IMG_1299

One of my wildest dreams has been to market luxury real estate like this: “Try Before You Buy”.

We try on shoes, clothes, and test-drive cars. All of those are a hell of a lot cheaper than a home. But who gets to “try a house” to see if you really love it? Why not take it for a “test-drive” before you sign on the dotted? 

That is exactly what The Perry-Miller Streiff Group of Dave Perry-Miller Real Estate the week before the election. They took 4920 Mangold Circle, lovely creekside cul de sac off Strait Lane, not too far from Jennifer Staubach Gates’ pad on Keyhole, not for a just a test drive, but a lifestyle test. It’s called Dwell Well. Exercise and lifestyle experts from Equinox came over to implement a very successful program they have been developing in other states: real-time workout sessions around the pool, fitness and health tips, and nutritional snacks in a private listed residence.

It’s called “Sweat-working”.

“This is how you would actually live in this setting,” says Christina Marshall, Director, Central Regional Marketing for Equinox.”This is a chance to interact with the home, maybe invite a few friends over, and see how it fits while you try out the high performance lifestyle.”

4920 Mangold Circle is definitely a high performance house, befitting of a relationship with the Equinox brand. In fact, Equinox is owned by Related Companies, a privately owned real estate firm in New York City with offices and developments in Boston, Chicago, Los Angeles, Las Vegas, Miami, San Francisco, even Abu Dhabi. The company was founded by Stephen M. Ross in 1972. Under it’s belt are Oxford Properties, Vornado Realty Trust, SL Green Realty, The Blackstone Group and Equinox. Formidable siblings, real estate in the blood.

“Fitness is no longer just in the gym,” says Christina, “It’s in your life. We provide you an amazing place to come to in the community, but we also venture outside of our four walls to show how we practice our three pillars and incorporate it into busy lives.”IMG_1330 (more…)

spec house

I’ve got a total scoop for you today, a gorgeous transitional spec house in Midway Hills that just listed. This property is swoon-worthy, with rich, open spaces, high-end amenities, and beautiful conveniences. This is a Preston Hollow-esque home, but with a lot smaller price tag.

Located at 4046 Northview Ln., it’s the work of CandysDirt.com Approved Builder Michael Turner, owner of Classic Urban Homes. Turner builds in great Dallas neighborhoods, and he currently has eight luxury homes in various stages of construction. His creations are in demand, to say the least, and it’s easy to see why.

This home has five bedrooms, six bathrooms, three living areas, a three-car garage, and 5,638 square feet on two stories. It sits on just over a third of an acre near Northaven and Midway roads. It has a smooth, clean, uncluttered design with big windows, rich hardwoods, and high-end extras that make for exceptional living.

“I like the neighborhood because you can get the same amenities as the Preston Hollow area, but this house is about $500,000 less expensive that what you would pay there [because of the lot prices],” Turner said. “It’s still a Preston Hollow-style house and finish-out with all the bells and whistles.”

(more…)

In-Home Wine Room

In-Home Wine Room

(Sung to the Mister Ed theme song)
The House is a house, of course, of course,
And no one can talk to a house of course
That is, of course, unless the house is the famous Dallas House.

Believe me, this unit at The House will speak to you. Heck, that wine room slurred sweet nothings in my ear during my visit. Imagine that room … 23 stories off the ground.  This isn’t the entryway (could you imagine?) but in taking over the den space, guests see it before the living room (as god intended).

You may recall my recent dalliance with the Ritz Residences?  Realtor Sharon Quist hijacked me over to this unit at The House that same evening. I’ve got no problem being hoodwinked if this is the final destination.  I mean you know you have serious wine when it’s got spotlights on it.

How fabulously unexpected … and there’s a lot of fabulously unexpected in this unit. The current owner went well beyond the standard House finishes.  This heady home has recently been listed with Sharon Quist from Dave Perry-Miller Real Estate. It’s a double unit with 3,184 square feet inside and another 818 square feet of outside (89 linear feet). Inside there are three bedrooms with three full and one half bathrooms. It’s only recently leapt onto the market at $1.75 million.

(more…)

 

unspecified

Nothing defined an era more than the 14-year run of the television series Dallas. The entire world was caught up in the complicated lives of the Ewing clan, and all we wanted to know was “Who shot J.R?” I remember traveling in London at the time, and the moment people found out I was from Dallas, that’s all they could talk about.

Nothing before or after the original series has created that sort of international interest. It cast our fair city in a brighter light and made everyone fall in love with the idea of “bigger is better.” Big cars, bigger hair and of course, the biggest houses. The infamous Dallas TV home of the Ewing clan is one of the biggest, one of the best, and it’s for sale. Allie Beth Allman has it listed for $12.95 million.

(more…)

2 - Exterior 1

Each time I’ve been waved through the gates at Place des Vosges, I’ve been riding shotgun in a Bentley … something akin to tooling around Arlington in a Toyota. It’s just what you do. As Karen Eubank recently pointed out, the original Place des Vosges is in Paris (near the Bastille).  It’s also a stroll from a friend’s Paris home so I’ve enjoyed many a chocolate and a gab in its center park in the same manner as one-time resident Cardinal Richelieu … without the palace intrigue.

However, Dallas’ Place des Vosges, begun in 2006, is based on the slightly later Place Dauphine, located at the tip of Paris’ Île de la Cité and completed in 1616 … 400 years ago.  Both are residential “squares” with a central courtyard, but Place Dauphine is triangular in shape, more like our Place des Vosges.

(more…)

439 W Colorado Blvd ext 4

This charming cottage at 439 West Colorado Boulevard in the heart of East Kessler Park lasted on the market only five days and snagged three offers. (I was actually surprised it lasted that long.) When the seller told me he and his “partner in crime” were considering selling, I said, go find a place to live NOW.

This is the home of the most talented Todd Johnson, who I knew as the Art Director of D Home Magazine, but his last art direction gig was with Ink, the magazines of American Way. 

You can see his well-thought out touches from the very first glimpse of the home: the detail work in the freshly white brick, the welcoming front door and shutters. Inside the walls are various shades of blue-gray that enhance the abundant exterior greenery floating in from the giant windows, located on multiple sides in most rooms.

439 West Colorado Blvd ext

(more…)

4350 Westside Drive ext

If the name Barry Williams comes to mind, you have a nose for haute design. He is one of the most exclusive interior designers in Texas. He has created exquisitely appointed interiors for a highly select register of clientele. In fact, his nickname is “the billionaire’s decorator”, because he has worked for six. He has no website, because he’s not interested in making himself available to everyone, only to those as serious about beautiful design as he is. For years, his business even had an unlisted telephone number. As our Leah Shafer wrote:

He brings a photographer’s eye, a perfectionist’s attention to detail, and a historian’s context to his work at Williams Design Inc., a firm he opened in the Dallas Design District in 1999.

If one could step into the imagination of interior designer Barry Williams, I imagine one would find a lavish, carefully curated place of amaranthine loveliness, as well as an endless inventory of ideas.

But oh, what if one could step into his home? What if one could buy it?

Barry Williams portrait

“I wanted 4350 Westside Drive to reflect my evolution of taste,” he told me. “to quote Alfred Lord Tennyson: ‘I am  part of all that I have met.’ And I have met lots of new stuff! There has been a sea change in design in the last ten years. I could offer, for example, to deliver a gorgeous 18th century armoire to your house for free, and you wouldn’t want it.” (more…)

11627 Forest Creek Place ext

An “O” House is a home so fabulous you have to drop whatever you are doing (yeah, even that) or holding, including your nail file, to look!

I am sort of on a roll here with doctor’s houses. “O”h my; another physician’s dream castle. The compulsion to building perfection here is almost Freudian.

Well of course it is, this is an “O” home. The Bionic Alpine “O” home.

11627 Forest Creek Place is located in a leafy, cul-de-sac laden neighborhood of circa 1970 homes south of Forest Lane, in-between Preston and Hillcrest. There is a bounty of building going on across the street from this area, and Sharif-Munir has all but sold out Iris Hollow. Centurion American is developing more lots to the west of Iris Hollow. The prices are around $700K for a quarter of an acre of raw land. Come 2020, there will not be a blade of grass in this area to build on: everything will have to be re-developed.

Talk about wildlife: Lee Kleinman and his Wildebeast are your city council reps. And the coyotes roam nightly.

Forest Creek Place foyer

(more…)