River North is a section of Chicago that’s a little north and west of the main skyscraper areas of the city. So finding a 28th floor penthouse gives one a perspective not easy to replicate. Of course, it helps when the ceilings are 14 feet tall with edge-to-edge glass. The building is called The Montgomery because it was the home of catalog retailer Montgomery Wards who began operations in 1872 and folded in 2001. It was an omnipresent second-fiddle to Sears. Nicknamed Monkey Wards, in 1939 it was a Wards’ copywriter who created Rudolf the Red-Nosed Reindeer. In the late 1980s Wards also broke the $1,000 price point for a home computer during a Back to School Sale.
Have you ever struggled to visualize furniture in a newly purchased property? What about finding the perfect décor to suit your vacation home? Well thanks to one international real estate brand, those days are over. Enter Curate by Sotheby’s International Realty. A revolutionary augmented reality (AR) app that allows consumers to visualize a house as their own before purchase, thereby curating the entire home buying experience.
As we visited (and drank!) with them at their recent launch party, it was hard to not be impressed with what John Jones and Conner Cromeens want to accomplish. And what they HAVE accomplished! The two East Dallas Realtors launched the Source Group at Briggs Freeman Sotheby’s with the objective of using their skills, talents and vast network of connections to fulfill a niche in East Dallas neighborhoods. Truly, their mission statement offers a lot of insight to their business:
“We believe our product is a lifestyle. In everything we do, we believe that honor, integrity and kindness are not benefits, but the standard. We believe that community turns houses into homes. We believe that luxury is an experience. We do these things by offering tireless service, unmatched experience, knowledge, and a kind warm approach. We just happen to sell real estate.”
What it doesn’t say is that Jones and Cromeens have the backgrounds to really cater and guide the homebuying or selling experience into something that isn’t fraught or stressful.
As a child, my family piled into the car for a summer beachfront vacation on the shores of Cape Cod. The drive from Chicago was as you might expect when two children and a dog are in the back seat. The dog often stood between us looking out of the windshield while my brother and I took turns pushing the dog’s butt into the other’s face. Ahh … youth before the iPad.
Our destination was a grouping of small weathered beachfront cottages in East Sandwich, Mass. Imagine my surprise when I saw that a few of those cottages were for sale. At two bedrooms and one bath, these 400-square-foot retreats only lasted until teenagerdom made them uninhabitable for four adult-size people. At that point we moved on up to the deee-luxe 700-square-foot model.
There’s nothing seemingly historic about this duplex penthouse on the 13th and 14th floors of Marathon House, a modern-ish high-rise in London (Map). Thankfully for someone who loves big views, modern buildings are not the issue in London that it can be in Paris where old almost always beats new.
For those not familiar with Marylebone (pronounced Marla-bone), it’s just north of Mayfair and borders the 410-acre Regent’s Park. It’s highly residential and lighter on tourists. But as you can see, it’s still quite close to the action. The tall light slightly left is the Shard while slightly right you can see the arc of the London Eye Ferris wheel. Truly, London is at your feet.
This 4,079-square-foot apartment has four bedrooms and four bathrooms. It’s listed with Simon Tollit and Hannah McDougall of Sotheby’s International Realty for £7.950 million ($9.857 million) which works out to $2,417 per square foot.
I say you’re Sherlock’s neighbor because the closest underground station is Baker Street, which, as fans will recall, is the street Mr. Holmes fictionally lived on…number 221B to be exact. It’s also just down the road from Euston Station, the home of Eurostar where Sharon Quist of Dave Perry-Miller and I alighted from a train to see this beauty (Brits don’t “hop off”).
There is a print pub in Houston called Houstonia Magazine. Seems the Ashton-Martini Group of agents at Martha Turner Sotheby’s International ran an ad in the magazine — the ad above (photo credit to Chris Skiles) and a couple of subscribers to the magazine got miffed. What bothered them? They were upset that the ad depicted a mixed-race marriage — white mother, black father, and three darling biracial babies.
I know, I am scratching my head, too. Can you double check me here? Is it 2015? Thought so.
In the words of Houstonia editor-in-chief, Scott Vogel, a doctor in Tomball, a suburb of Houston in Harris County, was provoked by the Ashton Martini Group’s biracial real estate “message” sitting in his waiting room — so he rattled off an email to the advertiser: (more…)
You do remember this estate up in Hickory Creek, the stunning French magnifique modeled after Vaux-le-Vicomte, a chateau on the outskirts of Paris, France?
It’s enormous: 48,000 square feet now on 39 acres. Originally built by CellStar Corp. founder Alan H. Goldfield and his wife, Shirley, the estate known as Champ d’Or (or “Gold Field”) is one of the grandest residences in the entire country. The property features endless unique high end amenities including a two-story mahogany library; a conservatory mimicking Tavern of the Green in New York City; an ornate theater complete with stage, twin loges, screen and and a concession stand; two commercial elevators; multiple staircases, powder rooms and fireplaces; a master suite with a steam room inspired by “The Rat Pack”, hair salon, two-story Chanel-style “her” closet, two-story “his” closet, an indoor lap pool and an exercise room off the huge master bathroom with heated towel drawers. The third story holds a mirrored ballroom patterned after Versailles with complete kitchen plus powder rooms for the ladies and men. The entertaining prospects are endless there, or on the veranda with seating for up to 450 people. There is a catering kitchen and a Butler’s pantry. Downstairs, on the lower level, there is a bowling alley, full racquetball court, garage for 20 cars, and a laundry room with commercial washer, dryer and sheet press. There is also a full wine room and gift wrap room with storage. It doesn’t stop here: there is an outdoor pool and pool house, tennis court, and numerous patios and gardens.
As for actual number of bedrooms, there are about six with six full baths and eight powder rooms: the master wing is on the first floor, the Wedgewood suite with living area and fireplace, breakfast bar, luxurious bath and private laundry room, is on the second floor where you also find another two-bedroom suite, each with en suite baths. There is yet another bedroom compartment on the third floor near the ballroom. This one has living and dining rooms plus a kitchen with two bedrooms and separate en suite baths.
Once again, Joan Eleazer of Briggs Freeman Sotheby’s International Realty is listing 1851 Turbeville Road, now known as “A French Country Retreat”. Asking is $17,500,000. No more Champ D’Or. Of course not: the Goldfields no longer own it. A new family, a new generation of life and love has filled 1851 Turbeville Road for the last few years as a second home, and they are ready to pass the beautiful baton: