Diagram This

Photos by John A. Peralta

 

John A. Peralta began taking things apart long before he was compelled to truly pursue art. “I was always breaking things open to see what was inside. I’ve had such wonder for the tiny components that make something work,” he says.

Now a self-taught artist based in Austin, Texas, Peralta has a unique taste for both science and how things work as well as art. While working as a business consultant, he began painting as a way to tap into and satiate his creative side. The exploded diagram, which has been an essential engineering tool, melds Peralta’s contrasting interests and inspired his work.

An exploded diagram of a bike on the back of a magazine was Peralta’s original inspiration, but since then, his work has begun to evolve over the years. “It’s more about a concept that imagines that these machines we use — that we often take for granted and use every day — they hold our memories,” according to the artist. “And sometimes in literal ways. The typewriter has an imprint of every letter, every document permanently imprinted on it. It could never be deciphered today, but nevertheless it’s in there.”

Peralta’s art reveals the inner workings of a time in history or a memory. The contrast between machinery and emotion creates enchanting displays and elicits a feeling when you see them. The idea of machinery holding memories extends to all of our objects, according to Peralta. “It’s why we become nostalgic years after for antiques or whatever it might be. We attach emotion to these things and they hold our memories and it’s sort of two-way relationships with the objects in our life.”

Peralta describes a large pile of items in his studio that he might one day choose to take apart, but there is a method to deciding which items he will display. “I usually choose something that would be considered iconic. Something highly recognizable, and familiar, but most of the time, it’s also something that is no longer in use,” he says. Often, he chooses items that people may have seen in their grandparents house or in an antique store. “Those items have a lot of emotion and nostalgia connected to them. I’m also looking for things that the designers and architects put a lot of time and careful thought into.”

“For some reason, it has a strong appeal. I’m not entirely sure why,” Peralta says about the exploded diagram concept, explaining that most people see them in their everyday lives without realizing, but their eyes still light up when they see it displayed like this. “Because it’s not like you can’t see the string. At first, I tried to hide it. I tried all different things to try and hide the suspension. But I began to realize that I actually shouldn’t hide it. The string really contributes to the piece.”

In the Future

Working mainly on commissioned pieces these days, Peralta is still working on a few ideas that continue to push the boundaries of the exploded diagram concept. When asked what his dream projects are, he says, “There’s actually two. I’ve been wanting to do — and I haven’t really gotten anyone to pull the trigger yet — and that’s a grand piano. I think it would be very impressive. I imagine it in a large hotel with a high ceiling or something like that. And the other one is a fighter jet, which would obviously be a very big piece. It would need a superstructure to support it. But I have some really cool ideas of how it would look.”

Khaliah O. Guillory, Owner of Nap Bar

A new set of businesses aims to help a sleep-deprived society relax and rejuvenate.

Nap bars. Upon hearing about this concept, various images come to mind, from a series of bedrooms with designated time slots for napping, to a pillowy oasis set in the clouds. While some ideas are more fantastical than others, the meaning behind many nap bar businesses and their missions is far more down to earth.

Whether naps are offered as a complimentary service or finely curated in a luxury setting, the importance of sleep has been reinvigorated by companies like these who know that the benefits of napping are nothing to sneeze (or snore) at in today’s world. 

In recent years, with the rise of globalization and businesses running 24/7, productivity can and has for some time become a priority. Maria Jose Hernandez of recharj, a meditation studio headquartered in Washington, D.C., says the needs of the human body should take precedence, however. 

An avid lover of naps since childhood, Guillory developed her company as a way to keep herself from “taking naps in [her] car.” 
Photos courtesy Nap Bar.

“Science has proven that sleep is how you are able to learn, retain memory — all these functions that we need to be productive.” 

Many nap bars and sleep-oriented businesses have been developed by busy business professionals and entrepreneurs who found themselves suffering from sleep deprivation or sleep-related issues. For example, Khaliah O. Guillory was working at a Fortune 500 company and struggled with getting restful sleep when she was inspired to open Nap Bar in Houston. An avid lover of naps since childhood, she developed her company as a way to keep herself from “taking naps in [her] car,” and engage other young professionals to rest, relax and feel rejuvenated through a curated, white-glove napping experience.

Top: Zen – Bar à Sieste Weightless Chair and VR.

Photos courtesy Zen – Bar à Sieste

Christophe Chanhsavang and his wife, Virginie, have had similar trials and tribulations. From Virginie’s corporate work hours to Christophe’s long hours of study, he realized from his experience working in the UK, China and Greece how much the concept of wellness was nonexistent in the French society. To avoid taking more naps in the office bathroom, Chanhsavang says they founded Zen – Bar à Sieste in 2011 in Paris and have since approached wellness from a holistic perspective by promoting sleep, nutrition, physical activity and mental health. 

Professionals in the wellness industry have noted and continue to highlight the importance of sleep, which in turn has led to research and results into the benefits of napping. Guillory offers facts that have helped fuel the educational aspect of Nap Bar, including a NASA statistic that suggests shorter nap durations are better for reducing the impact of sleep inertia, a physiological state of impairment that affects cognitive and sensory-motor performance.*

Mauricio Villamizar, CEO of Pop & Rest in London, takes these findings a step further, noting how a lack of sleep can ultimately lead to disruptions in workflow. “Sleep deprivation is linked to lower productivity at work and it’s one of the main drivers of absenteeism … in the workplace. If we translate this into working days, we are looking at around 200,000 working days being lost each year in the UK only. In terms of economic consequences, it’s around £40 billion, almost 2 percent of the UK’s GDP,” Villamizar says.

Wellness overall has seen a resurgence in strength from businesses like these, as health has come to be the utmost priority of nations around the world. And just like there are many types of methods of getting and staying well, there are a variety of ways to nap.

Pop & Rest is a London-based wellness startup that connects locals and travelers with sleep and meditation pods, offering clients safe and secure spaces to unwind, rest, and work peacefully. According to Villamizar, customers can visit one of the company’s various locations throughout London and become immersed in a calm environment where the pods are situated.

“Once you are inside, your pod will be like a box that features a single bed, small table, along with accessories to change lights, music and the aroma,” he says, noting that everything is built to ensure the best relaxation experience. The pods are movable and soundproofed, and only require a power supply and WiFi connection to function, an enticing offer for companies looking to purchase these pods for their own offices.

The aforementioned Nap Bar curates a luxury napping experience for customers, which Guillory says is ensured by engaging all five senses. For sight, all of the custom suites are outfitted with mood lighting that is adjustable; for taste, a duo of raw juice shots are offered with rich nutrients and ingredients that aid in relaxing the body pre-nap, and waking it up post-nap; for hearing, exclusive brain waves are curated for each client and played inside suites that increases the release of melatonin in the body by 97 percent; and for smell, an aromatherapy pillow mist infused with lavender is available.

recharj – D.C. meditation room and class.

Photos courtesy recharj

Pop & Rest sleep pod for napping.

Photo courtesy Pop & Rest.

The final sense, of touch, goes a step further, as all suites include an organic, locally sourced mattress, linens and sheets, and each room is painted with toxin-free paint. All of these inclusions are accompanied by a full-service concierge who will guide customers through the experience and help them on their wellness journey

According to Chanhsavang of Zen – Bar à Sieste, wellness is the future of humanity, a future he aims to advance with the Siesta Bar, which combines technological and traditional means of treatment for sleep deprivation. For nap services, customers can choose from a luxurious memory foam retreat, a zero-gravity massage chair or a Shiatsu bed; for aiding in relaxation and overall wellness, complimentary services include massages, virtual-reality meditation and even a fish spa.

As a meditation studio, recharj has been offering premier restorative practices to help clients, which includes the use of power naps. According to Hernandez, during open hours these power nap sessions are curated to be 25 minutes long and offered in large Yogibo chairs, a favorite for many. “A client once described them to me as if you’re laying down in a cloud,” Hernandez says, which only adds to the whole-body experience.

Binaural beats are also incorporated into the nap session, a type of music melody that registers at different frequencies that are meant to relax your body and get it ready for sleep. Overall, the studio aims to bring a sense of relaxation as well as mindfulness through meditation to its clients. “We offer workshops about mindful leadership, mindful communication and mindfulness in general,” Hernandez says, which in turn helps clients learn ways to de-stress and regain focus on whatever tasks lay ahead.

Unlike the typical fad that comes and goes, wellness is rooted in a deep need for comfort and stability. As we write this, we’re in the midst of a public health crisis, and brick and mortar locations may not be open. But there are ways to implement the wisdom of these businesses from your own home. Studios like recharj continue to offer online meditation classes, in an effort to keep a consistent schedule that is based solely on keeping well. And though the future is uncertain, businesses like Pop & Rest, Nap Bar and Zen – Bar à Sieste continue to work and create solutions for customers, from promoting online educational sessions and tips to developing applications, products and services for when businesses are fully up and running.

“Wellness is not just a fashion, but a fundamental trend in our societies,” Chanhsavang asserts. “Hopefully the nap services and related businesses will become a game-changer in the hospitality industry.”

*Source: NASA conducted a study on sleepy military pilots and astronauts and found a 26-minute nap increased productivity by 34 percent and alertness by 54 percent.

A modern traditional masterpiece of privacy and perfection. An exquisite Mediterranean work of art and appeal. An elegant estate designed with soaring ceilings and refined finishes. Their common denominator? All located in the Lone Star state, and sold through Supreme Auctions, known for accelerating marketing for luxury real estate. See these exclusive sales below. 

Piney Woods Edge – Houston Texas

Piney Woods Edge is a modern traditional masterpiece of privacy and perfection showcasing pristine lines of modern architecture, and the impeccable mastery of Houston’s premier homebuilder, Randy Ratcliff. Each corner of this home is filled with exquisite detail and opulent features. Located in Piney Point Village within the prominent Houston suburbs of the highly desirable Memorial Villages communities, just minutes from the heart of Houston for both business and pleasure. 

Even though the property was located in a highly sought-after community called Piney Point Village in Houston, it lingered on the market for over two years with the listing agent doing all that was available to market the property to potential buyers with little to no activity. Supreme Auctions implemented our 45-day Accelerated Marketing Program which drove prospective buyers to take action.

Catina Hollow – Dallas Texas

Catina Hollow is an exquisite Mediterranean work of art that will dazzle you with its serene setting and abundant appeal. Designed with distinguished architectural elements and refined finishes throughout, this outstanding property is positioned in one of the premier estate neighborhoods in Dallas within the highly sought after Preston Hollow Community. Located a brief 15 minutes from Dallas Love Field Airport and downtown Dallas with all that the city has to offer. 

The property was on the market for about a year and not stimulating any new buyer activity. With summer fast approaching, which is not the best time of year to sell in Dallas, plus the fact that the seller had already purchased another home, they chose an expedited sale with Supreme Auctions. 

Starwood Creek Manor – Frisco Texas

Privately nestled on over an acre, Starwood Creek Manor is an impeccable Traditional estate designed with soaring ceilings and refined finishes throughout. Located within the gated Starwood Community, this exquisite home is positioned overlooking the creek and walking paths with access to the Community amenities. Situated within 25-minutes away from DFW International Airport. 

The property was on the market for a little under a year, during which it received only seven viewings. The listing agent conducted three months of research as to which auction company to select, she contacted Supreme Auctions.

All photos courtesy Supreme Auctions.

Located in Spring Valley Village, this spacious estate sold due to the proprietary Accelerated Marketing Process of Supreme Auctions.

Supreme Auctions announced the recent closed sale of Westview Heights in West Houston, Texas. This luxury home is conveniently located within minutes of Memorial Park, as well as being a short 20-minute drive to Interstate 10, which will put you in the heart of downtown for business, the Galleria, City Center, and Memorial Shopping Center.

The results of Supreme Auctions’ accelerated marketing program for Westview Heights produced over 24,602 unique views to the website from 104 countries and 153 direct inquiries were made about the property. Supreme Auctions also received 11 registered bidders for the estate and the property sold on auction day.

“We are thrilled that the sale of Westview Heights represents our third successful transaction with John Daugherty Realtors in Houston this year,” stated Jennie Heal, President of Supreme Auctions.“With Supreme Auctions’ proprietary sales and marketing efforts, we garnered the attention of motivated buyers for this contemporary estate. In addition, our knowledge of the luxury market allowed for heightened interest and ultimate sale , which elated the seller as this home was on the market traditionally for over two years with little to no activity. The entire Supreme Auctions team is proud of having the highest success rate, at 96%, in the luxury real estate industry this year among all auction companies.” 

“We decided to use Supreme Auctions for our listing because we had heard so many good things about them and they had just finished two auctions within our company, which were very successful,” stated Judy Mousa of John Daugherty Realtors. “The experience with Supreme Auctions was superb, very professional and everything about it was over the top… the marketing, the details, the feedback, and just being able to understand how it all works was wonderful. As an agent, I would definitely recommend Supreme Auctions because we feel like through this experience, not only did we sell and please the seller, but we gained so much more knowledge. There are so many properties right now in our market; we are experiencing a soft market so the high-end luxury homes are sitting longer than we expected them to. With Supreme Auctions, we felt we could get the property sold quickly. If I could give sellers and agents some positive advice, it would be to use Supreme Auctions when you want your property listing sold.”

Photos courtesy of Supreme Auctions

Sweet Sustainability

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Dining Responsibly

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A Guide to the Michelin Guide

Bvlgari Hotels & Resorts is proud to announce that both the hotel’s signature restaurants, the Italian Il Ristorante — Niko Romito and the Chinese Bao Li Xuan, have been awarded Michelin stars during the Michelin Guide Shanghai 2020 presentation ceremony.

The Magic of ‘Layering Light’

An artist’s unconventional way of painting creates spectacular pieces that allow the viewer to experience their own emotion or recall their own memory.

A Rare and Unique Opportunity in Lake Champlain, New York

On one of the largest contiguous parcels in the NY Champlain Valley, this 431-acre farm and custom 8,000-square-foot waterfront home showcases mountain views on 646 feet on Lake Champlain. It offers the very finest custom details.

Wallpaper’s Wizardry

Subtle or bold, classic or contemporary, shiny or opaque, wallpaper has evolved to be design’s magic wand to fashion an interior that captures creativity.

Streetwise

Graffiti and street art have earned a place in prestigious collections, private galleries and museums. Click the link to see examples from all over!

The Audacious Artisan

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On the Water, For the Water

This hydrogen-powered superyacht blends sustainability with “highly poetic” luxury.

Maximalism

From patterned wallpapers and dark paint to a velvet sofa with a mix of textures pillows, Maximalism calls to be courageous in design and embrace “more."

Safe & Sound

When it comes to kitchens, the popularity of all things smart and sanitary is soaring, as consumers gravitate toward antimicrobial features.

Lifestyle and Longevity

New values, shifting demographics and technology are all transformative agents in 2020, and each will shape real estate and design well into the next decade.

365 Days of Summer

Bring the outdoors in to create your space to enjoy a summer state of mind all year round.

A Cut Above The Rest

Sustainable jewelry companies weigh the impact of their creations, in more ways than one.

Big Gardens for Small Spaces

By focusing on a desire to nurture carefully grown fauna, this company has rethought the living wall by making gardening easy for small spaces.

How To Make Your Home Sports-Friendly

Whether you’re looking to add a basketball or tennis court, or something more adventurous like a putting green, home golf simulator or bocce ball court, having the ability to play these sports while at home can provide countless hours of enjoyment.

The Art of Writing

Exclusive writing instruments elevate the tradition of putting pen to paper — a ritual technology cannot erase — into fine art

Bedding for a Cause

The Good Sheet, a luxury bedding brand based in Tasmania, Australia partnered with non-profit organization, One Tree Planted, is planting five trees in its home state of Tasmania with every bedding set sold.

Modern Midwestern Makes

These two Midwestern brands, both with a reputation for timeless design, craftsmanship, and innovation, will debut a new collection in January 2020.

Concrete-Inspired Gift Guide

Looking for inspiration this holiday season? Check out this gift guide with an edge. These concrete-inspired items are perfect for your home or office and will stand the test of time to celebrate for years to come.

Some of the most affordable beach towns to invest in for 2019 lie on the Gulf Coast, especially in Texas.

In four-season coastal communities such as Port Aransas, Texas on Mustang Island, the average 50-foot Gulf front lot costs under $1 million — well under the $4 million to $5 million-plus average found in coastal California and Florida. “In addition to the bottom-line profits, people fall in love with our island. We’re an authentic beach community with a laid-back lifestyle more in tune with life in the tropics,” notes Keith McMullin, broker/owner of Port Aransas Realty.

In 2019, Texas housing sales recovered after second-quarter declines, trending upward amid lower mortgage interest rates and a robust economy. Mortgage applications for home purchases and refinances continued to rise, nudged by further dips in interest rates. “The construction of high-end, luxury homes and condos in Cinnamon Shore, Palmilla Beach, and Sunflower Beach have played a significant role in our expansion to new markets. We remain somewhat of a secret outside of Texas, but that is changing as more people discover the affordability and allure of Mustang Island,” according to McMullin.

Texans capitalized on lower rates, pushing mortgage applications for home purchases up 15.6 percent year to date (YTD). Refinance mortgage applications (more sensitive to interest rate fluctuations), have nearly doubled over the past six months. “Large areas of Mustang Island were undeveloped until recent years. Of the 367 miles of Texas coastline, the bulk of the land available for development is located on Mustang Island.  We simply are not as widely known as other more mature beachfront communities,” says McMullin.

Investing in Texas real estate has been a no-brainer. Since 2010, the population has grown by 3.5 million, a million more than either Florida or California — converting into one and a half million new homes. Some 2 million of those people came from elsewhere attracted by new jobs, a fast-growing economy, more reasonable home prices, no state income tax, and a state ranked among the world’s ninth strongest economy.

“When compared to investing in other vacation/second-home markets, our story is very compelling. Lower property acquisition costs coupled with the vibrant Texas economy and steady population growth has created a healthy investment opportunity through appreciation and vacation rental income,” says McMullin.

For small coastal communities like Port Aransas, 2019 visitor arrivals from Texas and around the U.S. have so far exceeded last year’s numbers by 40 percent. Those arrivals are expected to rise, thanks to 3,300 out of 4,200 lodging units (up from 2,200 last year) that are now open for business (since Hurricane Harvey) with elevations of 10 to 11 feet above sea level.

Port A is definitely on the upswing, with new developments that include:

  •   The destination’s first conference center, slated to open in 2021 for gatherings of 500 to 2,000 attendees.
  •   225-room conference center hotel, slated to break ground in February 2020.
  •   A new beachfront/bayfront marina and resort
  •   Cinnamon Shore, an upscale 1,000-acre master-planned beachfront, family- and pedestrian-friendly community that will add Cinnamon Shore South, a $1.3 billion, a 300-acre expansion that will more than quadruple the existing community. It will include luxury homes, Town Center residences, community pools, a dining district with several restaurants, a retail destination, a health and wellness center, and a boutique hotel.
  •   Palmilla Beach Resort & Golf Community opened a new golf course on June 1st with 9 holes of links-style play, plus THE LOOP – a 3-hole, par 3 course, plus a driving range. Palmilla Beach’s homes range from condos and townhomes to cottages and custom homes. Homesites begin in the $200s and completed homes from the $500s. 
  •   Sunflower Beach Resort & Residences, nestled among 50 acres of protected dune preserves, features beach homes, several lots and 21 single-level poolside condos.  It has nearly completed the first phase of 25 new ultra-luxury one- and two-bedroom beach cabins priced from $382,000 to $499,000 at The Camp.

Photos courtesy of Cinnamon Shore

With the guidance of experts, travelers are able to experience more than simple sightseeing.

Spanning across Africa, Europe and The United States, these expert-led trips — curated by Architectural Adventures — blend world-class vacations with a deep appreciation for culture, history and architecture. Serving as the official travel program of The American Institute of Architects, Architectural Adventures plans each trip alongside knowledgeable architectural experts — unlocking the historical, cultural, and aesthetic significance behind the world’s most notable architecture.

©istockphoto / Daniel_Keuck

©istockphoto / TomasSereda

“In both Barcelona and Rome, we stay in the same city, and each day discover more about it. Staying in one place affords developing a more intimate look at the architecture and culture of the city.”

Sophia Gruzdys

Barcelona, Spain

Whether she’s embracing the local language, indulging in local cuisine, or exploring historic architecture, Sophia Gruzdys — an Architectural Adventures expert since 2017 — brings her own perspective to each tour she plans.

The licensed architect and educator has led tours in Barcelona and Rome, and will lead two Barcelona tours in 2019. “In both Barcelona and Rome, we stay in the same city, and each day discover more about it. Staying in one place affords developing a more intimate look at the architecture and culture of the city,” Gruzdys explains.

In Rome, travelers explore a wide range of architectural styles — including Contemporary, Fascist-style, Art Deco, and Renaissance. Meanwhile in Barcelona, travelers visit Antoni Gaudí’s iconic Sagrada Família and recently opened Casa Vicens, Ludwig Mies van der Rohe’s famed Bareclona Pavillion, and the modern urbanism of the @22 District. “It’s fascinating to compare the styles that emerged in our culture in different periods of history in different cities,” Gruzdys says.

Gruzdys, who encourages travelers to engage with local languages and embrace local culture, values the importance of hands-on experience. “It’s so rewarding to travel with people who are interested in the architecture — and to share their enjoyment. Each time I visit the sites, I’ll notice something new, and continue to learn from the experiences of others,” she says.

©istockphoto / TomasSereda

“I have traveled all over the world, but traveling back to San Antonio makes me more aware of its architectural history, and its many layers and textures.”

Jane Martin

San Antonio, Texas, United States

First discovered by Spanish explorers in the 1600s, San Antonio’s identity has always been strongly rooted in Mexican culture, history, art and architecture. From exploring the city’s Spanish colonial past at the Alamo and other UNESCO World Heritage Missions to cruising along the San Antonio Riverwalk, those who travel to San Antonio will be deeply immersed in local culture.

Jane Martin — architecture educator, historian and resident of San Antonio — will lead her first trip with Architectural Adventures in 2019 in her hometown. “I have traveled all over the world, but traveling back to San Antonio makes me more aware of its architectural history, and its many layers and textures,” she says. “There is a lot to see in San Antonio, and I am constantly discovering new things. There are a great variety of architectural styles — with everything from Spanish Colonial, all the way to International Modern.”

Travelers will also visit Sir David Adjaye’s cutting-edge Ruby City, the newest of the city’s world-class museums, and learn about historic Pearl Brewery, now a 22-acre complex with housing, retail and fine dining. “I hope this trip helps to bring San Antonio to the world, encourages people to sign up for the tour and enjoy the city,” Martin says.

©istockphoto / Marco_Bonfanti

Milan, Italy

From marveling at Milan Cathedral, touring Santa Maria delle Grazie (home to Leonardo da Vinci’s Last Supper), to visiting the UniCredit Tower, those who travel to Milan will surely learn a great deal from Architecture Adventures expert David Rifkind.

Leading a nine-day tour in 2019, the architectural history professor and practicing architect will explore the city’s range of historic architecture, as well as its recent cultural renaissance — which led to the creation of new museums, sustainable architecture, and Contemporary art exhibits. “I was surprised to learn that architects tend to be very interested in Contemporary architecture,” notes Rifkind, who also finds that non-architects tend to be more interested in historic structures.

Rifkind’s trip to Milan will bring together a unique group of travelers, consisting of both architects and non-architects from around the globe. “The dynamic of the people on the trip really does impact the experience in a really positive way,” Rifkind says. “Experiencing architecture first-hand is a unique pleasure, and alongside a group of diverse people who share your passion is truly magical. It has been rewarding to learn how travelers experience places that I thought I understood.”

While Rifkind understands the importance of an informative lecture, he also highly values hands-on learning. “It is really fascinating when a relatively small group of people experience a city together,” says Rifkind, who made unique contributions for this trip to contrast classroom learning.

“Experiencing architecture first-hand is a unique pleasure, and alongside a group of diverse people who share your passion is truly magical.”

David Rifkind

©istockphoto / Daniel_Keuck

“Although my studies will be very helpful, leading an Architectural Adventures tour will be a new experience for me. It will be very interesting to give tours to travelers who are already immersed in architecture.”

Stanley Ira
Hallet

Morocco

From volunteering in Tunisia for the Peace Corp to lecturing at the University of Kabul in Afghanistan, Architectural Adventures expert Stanley Ira Hallet’s range of cultural experiences has prepared him to lead a tour throughout Morocco in 2019.

“Although my studies will be very helpful, leading an Architectural Adventures tour will be a new experience for me. It will be very interesting to give tours to travelers who are already immersed in architecture,” says Hallet. The trip will include visits to the Hassan II Mosque, the French-designed Habous Quarter, and the Majorelle Garden (a two-and-a-half-acre botanical garden).

Whether travelers are exploring the ancient capital of Mauretania, Volubilis, visiting the medieval school of Bouanania (which was built in the 1300s), or marveling at the Sahara Desert, Hallet says they will partake in a “completely different urban experience.”

Hallet, who also has a passion for photography, hopes the trip will offer travelers a more complete story of Morocco.

For years, the coastal town of Port Aransas, affectionately called “Port A” by its residents, has seen visitors from other areas of Texas and from all throughout the U.S. In fact, the amount of visitors so far in 2019 has exceeded last year’s numbers by 40 percent.

 

This influx of new visitors is only expected to rise with the new festivals Port A is involved in over the summer. The location has long been described as an ideal fishing destination, and the 84th Annual Deep Sea Roundup is a reflection of just that. As the oldest fishing competition on the Gulf Coast, the Deep Sea Roundup, taking place from July 11 to July 14, brings people from all over to enjoy fishing in this relaxed atmosphere. Also attracting fishers from across the nation is the Texas Legends Billfish Tournament, taking place from August 7 to August 11.

The Beachtoberfest is a seven week-long festival involving a 5K run, a music fest, fishing tournaments, chef competitions, craft beer tastings, an art walk and other events as well. Also located at Port Aransas, the festival is taking place from September 13 to October 27.

Port A’s underrated food scene will also be showcasing itself during the Texas Super Chef Throwdown Series, occurring from September 18 to October 21. Consisting of 30 chefs from all around the state, the event qualifies the winning chefs to the World Food Championships in Dallas, Texas, consisting of 450 chefs competing from around the world.

All these events, taking place in Port Aransas, are a reflection of the culture and lifestyle in this coastal town — one where breathtaking luxury meets a casual atmosphere and invites all families to join in on the festivities.

Photos courtesy of Cinnamon Shore

Palmilla Beach Resort & Golf Community is taking their community to the next level with a new golf course, slated to open Saturday, June 1st in Port Aransas, Texas.

Red McCombs, the developer of the Palmilla Beach Resort and Golf Community, says “the damage to our golf course caused by Hurricane Harvey gave us a great opportunity — not just to rebuild the golf course, but to reinvent it to be much better, especially for vacationing families.”

Grand Re-opening

Palmilla Beach Golf is open to the public year-round, and everyone is invited to join the grand opening celebration from 10am-3pm on Saturday, June 1st.

Festivities will include:

  • Live music
  • Games
  • Prizes
  • Demonstrations from Callaway and a Dulce Vida tequila tasting tent
  • Guests can ride the new golf boards.

 

Palmilla Beach appeals to families looking for a luxurious community or vacation stay and has made changes to the golf course to include all types of golfers, including children, beginners and more.

“The improvements to Palmilla Beach Golf were influenced by changing consumer and golf trends,” commented Joe Shields, McComb’s grandson. “Play at traditional courses is down and Port A visitors want more variety, entertainment, and fun from their vacations.” The new course is a terrific activity for friends, families and novice golfers, yet still challenging from the tips for serious golfers, according to Shields. “It’s designed to be fun for everyone. And we are excited to bring these positive changes to the great game of golf.”

Additions to the course:

  • 9 holes of true links-style golf (still the only of its kind in Texas)
  • The LOOP, a 3-hole short course
  • Class A driving range  
  • Electric golf boards (plus traditional golf carts) 

 

In addition to booking a 9-hole round of golf, Palmilla Beach Golf is introducing the 12PACK and 21PACK. The 12PACK combines the 9-hole course plus The LOOP, a 3-hole, 85-100 yard pitch and putt. For avid golfers, the 21PACK allows players to play the 9 holes twice, followed by The LOOP.  The course also includes a full-size Class A driving range with five target greens, plus a short game practice green.

 

Every year we select locations to highlight as Markets to Watch. This year change is underway and we take a look at some top performers, others that are beginning to transition, and a handful of under-the-radar locations that are emerging.

Austin, Texas

On track for another record with sales up more than 3 percent, Austin’s luxury patina shines ever brighter. In October, the medium home value in Barton Creek increased to $1.02 million, making it the city’s first million-dollar neighborhood. Austin’s charms include no income tax to win over newcomers, but music and tech might be tops.

Bozeman, Montana

Bozeman might seem like a sleeper on this list, but with ranches, the Yellowstone Club and Big Sky country it’s an under-the-radar hangout for demi-billionaires and billionaires.

Brooklyn, New York

No longer second best! Buyers are making Brooklyn a first choice. Median prices in the most expensive neighborhoods hit the $1 million mark. Israelis, Chinese and Western Europeans also gravitate here. It’s no surprise this New York City borough is No. 2 on Urban Land Institute’s Markets to Watch. 

©istockphoto.com/Auseklis

 

 

Chicago, Illinois

By August, the Chicago area recorded as many luxury sales as in all of 2016 or 2017. Sales of $1 million-and-up properties set a record in the third quarter with a 19-percent increase over 2017. According to RE/MAX, luxury is booming in the west loop area. Upscale suburbs trail the city. Lots of new condos and stunning new buildings open doors to more urban opportunities in a market that hangs in the balance.

Dallas, Texas

Few cities have charted a post-recession course as strong as Dallas and the city remains Urban Land Institute’s No. 1 location for overall real estate prospects in 2019. But the dramatic post-recession price increases are over, say economists. Moderating prices and adjusting inventories are positive indicators that that a move back to a normal market is underway.

© istockphoto.com/Kanonsky

Denver, Colorado

Real estate’s Rocky Mountain high isn’t over yet. Denver continues to rank in the top group on many lists. In the upscale bracket, a shift toward balance is underway with the inventory of $1 million-plus homes at about seven months. Year-over-year prices are up on average 9.29 percent. Boulder remains a sweet spot for luxury, ranking 10th among cities and towns with at least 10 neighborhoods considered million-dollar.

Las Vegas, Nevada

Projections call for appreciation as high as 10 percent this year. Nevada was the fastest growing state, with new platinum communities; forward-looking, innovative architecture; and spectacular views capturing the attention of buyers looking for lifestyle and tax relief.

Hilton Head, South Carolina

Coastal South Carolina and Georgia are ground zero for demographic shifts and the growing ability among the affluent to live wherever they want — a trend just taking off. New developments including Palmetto Bluff add to demand for the Hilton Head region.

Minneapolis, Minnesota

Moving toward balance. A long-awaited uptick in homes on the market is one of several hints of a market shift. Median prices reached a record high this fall, and homes still sell quickly. Still the inventory of homes for sale is one of the lowest in the country. Upper tier and move-up brackets are less competitive.

Northern Virginia

D.C. continues to be in the top group on watch lists but Amazon’s recent announcement makes real estate in Northern Virginia much more interesting. What the prospect portends for current homeowners is uncertain, but sure to make this a market to watch in 2019.

Park City, Utah

No longer just a ski hangout, this Salt Lake neighbor is luxury’s newest player. The most desirable neighborhoods see a shortfall of inventory. Land prices increased by 25 percent with the highest number of sales occurring at Promontory. Opportunities abound: new projects at The Canyons, a large expansion of Deer Valley, a $4 billion renovation of the Salt Lake airport and a bid for the 2030 Olympics.

Wikimedia Commons / Don Lavange

Portland, Maine

Beaches and skiing, does it get any better than that? Hipsters meet old money here. Ranked among the top 20 for entrepreneurs, the city has a growing tech industry and one of the best foodie scenes in the Northeast. Look for more new construction. Prices will continue to ease upward as more people discover this hidden gem.

© istockphoto.com/DougLemke

Santa Barbara, California

Opportunities for buyers in many California locales continue to increase as markets shift. Median prices in Santa Barbara in November were down more than 25 percent, which is good news for buyers. The area remains a prized luxury refuge and lower prices open the door for newcomers to enjoy one of the most unique locations in the U.S.

Sarasota, Florida

The city’s iconic waterfront is being reimagined with a vision to increase cultural programming and urban amenities. Median prices have been increasing steadily, up 25 percent since 2014. New construction means more inventory with more on the horizon. Agents report steady and growing interest in individuals from high tax states.

© istockphoto.com/KarolinaBorowski

Seattle, Washington

Happier times are ahead for buyers in Seattle with active listings up by 41 percent. Even though inventories are still slim, it’s a good indication the frenzy is over. Closed sales in November were down 28 percent. Homes continue to appreciate but the increase has slowed to 5 percent. For buyers and sellers this is definitely a market to watch. The city still is in top groups in many rankings, but the frenzy is over.

Wikimedia Commons / Jeff Gunn

Toronto, Canada

Canadian Baby Boomers and Millennials came together and turned up the heat on the luxury condos in 2018; single-family home sales decreased by as much as 44 percent. While the foreign buyers tax has reduced sales to overseas buyers, it’s also opening new opportunities for locals. Local buyers will continue to drive demand for condos here.

Resort Markets

Luxury’s top performers in 2018. Not only are residences in demand, but new resorts are raising the bar for luxury and reinvigorating current markets. New developments in Turks and Caicos, including the ultra-indulgent Gansevoort Villas, turn up the heat on interest in the Caribbean. Easy reach from the U.S. and private enclaves generate new interest in the Bahamas. Cabo San Lucas, Mexico is seeing new resorts and other regions along the Sea of Cortez are seeing new development. Mandarina in Nyarit is the site of One & Only’s first collection of private homes. Owning a private island continues to be an ultimate purchase and the Bahamas is ground zero.

Thanks to:

Austin Board of Realtors

Michael Saunders, Founder and CEO Michael Saunders & Company

Anthony Hitt, President and CEO, Engel & Völkers Americas

Aleksandra Scepanovic, Co-Founder and Managing Director of Ideal Properties Group

National Association of Realtors

Northwest Multiple Listing Service, Kirkland, Washington

RE/MAX  Canada

Trulia

Zillow

This story originally appeared in the Winter 2019 issue of Unique Homes Magazine. 

Palmilla Beach Resort & Golf Club in Port Aransas, Texas is the perfect place to settle with your family, gather with friends or relax on a vacation filled with elegance and luxury.

The historic town of Port Aransas has all of the charm and color to make it a perfect family destination with the excitement that you and yours are craving. Gregory Carr, development manager at Palmilla Beach Resort & Golf Community described the community as “fun, eclectic, and funky.” Port A — as it is fondly known by the locals —  has 18 miles of uninterrupted beach with spectacular Gulf views and beachfront living. Palmilla Beach Resort is the ideal home or vacation spot for ocean and nature lovers alike.

 

Located in the ideal Gulf coast town, this beach community easily paints a picture of luxury with modern yet traditional architecture, high-end dining, and top-notch amenities. Walking through the development is a serene and safe experience. The tumbling ocean waves add to the relaxed atmosphere that one feels. Overall, the resort is “an environment where memories can be made,” says Carr. He also made note of how the community comes together whether it’s at the pool, on the beach or just in their backyards to create a welcoming environment.

The Real Estate

 

Palmilla Beach is well-established and always expanding. There are plenty of real estate options for vacation renters and those looking to make Port A their home. “It’s a lifestyle community,” says Carr, pointing out that most of the community are in rental properties. According to Palmilla Beach’s website, more than 75,000 people visit Port A during peak season. This is the perfect opportunity to take advantage of a popular destination and generate extra income while securing your perfect vacation home. Tiffany Holmgren Zuniga, sales executive at Palmilla Beach says, “Port A has the fastest growing rental market in Texas.”

 

Real estate options include:

  • Homesites
  • Homes
  • Condominiums
  • Cottages
  • Townhomes

Black Marlin Bar & Grill

 

The on-site restaurant is elegant with a high-end menu and taste, but it is surrounded by a comfortable beach atmosphere. The relaxed feel, friendly staff, and delectable cuisine make for the perfect summer afternoon. Choose from a variety of fresh seafood, such as lobster imperial or seared scallops. Then, end your meal with a sweet treat that is made in house with top quality ingredients. The Black Marlin is a gathering place for great company and exquisite food. “It’s the perfect comfort food,” says Zuniga.

Palmilla Beach Golf Club

Previously an 18-hole course, with a high difficulty level, the course is now undergoing some major changes that are going to appeal to more than golf enthusiasts. The new additions will make the course less challenging, kid-friendly, and entertaining for the whole family. “These new improvements are going to be for the whole family,” says Carr.

 

Once completed, the course will accommodate a range of golfers, from experienced to new players. After construction, The Playground will feature “an 18-hole putting course featuring an authentic, all-grass putting play with grass greens, bunkers, dunes, music, and access to food and beverage that will appeal to avid golfers, families, and children,” according to Palmilla Beach’s website.

 

A three-hole, short course will also be offered. This will serve perfectly as a warm up or simply a relaxed, quick game. Another addition will include the events lawn, which will accommodate games, competitions and concerts. The new improvements will include music, food and beverages that will help make this area an entertaining activity for the whole family.

 

Photos courtesy of Palmilla Beach Restort & Golf Club

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