gold rushAlways a hotel, this week’s gold-rush era historical shelter in California also has its place in history as the location for an office and stage stop for an express company that ran mail across the country.

The site of the current Hotel Sutter, located in Sutter Creek, California, was first home to the American House Hotel, built in 1851. It served as a stop for Adams & Co., later Adams Express Company, which pre-dated Wells Fargo.

Sutters Mill

Sutter Creek is named after a local creek, which in turn got its name from a local prospector, John Sutter, who discovered gold nearby in 1848, triggering the California Gold Rush.  Sutter owned a sawmill where the mother lode was found, and after fortune hunters began trampling his land, he decided to prospect, too, moving to Sutter Creek to begin his own mining operation, using his servants to mine, something that drew the disapproval of the miners also working to find gold. Eventually, he returned to Sutter’s Fort in Sacramento and never mined again.

By 1852, Sutter Creek had a post office. Two years later, it was a town. In 1913, it incorporated.

Over time, the town became a boomtown, moving from gold mining to quartz mining until 1942, when most of the gold mines were closed during the war.

In 1865, disaster struck the town of Sutter Creek when fire ravaged the business district, burning the American House Hotel to the ground. It was rebuilt, and went through several name changes — the American Exchange Hotel, the Belotti Inn, and now the Hotel Sutter.

And while gold mining doesn’t happen in Sutters Creek anymore, there are plenty of nearby wineries and breweries, restaurants, and shopping. And the area that was once known for gold is now known for having land perfect for growing grapes, making Amador County a go-to place for a more dressed-down wine country. (more…)

MobileEditor’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 week, we looked at the 32nd city on the list — Overland Park, Kansas. This week, we look at Mobile, Alabama, and found three great homes — all for less than $500,000.

“Mobile offers inexpensive living and a mild, temperate climate. The median household income is $38,000,” MoneyWise wrote. “Winters are rainy and summers are hot and humid, making the town a perfect retirement getaway from snowier areas.”

“The city’s 18 major health care centers include a hospital and two nursing homes.”

Want to see examples of what you can find in Mobile? Jump with us, won’t you? (more…)

Sinatra

This gorgeous Malibu view once belonged to Frank Sinatra — and it could be yours for $12.9 million.

Whether you want a beachy retreat or a swank pad you can pick out in episodes of Mad Men, Frank Sinatra hung his hat in two homes that are on the market at the same time, for nearly identical price points.

Malibu Frank’s Way

If Malibu is your bag, the estate at 30966 Broad Beach Road was designed by architect Ted Grenzbach and Sinatra and his wife, Barbara in 1992, and is listed by Leonard Rabinowitz and Jack Friedkin of Hyland & Hyland for $12.9 million. Grenzbach also designed homes for Cher, Rupert Murdoch, and Barbra Streisand.

When the Sinatras lived there, a veritable who’s who of Rat Pack era celebrities visited, from Dick Martin, Jack Lemmon, Gregory Peck, and Dick Van Dyke, and more.

And it’s a beautiful home designed to showcase the ocean views, with an open floor plan and floor-to-ceiling windows. The 5,800 square foot house has seven bedrooms and nine bathrooms.

(more…)

overland parkEditor’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?

Before the holidays, we looked at the 33rd city on the list — Lakeland, Florida. This week, we look at Overland Park, Kansas, and found three great homes — all for less than $500,000.

“If you want to live in the American heartland, this is the place for you,” MoneyWise said. “The cost of living is slightly higher than some of the smaller locales on our list: you will need an income of about $72,000 to live here.”

“Overland Park is close to Kansas City, so health care options abound,” the story continued. “It is a low-crime city and residents consider it to be a nice, quiet place to live. The weather can be cold in winter, but summers are mild and sunny.”

BRIGHT UPDATED TOWNHOME IN SHAWNEE MISSION

Overland Park (more…)

Jule Pond, New York, $175 Million, currently the second most expensive home in the nation.

If you’re lucky, you might get a pair of Airpods or some new Yeezys this Christmas. But as the holidays come around, we find ourselves dreaming BIGGER.

Here’s a roundup of the five most expensive homes in the U.S. you can ask Santa for this holiday season. Who knows, maybe dreams really do come true!

(more…)

galvestonIt’s not often that the home of what many would consider to be Texas retail royalty comes up for sale — which is why this week’s historical shelter in Galveston immediately caught our attention.

The Victorian Robert I. Cohen built in 1896 is a half mile from the beach and a little more than a mile to the Strand.

If Cohen’s name doesn’t sound familiar, perhaps the store he bought will. In 1917, Pat and James Foley sold their Houston store, Foley Brothers, to Robert, who then turned the day-to-day running of the dry goods store to his son George, who then grew sales to almost $1 million by 1919.

Foley Brothers Store, 1906, Historic Houston Photographs, Special Collections, University of Houston Libraries, accessed November 10, 2018.

By 1922, the Cohen’s moved the store to a three-story building on Main Street in Houston, becoming the city’s largest department store. (more…)

Cape CoralEditor’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 week, we looked at the 40th city on the list — Scottsdale, Arizona. This week, we look at Cape Coral, and found lots of incredible inventory for as low as the $150,000s to the millions.

There is something for every budget, it seems.

“Although there will be some rebuilding to do in this city after Hurricane Irma, Cape Coral is a lovely town worthy of your consideration,” Moneywise said. “Cape Coral is located on the west coast of the peninsula and is known for its low crime rate, excellent restaurants, and perpetually sunny Florida weather!”

“The cost of living in Cape Coral is relatively low when compared to the cost of living in Miami or Fort Lauderdale,” the story added.

The city offers much in the way of amenities (as do many of the planned communities), including golf, splash grounds, art studios, and more. But with more than 400 miles of canals, you can bet that boating, fishing, and other water activities take center stage.

ONE STORY HOME CLOSE TO GOLF AND KAYAKING ACCESS

Price: $259,900 (more…)

scottsdale

This Scottsdale, Arizona, condo boasts waterfront and desert views, but has a budget-friendly price.

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?

We decided to take a look. Number 40 on the list? Scottsdale, Arizona. Just east of Phoenix, the town of about 200,000 or so is home to a lot of golfing, a lot of shopping, and warm weather pretty much year around.

It’s also (for a few months every year) a baseball lover’s paradise, since the Major League Baseball spring training camps of the Cactus League are sprinkled around Arizona, with two in Scottsdale proper.

“This community of a little more than 200,000 people offers gorgeous warm weather, beautiful parks, and immaculate streets,” MoneyWise explained. “Its proximity to Phoenix makes it a fantastic place for shopping, restaurants, and entertainment.”

“Owing in a large part to the year-round arid weather, Scottsdale and Phoenix are home to world-famous golf courses,” the story continued. “Healthcare in Scottsdale is known to be excellent. It should be noted that the Mayo Clinic has one of its three major branches in Scottsdale.”

So what did we find in Scottsdale? We found some frugal, some fairly frugal, and some not really frugal at all options. Today, we’ll look at two homes in two different price points, so you can get an idea of what your second home dollar can buy. (more…)