07/14/19 2:00pm

martha's vineyardBy 1979 when Jacqueline Kennedy Onassis bought Red Gate Farm at the edge of Squibnocket Pond in Martha’s Vineyard, if anyone was in need of refuge from prying eyes, it was the former First Lady.

And now that 340-acre sanctuary with a mile of beachfront near the Cliffs of Gay Head is up for sale. 

When Onassis bought the property, there was just a hunting cabin on the land, which had previously been a sheep farm. Rachel “Bunny” Mellon, who had redesigned the White House Rose Garden, designed the landscapes on the estate, and architect Hugh Newell Jacobson designed the Cape Cod-style main house and a two-story guest house. 

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07/11/19 9:30am

According to USA Today, Bar Harbor, Maine, is one of the best places to buy a second home in New England and the Mid-Atlantic. In fact, it ranks No. 5 on their list, which encourages buyers to “Come for the beautiful town, stay for a hike in breathtaking Acadia National Park, which draws a steady flow of tourists from around the world.”

However, it’s not all tourist traps in Bar Harbor. There is a peace and serenity about the idyllic coastal town. It sits on Mount Desert Island along Maine’s famous Frenchman Bay. Here, you’ll get lost in scenic paths, enjoy a day out on the water, or cozy up in one of the town’s charming cafes.

And if you’re like any of the wide-eyed tourists who vacation here, real estate will eventually be top of mind. The homes in Bar Harbor can cost you a pretty penny. But we found something out of the ordinary that stopped us in our tracks.

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07/10/19 9:30am

A quintessential aspect of life on a ranch is keeping horses, whether for riding, rodeos, or relaxing with. Plus, they’re pretty. Adventures in the saddle often lead to landscapes rarely viewed and traversed other than by horseback. And in the heart of the Colorado Rockies, sits one stretch of alpine paradise equestrian lovers don’t want to miss.

Nestled within the resort town of Steamboat Springs sits Alpine Mountain Ranch and Club, a 1,216-acre luxury ranch community located just five minutes from downtown Steamboat Springs. The property provides a perfect blend of modern, luxury amenities, yet also exemplifies all things Western, including horses. Here, horses roam on 220 acres of open pasture for all homeowners to enjoy.

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07/09/19 9:30am

Our Splurge: Leslie McElwreath with Sotheby’s International Realty Greenwich has listed 17 Ivanhoe Lane, Greenwich, Connecticut for $3.1 million.

For architecture buffs and house enthusiasts alike, few structures are more appealing than a big white Colonial. So this week, we are taking you to Greenwich for the chicest homes this side of Connecticut. The only question is, which will you choose?

Splurge: Masterful Colonial With A Private Pond For $3.1M

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07/08/19 11:00am
beaches

Where did Naples, Florida, fall on WalletHub’s list of best U.S. beaches? Read on (photo courtesy Wikimedia Commons).

Whether you’re a lake beach person or an ocean beach person, we found 20 beach towns for everyone, plus (speaking of beaches) we take a look at an amazing mansion in the Hamptons and head to Greece’s Saronic Islands.

Here’s what we’re reading. What are YOU reading? (more…)

07/07/19 12:00pm

big surOne of California’s best scenic drives is Highway 1 through Big Sur — and this week’s historical shelter is not only boasting a Highway 1 address, but it was built by one of the foundational members of the Big Sur community.

Back in the day, Big Sur was quite the hotbed of artistic talent, from sculptor Harry Dick Ross, to novelist Henry Miller, collage artist Jean Varda, painter Emil White, poet Robinson Jeffers, writer George Sterling, poet Eric Barker, painter Ephraim Doner, Jack Kerouac, and photographer Ansel Adams.

Big Sur’s pioneer era began sometime between 1821 and 1846 and ended in 1937, with the opening of Highway 1. In the years in between, families that still call Big Sur home today took root —  Pfeiffer, Bixby, Post, Trotter, Dani, Notley, Partington, and Harlan.

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07/06/19 1:00pm

Photo courtesy Ocean Pines Association

Editor’s Note: Recently, MoneyWise revealed its list of the 40 most frugal and friendly places to retire. In a bid to provide an idea of what housing inventory is available in these cities and towns, we’re taking a look at listings in each of the cities on the list.

Not everyone can spend $1 million or more on a second home, even if it’s with the idea that eventually you’ll retire there. So when MoneyWise’s list of 40 places to retire that are more budget-friendly came out, we were curious — what kind of homes could you find in these towns?

Last time, we looked at the 13th city on the list — Bella Vista, Arkansas. This time, we look at Ocean Pines, Maryland, and found three great homes — all for less than $500,000.

“Residents love life in squeaky clean, amenity-filled Ocean Pines. It’s a lovely place to relax and grow old, with its fresh air, welcoming beachfront and bay, and a plethora of outdoor activities,” MoneyWise said. “From yachting to golfing to tennis, you can pick your leisure activity and walk or bike there.”

“Retirees will also benefit from the no state tax on Social Security income and the above-average number of doctors in the area. The median housing cost is a bit higher at $233,500, but residents swear that the warm community and great lifestyle is worth every penny.”

Want to see what we found? Read on. (more…)

07/06/19 9:00am

Honolulu County awards pot of gold to hotel industry

Hawaii has had a complicated relationship with the short-term vacation rental market. Back before Silicon Valley got its claws into the process, these types of arrangements were called B&Bs (bed and breakfasts). Stereotypically, older ladies with a penchant for macramé would rent rooms and provide a meal or two – hence the name.

In recent years there’s been a (insert “large” synonym) growth in these types of listings. Back in the 1980s, Honolulu County (encompassing the island of Oahu) set a limit of 770 licensed B&Bs outside the tourist areas of Waikiki and Ko’Olina. It’s estimated there are 8,000 to 10,000 B&Bs operating on Oahu today. Suffice it to say that even subtracting those operating legally and in the designated tourist areas, there are still a ton operating illegally.

In June 2019, Honolulu County approved a measure that would increase the number of legal vacation rentals to 1,700 beginning in October 2020. That gives the city 14 months from the effective date of the legislation (August 1, 2019) to shut-down all the illegal ones. Essentially any ad placed without a license number will get a visit from the county. Violators can get slapped with a $1,000 fine for a first offence that’s then ratcheted up to $5,000 per day on the next violation and finally $10,000 per day on future offences.

The new regulations also shine a light on the already outlawed (though largely ignored) unhosted or whole-house rentals outside the tourist areas of Waikiki, Ko’Olina and Turtle Bay.

Note to readers: If you have a reservation after August 1, 2019 for a short-term vacation rental on Oahu outside designated tourist areas, you might want to recheck. The city is saying they have little sympathy for those already-made reservations. I assume landlords have been busy informing their upcoming guests.

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