03/01/17 2:46pm

Country Cottage Idea House

Here’s the teaser — a sketch of the pint-size Country Cottage Idea House opening March 24, 2017, in Round Top, the Fayetteville County hamlet that has been hosting mega antique shows each spring and fall for decades.

The 1920s-era building which measures less than 800 square feet, was transported by trailer to The Compound of Round Top earlier this year. Award-winning designer Julie Dodson of Dodson Interiors in Houston has overseen a complete makeover of the tiny house, utilizing finds from the vendors of Round Top, to create cozy “Southern Country Chic” guest quarters.

Looking for ideas to build a nest for your guests?

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02/10/17 10:58am
This pretty property in Crested Butte is among the vacation destinations featured at the No Place Like Home Event. Photo courtesy of Austin Street Center.

This pretty Crested Butte property is among the vacation destinations featured at the No Place Like Home Event raising funds for the Austin Street Center.

What a shame to let a gorgeous vacation house stand empty when it could be put to good use raising funds to support the homeless!

If you’re going to rent a vacation place anyway, why not book a spot that will do the same?

Austin Street Center is hosting a fundraiser that has your name all over it if you own a vacation home that you are willing to lend, or if you are interested in purchasing a stay at a lovely vacation property to benefit the Center’s facilities and programs to help the homeless. The second annual No Place Like Home Event will take place from 6 to 9 p.m. on Thursday, Feb. 23, at Pirch NorthPark Center. Linda and Frank Roby are co-chairing the event.  (more…)

02/06/17 2:29pm
Steamboat Springs Hot Springs

Photo courtesy of the Colorado Tourism Office

Every ski town seems to have its own appeal. It’s easy to get to, or it’s isolated and exclusive.  It’s snowboarder heaven, or it’s snowboard-free. It a great place for beginners, or  it’s dominated by advanced-level runs and black diamond-lovers don’t have to navigate around skiers like me.

Steamboat Springs in northwestern Colorado is known as an exceptionally family-friendly town. It’s known for lots of programs for children, kids-only lifts, and play areas and parks designed with juveniles in mind.  But,  the area has a unique natural feature with special appeal for adults: mystical natural hot springs where skiers, snowboarders, and hikers can relax and soak away tired muscles and aches and pains.  Click here for a look at these therapeutic wonders and a gorgeous new vacation home listing in Steamboat Springs:

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01/31/17 2:31pm
Most expensive homes listed in U.S.

Photos courtesy of Kuper Sotheby’s International Realty

A Texas ranch was included in Curbed.com’s roundup of the most expensive homes for sale in the U.S. earlier this week. Perhaps the Hill Country town of Lampasas should rebrand itself Lampa$a$, given the $81 million price tag on the Hill Country property, which ranks among the 25 most expensive homes currently listed for sale in the nation. It ranks 21st in the lineup that ranges from $250 million to $78 million , with most in what seems to be a sweet spot for top-tier housing prices — the low to mid-80s.

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01/24/17 8:35am

montana landscape

Texans love the fierce, independent spirit, wide-open spaces, and natural beauty of Montana. The fourth-largest state has long been a favored vacation home setting for folks from North Texas, made even better last summer when American Airlines instituted daily nonstop seasonal flights to Bozeman Yellowstone Airport, the gateway to the area known as “Big Sky,” from May through September — prime time to get away from triple-digit heat.

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01/13/17 4:18pm

Boot Ranch 25

More news from Boot Ranch, the luxe private golf club and residential community we’ve been following in the Texas Hill Country: a new toque in the kitchen. Boot Ranch chef (and Abacus alum) chef Aaron J. Staudenmaier left the ranch in October to return to Dallas to join Tracy Rathbun and Lynae Fearing in Lovers Seafood and Market which opens in the next few weeks. Fredericksburg pastry queen Rebecca Rather filled in during the transition while Boot Ranch management sought out their new executive chef – Casey McQueen. McQueen is now at the helm of the Boot Ranch kitchens, overseeing the clubhouse dining room, outdoor bar and grill and catering activities.

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01/12/17 1:42pm
Julie Dodson Round Top

Kevin Isbell with Julie Dodson at the Round Top Designer Shopping Spree 2016. Photos courtesy of Julie Dodson.

Twice a year, 2,000 dealers and over 100,000 shoppers from all over the U.S. flock to Round Top, midway between Austin and Houston, for the Round Top Antiques Fair. It’s a shopping extravaganza showcasing European and American antiques, architectural elements, and collectibles.

Texas’ own designer Julie Dodson hosted a special event at last year’s fall show that was such a success she’s returning for a reprise this year. The Second Annual Designer Dream Spree, to be held September 26-29,  will include shopping the dealers of Round Top, a designer panel discussion on “Exceptional Discoveries,” and an array of social gatherings, from wine tastings to fine dining featuring cuisine prepared by notable Houston chef Travis Lenig.

Click to read more about the event and the design star-studded panel she’s recruited to speak at this year’s Designer Dream Spree on CandysDirt.com!

01/10/17 8:15am

 

Kimpton Seafire Resort on Seven Mile Beach on the Grand Cayman Island.

Kimpton Seafire Resort on Seven Mile Beach on the Grand Cayman Island.

 Yikes, that arctic blast made me long for a warm beach with a tropical breeze! Time to head for Seven Mile Beach, named by Travel and Leisure as “The Caribbean’s Best Beach.” The destination I am longing for? The Kimpton Seafire Resort + Spa, Grand Cayman, the first new hotel in the Cayman Islands in a decade. Developer Dart Real Estate opened the boutique hotel just this past November, and announced the launch of an affiliated residential option: The Residences of Seafire, 62 luxurious modern units in floor plans ranging from 600-square-foot studios to 4,000-square-foot, four-bedroom abodes that share the resort’s landscaped gardens and pools, panoramic views, and open access to gorgeous Seven Mile Beach.

Click here for a peek at pics of this posh paradise, enhanced with famed interior designer Martyn Lawrence Bullards’ Carribean-inspired public spaces and the stunning natural beauty of the setting: (more…)