Symphony House IHOTW

Walking through Architect George C.T. Woo’s “Symphony House” in University Park is like reading a good book, and one you can’t judge by its cover. That’s on purpose. Woo likes a good surprise as much as anyone. So he created a subtle façade that does very little to prepare you for having your proverbial socks knocked off the moment you enter the front door.

3636 University

Woo is known for his work with I.M Pei on The Morton H. Meyerson Symphony Center. He lived in this home at 3636 University Boulevard while working with Pei on the project. He founded his architectural firm, George C.T. Woo & Partners, in Dallas in 1986. Woo also worked on the design of Dallas City Hall and The Lipscomb House in Cedar Hill. His residential and commercial projects span the globe.

You can imagine the detail and craftsmanship an architect puts into their own home—it’s off the charts.

(more…)

dfw open houses

The unique traditional in Mockingbird Park at 5435 Westside Dr. is one of our five featured DFW open houses this week.

Every Thursday, we bring you a roundup of DFW open houses that will knock your socks off. This week, we’re got a particularly big range of styles and prices, ranging from $394,900 to $1.16 million.

You’ll find an updated and expanded M-Streets Tudor, a unique traditional near West Highland Park that feels secluded and contemporary, a Mediterranean home near Celestial Park in Addison, and more. You don’t want to miss these!

(more…)

Dax Pass

It is with a heavy, grieving spirit we report that Dallas has lost one of our brightest real estate talents.

Dax Howard Pass, Briggs Freeman Sotheby’s International Realty Ranch and Land broker extraordinaire, husband of Caroline Summers, and father of three, passed today peacefully following complications from a heart attack suffered over the weekend.

He was way, way too young to leave us.

Services will be on Thursday, Sept. 8 at 3:00 p.m. at Highland Park Presbyterian Church, with a reception to follow at the Dallas Country Club.

Dax’s roots ran deep in Texas, with a deep love of and respect for the land. He had more than 18 years of real estate experience in commercial, ranch and land, oil and gas and investment properties.  He and his family ranched in west Texas for six generations, developing connections throughout the State.  

“My family ranched in Erath, Somervell and Presidio counties growing up, and I spent my summers working the ranches,” Dax told me. “Currently my family ranches in Presidio, Jeff Davis, Brewster and Crane counties, and we run a commercial herd and breed horses.  I formed a new group within the Land and Ranch division (at Briggs), our focus is on brokerage, ranch management and natural resource management and consultation. “

I knew he loved working with the land, and understood it better than most. According to his Briggs Freeman Sotheby’s International Realty profile, Dax started brokering deals in 1995:

In 1995, Pass brokered his first land deal with John and J.T. Pass, beginning his career in the ranch and land business. For the past two decades, Pass has been guiding his clients through complex ranch and land and commercial real estate transactions. He launched his commercial real estate career by working for another family business, Whataburger Restaurants (Whataco Inc.). During his time with Whataco, he was in charge of site acquisition and development in Texas, New Mexico and Louisiana. The family’s franchise became the largest in the nation with 92 restaurants, employing 3,500 people and was sold in 2000 to Redstone Companies of Houston, Texas.

Then in 2001, it was oil and gas acquisition, development and exploration.  He co-founded Phoenix Resources, Inc., where he negotiated seismic permits and leased 104 square miles of Texas Gulf Coast in Calhoun County. Dax managed seismic data acquisition and expansion of additional leases. Phoenix drilled and developed a substantial portion of the county and was sold in 2006.

Next he founded Pass Properties, a real estate brokerage and consulting firm specializing in the sale of ranchland, pasture, agricultural farms, timber, hunting acreage and recreational properties across the Southwestern United States, notably in Marfa.

Dax was a graduate of Highland Park High School, and studied business at Texas Christian University. He lived in Greenway Parks with the love of his life, Caroline, and their family.

“My flesh and my heart may fail, but God is the strength of my heart,
 and my portion for ever.” -Psalm 73:26

We are praying for strength for Dax Pass’s beautiful, loving family. When a loved one passes, there is really no comfort for those who grieve. Let the love of our incredible real estate community, and the devotion of family, comfort the Pass family. Our deepest condolences.

 

4401 Lorraine Avenue

A simply stunning Highland Park French Normandy masterpiece, at 4401 Lorraine Avenue, hit the market last week and it has totally captivated us. Our staff sees hundreds of home online each day. When we have the opportunity, we also see several in person each month. So we’re accustomed to gorgeous properties and yes, we can get a little jaded.

Then there are the times, when a home is so fantastic, we get that dazed look in our eyes and gasp “OMG, just look at this!” This is one of those times.

What distinguishes this property from thousands of others? Well, it’s not just beautiful but it’s also tasteful and well thought out. It has a restrained elegance. You know what Realtors say about location? You can’t get much better than the corner of Armstrong Parkway in Highland Park.

(more…)

4025 Bowser Front

Caroline Summers strikes again! This dynamic Briggs Freeman Sotheby’s International Realtor has another great listing, and this time it’s in the super-hot SoHIP neighborhood (South of Highland Park, for the uninitiated).

This gorgeous semi-detached home has a beautiful modern facade and an even better location. It’s right in the honey pot of Uptown, north of Lemmon and west of Oak Lawn, and it has creative, open interiors with tons of texture. It has a rooftop deck, too. This luxurious urban property is definitely worthy of our High Caliber Home of the Week award.

And Caroline Summers is a Realtor who will work tirelessly to market her clients properties, too. This award-winning agent just received the Charles P. Freeman Spirit in the Sky award, as well as entrance into the Briggs Freeman Millennium club with more than $20 million in sales for 2014. Yes, Summers is driven and creative, which reminds us an awful lot of Lisa Peters at Caliber Home Loans. If you want a mortgage professional that will help you sail through closing, don’t take any chances and call Lisa Peters today.

Jump to find out more about this chic home!

(more…)

The spec house at 6115 Desco Dr. will look similar to this. Photo courtesy Shoot2Sell.

The spec house at 6115 Desco Dr. will look similar to this, also built by LRO Residential Development.

Spec homes are a sign of strong builder and bank confidence in a market, as they are created without any specific buyer in mind, just the belief that one will be interested once it is completed. The higher the price tag, the higher the stakes.

In our inventory-parched market, homebuilder Les Owens, President of LRO Residential Development, has that confidence in the Dallas market, even at multi-million-dollar levels. He’s starting two spec houses this month, one in Preston Hollow for $3.15 million, and another in Devonshire for $2.2 million.

Both houses are available for customization, but Owens is breaking ground now and says he will complete them in late summer/early fall this year.

As we reported earlier this month, luxury home sales in Dallas-Fort Worth skyrocketed in 2014—those with prices of $1 million and up grew 15 percent year-over-year, the second highest sales volume in Texas (bested only by Houston).

Luxury home sales in DFW represented 1.2 percent of the market, and top-performing luxury brands are seeing more multi million-dollar sales in areas that have strong resale value and high existing demand.

“Established neighborhoods and homes of significance in coveted areas such as Highland Park, Preston Hollow, Greenway Parks, and The Volk Estates are desperately pursued, and the quality of the design continues to be a driving factor,” said Caroline Summers, a Briggs Freeman Sotheby’s agent. Jump to read about the houses and see photos!

(more…)

4326 Lorraine

Caroline Summers, the Briggs Freeman Sotheby’s agent who sold 4326 Lorraine, says that well-designed luxury homes in high-profile areas are seeing heightened demand.

Luxury home sales with prices of $1 million and up posted huge growth in 2014 according to the latest Texas Luxury Home Sales Report from the Texas Association of Realtors. In Dallas-Fort Worth, the sales volume of luxury homes was second highest in the state and grew 15 percent year-over-year. Dallas was a runner up to Houston, which had the highest volume of luxury home sales as well as the highest luxury home price growth.

The overall inventory of luxury homes in Dallas-Fort Worth shrank by 1.2 months in 2014, a trend that was seen across the market in North Texas, and luxury home sales represented only 1.2 percent of the market. Compare that to Houston, in which luxury home sales represented 2 percent of the market and were up 13 percent year-over-year.

(more…)

Emily Summers Arch Digest

Need more proof that the apple doesn’t fall far from the tree? Then you’ll appreciate this lovely write-up of legendary Dallas interior designer Emily Summers in Architectural Digest.

(more…)