forestwood

I say it’s about time: the northwest corner of Inwood and Forest, known as “Forest Wood”, is going to get a much-needed facelift. Wait, strike that: try a major gutting from the ground up. Yep, those 1974 rental townhomes are about to go far away, replaced by sturdier, prettier, higher quality homes that will create a walkable living environment and a brand new North Dallas community.
Forestwood Townhomes brings back memories, not all of them pleasant. This was where single dads and moms would go to live after a separation or suddenly being single because it was still close to the private schools their children attended, but more reasonable than a single family home. It was known as a safe, secure place to hunker down in North Dallas if you couldn’t swing a mortgage.
For years now, I wondered why the neat, but clearly aging, townhomes would not be replaced with something more upscale, attractive, especially considering the surrounding neighborhood demographic$$$: sprawling ranches on leafy half-acre lots that start at about half a million dollars, while the newer built McMansion are pulling in more than $1.5.

So why are we stuck with boring beige townhomes that had their prime in the seventies, like Cher? (more…)

Jeannie Smith

Jeannie Smith with “The Wee Ones”: two of her pack of miniature dachshunds.

We love Jeannie Smith and her “can-do” attitude. She’s the kind of woman that can inspire confidence after just a moment with her, and she is a dog lover, to boot!

It’s no wonder that Jeannie, a mortgage professional that looks after her clients like family, is this week’s Guardian Angel. She takes time with every client to make sure that their needs are met, if not exceeded, which is a valuable asset in this quick-changing mortgage environment.

“I care about each loan and customer I work with — whether it’s a$ 50K loan or a $5M loan — and I love providing the white glove treatment,” Jeannie says. “I approach each loan and customer with a wide open mind so that I can learn about them, their financial goals, expectations, and what keeps them up at night when they think about the loan process.”

That’s the kind of personal service that is all too rare these days, but it’s exactly what you can expect at Guardian Mortgage. Find out more about Jeannie and how, through her tenacity, she’s made a wonderful career in the mortgage business.

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6326 LakehurstAn unknown builder built 6326 Lakehurst several years ago, and I went to see it when it was brand new. At the time I was editing DallasDirt for D Magazine, and I know I wrote about this house. He kind of went over the top and then. just. stopped. building. Well, that was a familiar story back in those days.

Unfortunately, I cannot find the story I wrote, but when I walked into Lakehurst, it was like seeing an old college friend or boyfriend after so many years. The vibes just swelled and I felt comfortable, familiar again. Like I might just move into one of the humongo rooms and never leave.

Let’s face it: this is a big house, big mama, a house that is so perfect for a large family: three teenage boys or girls. Or a family with elderly parents who want to live in with them but still have their privacy. This would also be a great home for blended families. (more…)

Village Bend East Apartments

Let’s face it: the only news we care about today is the sickening news coming out of Presbyterian Hospital of Dallas, a Texas Healthcare Resource Hospital, that a second nurse who treated Ebola patient Thomas Duncan has now tested positive for the disease. I have been glued to Facebook this morning (where I am limited to 5,000 friends, but you can still follow me) because I thought, well, this is a health issue, not real estate.

Then I heard from an agent or two that showings were slowing down. I hate to say it — hate to — but the whole world is now looking at Dallas as the place where we messed up with an Ebola patient. We have become Ebola Central. (more…)

the-grand-alps-hard-rock-hotel-600xx1500-1000-175-0

When we visited Tokyo a few years ago and our hosts told me about the indoor ski resort there, outskirts of Tokyo, I did not believe it until I saw the dome for Zaos, as I think it was called. Sure enough the Japanese loved to ski indoors. The indoor ski resort was on the way to the airport. Now I hear it may no longer exist. But that’s OK, because soon we will have own own little interior ski village in Grand Prairie.

And it’s not a little village, either: try a $215 million 350,000-square-foot indoor ski resort and a Hard Rock hotel. Does this mean we can ski in the middle of August?

Grand Prairie unveiled plans for a Grand Alps Resort and Hard Rock Hotel off Belt Line Road, north of Interstate 30 at a Tuesday afternoon news conference. The indoor ski resort — which includes a ski slope, ice climbing wall, luge track and winter play area — will include restaurants and specialty retail from Park City, Utah, and Vail, Colorado. Of course, we will need a place to buy ski hats and sunscreen!

Oh wait, indoors means we won’t actually NEED sunscreen!
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tres mess

This big boy came down in yesterday’s storm, bringing down the tree lights. So I have to call Unique Electric first, then a tree man.  My front driveway is even worse. Judging from my drive home along Royal Lane, I am not alone. Are you all busy cleaning up today after the storm, too? Power came on at 3:06 a.m., but many of my neighbors (and Jo!) are still without.

Meantime, the rest of the nation now knows us for two things: Ebola and massive wind storm!

3344 Rankin Front

There are two reasons I love this listing:

1) This home is seriously adorable and not at all what you’d expect from a home in University Park, where restrained architecture and transitional style reigns supreme. Cozy and colorful, with original details in the most unexpected places, it is a treasure trove of architectural interest.

2) This home is packed to the gills with a lifetime’s worth of worldly collectables. Exotic pelts, antiques, African statues and masks, Moroccan textiles, and Spanish tile cover the floors, walls, and even ceilings of this beautiful home.

Jump for an inside look!

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Trevino Country-estate-ext-1

It was sooo hard not to tell you who’s house this was back when Ralph Randall had it listed, but there is one thing I pride myself on, and that is my ability to keep confidences. And so, when I wrote up this exquisite home on Park Lane in Sunnybrook Estates listed for — wait, I could not even tell you what it listed for — I said it was beautiful, but I cannot tell you who owns it. Well now, FINALLY, the Wall Street Journal has spilled the beans: the home belongs to golfing great Lee Trevino and his wife, Claudia. I have been in the house a few times for events and, when Ralph had it listed, a book event. The Trevinos never wanted Ralph (or anyone) to reveal that this was their home. And that is perfectly understandable. Just makes it kind of hard to sell the house, a 10,000 square foot house! (Note: these photos were taken when Ralph had the listing — Penny is likely having the home re-shot.) (more…)