Photos courtesy of the Kimpton’s Seafire Resort + Spa Residences

Good news for Cayman Islands vacation home owners this year: Tourism numbers are up and, with that, real estate sales. A recent independent report singled out the sales launch of luxury condominiums affiliated with the Kimpton Seafire Resort + Spa on Grand Cayman as representing a significant amount of the luxury condominiums sold.

We’ve been following the Residences at Seafire located on Grand Cayman since the project was announced. Lodged in a ten-story LEED ® Silver-certified building designed to Miami-Dade hurricane standards, the Residences at Seafire offer residents unlimited access to all the amenities and services of the AAA Five Diamond-rated resort property: communal amenities with interiors by acclaimed designer Martyn Lawrence Bullard, three signature restaurants, an 8,500-square-foot spa, a state-of-the-art fitness center, and a spectacular setting on famed Seven Mile Beach on Grand Cayman Island’s western shore.

The Residences include 62 condominium units ranging from 600-square-foot studios to 4,000-square-foot, five-bedroom homes and penthouses, listed from $1.5 million to $8 million. Developer Dart Real Estate recently added the neighboring Ritz-Carlton, Grand Cayman, to its portfolio, and announced another luxury brand with approximately 225 guest rooms, 80 residences and 10 villas with ocean views of Seven Mile Beach, the North Sound, and the Camana Bay Town Centre is also included in their master plan.

Click here to see the story and have a look at one of their gorgeous beach destination homes.

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Photos courtesy of La Amada Residences

Looking for a coastal home in Mexico? Meet La Amada Residences, a luxury residential community located in Playa Mujeres, a secluded seaside resort area on the northeast coast of Yucatán peninsula. Bordered to the east by the Caribbean and the west by natural areas, Playa Mujeres is 15 minutes north of Cancún. The La Amada community is the only residential offering in Playa Mujeres. The property includes 215 luxury mid-rise condominiums featuring contemporary Mexican design, with views ranging from the sea to a luxe marina to the lush wildlife wetlands of the Chacmochuc Lagoon nature reserve.

This June, La Amada is unveiling a new multi-million dollar beach club with infinity pools, a swim-up bar, tennis and paddle ball courts, a gourmet food shop and restaurant, and a world-class gym. Along with access to the beaches and boardwalks of the broader community, residents enjoy the Greg Norman-designed golf course of Playa Mujeres Golf Club; touring and zip-lining in the wetlands and rainforest jungle; fishing, snorkeling, and watersports; and spas and golf at nearby hotels and resorts. At $320,000, a one-bedroom La Amada condominium was named “steal of the week” in the March 16, 2018 issue of The Week magazine.

Make the jump here for more detail of second home options in this tropical wonderland…  (more…)

Ono Island is the most exclusive island in the Gulf Coast. Situated between Old River and the Intracoastal Waterway, Ono is a narrow sliver of paradise, just 5.5 miles long. Only 800 home sites comprise Ono’s residential-only island.  Of those, less than 30 percent sit on premium waterfront lots. This private, gated island is second home to titans of industry, celebrities, musicians, and retired professional athletes.  However, there is an unspoken rule of Ono Island for residents: We don’t drop names or discuss the locals.  It’s one of the big reasons Ono Island is so prized.  It’s private — very private.

If you love Hilton Head, but hate the traffic, Ono Island might just be your perfect Second Shelter.

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Wish-booking summer? Here ya’ go – a trim, dreamy bungalow in the world famous “Hamptons.” The three-bedroom, two-bath house priced at under $1.5 million sits just a half mile from the village of Amagansett — home to the likes of Gwenyth Paltrow, Alec Baldwin, Sarah Jessica Parker, and Naomi Watts. The area has charming boutiques and lively, health-conscious restaurants. The beach is just a bit over a mile south; it’s a five-minute drive west to East Hampton Village and 15 minutes to the seaside town of Montauk to the east. This gorgeous cottage has been thoroughly modernized and is dripping with charm.  (more…)

Wailea Point I II IIl Unit 801| Candysdirt.com

Wahoo, Hawaii! No, “wahoo” is not a place on the Islands or a Hawaiian word (that I know of) – it’s a whoop of approval, because Southwest Airlines has announced they intend to open air service to The Aloha State soon. No word yet as to which airport they will favor, but Kahului Airport in Maui is sure to be a contender, so it’s a good time to check in on vacation housing there. There’s no better place to start than Wailea, a 1500-acre resort on Maui’s southwestern coastline that’s one of the world’s leading luxury destinations. Fancy a view like this?

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Cinnamon Shore

Photo credit: Aaron Costilla

More of a good thing’s on the way: Cinnamon Shore, one of Texas’ most charming beach communities, has just announced a $1.3 billion, 300-acre expansion. We’ve been following the master-planned beach development in Port Aransas on a 19-mile barrier island off the Texas Coast since inception.

Homeowners and rental guests there enjoy beachfront access, parks, interior lakes, restaurant dining, recreational activities, and events all within a picturesque walkable community. Construction on the horizon will dramatically increase the size of the existing development and add a boutique hotel, a 10-acre lake, a spa, retail shops, and more.  (more…)

SPI is a sliver of beauty surrounded by sand

SPI is a sliver of beauty surrounded by sand

South Padre Island (SPI) is as close as Texas gets to tropical Gulf breezes on sun-kissed shores where the water doesn’t look a mini-marshmallow away from Swiss Miss (Galveston).  SPI also isn’t an island. SPI is a city located on the southern tip of Padre Island which is the longest barrier island in the world. The whole caboodle is 200 square miles.

SPI has always served a colorful clientele operating as Texas’ laid-back Key West or a haunt for Spring Break Betty Ford wannabes.  But it’s also home to a mess of sea turtles, the SPI Music Festival, Splash SPI and … who knew … the Texas State Surfing Championships.  But all that’s so much icing on the cake.

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All photos: Leah Shafer

Cedar shake shingles for siding is a classic look for cottages all over Cape Cod. They are left unpainted and turn from light tan to a weathered gray over time. Clapboard siding is also commonly seen on Cape Cod cottages. All photos: Leah Shafer

Cape Cod has historic roots in American history, one of the earliest places the Pilgrims settled, later becoming a thriving fishing, whaling, and trading area.

But the romantic mythos of the Cape took off during John F. Kennedy’s presidential campaign, much of which was based out of the Kennedy Compound in Hyannis Port. JFK gave his acceptance speech there after winning the 1960 election, and returned frequently during his presidency. The Kennedy’s Camelot and Cape Cod are inextricably linked in the American imagination.

Today, the year-round population of 220,000 swells during summer months, when many thousands flock to Cape Cod for relaxation and resorts. It stretches from Provincetown in the northeast to Woods Hole in the southwest, and each of the 15 towns has its own individual character and hallmarks.

The sunset at low tide from our vacation house near Oster in Cape Cod.

The sunset at low tide from our vacation house near Orleans in Cape Cod. Stunning.

Cape Cod still maintains a charming, maritime feel, with almost 560 miles of wide, sandy coastline (including the gorgeous Cape Cod National Seashore), and house after house with weathered cedar shake shingle siding and colorful flowers that thrive in the temperate summer climate.

I just returned from a week’s vacation in Cape Cod, where we stayed in a classic shingle-style Cape beach house near Orleans on the inner bay. My fiancé’s family has vacationed there since the 1970s, and I joined them last year for the first time. As someone who spent her childhood summers in Galveston, Cape Cod was an enchanting experience, from windy afternoons walking by the seagrass along the shoreline to driving along winding roads with lush vegetation. The whole week we were there, the temperature never rose above 71 degrees.

Candy just wrote about the Cape for Grand Vie Magazine (read it here), and we both are delighted with the region and intrigued by the real estate market there. As Realtor Paul Grover of Robert Paul Properties in Osterville told her, 68 percent of his buyers were from Boston and its suburbs in 2013, and lots are empty-nesters.

But contrary to popular belief, Cape Cod is not just a haven for the rich and famous. As I discovered, there’s a range of housing available, with many beauties available for under $400,000 (I photographed 14 houses I’d consider classic Cape Cod cottage style that you can see throughout this post).

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