsome village of Millbrook in upstate New York is a haven for 1500 well-heeled and well-bred souls (among them: Liam Neeson, Katie Couric and fashion mogul Massimo Ferragamo). And you could become part of this exclusive, close-knit community simply by scooping up this splendid 1902 stone and shingle Tudor, which comes with 14.5 acres, a pool, pond and—of course—a stable! The 7 bed/5.5 bath 8200+ square foot main house (which doesn't take into account either the carriage house or the caretaker's cottage) may not have the classic exposed timbered ceilings we've come to expect in a Tudor, but it does have lots of other things to love like ornately detailed 11 foot high ceilings, richly carved woodwork, leaded glass windows, window seats and more fireplaces than we could count. Although it's just 90 minutes from Manhattan, this property couldn't be further away from the madness of midtown. Take a closer look at it here

Monday, January 19, 2015

Mid-Century Modern Monday: Pedigreed in Phoenix

Known for his sleek steel and glass designs that brought desert modernism to Arizona architecture, the late Al Beadle is survived by over 160 residential and commercial buildings. The Three Fountains condo complex, where this 2 bed/2 bath unit is on the market for a reasonable $264K, is one of his loveliest. Built in 1963, the building features a central courtyard, floor to ceiling glass walls and, yes, fountains, as well as a community pool and tennis courts. Nicely updated with things like a groovy aged-looking concrete floor, this 2 story unit has over 1000 square feet, built-ins, walled patio garden and parking space (note: the HOA fees are just $230). It's also located in the very desirable Arcadia neighborhood, close to restaurants and all manner of shopping destinations. In other words, it's damned near perfect! See more of it here

Friday, January 16, 2015

Foreign Intrigue Friday: Beachside in Rio de Janeiro

If you were in Rio de Janeiro right this minute, you'd probably be wearing short-shorts, a bathing suit or nothing at all, as it's in the high 90s! Which sounds really good right about now as some of us are getting sick of bulky parkas, hats, gloves, scarves and winter boots. Sitting pretty in a secure building overlooking gorgeous Barra Beach in the posh Barra da Tijuca area, this 8600 square foot penthouse condo has pretty much every luxury you could want, from 5 ensuite bedrooms (and 2 half baths) to a ravishing wrap around infinity pool. Naturally, this kind of lifestyle will cost you, but the $2.96 million price includes things like two living rooms, two verandas, a tv room, study, patio with dining and barbeque areas, gourmet kitchen with wine cellar and large pantry, gym, separate 1 bed/1 bath for the manny (or maid or masseuse or dog walker) and parking for three cars. Located on the newer, western side of the city close to lakes and rivers (as well as the city's fanciest shopping centers), Barra da Tijuca is home to many of Brazil's biggest celebrities and will serve as the main location for the 2016 Summer Olympics. In other words, it's probably also a good investment! Take a closer look at our latest crush here