What You Need to Know
Navigating Today’s Luxury Market
You’re invited to an exclusive Unique Homes online event on Wednesday, Dec. 9 at 1 pm Eastern.
Our panel of experts will discuss the latest market dynamics for buyers and sellers as the world of real estate continually adjusts to a new norm.
We’ll talk about how common bidding wars are these days. Was there a COVID bump in sales? What has the pandemic done to the dynamics in your market? And much more!
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- Joyce Rey, executive director of Coldwell Banker Global Luxury in Beverly Hills, California
- Sula Pearlman, associate broker with Coldwell Banker Realty in Westchester County, New York
- Jeff Alexander, vice president with Compass in the Greater Boston area
- Linda Martin with Coldwell Banker Realty in Chicago
- Joanne Nemerovski, broker associate with Compass in Chicago
- William and Phyllis Taylor of Taylor & Taylor, an award-winning architecture and interior design firm based in Miami, Florida
- John Fair, managing director of The Strand, Turks and Caicos, a private residential community
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.
“From the library to the floor-to-ceiling windows, you feel as though you are outside in a gorgeous glass room looking through a filtered view of the manicured mature cedar trees at Lake Champlain and the Green Mountains,” says co-lister Jodi Gunther of Berkshire Hathaway HomeServices Adirondack Premier Properties, who is listing the property with Margie Philo. “In the media room and dining areas there are completely different views of Lake Champlain, but my favorite is the main suite with oversized windows that swing open for amazing Adirondack air and a higher vantage point.”
The property, listed for $9.5 million, boasts a totally renovated working 10-building farm, including a horse barn, hay barn, cow shed, a renovated year-round farm home, old slate gable roof barn and more.
It is even equipped with an underground water distribution system to the buildings, high speed internet, and a security system.
It is only minutes to the ferry to Vermont and includes a 2,000-foot grass runway for a serene and safe getaway.
To learn more about this proeprty, contact:
Margie Philo and Jodi Gunther
Berskire Hathaway HomeServices Adirondack Premier Properties & Adirondack Realty
O: 518.523.3333 C: 518.576.9840 Margie@adkpp.com www.adkpp.com
On nearly 5 acres with a spring-fed pond in Hamlet of New Hamburg, New York, this distinguished manor-style home offers Old World elegant living space, which flows to the expansive exterior vignettes that feature iconic Hudson Valley vistas.
“The interior areas all allow access to the exterior of the home maximizing the incredible Hudson River vistas and use of the many different outdoor features this home has to offer,” says listing agent Angela Ingham of Berkshire Hathaway HomeServices Hudson Valley Properties. “Additionally, not only the architecture of the home itself, but the grounds and landscape design all blend together to offer you the true feeling of an English countryside estate.”
Completely renovated, this five-bedroom, four full- and two-half bath home features a multitude of modern amenities including a gourmet kitchen, a private theater on its own level and a lower pool terrace with a pool house, complete with outdoor shower and half bath.
“There are so many amazing spaces, but the master suite is truly decadent, and inviting, with its own balcony to enjoy the Hudson River scenery,” says Ingham. “Its luxurious master bath even has a claw foot tub that showcases the river as a relaxing backdrop.”
Additional amenities include a fire circle, wine nook, and a finished lower level with 3-car attached garage.
This estate, listed for $3.4995 million, is full of lush landscaping with full property irrigation and offers tons of privacy, nestled in between densely wooded areas, and accessible from the gated entry leading to a long winding driveway. “This is a wonderful home for anyone, especially a family or extended family,” says Ingham. “It is a great home for entertaining and relaxing with loved ones.”
Sinot Yacht Architecture & Design recently revealed an innovative 112-meter superyacht — the first of its kind to be powered by liquid hydrogen and fuel cell technology.
Aptly named, AQUA embodies a seamless connection to the ocean, voyaging at a speed of 17 knots with a range of 3,750 nautical miles. “AQUA is inspired by one of the elements of nature that it is closest to: water. Water is the life-sustaining force that makes planet Earth habitable,” says Sander Sinot, founder of Sinot Yacht Architecture & Design. From the cascading swim area that can be experienced at sea-level to the hydro massages in the indoor health and wellness center, water is the inspiration at every turn.
Sinot Yacht Architecture & Design created in collaboration with Lateral Naval Architects a superyacht that produces fewer emissions, yet far exceeds in luxuries. “We consider AQUA to be a major step forward in the application of new technologies aboard a superyacht, while at the same time showcasing an integrated and highly poetic design approach,” says Sinot. The yacht’s sleek exterior mimics the lines of a wave, which is merely one example of the team’s goal to utilize safer and environmentally conscious technology while taking inspiration from discerning owners’ lifestyles. “Our challenge was to implement fully operational liquid hydrogen and fuel cells in a true superyacht that is not only groundbreaking in technology, but also in design and esthetics,” adds Sinot.
Guests will experience relaxation in the highest manner on AQUA. The superyacht’s interiors meld effortlessly with the exteriors, allowing guests to glide between nature and luxury. The five-deck configuration affords the opportunity for guests to experience the water at every level. Cascading platforms allow guests to swim at sea level on the beach deck, while the top deck offers unforgettable views of the horizon as well as the AQUA room. Even the superyacht’s yoga space and workout floor have a gym-wide hatch that opens at surface-level for stunning views that can be enjoyed while using the equipment.
Integrated into the heart of the superyacht, just one of the awe-inspiring features is the grand circular staircase that travels from the top deck to the lower deck. The cylinder of open space in the center of the staircase creates a floating sensation, along with the flowing art piece at the bottom, which reflects the open skies above. “At the lowest level, two vast liquified hydrogen tanks reveal their hexagonal textured surface structure behind a giant facade of strengthened glass,” according to Sinot.
Fit for a King and Queen
The owner’s pavilion — designed with the superyacht’s finest luxuries — is at the front half of the upper deck and features floor-to-ceiling viewing windows, a jaw-dropping central skylight, a private spa section, and plenty of privacy and space. According to Sinot, “we always integrate all aspects of design into a new build: this means acknowledging key questions such as ‘why build a yacht in the first place?’ and ‘how can we ensure that you will enjoy your investment and enrich your sense of freedom?’” AQUA as a whole embodies the openness of the ocean and makes it readily accessible for family and friends aboard.
For Your Viewing Pleasure
The beach deck lounge transforms any morning, afternoon, or night to magic with a series of interlocking spaces that masterfully dictate the atmosphere. Handcrafted wooden screens create the perfect opportunity for dining on every scale from a fine dining setting for 14 to an intimate smaller party. The lounge also includes a circular seating area that is ideal for entertaining or conversation. The area easily rotates and transforms into a top-of-the-line home cinema with light-blocking window covers to ensure total comfort.
According to Sinot Yacht Architecture & Design, “the AQUA room, located at the bow, at the far end of the owner’s pavilion, offers top-of-the-world feeling and endless views from the best position on board.” The private room boasts uninterrupted floor-to-ceiling views, which can be enjoyed in privacy and comfort on the custom-designed floating daybed. Though spectacular views are possible around the superyacht, the AQUA room is a heightened experience altogether.
The superyacht has a guest capacity of 14 people, with one beautiful owner’s pavilion, two VIP staterooms, four staterooms for guests, family, and friends to relish in. With a crew capacity of 31, there are 14 double crew cabins, two officer cabins, and a captain’s cabin available on board. There is also space on the superyacht for one 10-meter limo tender, three wave runners, and more.
Renderings and featured photo © Sinot Yacht Architecture & Design
While working for a production company in New York City, Dylan Smith received a rare opportunity to pursue a career alongside some of the most creative and accomplished names in television. His demanding schedule required diligence, perseverance, grit, and strong communication — skills needed when addressing many of the renowned guests and high-profile staff. “These traits are an absolute necessity in real estate,” says Smith.
As a real estate professional with Chris Smith Realty, he serves as an able adviser and powerful advocate. His ability to empathize and connect with clients is one of his strongest assets when helping clients find new homes, or aggressively marketing the ones they have. “The real estate industry is constantly changing, and, as agents, we need to be adaptable,” says Smith. By studying trends in the housing market and keeping up with advancements in technology he has developed a strategy that works. “With a genuine approach to your needs, you will acquire a tenacious supporter, and also a friend,” says Smith.
Dylan has spent his entire life calling Southern Monmouth County his home. “These roads, bridges, and boardwalks were the foundation of my childhood and a fundamental aspect of who I am today,” says Smith. “Serving these communities and the people within them is so much more than just a job to me.”
For Anna Bario and Page Neal, designing jewelry meant more than choosing the perfect stone — it meant making a lasting impact. Their company, Bario Neal, was born from the idea that “our most precious things come with a story,” and the beginning of that story is of utmost importance.
Sustainable fashion has eased its way into the growing culture of being environmentally mindful, and with this movement came an increase in jewelry companies focusing on how to source gemstones and metals without causing a devastating impact on the environment. For Bario and Neal, the principal and lead designers of their company, they sought to create jewelry with a meaning, saying, “to us, creating objects of lasting value means understanding their full impact and origins. [That means] the places the raw materials come from, all the hands that touch the materials and the jewelry as it’s made.”
The Philadelphia-based company creates all their jewelry pieces by hand, with all their diamonds and colored gems being traceable, mine to market products. The design process starts with the aesthetics of the piece, then to how it will be crafted and its functionality, says Bario and Neal. “Then we work out how to make it responsibly. That can mean researching new sources, new materials, or custom cutting.”
Along with supporting sustainable jewelry, the company, which mainly creates engagement and wedding bands, also supports LGBTQIA rights, working to “undermine and eliminate the presumption of heterosexuality that pervades much of the wedding and jewelry industry,” says Bario and Neal. “Supporting unity and advocating for human rights within the jewelry industry is a non-negotiable part of our mission.”
©Bario Neal Jewelry
Photo by Daniel Johnson
Like Bario Neal, for Caitlin Cimino and her namesake jewelry company, the story of her ethically sourced pieces is essential to her craft. Cimino, who started her company in 2010, takes a hands-on approach when it comes to her creations. “When I create jewelry, I tie a mindful practice around the entire process — from collecting plant material to sifting through mine debris for gemstones.” Cimino started her ethical business knowing the connection between the jewelry industry and the gemstone and metal mining industries, two industries that are “environmentally and ethically damaging,” Cimino says.
All the gemstones Cimino finds are collected from a privately owned mine in California where her company is based. According to her website, unlike other mines that neglect their surrounding environment, the mine Cimino visits encourages local ranchers to utilize their mining debris in their orchards. The metal she uses is high-quality, up-cycled sterling silver with its impurities removed, making the quality similar to newly mined metal. Cimino describes her jewelry as “Medicine Jewelry™” and has created a process surrounding this ideal. “When I sit at my workbench, I perform different ritual practices like lighting herbs and incense, saying prayers or mantras and setting intentions,” Cimino says. “I do this because everything we involve ourselves in has a story and energy intertwined within, and I believe in the importance of making the story of my jewelry pure and positive.”
For co-founder of the jewelry company Puck Wanderlust, Ranelle Chapman, a core mantra pulls together the focus of her brand with it being “one of collaboration and the shared wealth of skills to create something unique yet mindfully made,” says the company’s website. “The interest in sustainability is at the heart of the brand — from packaging to production.” Founded in 2015 in London, the name is derived from “Puck,” a mischievous fairy in English folklore, and “Wanderlust,” a strong desire for travel and adventure. The company’s team traveled outside of its home country to India and Bali where its jewelry is handcrafted.
Sun Mandala bracelet in silver
by Puck Wanderlust.
A mix of different gold rings with onyx and moonstone by Puck Wanderlust.
Photos courtesy of Puck Wanderlust
Moon Mandala pendant necklace in gold
by Puck Wanderlust.
Puck Wanderlust works with small family-owned suppliers in these countries, their suppliers using recycled materials where possible while providing fair wages for their staff. According to the company, “we are committed to the ethical sourcing of our semi-precious stones and work closely with suppliers to ensure that they adhere to our code of conduct, which outlines strict standards of business behaviour.”
Puck Wanderlust also draws design inspiration from the countries that provide them with their materials. The latest “Bombay Deco Collection” is inspired by Indian Art Deco with geometric motifs and vibrant colors and patterns, according to Puck Wanderlust. In this collection, every design is handcrafted using 100-percent recycled silver and 18-carat gold vermeil, with each stone being “lovingly set.”
Niki Grandics, founder and designer of Enji Studio Jewelry in California, also sources her materials from around the world, buying them as close to the source as possible, she says, with rutile coming from a Pyramid mine in Bahia Brazil and her rich red rubies from Liberia. Grandics, who has always loved fashion and design, chose to ethically source her materials after the Rana Plaza factory collapse in 2013. The devastating event killed over 1,100 garment workers and injured over 2,000 more people, shaking the fashion industry to the core and causing companies to change where they source their materials. “The factory produced clothing for large brands I shopped with at the time,” Grandics says, “and it was shocking to me that so many young women — most garment workers are women age 18 to 35 — died so that young women like me in the West could buy the latest trends.”
Photo courtesy of Enji Studio Jewelry
Grandics’s favorite recent creation, the Ankoma Pendant. It’s made of rutilated hematite stone and hand-fabricated with recycled gold.
Enji — its name derived from Grandics initials “N” and “G” — goes beyond making modern and minimalist styles, but looks to shed light on issues in the industry that people may not be aware of, supporting projects that help end the use of toxic chemicals such as mercury, which is harmful to people and the surrounding environment.
Grandics’ future plans include putting together a map of where all the gemstones come from, creating “radical transparency,” something she believes fashion companies should start doing, along with becoming completely sustainable. “We only have this planet as far as I know and, given the scale of climate change, I think it’s imperative,” Grandics says. “If it can’t be reused, recycled, or biodegraded, it shouldn’t be in production, period.”
Photo courtesy of Enji Studio Jewelry
Aline Pendant: 2.25ct rutilated quartz and recycled 14k gold.
Paavo Studs: Recycled 14k gold, Montana sapphires and Canadamark diamonds.
Photos courtesy of Enji Studio Jewelry
Faustina Ring: Ruby slice, Montana sapphires and recycled 14k rose gold.
Upon learning that her engagement ring possibly contained a conflict diamond, CEO and founder of MiaDonna Anna-Mieke Anderson knew she had to make things right for herself and the jewelry industry. “I started sponsoring Ponpon, a 7-year-old boy in Liberia, Africa,” Anderson says. “It’s through our letters that I got a first-hand look at the realities of living in a diamond mining community. I will never forget the day he wrote to me and said, ‘I had a great summer because only one of my classmates was killed.’”
Anderson set out to source conflict-free diamonds the best possible way she could find: growing them in a lab. MiaDonna has led the evolution in the lab-grown diamond industry, with the company debuting the largest USA-grown diamond at the time, at 6.28 carats in 2016. To help combat the issue, Anderson created a foundation, The Greener Diamond, that works together with MiaDonna, and empowers communities to grow food instead of mining diamonds. With each purchase of a piece from MiaDonna, the money goes toward programs that restore the lives and lands of people in sub-Saharan Africa affected by mining.
©2016 Alex Milan Tracy
Anderson’s company, MiaDonna, is named after the two most influential people in her life: her daughter, Mia, and her late mother, Donna.
According to Anderson, people should become more aware of where their jewelry is coming from because “every time we make a purchase, we are voting with our money.” Anderson is proud of where her company is headed, recently becoming B Corp certified in America, the first lab-grown diamond retailer to do so. But she isn’t going to stop there, looking toward the planet, her cause, and more importantly, the people, as her reason for making a difference. “As for the little boy, Ponpon, he just completed University and runs our foundation projects in Liberia, Africa.”
Custom lab-grown diamond ring by MiaDonna.
Photos courtesy of MiaDonna
Paris ring set with natural recycled diamonds by MiaDonna.
When it comes to kitchens, the popularity of all things smart and sanitary is soaring, as consumers gravitate toward antimicrobial features.
Almost a sous chef, innovative, hands-free faucets such as U by Moen fill pots with exact amounts of hot or cold water or anything in between.
Seemingly overnight, touchless faucets, easy-open drawers and an ever-growing array of kitchen tech morphed from “nice-to-have” amenities to “must-haves” as the desire for cleanliness and safety eclipsed convenience.
Indoor air quality, purified water and clean surfaces rank high with consumers. Before the pandemic, interest in wellness at home was on the rise; now, amenities that bring a hygienic benefit, particularly in the kitchen, top wellness demands. A desire for simplification with easy-to-clean cabinets and counters along with healthy living are micro themes expected to steer product development and design in the future, according to the National Kitchen and Bath Association.
Even trusted materials such as wood, cork and brass are now considered for their capacity to shed germs or resist contamination. “All our faucets are solid brass construction and therefore, by the very nature of the metal, have additional antimicrobial properties,” points out Noah Taft, senior vice president of marketing and sales at California Faucets, noting the benefit of brass over less costly materials
As the desire for healthy homes builds, so does interest in water quality. Filtration has become an important focus, according to experts at Kohler, who say more than 75 percent of customers already take measures to filter their drinking water. In January, Kohler introduced a four-stage reverse osmosis purification system designed to fit in the cabinet under the kitchen sink. The system reduces contaminants, including lead, mercury, chlorine, bacteria, virus, arsenic, copper, fluoride and more. With a capacity of 27.5 gallons per day, it would replace approximately 200, 16.9 oz. bottles of water.
Sinks used to be, well, just sinks, until Rohl and other manufacturers elevated the status to “water appliance.” According to estimates, the kitchen sink used to be frequented 10 to 30 times a day. Now, after weeks of sheltering at home and a hyper-focus on handwashing, the sink is getting more use than ever and receiving lots of scrutiny regarding design, ease of use and even appearance.
“Kitchen sinks and faucets are on the front lines of keeping a home clean and safe — used continuously for food preparation, hand and dishwashing,” says Edyta Drutis, director, brand and communications, at Blanco North America. Blanco’s Silgranit stone-like sink material is nonporous, resistant to stains, scratches, chips, acid and heat. Acting as a shield against dirt and contaminants, it reduces bacterial growth by 98 percent. The hydrophobic surface pushes away dirt and water, so it drains easily and cleans with soap and water or baking soda.
When it comes to sinks, bigger continues to be better. Even before the pandemic, experts at the National Kitchen and Bath Association noted increased demand for large sinks to accommodate tasks as diverse as washing fresh produce and jumbo pans, to babies and the
More Power Per Drop
Look for faucets designed to do more than deliver water. Lenova introduced a model that takes washing produce or the dog’s bowl to the next level by integrating ozone into the flow. Recognized as a safe, non-toxic way to kill viruses, bacteria, mold, yeast and algae within seconds of contact, aqueous ozone has been extensively tested and clinically proven, according to Lenova. Not only does it sanitize surfaces, but it can be used to wash produce, and it even removes pesticides.
Adding more cleaning power to each drop, particularly for sprays, is another objective for manufacturers. Kohler recently introduced options such as a faucet sprayer with nozzles aligned to create a forceful blade of water to sweep away stuck-on food. Another, a soft spray, preps berries without bruising. Moen optimized its sprays to deliver 50 percent more spray power while containing the splash — great for messy pots and messy hands.
Look Ma, No Hands!
Touch-free faucets have been around for a few years. In the first versions, sensors would activate the flow in response to a motion. Then, voice control was added. The most recent innovation enables homeowners to activate faucets via Alexa or Google Home. Turning the water on and off is only part of what U by Moen — a Best of KBIS 2020 winner — delivers. Instead, it can fill a baby bottle with just the right amount of water at the right temperature or load a pasta pot with precisely four quarts of hot water, freeing the cook for other tasks. Metered dispensing ranges from one tablespoon to 15 gallons, and temperature commands can be exact degrees or merely hot or cold. “Baby bottle” and other customizable presets simplify commands.
Hard As Glass
“Glass tiles are not porous and do not possess characteristics that allow or promote the growth or life of microbes, bacteria, or germs,” explains Jim Stevens, brand manager for Lunada Bay Tile. “Keep in mind that the grout between each tile is porous and does not have these same characteristics. However, grout is usually set down, below the top surface of the tiles, so direct contact is less likely. And grout could be sealed with an antimicrobial sealer to create a safe and sanitary surface.”
Glass tiles, which are nonporous, also mesmerize.
Set on 24 conserved acres in the Radnor Hunt countryside, in Newtown Square, Pennsylvania, Chester County’s Delchester Farm offers panoramic views. The well-maintained estate, with its elegant home, stone-and-wood barns and a guest cottage, exists within a landscape of quiet beauty. It was first constructed by one of the financiers of the Revolutionary War, was later expanded by renowned architect R. Brognard Okie and extensively renovated in the last 20 years.
“The property is ideal for large gatherings of family or friends — the current owners just recently hosted a beautiful wedding behind the main house,” says Deborah Dorsey of Berkshire Hathaway HomeServices Fox and Roach, who is listing the property for $5.45 million. “And the circa 1795 Pennsylvania fieldstone bank barn could be converted into an amazing ‘party barn’.”
A long drive passing split-rail fences and open pastures leads to the main house, built of Pennsylvania fieldstone. The entry hall features a black marble floor, French doors at either end, and ten-foot ceilings that continue throughout. The living room feels both elegant and welcoming, with its dark wood floor and carved fireplace mantel. Across the hall stands the original parlor, with another fireplace, a bar, and an original door topped with a glass transom. The home also features a kitchen with a black granite island; a conservatory with a glass ceiling and bluestone floor; and a master suite with a carved antique marble fireplace and French doors to a private balcony. Outdoors, the home features multiple bluestone patios (both covered and uncovered), a pool, and a first-rate equestrian facility and barns.
“The property is perfect for someone looking for a family compound within commuting distance of New York, Philadelphia or Wilmington,” says Dorsey.
For more about this property, contact:
Deborah Dorsey, Associate Broker, REALTOR®
Berkshire Hathaway HomeServices, Fox & Roach, REALTORS®
C: 610-724-2880 O: 610-527-6400
Nestled in one of Holmdel, NJ’s most desirable neighborhoods, this home is positioned on 1.4 private acres. The brick masterpiece is adorned with a brand new roof and over 6,000 square feet of extraordinary quality and design. Fine details include a stunning two-story foyer, grand staircase, sun-drenched palladian windows, ornate moldings, wide plank hardwood floors and palatial ceilings.
“This home is perfect for anyone looking for a luxurious and private residence offering the finest amenities,” says listing agent Doreen DeMarco of Berkshire Hathaway HomeServices Fox & Roach.
The home features a living room with French doors; an intimate library with a hand-painted mural and marble fireplace; a gourmet kitchen; and a main-floor master bedroom suite with high ceilings and a beautiful marble bath area equipped with a cedar sauna. There are also unsurpassed views of the backyard oasis and it is a true show stopper.
“The 2,500 square feet of outdoor terraces overlooking the stunning pool and resort-like grounds truly make this home one-of-a-kind,” says DeMarco.
The home, listed for $1.449 million, is in a prime location close to all New York City transportation, local shopping and Jersey Shore beaches.
Reconnect with nature in this rare, stunning, custom home on a picturesque 20 acres. The well-manicured, park-like acreage boasts an unparalleled open and private setting with groomed trails for biking or strolling through the serene private landscape. The property boasts extraordinary features like a large heated shop, outbuilding for storage or equipment, and a clean, nicely finished 2nd home with a suite — and the possibility to subdivide.
This home is packed with modern features — including vaulted ceilings, geothermal heating, and custom showers throughout — and a massive kitchen area with granite surfaces, gas range, and plenty of extra storage space.
The property is just a short drive to stunning lakes, Big White ski resort, hunting, fishing and more. Enjoy all of the conveniences at your own rural retreat, just minutes from town.
For more information, contact:
AJ Hazzi | Vantage West Realty Inc.
vantagewestrealty.com | firstname.lastname@example.org