Welcome to the Highlands, North Carolina

Enveloped by the Nantahala National Forest, Highlands North Carolina is located at the southern tip of the Blue Ridge Mountains at an elevation of 4,118 feet within two hours driving time of Atlanta Georgia, Asheville North Carolina and Greenville South Carolina.  The surrounding mountains soar to heights over 5,000 feet and in July our average daytime temperature is a cool 76 degrees.    With a rich history, wonderful climate and enviable way of life, Highlands has long been a haven for southerners anxious to escape the summer heat and is an ideal location for a retirement or summer home.  

The year round population of the Highlands area is about 4,500, however in the summer the area increases to over 15,000 folks.  The cultural amenities during the summer season include professional live theatre, chamber music concerts, art classes, cabarets and other special events.  A variety of educational programs and informative seminars are available as well.  Long noted for its fine dining with five restaurants holding Wine Spectator Awards, the community also offers unique shopping, with specialty gift and clothing boutiques, antique and art galleries, fine jewelry and custom furniture.

With the rare combination of scenic beauty and ideal climate, Highlands has much to offer in the way of sightseeing and outdoor recreation.  The number and variety of accessible trails will thrill hikers of all skill levels.  With the cool temperatures, golf and tennis are most enjoyable, while waterfalls and panoramic mountain vistas form the backdrop for fly fishing, rappelling and whitewater rafting.

Home to The Old Edwards Inn and Spa, recently acclaimed as the #1 Hotel Spa in North America by Conde´ Nast Traveler, Highlands was also recognized in 2012 by Barrons “Twenty Best Places for a Second Home.”

 

If you are hoping to make Highlands your residence of choice in the North Carolina Mountains, then you have chosen wisely and deserve expert help as you explore the available real estate offerings.   Meadows Mountain Realty has been serving the Highlands area since 2003 with nineteen brokers in two convenient locations.    Come visit with one of our local experts – let us introduce you to Highlands North Carolina real estate and the Highlands lifestyle.  

To learn more about this property visit www.meadowsmtnrealty.com.


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Posted by: Keri Mahoney
Posted on: 9/22/2012 at 8:30 AM
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Private Oceanfront Coastal Retreat

In prestigious Palmers Island. Offering 10 bedrooms, 9 full and 4 half baths. 7 bedrooms, 3 car garage and boat house. The guest home features 3 bedrooms and a 2 car garage. Located on over two acres of Oceanfront property and has unobstructed views of the Ocean. Cathedral ceilings, hardwood floors, Terracotta and ceramic tiles. Rooftop decks on both the main and guest homes.  Has 2 elevators, private office, butler’s pantry, recreation room and cabana room for ease of beach and pool enjoyment. Currently used as a private home, however rental income projections forecast over $385,000 annually.   $6,500,000 furnished with some exclusions.

For more information on this property visit The Hawkins Team website at www.thehawkinsteam.com.


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Posted by: Keri Mahoney
Posted on: 9/21/2012 at 8:09 AM
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Second Nature

Residents of The Elk River Club in Banner Elk, North Carolina wake up in a beautifully custom designed home, crafted from the finest native materials, to a gorgeous view of the Blue Ridge Mountains. They admire the stunning sight of Mountain Laurel and native Rhododendron blooming in the spring, and are surrounded by neighbors with the utmost Southern hospitality. This is what every day life is like.
            “The scenic beauty of the Blue Ridge Mountains is unparalleled,” says Rick Foster of Elk River Realtor. “Whether you enjoy hiking along tree lined trails covered in blooming Rhododendron and Mountain Laurel, driving along the breathtaking Blue Ridge Parkway, or fly fishing in crystal clear, cascading mountain streams and rivers, nature lovers and those with active lifestyles will find ‘Heaven on Earth’ in the North Carolina High Country.” Residents like to say Banner Elk and High Country is where Mother Nature goes to vacation.
            The Elk River Club real estate market has remained relatively stable, and it continues to be an excellent time to consider investing in mountain real estate, according to Foster. An investment in mountain real estate at The Elk River Club is not just a property investment, but a lifestyle investment as well. In a place where residents delight in outdoor recreational activities like mountain biking, snow skiing, and white water rafting as well as the luxury of fine dining, outdoor festivals and antique shopping, there is truly something for everyone.
            At The Elk River Club in Banner Elk, North Carolina, expecting relaxation, peace of mind and lots of beautiful living space are second nature. “But most of all, people can expect opportunities,” says Foster. “Opportunities to gather the family closer, to create experiences that become traditions, and legacies that last a lifetime.”
            To view some of the contemporary and luxurious properties currently on the market in Elk River, visit www.elkriverclub.com.

 


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Posted by: Keri Mahoney
Posted on: 9/20/2012 at 8:02 AM
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Mountain Living: Western North Carolina

Take one part Southern charm, and one part cosmopolitan sophistication. Add in a lush, green setting and you might understand why Western North Carolina has become a most desirable area for living the good life. 

Known as the “Paris of the South,” Western North Carolina has been coveted land since George Vanderbilt built his vacation home, the Biltmore Estate, over 100 years ago. Since this landmark building, it seems others have followed suit. Boasting a temperate year-round climate, an abundance of outdoor activities, and a moderate price of living, the influx of interest in the area makes sense.

The region’s housing market is on the upswing, in fact, ensuring plenty of accommodating options throughout the state. Whether you are in pursuit of a high-end estate in Waynesville or a multi-story condominium in Downtown Asheville, Western North Carolina has the inventory for even the most discriminating buyers. “As a region, sales in price ranges over $700,000 are up 50% over the same period last year,” says Michael Phelan, area expert at Beverly-Hanks & Associates.

Untouched nature devoid of chains, overdevelopment and traffic await those who visit the North Carolina mountains. It is a place that offers an unparalleled quality of life that most can only aspire to. The region is so relaxing that U.S. News & World Report recognized Asheville as one of “America’s Best Affordable Places to Retire” in 2009.

Western North Carolina also boasts countless dining options, and quite the craft beer scene, for those who appreciate local libations. Chefs in Asheville serve up delicious dishes while taking pride in using locally grown produce and grass-fed livestock.

Western North Carolina’s emphasis on quality food and the accessibility to breathtaking natural resources provide a picture-perfect canvas for living a healthy, active lifestyle in the last of America’s paradise.

 


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Posted by: Keri Mahoney
Posted on: 9/19/2012 at 4:11 PM
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Luxury Real Estate Marketing Tip: Beyond Popcorn to Tasty Marketing

As a luxury real estate marketing professional it is important to keep up with luxury marketing ideas that are outside the real estate field, as they can inspire and refresh your marketing approaches.  Here is an ingenious idea to lure the movie going public engaged in actually going to movie theatres, rather than waiting for Netflix or other on-demand channels to release the film.

This year at the New York City Food Film Festival, popcorn will not be served.  At the movie “Whiskey: The Islay Edition,” a story about the importance of single malt scotch to the island of Islay, scotch will be served along with a bacon wrapped steak. At the Chicago Food Film Festival there will be a presentation of  “Mozzarella, Inc.,” a documentary about two young Italian Mozzarella salesmen in London, and fresh mozzarella will be served.

Not to be outdone, at the first annual Minneapolis, Feast for the Eyes Film Festival they plan to feature local food and micro brews with their film lineup.  This will include new movies such as “Now Forager,” a story set in the New York restaurant milieu that features mushroom hunting (foraging) as a setting for falling in love.  No doubt wild mushrooms with be part of the goodies served.

How can this translate to luxury real estate marketing?  One of our clients in the wine country has new wine tasting at her office by invitation only. She serves an array of hors d’oeuvres made by one of the celebrity chefs in town.  This has created great buzz for her business as well as listings and sales.  Now that is a tasty marketing strategy!

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: 9/19/2012 at 7:18 AM
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Top Ten Foyers

They say that first impresssions are lasting ones.  Since the foyer of your home is one of the first things your guests will see, make sure it reflects the  right tone you wish to convey.  The wall coverings, artwork,  furniture and accessories need to send the right message.  Of course there are many styles. Contemporary, Traditonal, Tuscan just to name a few.  We have selected some of the best foyers on these two pages.  Perhaps one will catch your eye and give you some inspiration to create or update your own!


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Posted by: Keri Mahoney
Posted on: 9/18/2012 at 2:51 PM
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An Escape from Reality

Many people underestimate the rare beauty of The Golden State, a place where the atmosphere can change from laid-back to adventurous with a snap of your fingers and where rays of uninterrupted sunshine make this eco-friendly and highly recreational state incomparable to others in the United States.

With the highest and lowest points in the continental United States within 100 miles of each other and mild year-round weather, California offers residents an array of activities to indulge in at any time. Outdoor activities in California include hiking in the mountains, swimming, horseback riding, and skiing and snowboarding during the winter months. California is also home to a number of outdoor entertainment venues and thousands of vineyards offering tours and wine tastings.

One of the most exclusive properties on the market today embodies many of these activities. This jaw-dropping property rests behind an iron-gated entrance at the top of a gravel drive that meanders through stately olive and pepper trees. Old World sophistication meets 21st century comfort in this exquisite Mediterranean vineyard equestrian estate situated on approximately 10 acres in Carpinteria. The gorgeous Tuscan-style villa has outstanding ocean views and is surrounded by fruit orchards, a vineyard and modern equestrian facilities.

Built in 2005 at approximately 8,725-square-feet, the 4-bed, 4-bath main residence has a classic Mediterranean design, a state-of-the-art home automation system, a guest suite, home theatre, library and wine cellar. The villa has been decorated from ceiling to floor with top of the line finishes suitable for the style and emphasizing entertainment. A meticulously maintained 6-stall equestrian stable with paddocks resides on the property.

An escape from the bustle of the city area, this $14.5 million property at 338 Toro Canyon Road offers quiet serenity while being only minutes away from Summerland and Montecito, the 101 Highway, and Santa Barbara.

“Anything and everything is a go here,” says Suzanne Perkins of Sotheby’s International Realty in Santa Barbara. “And weather like California’s where the median coastal Santa Barbara is 70-degrees is beyond desirable.”

 

At this gorgeous residence, rest, relaxation and beautiful scenery will meet adventure. In a place where lifestyle possibilities are endless, you’ll want to make this brilliant Californian estate yours so you never have to leave.

To learn more about this property visit Sotheby's International Realty website at www.suzanneperkins.com


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Posted by: Keri Mahoney
Posted on: 9/17/2012 at 2:43 PM
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Luxury Real Estate Marketing Tip: How to Dominate Your Niche

In marketing luxury real estate, being a generalist is the surest path to mediocrity. The fastest route to market leadership is to identify an uncontested or underserved market niche that you can dominate. However, you must find a niche that you can serve better than anyone else and you must be genuinely passionate about it.  To understand this vital principle, here is an example of how this plays out in a completely different field.  

Did you happen to catch the season premiere of Shark Tank, the reality show where 5 wealthy entrepreneurs (including Barbara Corcoran, the New York real estate maven) compete to invest in promising start-up companies? The two women who invented BuggyBeds, the early detection system for bed bugs, made a presentation that wowed all five Sharks, and us too!  They had turned down a buy-out of $5 million dollars prior to appearing on the show. 

Apparently, there is a significant increase in the reported cases of bed bug infestation in the last few years. Females lay up to 500 eggs! Their patented early detection bed bug glue trap slips under a mattress and sells for $8.98 for a package of four.  Now, here is an uncontested market niche!  With the Shark’s help, every major hotel chain, every mattress company, every home improvement store chain and more will soon carry this product.  

BuggyBeds is a need that consumers did not even know they had. Now, “over-night” it will become a necessity. They got their branding spot on! The brand name itself identifies the new product category they created.  

When you identify an uncontested market niche you create news. By promoting the new category to a news-hungry media you can promote your brand in the process. By leveraging the media (including social media) you can maximize public relations and word-of-mouth advertising and minimize your marketing expense.  

When you take on an uncontested market niche in this way, your competition, if any, becomes inconsequential. If they attempt to copy you they are perceived as a “me-too” (think Zune vs. iPod).  Once you break the news about the category, their chance of getting substantial media coverage is very slim. They will have to out-spend you in marketing to try to keep up with you. 

If you have selected a niche that is not new, but is underserved, you still have the opportunity to create news because you or your company becomes the viable alternative to your competition that heretofore was not challenged. You can still spark word-of-mouth advertising that can lead to dominating your niche.

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: 9/17/2012 at 9:28 AM
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A Stunning Summer Retreat!

A stunning summer retreat with the perfect combination of luxury and elegance, 30 Point Road captures the essence of Cape Cod living. Situated in North Falmouth, Massachusetts this idyllic home enjoys a vibrant seaside community, as well as easy access to Martha’s Vineyard and Nantucket ferries. Expansive views overlook the picturesque Buzzards Bay on just over an acre of waterfront property. Magnificent outdoor living space and lush gardens leading down to the water make this 5,280-square-foot home the perfect summer destination.

Upon entering 30 Point Road one is immediately greeted by a grand two-story foyer, which opens to a spacious living room with panoramic views. Floor-to-ceiling windows enhance the dramatic scenery and flood the house with natural light. The gourmet kitchen boasts beautiful granite counter tops, hardwood floors, and top of the line appliances. One of the home’s most splendid features is the luxurious master suite with its own private balcony and breathtaking vistas. Four more ensuite bedrooms provide accommodation for family or guests with privacy and grace. A sumptuous family room with Brazilian tile floors, high ceilings, and a custom bar opens to the exterior living space with a roll out wall that invites a crisp ocean breeze.

The outdoor patio and deck area is perfect for entertaining with a state-of-the-art kitchen, fireplace, and stunning views. This tranquil sanctuary enjoys a waterside infinity pool and spa surrounded by Chinese granite. Plenty of open space and idyllic gardens make this the perfect location to escape the stress of everyday life. A stairway leads down to the ocean where one can enjoy the pristine waters of Buzzards Bay. Additionally there are separate guest quarters with a well-appointed kitchen, bedroom, and full bath.

Minutes from fine dining and immaculate beaches, 30 Point Road provides easy access to Cape Cod’s best amenities. Fishing, sailing, and kayaking are just a few of the great outdoor activities offered here in Falmouth. Land-lovers can enjoy walking the Roskovics Conservation Area or riding along the scenic Shining Sea bike path. A historic downtown area is a lively summer destination and epitomizes the unique culture of Cape Cod.

“The current owners have put a tremendous amount of work and care into this house,” says Paul Grover, co-owner of Robert Paul Properties. “Most buyers are looking for a finished home where they can move their families in right away. They can find that here along with sweeping views in a home that epitomizes outdoor living.”


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Posted by: Keri Mahoney
Posted on: 9/16/2012 at 1:52 PM
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Los Angeles Hideaway

 Create a legacy for generations to come. This nearly 400-acre property features endless development possibilities for polo, family recreation, and resort-style residences. Develop a Millionaire’s Playground in the scenic Lake Hughes area of Los Angeles. The 395-acre property is comprised of an 18 hole golf course, 113 space full hook-up RV park, onsite restaurant, Pro Shop, tennis & basketball courts, children’s playground and swimming pools. 

The property backs up to Angeles National Forest land on the south border and provides access to 10,000+ acres of public National Forest Land, with direct access to the Grass Mountain summit trail, Pacific Crest Trail, and trails for ATVs, horseback riding, mountain biking and hiking. This bank owned recreation area is the perfect legacy property to enjoy with friends and family.

Listed at $8,500,000


 

To learn more about this property visit their website at www.LosAngeleshideaway.com.


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Posted by: Keri Mahoney
Posted on: 9/15/2012 at 1:38 PM
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Where Adventure Meets Luxury

Envision living in a place where the days are bright, sunny and warm, and the nights are cool; where you can hear the sound of waves crashing and soft rock music is the soundtrack to everyday life. A place like this exists in the state of California.

The greatest aspects of owning a property in California are the very temperate weather, the lifestyle, and the beautiful geography. In addition to the ideal weather, the ocean and mountains offer astounding scenic views and a variety of year-round activities such as boating, mountain biking, sailing, surfing, and tennis.

There are also a number of venues to visit in California such as Disneyland, Knott’s Berry Farm, Magic Mountain, Hollywood, and Universal Studios. California is also known for having the highest standards of performing arts facilities and venues as well as performances such as Pageant of the Masters, which takes place annually every summer in Laguna Beach, California.

“Residents of California have a passion for life and enjoy adventure and the outdoors,” says Lee Ann Canaday, Broker/Owner of RE/MAX Fine Homes & the Canaday Group.

Californian homes are rich in a variety of styles of architecture and lifestyle homes. California is abundant with gated communities, offering its residents the utmost seclusion and privacy. Prospective buyers can choose from ocean-oriented homes, ocean front homes, homes with ocean views, boating and golf oriented homes, tennis estates and equestrian estates.

“The unbelievable deals on prices and loans make buying high-end properties in Southern California a double bargain. Now is the time to buy high-end properties here,” says Canaday.

Canaday was recently honored by the Orange County Business Journal as a top “Woman in Business.” She was also honored by the Girl Scouts of America as a Woman in Leadership.


To learn more about this property visit RE/MAX Fine Homes, Canaday Group's website at www.CanadayGroup.com.


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Posted by: Keri Mahoney
Posted on: 9/14/2012 at 1:12 PM
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Mountain Living: Clayton/Lake Burton, Ga.

Situated in northeast Georgia, the town of Clayton and Lake Burton represent the ideal mountain life. Resident Nan Vogler says, “The appeal of the north Georgia mountains is that they are simple and sophisticated at the same time.”

Verdant forest and clear mountain lakes blend easily with outdoor pastimes and more urban pursuits. The Lake Burton area has become a haven for artists, and Clayton charms with its restaurants and eclectic shopping.

Nature offers year-round enjoyment. Spring delights with the renewal it brings. In summer, waterfall hikes, swimming and wakeboarding are just a few of the athletic options. Vogler says her favorite time of year is fall “when the leaves turn the mountain slopes into a canvas of explosive colors. Wintertime is also a favorite, when the soft winter light seems to encourage romance and cuddling.”

Vogler’s property, which is for sale, is perched on a hill overlooking Lake Burton. “You have total privacy. In fact, you feel like the only house on the hill as you can’t even see your neighbors,” she says. The property is represented by Julie Barnett, a Realtor with Harry Norman, Realtors.  

The main house has three bedrooms, each with mountain and lake views, and three bathrooms. The best view, naturally, is from the master bedroom. “With floor to ceiling windows, all you see is lush green treetops and sky with Lake Burton on the horizon,” she says. A sunroom and a deck provide more space for entertaining and solitary relaxation.

A carriage house contains an additional three bedrooms, two bathrooms and a large playroom.

“Life on Lake Burton is really all about family and friends,” Vogler says. “We like to say we are building memories and a lifestyle for generations to come.”

 


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Posted by: Keri Mahoney
Posted on: 9/13/2012 at 1:07 PM
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Luxury Real Estate Website Design: The Winning Formula--Eye Catching Design + Original Content

Courtesty of Apple

In recent posts we have been focused on the importance of capturing attention with superior luxury real estate website design and holding attention with original content. We rarely include You Tube videos in our posts.  But, this one is so astonishing because it so clearly illustrates both of these concepts.  

Human beings tend to make snap judgments and pigeonhole people based on outward appearance.  That is why great web design is vital for capturing attention. Apple, the most highly valued company in the world, certainly understood the value of excellence in design. Without it you may be ignored, despite your talent, not to mention the time, energy and money you have spent getting people to your site in the first place. 

But, once you have captured their attention with eye-catching design, holding it is an entirely different challenge.  That is where continuously providing fresh, follow-worthy and share-worthy ORIGINAL content comes into play.  It can spark and accelerate word-of-mouth advertising for you or your company. This video has been viewed over 20 million times.  We hope it inspires you as much as it did the two of us.  If the video does not appear on your screen, here is the link.

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: 9/13/2012 at 10:32 AM
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SOUTHERN CALIFORNIA WINE COUNTRY

Sensational views of the entire Temecula Valley from every room of this modern work of art. 

Nestled high on the hills above the city and conveniently located within 1 hour of San Diego, Orange Country, and Palm Springs, half way between Ontario and San Diego International Airports, this 15 acre gated paradise affords the utmost in luxury and privacy. 

The centerpiece is an 8900 sq.ft architectural masterpiece.  A spectacular Great Room  awaits with 28’ walls of glass overlooking the pool area & the city below.  A chefs dream kitchen and butlers pantry highlight this entertainers delight. This one of a kind home features numerous guest suites, private apartment, his and her offices, his and her garages, an artist studio & private home theater. 

The interior of this home is embellished with custom hand made wallpaper, custom area rugs, commissioned artwork, state of the art Solar Electric, 12 volt Lutron Lighting, Security System and Safe Room.  No detail has been spared in the creation of this “one of a kind” estate!  

Offered at $2,600,000

To learn more about properties from Concord Realty Investments visit their website www.viewofthevalley.com.


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Posted by: Keri Mahoney
Posted on: 9/12/2012 at 12:57 PM
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Luxury Real Estate Website Design: Does Your Website Stir Emotions?

Great luxury real estate marketing begins with eye catching website design and emotional branding because, for many consumers, your site is their first impression of you or your company.  Does your webstie stir emotions?

You may be familiar with Ferrari and Lamborghini, two of Italy’s most famous sports cars.  But, unless you are a motorcycle enthusiast you may not have heard of Ducati, perhaps the most attractive motorcycles in the world. 

Ducati is committed to racing competitions and excellence in performance.  Yet, their unmistakable style is a pure expression of their passion for world-class design. Each bike Is built by hand not by robots.  Ducati designs stirs emotions!

Ducati understands emotional branding and their marketing message is communicated loud and clear. In their collateral material, they describe their design as having  “sinuous, seductive, flexible lines with a permanent, timeless quality that sets an unsurpassable standard”.  They know that their bikes dominate the dreams of the most discriminating motorcycle enthusiasts in over 60 countries where their bikes are sold. 

Before they ever discuss the unique mechanical features of their bikes or their impressive track record for winning 15 out of 18 World Superbike Championships they entice potential buyers with the opportunity to own a piece of kinetic art. Ducati’s impeccable design creates an immediate emotion sale. 

Pay close attention to your luxury real estate website design.  Favorable first impressions are so important. Before you start boasting about your top performance, let your superior website design be your silent salesperson.

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.