Category Archives: See how others live

See how others live and let them know what YOU think!

Rachel Zoe’s got her work cut out for her in her new house


She sure has some styling to do! Celebrity fashion designer and stylist Rachel Zoe bought a new house, and boy does it need work!! A simple paint job is not going to cut it. This needs a lot of TLC, eye for detail and money… lots of money. And she had such a nice house! 

 

Rachel Zoe’s new home. Pictures courtesy of the Real Estalker

Read the whole story at the fantastic blog of  The real Estalker

Fully furnished apartment, uninhabited since 1942, discovered in Paris


Time stood still in this remarkable place. An apartment, left by its owner fleeing for the Germans in 1942, wasn’t rediscovered until 2010. The magnificent large apartment belonged to Madame Florian, who never returned to her home after the war. She died in 2010. Bailiffs and those in charge of her estate found documents showing she rented an apartment in a desirable part of Paris. When entering, they stumbled upon a treasure trove of turn-of-the Century antiques and memorabilia including a painting by 19th century Italian artist Giovanni Boldini. Madame Florian paid her rent every month.

 

The smallest apartments in Amsterdam


A top three of teeny-tiny apartments in the Amsterdam real estate market.

1. 16m2 / 172 ft2, right on the canal

This very compact refurbished studio apartment on Amsterdam’s posh Prinsengracht offers all you need. A new kitchen with basic appliances, a small freshly retiled bathroom with shower, toilet and vanity. The roof is sloped,further limiting the available floor space. But it has its charm, and I can imagine the view, once one sticks their head out of the window, is quite nice. The studio is in the front of the building, so canal side. It was on the market for €120.000 / $162.000. That’s €7500 per m2 / $942 per ft 2, which is quite steep even for Amsterdam standards. But it sold within 4 months.

A tiny studio right on an Amsterdam canal

A tiny studio right on an Amsterdam canal

Refurbished and move-in ready

Refurbished and move-in ready

2. 22 m2 / 237 ft 2, again on the same canal

Funny enough the second smallest apartment is not far from the previous one. Again, this tiny studio is in a very characteristic and typical Amsterdam building on the canal. However, this apartment is not as refurbished as the other one, and the kitchen leaves a lot more to desire. But it does have double doors opening to a French balcony and I guess it’s bigger. The apartment faces the garden in the back, so no canal view. A big bonus is a storage room on the ground floor and access to a communal garden. This one was on the market for €129.000 / $174.400 and sold in a bit over 4 months. The price per m2 / ft 2 of €5864 / $736 didn’t scare potential buyers.

Another studio on one of Amsterdam's famous canals

Another studio on one of Amsterdam’s famous canals

French doors leading to a French balcony facing the communal gardens

French doors leading to a French balcony facing the communal gardens

View to the gardens in the back. The owner of this studio has shared use of the garden

View to the gardens in the back. The owner of this studio has shared use of the garden

3. A 23 m2 / 248 ft 2 studio with balcony overlooking a canal in up and coming Amsterdam West

This building is a bit of a landmark. It’s right along a canal by a working drawbridge, so many of Amsterdam’s inhabitants have seen it while waiting for passing boats. It’s in a part of town that was not really desirable up until a few years back. Since then, many people have ventured that way for its cheap real estate, and its proximity to the more popular parts of the city. This brought in new shops, bars and restaurants and in turn caused a fast rise in prices and a shift in the area’s popularity. That makes the price of €89.000 / $120.000 surprising.  Only since the crunch have prices dropped slightly below €100.000 for the smallest of places in lesser areas. The owner must have been going for a quick sale. Like the other, this one sold in a little over 4 months. Surprising because flats in this building tend to sell faster. Especially considering this is one of the few with a balcony. Only the first and top floor units have these. The apartment consists of a small living/bedroom, a separate kitchen, nice when you only have one room, and a small bathroom. There are a few built-in closets. The view is quite spectacular. And there’s a shared garden, laundry facilities, private storage and a communal bike storage. The building itself is an architectural gem so all in all a very good deal for €3870 per m2 / $484 ft 2.

The 'Geuzenflat' overlooks a working drawbridge in one of Amsterdam's newer canals.

The nicknamed ‘Geuzenflat’ overlooks a working drawbridge in one of Amsterdam’s newer canals.

The building's official name is Oranjehof, and is listed as a monument

The building’s official name is Oranjehof, and is listed as a monument

The door leads to a balcony overlooking the canal

The door leads to a balcony overlooking the canal

 

Cartoon-like home in Thailand cost just $8.000 to build!


It reminded me of the Maison Bulles house for Pierre Cardin on the French south coast. And it reminded me of another real live version of the Flinstones’ home. Either way, this is a clever piece of work. The owner built this wonderful little home for as little as $8.000. His name is Steve Areen, once a flight attendant for Delta, now non conventional entrepeneur making money with music, photography, blogging and, as this project shows, by saving money on living costs. He used materials sources from the local area and did most of the work himself saving on labour costs. It took him only 6 weeks nonetheless.

Dome house by Steve Areen / photo: Inhabitat.com

Dome house by Steve Areen / photo: theownerbuildernetwork.com

Dome house bathroom by Steve Areen / Photo: Inhabitat

Dome house by Steve Areen / photo: Izona