Jun
 
15

DESIGN ADVICE – FOLLOW & BENEFIT

Posted by: Rick Pariani in News, Tips
 

Falling Water at Bear Run is the internationally-acclaimed, magnum opus of America’s most famous architect, Frank Lloyd Wright (FLW). The house he designed in 1936 for Pittsburgh’s department-store magnates, Edgar J. and Liliane Kaufmann, was truly a labor-of-love on the part of both the architect and the clients.

It is said that FLW worked out the entire concept in his head – and upon being pressured by the Kaufmann’s to put up or shut up – he drew the elevations and floorplans in one afternoon, to finally be ready for his client presentation that had taken numerous months to schedule. FLW’s first completed and colored perspective rendering, that afternoon, captured the aura, character and allure of the house and the waterfall – almost precisely as the home would eventually be built.

The Kaufmann’s were quintessential patrons – in love with their property, their site and FLW’s unique and unprecedented (and quite expensive) concept. They were unbelievably accommodating – making every allowance for FLW’s prevarications. The back-and-forth challenges were wearisome – and the Kaufmann’s endured endless grandstanding from their architect, as in the following examples from FLW’s letters to Mr. Kaufmann:

“Kindly refrain all interference with me in my work at this time. Send me what I ask for. Easy to spoil the entire work by lack of confidence in my ability to handle my own work. Kindly stand by. Read my letter mailed yesterday. In circumstances like these there is only one doctor. Be thankful you didn’t lose him. Now be good enough to realize the truth of what I say.” – and this gem:

“It never occurred to me that you had not enough common sense, when we set this up, to stick to itthrough thick and thin. I must ask for this reassurance from you – in writing this time – as necessary to your own interest as well as mine if this building is to be creditably finished.”

We live in different times – an understatement, for sure. But, should you have the opportunity to work with experienced, capable and enlightened design professionals in the creation of your dream home and property – you will be well-served to challenge, yet follow, their advice. Collaboration is fun, but better, more finely crafted results are often created when there is a clear voice of design leadership. And remember, when it comes to intrinsic home values for generational use or re-sale, home and gardens conceived by design professionals maintain the highest returns.

At one particularly difficult summit, FLW submitted a form for his client, Mr. Kaufmann, to sign : “I hereby agree to do all in my power to see that the architect’s instructions to the builder – are faithfully executed and that no exterior advice or criticism be allowed to interfere with the architect’s authority over matters concerning the character and integrity of the building I have engaged him to build for me. And this is to continue until the building is completed to our mutual satisfaction.”

Yes – we do live in different times!

If you are looking for some great advice, contact one of our a trusted Real Estate professionals who can guide (not coerce) you on a clear path to your goals.

 
 
No Comments  

If thinking about Father’s Day leaves you without ideas, plan to visit the World Golf Hall of Fame on Sunday, June 17! The museum will be offering FREE admission for dads and their immediate families. In addition, Dads are invited to take a swing on the Challenge Hole, a replica of TPC Sawgrass’s 17th island green, for just $5.

The Hall of Fame will also launch its newest exhibit, Tales from the Collection, on Father’s Day.

This is huge savings as regular admission is $20.95 for adults ($19.95 for seniors, Florida residents and military), $10 for students, and $5 for kids 5-12 (4 and under are free).

The museum will be open from noon to 6 p.m. on Father’s Day. Escape the heat and make Dad smile by visiting the World Golf Hall of Fame on his big day!

 
 
No Comments  

World Golf Village’s Red, White & Boom celebration gives a new meaning to the term “dinner and a show!” In fact, the annual event offers one of the best fireworks displays in Northeast Florida. This year’s event will be held on Monday, July 3 with plenty of dining options before the big show.

Dinner: The Renaissance World Golf Village Resort in St. Augustine has two options for dining specials before the fireworks show:

  • Villagio Dinner Buffet(6 – 9 p.m.) is $45 per person ($20 for kids 6-12 years old, 5 and under are free). Guests will enjoy traditional summertime fare like barbeque pork ribs and watermelon.
  • La Terrazza Patio Party(7 – 10 p.m.) is $95 per person ($35 for kids 6-12 years old, 5 and under are free). This package includes a special dinner buffet, open bar, parking pass, live entertainment and primo seating for the fireworks display! The buffet will feature a wide array of fresh summer veggies, seafood, barbeque and fun desserts.

For reservations at either of the Renaissance restaurants, call (904) 940-8696.

The café at World Golf Hall of Fame will also be open until 9 p.m. and additional food and beverages will be on sale throughout the grounds.

read more +

 
 
No Comments  
May
 
16

APRIL SHOWERS BRING MAY FLOWERS

Posted by: Rick Pariani in News
 

In March, 2003* the Wall Street Journal Magazine of Personal Business, Smart Money, featured a special report on how one’s home values are boosted by good landscape.

At the time, the then president-elect of the National Association of Realtors, Walt McDonald, had advised; “when people ask me how they can get strong interest in their property, I always tell them to fix up their landscaping”. Studies showed that a design-wise, landscape investment of about 5% of a home’s value would result in as much as a 150% return. In most any market or region, a home on the market at $500,000 with an extra $25,000 invested in new landscape could result in an easy 7.5% / $12,500 of additional profit.

The Smart Money article suggested four distinct ways to invest in, and enhance, your home and property values – both for your own living as well as for future sale.

First – concentrate on Curb-Appeal – everything that can be seen from the street or during the approach to your home. Curb-Appeal is enhanced through landscape beds, staggered and layered height plantings (ground covers to taller shrubs), shade and special interest trees, walkways, pedestrian and vehicular arrivals and an attention to spacing, massing, scale, framing and accenting.

read more +

 
 
No Comments  

With THE PLAYERS Championship well under way at TPC at Sawgrass, now is the perfect time to get in the golfing spirit at the World Golf Hall of Fame!

This week, guests can peruse tournament history and artifacts in the new exhibit “THE PLAYERS Experience.” Inside the 1,800 sq. ft. exhibit, guests will find stories, mementos and images from the tournament, which is celebrating its 44th year of play. The list of past winners includes 11 Hall of Fame members.

read more +

 
 
No Comments  
Apr
 
23
 

Phyllis & Brian Benson with one of their treasured grandchildren

For Brian Benson, it was the draw of an active 55+ community near the beach. For his wife Phyllis, an avid traveler, it was more about access to planes, trains, ships and highways. What drew the couple to World Golf Village was that it offered both!

The Bensons, who bought a home in The Cascades, have certainly made the most of life in their new community. We recently caught up with Phyllis to learn more about them.

What do you like best about living in The Cascades?  No yard work! The Cascades offers beautiful and well maintained facilities, an active community life, and friendly neighbors. The first time we walked into our house it felt like coming home for both of us. 

We have attended several functions and met many new friends since joining The Cascades community.  We recently learned that we are part of a growing “younger” crowd moving into The Cascades; the more the merrier.

read more +

 
 
No Comments  
Apr
 
10

Good Growth – Invest in Your Place

Posted by: Rick Pariani in News
 

One of our nation’s premier professional land planning and development institutions, the Urban Land Institute, says that “Growth is inevitable and desirable, but destruction of community character is not. The question is not whether your part of the world is going to change. The question is how”.

How indeed. In our neck-of-the-woods, significant change is underway. It is rapid – more so in the residential realm than commercial and mixed-use (but that too is following and will continue to do so). It isn’t whether change will come and when – it is already here on a daily basis.

read more +

 
 
No Comments  
Bill Murray and his five brothers opened their first restaurant in St. Augustine’s World Golf Village in 2001.  The restaurant is done in golf décor and memorabilia from its namesake – Caddyshack – the movie which came out in 1980, which was written by one of Bill’s brothers, Brian Doyle-Murray.  The serving staff all sport caddy attire and if you look around, you might see a gopher or two.

read more +

 
 
No Comments  
There are plenty of beautiful public beaches all along the First Coast. However, as many locals will tell you, finding easy and convenient ways to access the beaches takes a little savvy. Here are the top five best places to access the beach all along the Northeast Florida coast:
ST. AUGUSTINE BEACH – St. Johns County Pier (350 A1A Beach Boulevard)
Pros: This is a great access spot for many reasons—plenty of parking, lots of activities and an abundance of soft, white sand. Also, while neighbor to the north Vilano Beach is more cramped due to crowds and vehicle access on the beach, St. Augustine Beach offers lots of space to spread out and throw around a football. Enjoy water sports, fishing, a beachfront splash park for kids, or stroll to one of several restaurants and bars near the pier.
Cons: Unless you live in or near St. Augustine Beach, getting to this spot on Anastasia Island may be a trek (especially on busy weekends).

read more +

 
 
No Comments  
Mar
 
2
 
We live in a very mobile society. International travel for education and leisure is now commonplace. Travel, whether spur-of-the-moment short duration trips or well-planned group or individual extended excursions are becoming the norm for families and friends. People seem to gravitate, through curiosity and inquisitiveness, to the pursuit of new experiences. For many, the acquisition of these experiences is far more satisfying than being the beneficiary of gifts and material goods.
I believe that folks have many “a-ha” moments during their travels. I think that more and more people are developing an understanding and appreciation of the role that art, architecture, urban design and public space play in illuminating cultural connections and inspiring our lives.
The foremost architect / architectural theorist / urban planner, Leon Krier, is a champion of the European city and village as a model for community building. He has been quoted as stating, “The architecture of the city and public space is a matter of common concern to the same degree as laws and language. They are the foundation of civility and civilization”.
Usually, in a suburban context, the public realm is not surrounded and framed by interesting, modern or historic architecture. The suburban public realm can, however, be as diverse – albeit, more spacious and interwoven throughout the built elements of the community. It is visually and experientially evident and it is critical to defining a sense-of-place that distinguishes a community.
When you shop for that perfect place for your residence – be cognizant and alert to the natural character and spirit of the place as much as you are focused on the features and appointments of the home itself.
Of course, individual recreational parks, pocket-parks and trailheads, community social buildings and amenities are the anchors for the suburban public realm, in most master-planned communities. But in a more grand manner, the public realm of the community is displayed in its open space – its vistas and view corridors – its setting and backdrop – its natural complexion and its conservation of sensitive lands. Neighborhood sidewalks, paths, trails, bike lanes, fields and fairways, lakes and waterways and even the manner in which the streets and roads were threaded – all come together to showcase the public realm.
Each community and its collection of neighborhoods is different. Those whose public realm was consciously considered and designed into the fabric of the place are those that beckon and attract the most interest. They are the places that offer true respite – beyond the walls of the house.
Comfort and commons, comradery and community are the key attributes of great neighborhoods. When the public realm of a community is celebrated and cared for – values for everyone are enhanced.
Find the place that serves you the best – one that feels right – not just one that fits your budget. And, when you do find that special place, be a part of its public realm care and stewardship. When you do – you will protect yours and your neighbors values and you will enjoy a more balanced, healthy and happy lifestyle.
 
 
No Comments