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You might expect to pay a cover fee to attend an open house at a property of this caliber. The art alone is worthy of exhibit. And together with  perfectly selected fixtures and finishes, 1717 Arts Plaza, unit 2208 strikes a masterful balance between the warmth of home and the aloofness of a gallery. The combination is purposeful and stunning.

“It’s very livable, though still museum-like,” said Realtor David Griffin. “It’s just very thoughtfully designed.”

With museum-smooth walls and impressive 11-foot ceilings, the design intent of this space is clear: art lives here. “The owner of this unit is an art collector,” said Griffin. “I think the floor plan, finish-out, and amenities of this particular home are perfect for those with artistic interests. It’s perfectly set for that purpose.”

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Stoneleigh 1.ashx
Mention the name Stoneleigh to anyone that’s been in Dallas for 20 years or so and watch as their face lights up. Then get ready for a story because we all have one about this incredible building. (more…)

Bleu Ciel 1 SM

In April 2015, just a few months after I started this gig, I noticed that Bleu Ciel’s prices had jumped. Well, it’s done happened again! Today saw a further 2 to 4.5 percent increase on top of the 15-ish percent they’d jumped since pricing was announced.

For the “teaser” units on the MLS that translates to …

Unit 1701 is a four-bedroom, four-and-a-half-bathroom whopper with 5,835 square feet. Before yesterday, it was $4.723 million; now it’s $4.951 million. A jump of $228,000. From a square foot perspective, what was $809 is now $848 per square foot, or a bump of $39.07 a square foot.

Unit 2803 is a three-bedroom, three-and-a-half-bath unit with a sizeable 2,973 square feet. It’s jumped from $3,163,000 to $3,218,000 — a shade less than a 3 percent bump — a new $18.49 per square foot. However, by cost-per-square-foot, it’s the priciest of this group at $1,082 per square foot.

Unit 2606 is also a three-bedroom, three-and-a-half-bath home crammed into a more modest 2,231 square feet. It’s hardly worth mentioning its measly 2 percent rise from $2,064,000 to $2,099,000 — a mere $35,000. Almost tip money in this realm.

Unit 1804 is a three-bedroom, three-bath unit with a “my size” 1,903 square feet of space. What was $1,292,000 grew $59,000 to $1,351,000, or 4.5 percent.

Unit 2505 is a 1,537-square-foot, two-bedroom, two-and-a-half-bath “shoebox” that added $54,000 and is now listed at $1,252,000.

If you’re on a financial diet, there’s still unit 702. It’s a bit closer to the ground (well, 18 stories closer) than unit 2505, but the floorplan is nearly identical (just 10 square feet smaller). Literally across the floorplan “hallway” it’s a steal at $906,000 or one-third ($346,000) less. That $346,000 is all view, baby.

For all the doom and gloom some feel is skittering towards the Dallas real estate market, the Ciel is sure Bleu down on Harwood. Looks like Harwood has a winner as Dallas continues to concentrate sprawl upwards.

Remember: Do you have an HOA story to tell? A little high-rise history? Realtors, want to feature a listing in need of renovation or one that’s complete with flying colors? How about hosting a Candy’s Dirt Staff Meeting? Shoot Jon an email. Marriage proposals accepted (they’re legal)! sharewithjon@candysdirt.com

The Abandoned Vida

The Abandoned Vida

In December, I spent a month writing about Hawaii real estate. Several of the articles showcased new and planned high-rises in the Kaka’ako area of Honolulu that were almost exclusively targeting foreign investment and wealthy local buyers wanting to trade their nest for a high-rise perch. You may also recall that many of these buildings were selling out in days.

The big Kahuna in the area is Howard Hughes’ 10-plus-year development called Ward Village covering 60 acres. They are not alone. One high-rise that hadn’t broken ground is called Vida … well, “was” would be the more accurate term as of last Friday. Developers cancelled the project after “only” selling approximately 40 percent of the 262 units (priced from $1 million) despite being on sale for 18 months. In Hawaii real estate if you’re scrabbling for sales after 18 months, something’s wrong.

In Dallas, a 40 percent pre-sale before the first shovel of dirt was moved would be occasion to rejoice, but markets are different.

Vida's High-End Finishes

Vida’s High-End Finishes

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Park Towers Small 2

Park Towers is one of Dallas’ original high-rises built in 1964 and located at Fairmount and the Katy Trail. It’s been no secret that I like their floor plans but hate the exterior of mismatched enclosed balcony “sheds” (that have finally been painted a uniform color). When I was looking to buy in 2012, I kept hoping the right unit would pop on the market. Today I can say, “thank God it didn’t.”

Word comes to CandysDirt.com from residents and Realtors that last Thursday, after barely finishing $3.7 million in special assessments (about $40,000 per unit) to take care of long, long, looooooong neglected infrastructure, that Park Towers now just raised their HOA dues a staggering 38 percent.

The HOA meeting was standing room only as the board approved the increase to cover a $247,000 shortfall from the $3.7 million spent on capital improvements. Many residents made the case for another special assessment to cover the shortfall and a more modest increase to the monthly dues. They were cheered by others in the meeting but the board wouldn’t budge. With resident monthly dues going up $500-ish a month, it’s not hard to understand their wrath.

This episode is yet another example of poor communication between residents and their HOA boards and management companies.  Residents were reportedly unaware of the impending increase. They were just told the budget would be discussed at the meeting and encouraged residents to attend.

As one resident put it, “Shazam!” The increase just materialized without warning. And let’s face it: the last thing a resident expects to hear after a $3.7 million special assessment is that the “party” is just getting started.

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Pretty soon there will be a much larger one of these in the Harwood District, only it's going to cost you more to get inside.

Pretty soon there will be a much larger one of these in the Harwood District, only it’s going to cost you more to get inside.

This morning’s Ebby Alert contained a surprise. Prices at the Bleu Ciel (the next rich, rich, rich highrise in Dallas) are rising right along with construction. So if you’ve been fiddling and diddling about putting a deposit down, it’s gonna cost ya!

Originally the 158 units had starting prices of $700,000 for the smallest 1,373-square-foot units (or $509-per-square-foot). Today that ’07 unit (707 to be exact) on floors 7-27 lists for $805,000 (or $586-per-square-foot). This represents a 15 percent increase … for a property still under construction. No moss growing here!

Other (much, much) larger units have also taken a hike upmarket:

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3831 Turtle Creek Blvd PH23C a

Though they’ve been living in their 23rd-floor penthouse at The Warrington only six months, it didn’t take Stephen and Jane Lerer too long to realize that they were totally and completely in love with their immense, luxurious, and freshly renovated unit inside this Turtle Creek highrise.



“I really loved the structure of it, the design,” said Jane. “Light comes in from three directions — north, east, and west — and we get the sunrise and sunset, and every room has these floor-to-ceiling windows.”

She’s so smitten that she’s opening her three-bedroom, three-and-a-half-bath, 4,100-square-foot home to the Turtle Creek Tour of Homes on April 12. The tour, which benefits the Turtle Creek Association, will feature a beautiful historic Tudor at 4011 Turtle Creek and five more luxurious units at some of the most sought-after buildings in the neighborhood. The tour runs from 1 to 5 p.m., with an invitation-only afterparty from 6 to 8. Tickets are $50 for Turtle Creek Association members, and $60 for non-members. You can purchase tickets on the website, or you can stay tuned to CandysDirt.com for your chance to win a pair of passes.

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Second Living Area or Dining

Some condos are just easy to love, and this beauty inside the “mid-rise jewel of Dallas,” as listing agent Marlis Rossetta calls the Drexel Highlander at 4240 Prescott, is the epitome of style and convenience.

“Considered one of the most prestigious addresses in the Oak Lawn area, this location offers a peaceful neighborhood adjacent to Highland Park. Within walking distance, residents enjoy easy access to the tranquil setting of Turtle Creek, The Shops of Highland Park and popular dining destinations such as Al Biernat’s and Eddie V’s,” Rossetta said. “I like to say, ‘The Highlander is better than lock and leave – Just leave. Everything is taken care of foryou!’ ”

And with a beautiful, classy, easy-to-love unit like 6F inside the Drexel Highlander, don’t you deserve a mortgage professional that will take care of you? No one likes surprises at closing, so go ahead and call Lisa Peters at Caliber Home Loans so that you’ll have the condo of your dreams with financing that works. A high-caliber home like this beautiful condo deserves an equally high-caliber loan from Lisa Peters at Caliber Home Loans.

Jump to find out more about this phenomenal property from David Griffin Realtor Marlis Rossetta.

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