Jack Rabbit Ranch in Carmel Valley

Enjoy the dazzling splendors of the Monterey Peninsula from high above the fog on this mountaintop property in sunny Carmel Valley. This 262-acre parcel has sweeping 360-degree views of the Santa Lucia mountains, Carmel Valley, Corral De Tierra and both Carmel and Monterey Bays. This extraordinary land is a peaceful haven, an unspoiled local that is home to abundant wildlife, deer, foxes, soaring birds and amazing wildflowers. Carmel Valley is renowned for its great weather with almost year-round sunshine and mild climate.

This property is a rare offering of mountain top property with elevations of up to 2010 feet, conveniently located close to quaint Carmel Valley village. Jack Rabbit Ranch is a blank canvas just waiting for that visionary individual. It has numerous potential building sites all with breathtaking views, vines and equestrian are permitted.

Priced at $3.95 million. For more information, click here.


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Posted by: Nicole Lauber
Posted on: 8/5/2012 at 7:00 AM
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Categories: Luxury Real Estate
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Architectural Masterpiece in St. Petersburg, Florida

The centerpiece of the home is an expansive great room under a soaring three-story atrium. Clerestory windows welcome abundant light and can be opened to take advantage of the gentle breezes across the waters. While the artful architectural style is undeniably impressive, the living spaces of this 5,144-square foot home with 5 bedroom, 4.5 bath, 4-car garage, are welcoming and comfortable. The kitchen is spacious and lavishly appointed with an adjoining breakfast nook. The master bedroom opens onto the back patio with a custom-designed pool. Behind the home is abundant space for outdoor entertaining and a private dock. Located close to downtown St. Petersburg on Snell Isle, this residence proudly proclaims a truly inspired lifestyle. And the half-acre home site is favored by more than 100 feet of frontage along the protected waters of Coffee Pot Bayou.

Offered at $1.85 million. For more information, click here.


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Posted by: Nicole Lauber
Posted on: 8/4/2012 at 6:55 AM
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Categories: duPont Marketplace | Luxury Real Estate
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Marketing Luxury Real Estate: The Luxury of Clean Air with Spats

There is nothing like a flowering plant to cheer up a home and exude luxury.  One of our favorite plants is spathiphyllum pictured above.  It is an easy to care for plant as it requires what we lovingly call "benign neglect!"  And it cleans the air.

What is wonderful about spats is that these plants clean  indoor air of many contaminants, including benzine, formaldehyde and other pollutants.  One plant cleans approximately 108 square feet.  It needs little sunlight and watering when the soil is dry.  And it is a great closing gift!

This blog posting has been provided by Ron and Alexandra Seigel, the Language of Luxury Community Founders and managing partners of Napa Consultants, International, the leading luxury real estate strategic marketing firm. They specialize in personal and company branding, luxury real estate website design and social media marketing. Photos courtesy of Ron and Alexandra.


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Posted by: Nicole Lauber
Posted on: 8/3/2012 at 7:32 AM
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Categories: Luxury Guest Writers | Luxury Real Estate
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Top 10 Inviting Gardens

The garden is one of many features a visitor sees when they visit your home. Often majestic, colorful and widespread throughout the grounds, a well-groomed garden is a reflection of the homeowner. Whether it's an English garden, xeriscape type, ornamental garden or custom-designed one, most reflect the area's regional climate as well. We all love to see a beautifully established garden. We have reviewed and selected the Top 10 gardens below from those that submitted. Perhaps you will find one that you love and create at your place!

Highlands, North Carolina | www.sageemanor.com

Thornhill, Ontario, Canada | 15elmbankroad.com

Secret Beach, Kauai, Hawaii | www.hawaiilife.com

San Clemente, California | www.3PowerRE.com

Charlevoix, Michigan | www.garydeters.com

Smith Mountain Lake, Virginia | www.SmithMountainLakeProperties.org

Brentwood, Tennessee | www.5106Pickney.com

Coronado, California | www.527oceanblvd.com

Casa Piena, Southern California | www.mycasapiena.com

Highlands, North Carolina | www.sageemanor.com


Luxury Real Estate Marketing Tips: Three Tips to Unleashing Social Media Power

Are people following your luxury real estate marketing blog? Are they watching your videos? If you do it right, you can build an entire personal brand and a large audience around your blog and videos. However, if your content is ordinary, meaning unoriginal or generic (content available on many sites and from many other sources) or just outright boring, you will not stand out as a worthwhile read.

You may at some point become number 1 on Google, (thanks to your SEO and the Google’s robots that drill the web), but will that number 1 equal referrals and new buyers/sellers?  Will the reader of your posts bookmark or subscribe to your blog, and come back to read your next installment?  Google has been besieged by complaints that they are ranking sites with “canned” content higher than those with meaningful “original” content.  Google has responded by making changes in their algorithms that are aimed at sites with what it calls "low quality" content: just enough information laden with keywords to appear in search results. If your luxury real estate marketing web pages or blog posts fall into this category of low quality, beware! Your natural search engine ranking could slip.

Here is a recent example of the power of original content.  According to an article in the Wall Street Journal, last Monday, an eight year old novel, Cloud Atlas was ranked 2509 by Amazon.  On Friday, it moved to 7.  The meteoric rise was attributed to Apple releasing the trailer to the movie on its iTunes website. 

"Almost as soon as the trailer went up, we saw chatter on Twitter and sales on Amazon really jumped," said Jane von Mehren, publisher of trade paperbacks for the Random House Publishing Group, a unit of Bertelsmann AG's Random House Inc.

“To cash in on the renewed interest, Random House has ordered a new paperback printing of 25,000 copies, to hit stores before a special movie-tie in edition of the book is released in September." WSJ 

The trailer which is 6 minutes long is a buzz worthy video, which translated into sales and results. How can you translate your blogs into referrals and leads?   Here are 3 tips:

1.      Write content that is useful, relevant, fresh, and informative for your marketplace

2.       Write content that is uplifting and newsworthy

3.       Write content that is comment worthy, follow worthy and share worthy

Generic luxury real estate blog content indicates that the blogger lacks imagination and therefore lacks the marketing savvy required to win listings or sell expensive homes. Remember this:  robots have no sense of humor; they leave no comments and do not share. They do not get uplifted. But, they do know when your content is fresh or original!  Focus in on those tips and see how you can improve the quality of your content, and you unleash the power of Social Media.

This blog posting has been provided by Ron and Alexandra Seigel, the Language of Luxury Community Founders and managing partners of Napa Consultants, International, the leading luxury real estate strategic marketing firm. They specialize in personal and company branding, luxury real estate website design and social media marketing. Photos courtesy of Ron and Alexandra.


Jackson, Tennessee

“For an opportunity to enjoy both the convenience and cosmopolitan lifestyle of the ‘big city’ while maintaining the calm, relaxing pace of life in a ‘small town,’ Jackson, Tennessee is the place to come to,” says Mike Baskin, Realtor with Town & Country Inc., Realtors in Jackson. “Jackson has easy access to regional, national and international airports, and sports fans can easily attend professional football, baseball and hockey games, as well as play golf on many professionally designed courses.”

For the outdoor enthusiasts, Mike notes that hiking, camping, fishing, horseback riding and many other family-friendly activities await in beautiful state and national parks in the area. Jackson also holds many celebrations and festivals, including the Shannon Street Blues Fest, the Strawberry Festival and the Miss Tennessee Pageant.

Jackson’s housing market is currently strong – Mike’s business is up from last year with his company reporting increased sales and listings. “The diverse economy and employment opportunities bring buyers at every level to the area.”

While the endless amount of recreational activities and diverse economy is key to Jackson’s draw, Mike believes that the biggest perk of living in Jackson is the quality of life. “Living in Jackson provides easy access to superior primary and secondary private education, several outstanding universities, incredible medical services, fine dining, business opportunities, and friendly people,” Mike says. “I proudly call Jackson home.”

For more information about Jackson, click here.


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Posted by: Nicole Lauber
Posted on: 7/28/2012 at 4:21 PM
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Luxury Real Estate Branding: How Strong is Your Brand Recognition, Part 4

Countdown Olympic Clock/Photo by Alison 14

As a luxury real estate marketing professional, the key to building strong brand recognition is associating you or your company with a category or niche that exists not just in your marketplace but also in the minds of your target market.  Studies have shown that most humans typically hold up to 3 brands per category at most in their minds.  If you do not come up as top-of-mind in a category your market share or lack thereof, will usually reflect this important branding phenomenon.  Try some 15 second categories quizzes to get more of the idea of how this plays out.

How many brands come to your mind in just 15 seconds when you think of:

  • Smart Phones?
  • Cellophane adhesive tape?
  • Singing-only talent competitions on TV?

 As we approach the opening day of the Summer Olympics in London, only  3 medals will be given out in each sports category: gold, silver and bronze.  The majority of us may remember the name of the Gold medal winner long after the event. But, will we remember the names of the silver and bronze winners?

In the men’s swimming competition what is the first name that comes to mind? Can you think of another?  Michael Phelps who has 14 gold medals and two bronze will most likely come to mind first rather than Ryan Lochte who has 3 gold medals, two silvers and one bronze.  Can you think of the third swimmer in this category?

Luxury real estate marketing professionals often underestimate the importance of achieving top-of- mind status in a specific category.  What is at stake in reaching the top?  The lion’s share of the business in your category! Focus on and conquer a single category or niche within your marketplace, then expand from there.

Become identified with that category, and you will experience a significance spike in business. If you already enjoy top-of-mind status, beware! Do not get complacent. A challenger may be right behind you who is bent on increasing its brand recognition strength and market share at your expense.

This blog posting has been provided by Ron and Alexandra Seigel, the Language of Luxury Community Founders and managing partners of Napa Consultants, International, the leading luxury real estate strategic marketing firm. They specialize in personal and company branding, luxury real estate website design and social media marketing. Photos courtesy of Ron and Alexandra.


17th Anniversary Top 10: Wine Cellars

Las Vegas, Nevada | www.tanyamurray.com

Orlando, Florida | www.oxfordrealty.com

Nashvlle, Tennessee | www.worthproperties.com

Charlotte, North Carolina | www.hmproperties.com

Charlotte, North Carolina | www.hmproperties.com

Bethel, New York | www.chapinestate.com

Franklin, Tennessee | www.homesinnashville.com

Grand Cayman, Cayman Islands | www.sircaymanislands.com

San Diego County, California | www.mycasapiena.com

Seminole, Florida | www.carolemerritt.com

Want to see more Top 10s? Click here to view our 17th Anniversary issue online!


17th Anniversary Top 10: Views & Vistas

Ondine, Vermont | www.ondinevt.com

South West Florida | www.barrydenicola.com

Palm Springs, California | www.iamthedesert.com

Emerald Bay Exuma, Bahamas | www.coldwellbankerbahamas.com

Banner Elk, North Carolina | www.elkriverclub.com

Naples, Florida | www.billearls.com

Lake Burton, Georgia | www.juliebarnettrealtor.com

Kent Woodlands, California | www.finelivingmarin.com

Miami Beach, Florida | www.oceanhousesouthbeach.com

Bozeman, Montana | www.suplatinum.com

Want to see more Top 10s? View our 17th Anniversary issue here!


Luxury Real Estate Branding: How Strong is Your Brand Recognition, Part 3

Pierre-Auguste Renoir, Dance at Le Moulin de la Galette (Bal du moulin de la Galette), Musée d'Orsay, 1876

To further understand this concept of brand recognition, and just how important it is to your luxury real estate marketing practice, consider the subject of French Impressionists.  Who is the first artist in this category that comes to mind?  How many French Impressionist painters can you think of QUICKLY? Give yourself only 15 seconds. Then, try this question on a friend and see what names come up in just 15 seconds.

Unless you have studied this subject thoroughly or have visited the Quai D’Orsay museum in Paris and have a photographic memory you most likely do not know the top 12 French Impressionists.  Most people who have some exposure to this subject can come up with only 3 at best.   That is how our mind works. We think in categories and sub-categories or niches.

Claude Monet is the most prolific artist in this category. For most people, Renoir and Monet are perhaps the two artists who come to mind first.   But, there are at least a dozen top French Impressionist artists. Here they are in alphabetical order. 

Frédéric Bazille, Gustave Caillebotte, Mary Cassatt, Paul Cézanne, Edgar Degas, Armand Guillaumin, Édouard Manet , Claude Monet, Berthe Morisot, Camille Pissarro, Pierre-Auguste Renoir, Alfred Sisley

Try this question:  When you think of French Impressionists who are famous for paintings ballet dancers which one comes to mind first? Edgar Degas is known best for this subject.  Can you think of any other artists in general who are known for painting this subject? 

Edgar Degas, Stage Rehearsal, 1878–1879, The Metropolitan Museum of Art New York City

How about haystacks?  Claude Monet is famous for these.  But, Armand Guillaumin also painted haystacks.  Why does his name not come to mind as readily?  Claude Monet “owns” the word ‘haystacks’ like Degas owns ‘ballet dancers’.  And, that is exactly what your goal is as a luxury real estate marketing professional.  Find a niche or category of luxury real estate in your marketplace that you can own.  That is, if top-of-mind-status and instant brand recognition is your quest.

Claude Monet, Haystacks, (sunset), 1890–1891, Museum of Fine Arts, Boston

(All photos are in US public domain)

This blog posting has been provided by Ron and Alexandra Seigel, the Language of Luxury Community Founders and managing partners of Napa Consultants, International, the leading luxury real estate strategic marketing firm. They specialize in personal and company branding, luxury real estate website design and social media marketing. Photos courtesy of Ron and Alexandra.


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Posted by: Nicole Lauber
Posted on: 7/24/2012 at 7:22 AM
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Categories: Luxury Guest Writers | Luxury Real Estate
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17th Anniversary Top 10: Outdoor Living Areas

Ondine, Vermont | www.ondinevt.com

Rancho Mirage, California | www.iamthedesert.com

Rancho Mirage, California | www.iamthedesert.com

Naples, Florida | www.billearls.com

Phoenix, Arizona | www.jeffpolettrealty.com

Miami Beach, Florida | www.oceanhousesouthbeach.com

Fort Lauderdale, Florida | www.luxuryrealestateftl.com

Cape Cod, Massachusetts | www.woodshadeestate.com

Bozeman, Montana | www.suplatinum.com

Las Vegas, Nevada | www.tanyamurray.com

Want to see more Top 10s? Click here to view our 17th Anniversary digital issue!


17th Anniversary Top 10: Living Rooms

Bozeman, Montana | www.suplatinum.com

Naples, Florida | www.billearls.com

Kentfield, California | www.marinkentfieldestate.com

Bozeman, Montana | www.suplatinum.com

Rancho Mirage, California | www.iamthedesert.com

Lake Tahoe | www.laketahoe-estates.com

Grand Isle Exuma, Bahamas | www.coldwellbankerbahamas.com

Muscle Shoals, Alabama | www.davidgardner.com

Beaver Creek, Colorado | www.vailmountainlifestyle.com

Beaver Creek, Colorado | www.vailmountainlifestyle.com

Want to see more Top 10s? Click here to view our 17th Anniversary Issue!


Personal and Company Branding: How Strong is Your Brand Recognition Part 2

Photo by Valentino Vicentini

Instant recognition, of your personal or company brand in marketing luxury real estate, is the ultimate goal of banding.  The fastest route to achieve this top-of-mind status is by specializing in a particular category or niche within your market place and becoming identified with that category. An example would be the waterfront property expert.

In part 1 of this article series about brand recognition, we demonstrated the speed at which the mind recognizes an iconic brand. What is not as obvious, however, it the speed at which we categorize, or pigeon hole that which we observe in order to give it a context.  The ultimate goal of branding is to become top of mind in a category.  James Bond’s 007 enjoys top of mind status in a specific category or genre of films-spy thrillers.  Can you think of any other lead characters in this film niche?  How about Jason Bourne in the Bourne Identity, or Ethan Hunt in Mission Impossible?

Spy thrillers are a sub-category or a niche within the large category of action adventure files. For example there are numerous action adventure heroes such as Batman, Spiderman, Superman, Ironman, X Men and the Incredible Hulk. James Bond is an action hero. But, would James Bond be associated with this same group of characters?

Try another category! When you think of late night talk show hosts, who comes to mind?  Did you think of Jay Leno or David Letterman?  How about a daytime talk show host?  Did Ellen or Oprah come to mind?  Notice that Oprah did not come to mind in the late night category.

Our minds think in categories, whether it is products, services, plants, animals or entertainment. That is why it is so important for you as a luxury real estate marketing professional to stand out and become known for some specific niche within the minds of your target market.

This blog posting has been provided by Ron and Alexandra Seigel, the Language of Luxury Community Founders and managing partners of Napa Consultants, International, the leading luxury real estate strategic marketing firm. They specialize in personal and company branding, luxury real estate website design and social media marketing. Photos courtesy of Ron and Alexandra.


Rosemary Beach, Florida

Located on 107 acres of land that faces the Gulf of Mexico is Rosemary Beach, Florida, a beautifully planned community with easy access to some of the most beautiful beaches in the world.

“Rosemary Beach is a traditional neighborhood development on the synergistic east end of Scenic Highway 30A in northwest Florida, between Destin and Panama City Beach,” says Linda Miller, Vice President, Broker and Realtor with Rosemary Beach Realty. “This development has a relaxed atmosphere of Caribbean charm and incorporates architectural and urban planning influences from around the world.”

While the beaches are obviously a major attraction for those who live in the area, Rosemary Beach also offers hiking trails, fine dining, great shopping, and a great quality of life with a sense of community and belonging, Linda notes.

One thing that makes Rosemary Beach different from the rest of Florida’s beaches is its balance of being a community and also a resort destination (you can catch a direct flight to the area from Orlando, Nashville, Houston and Baltimore). “Rosemary Beach mixes the virtues of urban density and pedestrian scale and accessibility. There’s no need for your car once you arrive because everything in town is less than 5-minute stroll away,” Linda says. “Everyone should come and visit – our town is a magical place and you’ll want to stay and play!”

For more information about Rosemary Beach, click here.


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Posted by: Nicole Lauber
Posted on: 7/22/2012 at 4:18 PM
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Categories: duPont Marketplace | Luxury Real Estate
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Castle of Rincon in Rincon, Puerto Rico

From its inception in 2006 and completion in 2009, no stone was left unturned in the creation of the picturesque Castle of Rincon, a modern-day Mediterranean-style castle perfectly set atop a private mountain peak on the west coast of Rincon, Puerto Rico. Sitting 800 feet above sea level, the Castle offers a 260-degree view of the ocean and a 100-degree view of green, lush scenery. Rincon has near perfect weather year-round with warm days, cool nights and tropical breezes.

The Castle was built with old-world elements in mind, while also adding in European styles of architecture. Inside, the Castle is filled with luxurious amenities including a glass elevator, a distilled water system, a water softener, a central vacuum system, a smart house wiring system for lighting, air conditioning in all bedrooms, and an elaborate intercom and security system that is unparalleled. Steep natural grades, high walls, cameras and security gates also protect the castle.

The most amazing feature about this home is its green technology, including two wind generators and 34 solar panels with computerized sun trackers – panels that move every 90 seconds to stay in exact alignment with the sun – that generate on average 50,000 watts per day. Maximum production is approximately 80,000 watts per day. The home is 95-percent “green power,” which is another term for renewable energy, and is produced from non-hazardous technologies such as air turbines and solar cells. The Castle is self-sufficient with its private 30,000-gallon cistern and water reserve, solar and wind power and abundance of fruit trees.

Seeing that you’re in a private location, it’s natural to worry about how far some necessary amenities are. Owner of the Castle, Gary Hellings, says, “The castle is remote enough by choice, yet so very close to beaches, fine dining, shopping, airports, and docks. You can also fly onto your own heliport located adjacent to the courtyard.”

The Castle of Rincon is the perfect getaway from the stressors of life and truly a jewel of Puerto Rico.

For more information about the Castle of Rincon, click here.