Virginia: Uncommonly Beautiful

Virginia has it all -- beatiful beaches, mountains and four distinct seasons are just a few of the many things this uncommonly beautiful commonwealth offers. The Blue Ridge Mountains and Chesapeake Bay are important natural attractions that draw people from around the world and shape the topography of Virginia. Located in the Mid-Atlantic region of the eastern seaboard, Virginia is not too far south or too far north, but has easy access to both. While the military and government are based here and bring many people to the area, Virginia's appeal is broader than that. For many, Virginia makes the perfect place to set down roots, enjoy your golden years, or purchase a second home.

Many historic sites that mark the storied past of our growing nation are found in Virginia. Colonial Williamsburg, Jamestown and Yorktown are just a few of the many historic places that draw people to Virginia from around the world. Charlottesvill, Virginia Beach, the Chesapeake Bay area and Smith Mountain Lake are also some very popular areas.

Smith Mountain Lake

Southwest Virginia holds a hidden gem that you won't find in a local mine. Smith Mountain Lake, known as "the Jewel of the Blue Ridge Mountains," is the cleanest lake on the East Coast. More than 500 miles of largely undeveloped shoreline make the area a pristine place to live, yet it's close to culture, airports and medical centers.

Just 30 minutes from Roanoke, the 20,600-acre lake offers nationally renowned bass and striper fishing, paddling, boating and swimming. Off-the-water amenities include golf courses and equestrian centers.

Franklin County, which borders the lake, boasts the highest job growth rate in the state due to the relocation of some Microsoft offices. Washington D.C. can be reached within three hours by bullet train from nearby Lynchburg, and the Roanoke airport has direct flights to many major cities. Smith Mountain Lake's airport services residents and visitors who have private planes.

With a population over 9,000 and a median age of 44 years old, Smith Mountain Lake has 75 percent full-time residents. Leslie Becker, broker of Smith Mountain Lake Properties, Inc., notes that most people relocate to the lake for "lower taxes, better quality of living and convenience of the larger city less than 30 minutes away. But the most important reason is that the lake does not fluctuate and is controlled, within five feet, so you do not have those large drops other lakes do, you really can boat year 'round.'"

Homebuyers can choose from waterfront houses, golf villas and condominiums, with asking prices as low as $100,000 and up to more than $1 million. Some of the most luxurious homes have access to Smith Mountain Lake's four-star resorts and all their pampering ways. Smith Mountain Lake Properties also sells farms, condos, lots and water access. For those who like to try before they buy, rental properties are available, as well.


Steeped in natural beauty, the peninsulas of southeast Virginia's Chesapeake Bay and River Country are dotted with many communities that offer a peaceful way of life, yet are complete with world-class amenities. Gloucester, Newport News, Hampton, Mathews, Middlesex and Williamsburg are just a few of the area's cities.

The region is renowned for its daffodils and popular activities like fishing, crabbing and sailing on Chesapeake Bay. "The area's many rivers, creeks and waterways not only make for a beautiful natural setting, but also provide a place with many waterfront properties," says Jeanne Hockaday, president/principal broker with Virginia Country Real Estate in Gloucester, Virginia.

A wide variety of home styles can be found on the peninsulas -- historic homes from the Revolutionary War or Civil War as well as super modern "smart homes" and everything in between. "Homes here offer privacy and acreage," Hockaday says. "Home prices remain competitive and opportunities to buy abound in the million-plus market."

A fine example of a Chesapeake Bay-designed hom can be found at 9847 Rowe's Point Road, located on the mouth of the Severn River at Mobjack Bay. This prime waterfront location has deepwater for sailing and terrific views. Situated on twelve-acres of land, the home has a peaceful and private feel, yet is convenient to the peninsula. "The home makes you feel like you are on a permanent vacation," says Hockaday.

The $1.675-million three-level home has a master bedroom suite with a whirlpool and its own private deck and hot tub. An elevator provides easy access to the living areas, which are higher up to take advantage of the breathtaking views -- a feature typical of the region. Expansive decks and windows combined with an unsurpassed location on the peninsula allow for enjoyment of beautiful sunrises and sunsets.

Additional features of the property include a private dock with covered boat slip as well as three slips for deep draft sailboats. A small, private sand beach is also included.




For 400 years, Williamsburg has invited settlers to its enchanting enclave, and they're still arriving.

"Our residents come from small towns and thriving metropolises. They are just starting families and just becoming grandparents. They are schoolteachers and retired corporate executives," says Marley Numbers, a Long & Foster Realtor's luxury home specialist. "What draws them all to Williamsburg? [It's] life the way you choose to live it."

Located on the Virginia peninsula, Williamsburg combines small-town ambiance with convenient location and historic attractions with championship golf and with deep water. The James and Chickahominy rivers host waterfront community parks, private and public marinas, and stunning waterfront communities.

The historic College of William and Mary is an integral part of Williamsburg, along with neighboring schools, colleges and universities. Superb educational opportunities present themselves to both students and volunteers. Residents can also take advantage of world-class restaurants, outdoor summer concerts and exploring the historic triangle of Jamestown, Yorktown and Williamsburg.

Nearby Norfolk's big-city shopping, restaurants and major universities, cultural and recreational facilities complement Williamsburg's hometown amenities. Just 45 minutes to the northwest, Richmond, Virginia's capital and center for banking and commerce, is home to Fortune 500 companies, universities and the Medical College of Virginia. Washington, D.C. is an easy two-and-a-half hours' drive north.

Luxury homes in Williamsburg suit any lifestyle, with golf course, marina and riverfront home sites, as well as nature preserve and country club locations. Single-family homes range in size from 2,000 square feet and price from $400,000 to more than $5 million.

One of these luxury properties is 1548 Harbor Road, located in the Marina Village of private country club community, Governor's Land. A 6,000-square-foot riverfront property with an outstanding vista of the James River, it has its own private beach. The asking price is $1,999,000.

Virginia Beach

Known as a premier resort area, Virginia Beach is located in the southeastern part of Virginia's Atlantic Ocean coastline at the mouth of the Chesapeake Bay. Blessed with thirty-five miles of beaches that grace the oceanfront and the bay, Virginia Beach also is home to many inland waterways. "This is a great place to have a second home because of our mild climate and all of the water we have here," says Jeanne West, associate broked with RE/MAX Alliance in Virginia Beach. "There are so many waterfront properties in Virginia Beach."

One of the area's central features is a three-mile long boardwalk that is a prime spot for a leisurely stroll as well as the site for many festivals. "There are lots recreational, historic, and cultural opportunities in the area," West says. "It can be like a year-round vacation here." Close proximity to Colonial Williamsburg, Virginia's wine country, and the Wintergreen Resort are among the many neighboring attractions that offer something to suit anyone's interest.

The Broad Bay Point Greens golf course community is home to one of Virginia Beach's premier properties, a home that exemplifies the area's relaxed lifestyle. The $3.999-million home is situated on Broad Bay. Its dramatic design is evocative of a cruise ship and includes 6,700-square-feet of living space. A black marble foyer rotunda has a circular lightwell to the foyer below. A lower level recreation area has a large curved bar, fireplace and a hot tub. It has breathtaking waterfront views and opens up to the terrace, pool and spa.

The back of the home offers 180-degree views of the water and overlooks First Landing State Park. The home's additional features make it the perfect place for watersports. A private pier can accommodate a forty-eight-foot vessel; the boathouse has a lift for a thirty-two-foot boat. A floating dock area has a jet ski lift.


Picturesque Charlottesville, Virginia is known for its historic properties. Realtor Rick Walden of Virginia Estates, who moved to central Virginia in 1970 from Colorado, specializes in large farms and estates, some of them dating back more than two-and-a-half centuries.

"There are historic properties in Charlottesville and in every direction," Rick explains. "When John Smith settled in Jamestown and they worked their way up the James River, they had been going along boring flatland and then reached the foothills of the Blue Ridge Mountains. That's where the people with money ended up, with their tobacco farms and the like. The hub of that area was Charlottesville."

Most everyone knows that early presidents Thomas Jefferson and James Monroe called Charlottesville home, but there are other historic aspects to this city of 43,750. You might even call the town charmed. During the American Revolutionary and Civil Wars, as battles raged and blood spilled all around it, Charlottesville was essentially spared from carnage.

The Charlottesville of today appears charmed as well. The city has been a regular on surveys of best places to live. "We have a super-stable economy," Rick explains. "University of Virginia pumps a huge amount of money into the local economy. Unemployment is always among the lowest in the nation. The quality of life is very pleasant. We're 30 minutes from the mountains, a couple hours to the ocean. UVA brings people in from all over the world, so it's a very cosmopolitan community, and very cultured. And the taxes are very moderate compared to similar type towns.

One of Rick's current listings is a Shelton Mill Farm, an enchanting 3,155-square-foot home on 269 beautifully rolling acres. It was built in 1780. Lovingly renovated and modernized, it's still graced by a quaint charisma. "The home is ready to go," Rick says. "The owners have taken great care of it. It's a wonderful country manor home."

Southern Virginia

"There's no doubt that the lake has provided a huge opportunity for this area to grow," says agent Debbie Shelton of Prudential Waterfront Properties in Virginia. "But at the same time, some people come here who don't even know there is a lake. It's a big, beautiful body of water, and it's surrounded by lovely rural communities, farms and properties."

Debbie is talking about the bucolic area surrounding Smith Mountain Lake in southern Virginia, about 45 minutes southeast of Roanoke. It's long been an agricultural region, but more and more farms with ample acreage are being turned into recreational properties. "It's rural but not isolated," Debbie says. "The place has experienced an influx of people from other parts of the country. There was a kind of culture shock, a bit of a us-versus-them attitude. But now it's all pretty much integrated. You might be driving down Route 40 behind a guy on his tractor, but you just slow down, take a breath and wait for him to turn off the road."

Debbie says one of the main reasons people relocate to her area is the beautiful climate. "There are four distinct seasons, but none of them are severe," she says. "We get some snow, but not much."

Because of low taxes and comparatively affordable prices, people are increasingly drawn to buying property near, but not on, Smith Mountain Lake. The lake is easily accessible to nearby residents, with plenty of public access, including boat ramps and recreation spots.

One of Debbie's very attractive listings is a beautiful 33-acre property with mountain views, a stocked pond and restored farmhouse fo $449,900.

The Soon-To-Be New Home of Prince William and Kate Middleton

It was announced last week that Prince William and Kate Middleton will be living in the Clarence House after they get married tomorrow, and the house has been in the Royal Family for quite some time. It was built in 1825 for Prince William Henry, the Duke of Clarence, and he lived there from 1830 to 1837 as King William IV.

Queen Elizabeth also lived here, from 1953 to 2002, and nowadays is home to The Prince of Wales and the Duchess of Cornwall, as well as Princes William and Harry, and very-soon-to-be Princess Catherine.

The house itself is valued at approximately $76.68 million, which is worth 343(!!) times the amount of a starter home for a newlywed couple in England. The Clarence House doesn't quite compare to Windsor Castle (valued at $279 million) and Buckingham Palace (worth $1.6 BILLION). Once William and Kate become king and queen, they'll live in Buckingham Palace. Not too shabby!

History of the Clarence House via The Official Website of The British Monarchy.

Pictures and values of Royal Residences via AOL Real Estate.

New York Townhouse Sells for More Than $47 Million

Good news for the luxury housing market in Manhattan -- The Wall Street Journal reported yesterday that a townhouse in the East Side of New York is currently in negotiations to sell for more than $47 million.

The townhouse is located on East 69th Street, and is currently owned by Sloan Lindemann Barnett, a New York Times best-selling author, and her husband, Roger, an entrepreneur who sold his company,, for $42 million in 2000. The townhouse was built in 1881 and was previously owned by a member of the Vanderbilt family. The buyer couldn't be determined at the time of publication.

The price of the Barnett's penthouse is in the category of record-high sales. Developer William Lie Zeckendorf sold his Central Park West apartment last December for $40 million, and a couple from Russia bought a $48 million apartment in the Plaza earlier this year. The highest price ever paid for a piece of property in Manhattan was a $53 million townhouse on East 75th Street, purchased by private-equity executive J. Christoper Flowers in 2006.


Cover Property: AZURE Penthouse in Dallas, Texas


Sitting atop AZURE, rising above all others in prestigious uptown, is this exceptional residence of modern elegance, designed by award-winning Architect James Cheng. Walls of glass wrap the exterior exposing unparallel views of the renowned Cultural Arts District, downtown Dallas and beyond from every room. The open concept main floor consists of living and dining areas, game/billiard room, professional grade kitchen, three ensuite bedrooms, powder bath, utility and storage areas.

Rich hardwoods, cool smooth stone and plush wool carpets accentuate the large rooms and stimulate the senses. All ensuites have private terraces and the baths are a mixture of glass, stone and dark wood adorned with jetted tubs and separate showers. The master shower is also equipped with steam to soothe and relax. There are three terrace gas log fireplaces, and one inside electric fireplace in the game room. For those times when you want to shut out your world view, motorized shades descend seemingly out of nowhere.



The kitchen is a modern marvel with ample granite counters, center island, two 30-inch Sub-Zero refrigerators and built-in Panasonic stainless-steel microwave. Miele appliances include: 36-inch gas stainless-steel cooktop, designer wall hood with shelving, dishwasher and matching double ovens. There is also a Miele built-in coffeemaker with fully automatic one-button grinding, measuring and brewing.

The upper level is accessed from a private elevator off the main floor corridor directly into the climate controlled roof terrace party bar with full bath. This "375-foot high in the sky bar" opens onto a 2,910+/- square-foot glass encircled, outdoor entertainment space with pool/spa, giant theatre screen, and indescribable views. There is also a spiral staircase to the large lower terrace with fireplace.


Security is a paramount amenity for residents including: private gates to parking; 24-hour digital video surveillance and recording guest pre-screening on your TV; identity card restricted floor access, 24-hour Concierge; and a unique concept for your special "toys," a private 4-car garage within the secured parking garage.

This exceptional private residence encompasses 9,444+/- square-feet of indoor and outdoor living, includes furnishings and has all the hi-tech amenities which a discerning individual requires.

For more information and pictures of this penthouse, click here.

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Posted by: Nicole Lauber
Posted on: 4/26/2011 at 4:06 PM
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Cover Property: Smith Mountain Lake, Virginia


Nestled on a point on scenic Smith Mountain Lake in southwestern Virginia is a home designed to bring the elegance of nature into everyday experience. Placed to take advantage of magnificent views of Smith Mountain as it rises dramatically from the lake, this home offers privacy, lakeside amenities and a gracious lifestyled for the discerning buyer.

"I designed the home to be very welcoming, with a casual elegance," says Anne Cook. She and her husband Bill own the property. "I'm an interior designer and I made sure that very high quality finishes were used throughout the house."


The home features 340 feet of shoreline, broad water views, 6,700 square feet of living space, four bedrooms, four and one-half baths, two fireplaces, gourmet kitchen, sun porch, home theater, two home office/day rooms, a large family room and upper and lower two-stall garages. Exquisite detailing includes deep crowning molding, 16-foot ceilings, exotic granite, Jerusalem stone, exotic Brazilian walnut hardwood floors, thoughtfully placed arch entrances, Jurassic-period green Brazilian granite in the master bath, and numerous architectural accents. A two-boat covered boathouse, entertainment dock and terrace complement the home.

"Smith Mountain Lake is heaven on earth. We have a very strong sense of community. People from all over have discovered this beautiful place and made it home," Anne says.

"One of the things that appealed to me is that as I neared retirement, I wanted to be in a place where there are people who have come out of business and have similar educational backgrounds. Smith Mountain Lake has a large early-retirement group who stay involved in consulting and are active in the community," says Bill.

Smith Mountain Lake is surrounded by shopping, dining, healthcare and outdoor activities. It is near Roanoke, Virginia with direct flights to major U.S. cities. The Cook's home is represented by Leslie Becker, Broker of Smith Mountain Lake Properties.

For additional pictures and information regarding this property, click here.

Cover Property: La Maison Des Deux Fleurs in Sister Bay, Wisconsin


Step outside the La Maison de Deux Fleurs estate in Marshall's Point, Wisconsin and all you'll hear is the wind in the trees, the waves lapping on the shore of Lake Michigan and the calls of wildlife. No traffic, no hum of civilization.

That sense of serenity -- and supreme privacy -- is what beckons people to Marshall's Point, a private, gated community of 32 homesites near the northeastern tip of the fabled Door County peninsula. Each waterfront property contains a minimum of 10 acres -- La Maison de Deux Fleu features 21 -- and the owners share nearly 600 acres of preserved wilderness in the community's interior, which also includes a winter skating rink, tennis court, horse stable and ample trails for hiking and cross-country skiing.



The elegant 10,000-square-foot home is carved into a sumptuous cloak of cedar forest. Nearby is the property's 740 feet of rustic shoreline. "The house was designed to fit into the landscape, not to stand out as an ostentatious mega-house," says Tricia Cramer of Premier Door County Properties, who is co-brokering the sale with Marilyn Hoffman of Hoffman International Properties. "It's fairly elongated, designed to mostly face out to the water."

Renowned architect Richard Bos designed the home to reflect the owner's love of yachting. "The interior is reminiscent of a hull of a ship," Tricia says, "with steel framing and open-beam ceilings." It's also asymmetrical, with lots of graceful curves and geometric shapes (the library is octagonal). "In some homes you walk into dead-ends, whereas this house flows from one space to another," Tricia explains.



Two corridors flank the stunning rotunda, one leading to the lavish master suite, the other to a lovely guest suite. All of the home's mechanicals are routed underground, adding to its uncluttered, pristine air.

While privacy is paramount on Marshall's Point, the home is not far from amenities: country clubs, restaurants, stores and the Door Peninsula's rich arts tradition in quaint towns like Fish Creek, Sister Bay and Ephraim. "We prize our wilderness in Door County," Tricia says, "but we have a full cultural life here as well."

For more pictures and information regarding this property, click here.

Featured Realtor: Joan Pletcher



An Ocala resident since 1985, Joan Pletcher can honestly say Marion County is just as friendly today as it was when she moved here. "The Thoroughbred business brought my husband and I to Ocala and people went out of their way to make us feel welcome and they haven't changed one bit." Of course, these days Joan has become a part of the network of welcoming Ocalans through her involvement with Payton Training Center, the Florida Horse Park, Ocala/Marion County Chamber of Commerce, Monroe Hospital, and connecting people with properties.

Personally as well as professionally Joan is extremely dynamic choosing to specialize in estates, training centers, ranches and major parcels of land.

"I love turning raw land into a development," she says. "Not one where they bulldoze everything and squeeze in as many houses as possible. I'm talking about the kind of development that saves the trees and the integrity of the land to give people a home where everything is just perfect."

Then again, that's what Joan is all about -- making people happy and often times that requires more than just selling property. On more than one occasion Joan has been connecting properties with property managers, etc.

With her infectious laugh, pure southern hospitality, generous spirit and deep-seeded work ethic, it's no wonder the people she works with usually become close friends. "When I represent a piece of property it becomes a part of me. Whether buying or selling, my goal is to have happy and satisfied customers while maintaining the integrity of my business."

To view Joan's listings on the duPont REGISTRY Homes website, click here.

For Joan's contact information, visit her website here.

Miami Equestrian Estate; A Full Blown Smart Home

Adapted from 

Seated on over eleven acres and tucked away in a private, gated community in the Southwest corner of Miami, Florida, is a magnificent Mediterranean estate. This 17,285+ square foot residence, designed by architect Pacheco, is a smart home containing an electrical room that controls the security, pool area, lighting, music and ambiance of the estate.     

The reception area or grand foyer with its majestic chandelier, art niche, and graceful marble medallion beckon you into the main living areas of the residence. This awe-inspiring space touts an entire wall of double-French doors with glass arches showing off the greenery and fountain outside.

At the heart of any home is the kitchen. Included in this space is a gourmet chef's best amenities – double-Viking stainless steel convection ovens, a Viking warmer, as well as a Viking microwave and a six-burner electric Viking stove. The Sub-Zero, double wood-paneled refrigerator blends in with the deep, cherry wood cabinetry with its own crown molding. Included is a breakfast area and an extended island featuring granite throughout:

This  magnificent Mediterranean estate that also includes a manor home, a game house, an equestrian center complete with a six-horse stable, a training center and grassing areas, a fifteen-car garage, pools, terraces with a summer kitchen, fountains, a playground with playhouse, miniature golf, basketball and tennis courts, three koi ponds with cascading waters, and a helipad with an FAA-approved airstrip.

The dupontRegistry marketed this residence in Miami, and after receiving numerous inquiries from around the world, Nancy Jimenez closed the property last Tuesday, April 12th.

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Posted by: awilliamson
Posted on: 4/25/2011 at 12:52 PM
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Sold! A Stunning Estate in D.C.

From the dupont Registry's featured properties - Southeast

Gaining exposure from a cover run in our August 2010 issue of the dupontREGISTRY's Homes edition, Foud Talout closed the sale of a beautiful Virginia estate for 10.2 million. The new owners will be taking possession of the Chateau Noble de McLean by the end of this month. 

The Chateau Noble de Mclean, built by Michael Darvishi, accomodates regal living. Nestled atop a hill and beset by two beautifully landscaped acres, this Chateau Noble presonifies its name as a 27,000-square-foot manor brimming with spatial rooms and detailed with Beaux-Arts elements. 

The crown jewel of the living quarters is the magnanimous master suite that supplies a separate sitting room with fireplace and closets equipped with cherry wood built-ins. Luxurious accomodations continue in five additional bedrooms, each bedecked with their own marble and tile bathroom.

Agent Fouad Talout notes, "Never before has there been such an ideal opportunity to own one of the D.C. area's most stunning estates" In his stately position, Chateau Noble complies with any preference of political involvement while pledging a royal lifestyle. 

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Posted by: awilliamson
Posted on: 4/25/2011 at 9:16 AM
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Orlando's 2,500 Navigable Lakes

When you think of Central Florida, you think of Disney, entertainment and attractions.  Few people realize that among the five major counties in Central Florida, Orange, Seminole, Osceola, Polk and Lake counties.  Carol Ann Hewitt of Oxford Reatly notes that there are 2,500 lakes where Bass fishing is a major sport, in addition to golfing and water skiing.  

Nothing could be more pleasant than a leisurely boat ride through the many lakes, some of which are connected by navigable canals, such as the famed Butler Chain of Lakes in Windermere, a growing suburban area to the southwest of Orlando, where one will find a series of eleven environmentally protected lakes, whose shores are dotted with beautiful estates. These lakes weave through  and around some of Central Florida’s most prestigious gated golf and country club communities, such as Keenes Pointe, Isle Worth, and Lake Butler Sound. Winter Park, a charming town with a quaint downtown shopping area on the north side of Orlando, boasts the Winter Park Chain of Lakes.

Minutes from Orlando’s downtown business district, there are beautiful homes on the shores of Lake Conway and Sand Lake.   To the north of Orlando in Lake County is Lake Harris, a 13,789 acre lake, which is part of a large body of water known as the Ocklawaha Chain of Lakes.  Lake Tohopekaliga – known to the locals as Lake Toho – is one of the largest lakes in Osceola County with over 19,000 acres!  Great fishing here!

Gone are the tiny cottages of years ago,  where native Orlandoans would come during the hot Summers to catch the cool lake breezes.  They have been replaced by luxurious lakefront homes with wine cellars, elevators, elaborate gardens, heated pools, spas and boat houses.  You can purchase a resort setting in your very own back yard and statistics prove that lakefront property is less resistant to economic downturns.


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Posted by: awilliamson
Posted on: 4/20/2011 at 2:44 PM
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Montecito — Live a Luxurious Lifestyle in “The American Riviera”

Grand estates, stunning ocean and mountain views, and a mild sunny climate all come together to make this Pacific coastal community irresistible. Historic elegance, lush countryside, and spectacular ocean vistas contribute to the enormous appeal of Montecito real estate.

Montecito is a small community 90 miles up the coast from Los Angeles, framed by coastal mountains and broad, white beaches. White Mediterranean homes with red tile roofs, bougainvillea covered stone walls, wrought-iron gates, palm lined drives, courtyard cafes, collectable cars and smart boutiques, all mixed with a casual but refined lifestyle, characterize Montecito.

This is the perfect place to raise a family, where the weather is ideal, the air clean and the schools, beaches and parks are healthy, enjoyable environments - a place rich with leisure and recreational pursuits.

Most new residents are first introduced to our community while on holiday, as was the case many years ago when wealthy Eastern families discovered Montecito in the late 1800’s. Huge estates were created as wintering spots, and by the 1920’s there were more millionaires per acre in Montecito than anywhere else in our country. Today these fine homes are being renovated with the care they deserve, and some of our most charming small homes started their lives at the turn of the century as modest gardener’s cottages to these estates.

 Our Montecito real estate is more than enchanting: the magnetism of this quiet coastal community is absolutely intoxicating. Like an island where troubles and worries are left on the mainland, Montecito lulls its inhabitants into a peaceful state of mind, which translates into being purely focused on enjoying some of life’s genuine pleasures: ocean breezes, warm sunshine, good food, and fine wine. Montecito real estate includes an impressive array of estates, many of which were inspired by the stately homes of the south of France, Spain, and Italy – where the similar climate is due to our sharing one of the few east west shorelines in temperate latitudes.

Harry Kolb is one of the foremost experts on luxury residential real estate in the Santa Barbara, California area including Montecito and Hope Ranch. His past professional involvement in international marketing has served him well in managing the sale of estate properties. He was one of the founding members of Sotheby’s International Realty when they opened their first office in Montecito and his real estate career has spanned more than 30 years. During which time he has personally managed several billion-dollars in transactions representing over 200 estate property sales. As an authority on Montecito real estate, architecture and history Harry has frequently been quoted in the New York Times, Wall Street Journal, Forbes Magazine, Los Angeles Times and Architectural Digest. He assisted in the publication of books on famed architects George Washington Smith and Reginald Johnson and the history and architecture of Montecito.

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Posted by: awilliamson
Posted on: 4/20/2011 at 12:59 PM
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Prestigious Living in Rarity Pointe

There are many activities on and around Tellico Lake near the Smoky Mountains in east Tennessee, but
RE/MAX at the Lake Real Estate Broker Jim Davis describes one of his favorites: “Tellico Lake has about
400 miles of shoreline, with many, many coves. We enjoy getting together with four, five or six boats, tie
off in one of the coves, open a bottle of wine, put a steak on the grill and enjoy an evening with friends.
It’s wonderful.”

 Tellico Reservoir, as it is officially named, was the last project undertaken by the historic Tennessee Valley
Authority, part of FDR’s New Deal. It was completed in 1979. In the mid to late 1980s, development picked
up pace in Tellico Lake, and these days the bucolic body of water is surrounded by golf communities,
upscale retirement areas and waterfront estates.

 One of Tellico Lake’s most prestigious neighborhoods is Rarity Pointe, where Jim has listed a breathtaking,
8272-square-foot English country manor home built in 2009. It’s brimming with state-of-the-art features and
amenities: an exquisite design using natural stone and brick; a gourmet kitchen with Viking appliances; a
finished lake level with a full kitchen and indoor and outdoor fireplaces; a media room with stadium seating
and a 92-inch screen; and much more. “The home has views of Tellico Lake’s sparkling water with the
Great Smokey Mountains as a backdrop,” Jim says. “You can see a golf course unfolding in the distance.

Tellico Lake’s mid-south location makes it a year-round community. “We have people in Florida who come
up for the summer,” Jim says. “We have residents we call ‘halfbacks,’ people from the upper Midwest who
might’ve bought a home in Florida but realized it was a two-day drive back to see the kids and grandkids.
They realized the Tellico Lake communities are only a one-day drive instead of a two-day drive. We have
some second-home owners, but the community is vibrant year-round.”




A Tuscan Manor Situated in the Arnold Palmer Bay Hill Golf Community (Featuring Lakefront Views)

Central Florida’s hottest properties today are also the rarest to find: single family homes that offer both golf and waterfront lifestyles. For those who want the best of both worlds, this Bay Hill Tuscan manor is the perfect opportunity. Located in the Arnold Palmer Bay Hill golf community it features 100 feet of shorefront on Lake Tibet of the famed Butler Chain of Lakes.

“From this house you can jump on your golf cart and literally be on the golf course in minutes, relaxing at the spa, enjoying a game of tennis, or outback enjoying the lake,” says Chris Christensen, owner/broker of Regal Real Estate Professionals in Orlando.

Arnold Palmer lives in Bay Hill, which is one of the most prestigious communities on the 11 lakes that make up the Butler Chain.

The home features palatial 24 foot ceilings, expansive lake views from every room, 6,000 square feet of living space with exquisite detailing. Features include a gourmet chef’s kitchen, spacious master suite with sitting lounge, second master suite upstairs with large covered veranda overlooking the lake, home theater with flex space, custom cabinetry, granite surfaces, and travertine marble floors. A lakefront lagoon pool, covered boat dock with electric boat lift, sand beach area, summer kitchen and large covered area for entertaining complement the home. Within walking distance are the Bay Hill Golf Course club dining, spa, salon, fitness center, and tennis courts.

“During the downturn, lakefront property was the most resilient and has not lost a lot of value. From a lifestyle standpoint, this home has everything possible to offer. Two of the highest demand amenities in Central Florida are golf and waterfront. This house has both. It’s very rare and only a few communities in the area offer both in a single home,” Christensen says.

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Posted by: awilliamson
Posted on: 4/20/2011 at 12:11 PM
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Categories: duPont REGISTRY Featured Properties | Luxury Real Estate
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A Place for Tranquility - "The Castle" on Smith Lake

By: Britta Dragicevic

“Having the availability of your boat at the dock anytime to go fishing or just to sit there and have a glass of wine – water calms you and puts you in a different world,” says Jeff Baggett, owner of “The Castle” on Smith Lake in the gorgeous rolling hills of northern Alabama.

A calm, relaxing drive through a private winding road surrounded by 18 acres of park-like forest leads to the home deemed by locals as “The Castle.” The home is situated on a bluff overlooking the pristine waters of the third cleanest lake in the United States.

“People comment on the cleanliness of Smith Lake all the time. And fortunately, our lake association is filled with people dedicated to keeping it that way,” says Baggett. “It’s a quiet lake where you can explore more 560 miles of shoreline and access four counties.”

To take advantage of gorgeous views, The Castle has been carved out of rock shifts to blend harmoniously into the landscape. Constructed over a 24-month period, this custom built four-story home includes a gourmet kitchen and master suite that encompasses the entire third level. With 5,500 square feet of gracious living space, this home features three additional bedrooms as well as custom baths. Towering window walls and a three story glass-encased solarium provide breathtaking views of lake and long-distance vistas. Exquisite plasterwork with columns and scrollwork hallmark the custom craftsmanship. The exterior is maintenance-free with extensive copper detailing. The home is offered fully furnished.

The property’s 4,400 feet of shoreline secure privacy along with gated entrances and full security systems. At the 50’ by 50’ boat dock with three boat lifts, an attached 30’ by 25’ air conditioned boathouse offers an interior 10 ’by 10’ fishing hole for convenient and climate-controlled angling in 100 foot depths of water. An 8,000 square foot shop and air conditioned toy garage offers the ideal setting for the motoring enthusiast with room to store up to four touring buses.

Smith Lake is located near Cullman, Alabama. Its crystal clear waters and depths of over 400 feet make it ideal for water sports, swimming and angling. “The Castle” is located within an easy two hour and 15 minute drive from Nashville, Tennessee and only 45 minutes from Birmingham, Alabama. 

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Posted by: awilliamson
Posted on: 4/20/2011 at 12:01 PM
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Categories: duPont REGISTRY Featured Properties | Luxury Real Estate
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Downtown Phoenix's Chateau On Central Helps Reclaim Millionaire's Row

Appropriate for the lifestyles of the rich and famous, Chateau On Central in downtown Phoenix has seen its fair share of Hollywood home-shoppers in the last few weeks. Varying from 5,192 to 8,252 square feet, these luxurious brownstones are helping reclaim the Central Corridors dated alias, Millionaires Row.

According to the Mayor of Phoenix, Phil Gordon, “The downtown area is a major growth corridor in Phoenix and is becoming one of the Valley’s most desirable places to live. With the addition of Chateau on Central, downtown Phoenix is a destination for those seeking a luxury urban experience.”
Fortunately buying a home at Chateau on Central is a real-estate bargain with brownstones starting at $1.39MM each. The price tag of most celebrity-owned homes averages in the $7-10MM range according to a 2008 study by Forbes Magazine.  Current star homes on the market include Val Kilmer’s $18.5MM “Kilmer Ranch” in New Mexico and the $150MM Spelling Manor owned by the wife of the late television icon Aaron Spelling in Los Angeles.

“It’s not uncommon for celebrities to have multiple homes – New York and Los Angeles are eternally popular as celebrity home hotbeds, but Phoenix and the Arizona suburbs are becoming increasingly popular too,” said Celebrity Realtor Barry Slone of Sotheby’s International Realty in Los Angeles.
The famed features at Chateau on Central include authentic jumbo-brick, masonry, ornamental wrought-iron, and copper patina finish turrets which are well-known throughout the region for structural originality and a distinctive architectural style.  In addition they offer multi-function zoning, resort quality elevators, deluxe Viking kitchen appliances, multiple terraces, a customizable rooftop terrace perfect for a private swimming pool, spa, fireplace or greenhouse and more.

Check out the community's website here: Chateau On Central