Friday, May 13, 2011

Own Your Own Village!

When you've been together a long time, when you've visited a place many times, you develop little "rituals." In Palm Springs that would be snagging a free real estate magazine like Lifestyle Properties and settling down with it out on the terrace at Rock Garden Cafe to wait for my breakfast which is always a half-order of Eggs Benedict with bacon, not ham.

Lifestyle Properties is printed on heavy paper stock and all of the illustrations are 4/c. At first feel, I thought, "Damn! Are they spending money!" And I saw the prices on these houses and promptly quit worrying about their printing bill.

The two most expensive houses naturally caught my eye. And then I noticed that in many cases you aren't buying a stand-alone home, but a complex with separate guest quarters called "casitas" (little houses.)

$8.9 million "Villa Paradiso" (so named by Cary Grant) has two separate guest houses in addition to the main house, a pool house, pool, two sundecks and in the photo it spreads clear across the page!

$17.5 million This complex is seated high up on a mountain side with four levels of living space. It's five minutes from a private jet hangar to the house. Alas, no helicopter pad -- that would be even swifter. Ah well.

The help comes and goes via your private funicular from the street to the house. How cool is that?!

You have a choice of 10 bedrooms, 9 bathrooms in seven different suites and houses, three half-baths, a two-room kitchen and a wine cellar for 5,000 bottles.

You can have Barbra (Streisand) or Tony (Bennett) come to dinner and then serenade the crowd in your own private amphitheatre!

There's a pool and spa and if that's not enough for you, there's a pond (stocked with trout) and a waterfall. Tossed into the deal almost as an after-thought is a separate two bedroom, two bathroom caretaker's house.

The last line of the copy reads "Designed for the individual who desires both true peace, at one with nature, and who wants guests to be mesmerized.

Four levels of living space on a steeply-sided mountain? I wouldn't be mesmerized, I'd be gasping like a fish out of water. Which way to the funicular -- get me outta here!

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