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AOL Real Estate - Blog

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    Re-purposing is the buzzword for 2011, and the real-estate version of this trend is of course conversions. One of the more unique conversions to come down the pike is this one in Brooklyn Heights: a 3,500-square-foot townhome that was once a printing facility for Jehovah's Witness literature.

    The four-bedroom, four-bathroom townhome, part of the One Brooklyn Bridge Park complex, is listed for $3,250,000. It has views of the harbor and is Brooklyn's largest residential conversion. The lobby is a re-creation of the original 1929 building.

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    The project, which was met with no small amount of protest from some original Brooklyn Heights residents, comes on the heels of the Jehovah's Witnesses (aka The Watchtower Bible & Tract Society) announcing that the organization is relocating its world headquarters to a 253-acre site in Warwick, N.Y.

    The interiors of One Brooklyn Bridge Park include original building columns and 9-foot-tall windows, plus amenities for residents-only that include a 3,000-square-foot fitness center, yoga room, children's playrooms, art room, music room, media lounge, and 7,000 square feet of landscaped gardens. Additional features include an indoor virtual golf and driving range, and an outdoor putting green.

    See more Houses of the Day on AOL Real Estate and other homes for sale in Brooklyn, N.Y.

    Got a tip for House of the Day? Know of an exceptional or unusual property currently listed for sale? Please email ann.brenoff@huffingtonpost.com with your suggestions and be sure to include links to listing details and photos. (Due to the volume of response, we unfortunately are unable to respond to each submission.)

    More on AOL Real Estate:
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    We're doing an ollie over the idea of a completely skateboard-able house being built in Malibu. Named the PAS House after Sole Technology owner Pierre-Andre Senizergues, for whom it is being built, the home will feature curved walls and furniture. Thanks to our friends at Malibu Patch.


    Also see:
    House of the Day: Bowled Over in Naples, Fla.
    House of the Day: Builders Really Nail Pixar's 'Up' Home

    See homes for sale in Malibu, Calif., on AOL Real Estate.

    More on AOL Real Estate:
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    Call it Candy Spelling-itis. Get one overpriced house sold and suddenly everybody has dollar signs where their pupils used to be. First, the lovely and talented divorcee Suzanne Saperstein brought her Fleur de Lys mansion back on the market at $125 million on the very day the MLS recorded the sale of Candyland at $85 million. And then, lo and behold, Richard and Lauren King bring their 17,000-square-foot Georgian Traditional to market the very next day at $65 million.

    The Kings' Bel-Air place, which sits on two acres, took five years to complete and, according to the listing, "no expense was spared." Of course it wasn't spared; it's being passed on! Truth is, this was pretty much a rebuild and not a remodel -- which is kind of a shame since it's one of those rare old Hollywood homes with some history.

    It was built in 1938 for Fanny Brice, the controversial comedienne and actress. Later it was owned by music mogul Jerry Moss, and then later still by Oscar-winning producer Alan Ladd Jr.

    The Kings bought it in 2001 for $15 million and intended, as they told Architectural Digest, to do a "minor interior renovation." New York-based Ferguson & Shamamian Architects were hired and the rest, as they say, is history -- literally. Only the foundation, the front façade and the staircase in the entry hall remain from the original.

    The two-story home has eight bathrooms, 14 bathrooms and lots of bells and whistles that we'd love to show you but the Kings don't want snoopy people like us to see the home's interiors (unless we fork over some bucks for a copy of the July 2011 Architectural Digest).

    Also see:
    See more homes for sale in Bel-Air on AOL Real Estate.

    See more celebrity real estate.

    More on AOL Real Estate:
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    We're not sure we'd want to be visiting during a big earthquake, but this cutting-edge architectural home sure pushes our "like" buttons. Especially the floating dining room that is surrounded (literally) by stunning views as it protrudes from the main structure.

    Listed at $10.8 million -- down from $12.5 million -- the five-bedroom home completed in 2007 and designed by Jeffrey and Rochelle Mills, features a large living room with walls of glass that fully retract; two family rooms; a gourmet state-of-the-art kitchen; private movie theater; bar area; gym and massage room.

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    The home is made of two unique glass and steel boxes perched in and cantilevered from a series of exposed poured concrete walls. There is a glass floor bridge that cantilevers out over the swimming/reflecting pool below and out to Lake Hollywood itself. The master suite is has ample use of glass and wood, magnificent views, and features a spa-like master bath. Rich finishes used throughout the residence include mahogany siding, and Tigerwood and Alabastrino flooring.

    There is a variety of outdoor spaces including enclosed gardens and outdoor rooms to cantilevered decks, and an open sky terrace.

    David Findley of Partners Trust Real Estate co-listed the property with Drew Fenton of Hilton & Hyland, Beverly Hills.



    Got a tip for House of the Day? Know of an exceptional or unusual property currently listed for sale? Please email ann.brenoff@huffingtonpost.com with your suggestions and be sure to include links to listing details and photos. (Due to the volume of response, we unfortunately are unable to respond to each submission.)

    See more Houses of the Day and more homes for sale in Los Angeles on AOL Real Estate.

    More on AOL Real Estate:
    Find out how to
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    homes for sale in your area.
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    vegas penthouse

    If you spin the roulette wheel in real estate today, Las Vegas might wind up being an investor's lucky number. Take this 6,779-square foot, two-story penthouse in the prestigious high-rise at 1 Hughes Center Drive that's on the market now at $10 million. In 2009, it had a price tag of $15 million. That's a lot of poker chips.

    Finished with rich woods and exotic stone work, the four-bedroom unit has a home theater, gourmet kitchen with dumbwaiter and lavish master suite that includes a large office. There are floor-to-ceiling windows that overlook the neon lights of Vegas below.

    Shapiro & Sher Group of Prudential Americana, Las Vegas, have the listing.

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    Got a tip for House of the Day? Know of an exceptional or unusual property currently listed for sale? Please email ann.brenoff@huffingtonpost.com with your suggestions and be sure to include links to listing details and photos. (Due to the volume of response, we unfortunately are unable to respond to each submission.)

    See more Houses of the Day and more homes for sale in Las Vegas, Nev., on AOL Real Estate.

    More on AOL Real Estate:
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    concrete house

    If you're the owner of a concrete company, what kind of house do you build? Why, a massive chateau made entirely of concrete, of course.

    A 72,000-square-foot single-family home (pictured above) is being built entirely out of concrete in Christian County, Mo., for Steven Huff, chairman of Wisconsin-based TF Concrete Forming Systems. The home has its own website, which should help the county officials who have been fielding inquiries about it from around the country. Lots of interest apparently, with no shortage of it coming from the bunker crowd, we suspect. (An architectural rendering of the finished project is below.)

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    The estate between Branson and Springfield, called Pensmore, "represents what we believe will be a practical application of new technologies to bring to life a modern version of the Jeffersonian ideal of the self-sufficient sustainable estate," according to the website -- which also notes notes that "the whole house is in essence a storm shelter." It sits on 500 acres, plenty of room to keep marauders at bay should it come to that.

    This won't be the country's first massive concrete house though. An astute Gawker reader pointed out another one in Bucks County, Pa.

    Concrete has been around the home-building world for quite some time of course. As our friends here at Houzz note, it's crept its way into our homes bit-by-bit (or should we say bag-by-bag?) -- polished concrete floors, stamped concrete patios, even interior concrete walls and concrete made to look like wood. Of course if you're going to try concrete furniture, you might want to consider upholstering the chair cushions. Just sayin'....

    concrete house

    Got a tip for House of the Day? Know of an exceptional or unusual property currently listed for sale? Please email ann.brenoff@huffingtonpost.com with your suggestions and be sure to include links to listing details and photos. (Due to the volume of response, we unfortunately are unable to respond to each submission.)

    See more Houses of the Day and more homes for sale in Christian County, Mo., on AOL Real Estate.

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    Generally when somebody screams "Once in a lifetime opportunity!" in our direction, we think about the proverbial snake oil salesman and hurry our pace away. This time, that somebody means it.

    This 50-room mansion was designed by famed Boston architects Peabody and Stearns during Boston's most notable era in architecture. The Ames-Webster Mansion is a carved-wood aficionado's dream and there are enough hand-made details in every massive nook and cranny to make you feel like you're in a museum, which to some extent, you are. The palatial entertaining rooms are fitted with murals, John La Farge stained glass and mosaic tiles. The 26,000-square-foot home has 28 fireplaces and a baronial scale dining room that features a hidden passage to the butler's pantry and a secret stairway to the master suite above. The orangerie is fitted with walls of curved glass and floored in hearth tile.

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    Frankly, they just don't make them like this anymore. Price tag: $23 million.

    The home was commissioned by Stephen Van Rensselaer Thayer and his wife, Alice. But at age 24, Thayer died unexpectedly while the home was under construction and the property eventually wound up in the hands of Frederick L. Ames, a man who became one of the principal owners of the Union Pacific Railway Company.

    The home is listed with Tracy Campion of Campion and Company, Boston.

    Got a tip for House of the Day? Know of an exceptional or unusual property currently listed for sale? Please email ann.brenoff@huffingtonpost.com with your suggestions and be sure to include links to listing details and photos. (Due to the volume of response, we unfortunately are unable to respond to each submission.)

    See more Houses of the Day and homes for sale in Boston on AOL Real Estate.

    More on AOL Real Estate:
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    most expensive bank owned home

    Who says the mighty can't fall? One of the country's premier listings -- the penthouse apartment of the St. Regis Hotel in San Francisco -- is now owned by a subsidiary of Bank of America and expected to be re-listed at $35 million, half what the asking price was, according to the listing agent. The unit is known as the Museum Tower Penthouse.

    The two-story apartment has about 20,000 square feet and was heralded as the lap of luxury -- it has an entry way with a two-story waterfall feature -- when it was first brought to market in 2008. We know the rest of that story, right?

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    The six-bedroom, 12-bathroom home with 360-degree views of San Francisco and the bay, will be staged and another attempt to sell it made -- this time by the bank, who is spending $500,000 on the staging. The penthouse has a 2,500-square-foot master suite with a gym, steam room and sauna and there are 3,000 square feet of terraces.

    The unit was never lived in. It was built by a developer who spent about five years combining three apartments into one superbly finished unit -- a good idea perhaps about a decade ago. There was an interim Hail Mary price drop to $49 million.

    Gregg Lynn, Louis Silcox and Bernadette Lamothe of Sotheby's International Realty of San Francisco have the listing. Lynn says that about 220 pre-qualified buyers toured the property during the past three years. There about a dozen he thinks will be "extremely interested" to hear about the new price.

    Also see:
    Bank of America Donating Foreclosed Homes

    Protesters 'Liberate' Foreclosed Homes


    For more on
    foreclosures and related topics, see these AOL Real Estate guides:

     

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    bay view house

    When Tony Bennett left his heart in San Francisco, what he really meant to say was that he stashed it in this 10,000-square-foot home on the island of Belvedere, just across from Sausalito and north of the city.

    The waterfront home, now on the market at $27.5 million, is on the Western-most promontory of Belvedere Island with the San Francisco Bay directly below it. It has unobstructed views that include Mount Tamalpais, the Golden Gate Bridge and the entire San Francisco skyline -- that are definitely worth crooning over.



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    Warren Callister designed the home, which has large formal living and dining rooms, a library, five fireplaces, three level lawn areas, a three-car garage and additional parking for seven cars. There is a world-class kitchen with a granite-topped island and a walk-in pantry. There is also a wet bar in the family room and the top-floor master suite has a private-view terrace. The property includes a guest apartment.

    It's a 35-minute drive to San Francisco's financial district or a mere 10 to 15 minutes if the trip were made by boat. The property doesn't have a dock.

    The listing agent is Bill Bullock of Decker Bullock Sotheby's International Realty in Mill Valley, CA.

    Want to see more homes on Belvedere Island? Check out:
    http://www.sothebysrealty.com/eng/sales/detail/180-l-702-4196883/alone-in-its-class-belvedere-ca-94920

    http://www.sothebysrealty.com/eng/sales/detail/180-l-702-4252404/casual-elegance-belvedere-ca-94920

    http://www.sothebysrealty.com/eng/sales/detail/180-l-702-4253226/san-francisco-bay-front-italianate-belvedere-ca-94920

     

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    Razor house

    As much a work of sculpture as a house, "The Razor" sits hollowed into a bluff overlooking the Pacific Ocean in the San Diego suburb of La Jolla. From its perch above Black's Beach -- reputed to be the largest nude beach in the world -- it also offers uninterrupted panoramas of the ocean and the craggy, pine-blanketed mountains of California's Torrey Pines State Reserve. The home is named for one of the natural sandstone monuments that rises along the coast.

    The original owner commissioned architect Wallace Cunningham to build the home and gave him an unrestricted budget more than 10 years ago. That free rein, exercised over eight years until construction was halted three years ago, brought the home's building cost alone to $34 million. So the minimum bid of $16 million required to purchase the place in an upcoming auction -- down from an initial ask of $45 million -- could be seen as something of a bargain.
    "It's a steal," said listing agent Bob Hurwitz. "It shows what you can buy right now in the market on the high end."

    Architect Cunningham is so fond of the place that he has offered to give prospective buyers a personal tour. And why shouldn't he be? The gleaming, polished concrete surfaces and floor-to-ceiling glass walls both capture and complement the jaw-dropping ocean views. Largely transparent, the building is designed to filter light in such a way that the home's appearance is different at different times of days. Even the pool interacts with the surrounding elements to create optical illusions at dusk.

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    "This home wasn't a spec house. It wasn't built to sell," said Hurwitz. But things change. As the real estate market began to teeter, the owner, a successful software designer, decided to move East. He put the home on the market about three years ago, stopping just short of completing the interior.

    After initially listing the place at $45 million, the owner reduced the price gradually to $34 million. He received a verbal offer of $30 million at one point, but rejected it, unable to bring himself to accept selling the home below its construction cost.

    Faced with serious financial difficulties, he filed for Chapter 7 bankruptcy recently, putting the home under the control of a court-appointed trustee.

    Hurwitz has decided to sell the home at auction because of how long the home has lingered on the market and because of numerous requests from interested parties "to expedite the sale." The auction will take place Sept. 28. Bidding will start at $16 million and increase in increments of $100,000.

    (Note: The home's website has not been updated to reflect this price and still lists The Razor at $32 million.)

    Also see:
    The Most-Expensive Bank-Owned Home in America

    'House Porn': Real Estate Blogs' Hottest Market


    Got a tip for House of the Day? Know of an exceptional or unusual property currently listed for sale? Please email ann.brenoff@huffingtonpost.com with your suggestions and be sure to include links to listing details and photos. (Due to the volume of response, we unfortunately are unable to respond to each submission.)

    See more Houses of the Day and other homes for sale in La Jolla, Calif., at AOL Real Estate.

    More on AOL Real Estate:
    Find out how to
    calculate mortgage payments.
    Find
    homes for sale in your area.
    Find
    foreclosures in your area.
    See celebrity real estate.

     

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    Recent big-ticket home sales have spawned a spurt of optimism in the high-end market. Take the 20,000-square-footer just listed at $44 million in Los Angeles' Bel-Air neighborhood. Previously on the market at $50 million, the estate has all the bells and whistles you'd expect. Maybe the second time's the charm?

    The gated compound occupies 1.5 acres and is accessed via a long private driveway. There is a formal dining room for large-scale entertaining, a top-of-the-line screening room and a resort-style indoor spa and gym. The master suite is 2,000 square feet. The home has a billiard room, a wine cellar, guest apartment and killer pool. The home has views of the Bel-Air Country Club, which may be on someone's wish list -- not mine. On the other hand, there is a subterranean garage for car collectors and a long circular motor court suitable for driving figure 8s in. All in all, a pretty spectacular place.

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    Other recent sales in the neighborhood of this price include Jennifer Aniston's house, which was listed at $42 million and sold in three months. An inspiration for all!

    Jerry Jolton of Coldwell Banker Previews International, Beverly Hills North office, has the listing.

    Also see:
    The Most-Expensive Bank-Owned Home in America

    'House Porn': Real Estate Blogs' Hottest Market


    Got a tip for House of the Day? Know of an exceptional or unusual property currently listed for sale? Please email ann.brenoff@huffingtonpost.com with your suggestions and be sure to include links to listing details and photos. (Due to the volume of response, we unfortunately are unable to respond to each submission.)

    See more Houses of the Day and other homes for sale in Los Angeles' Bel-Air district at AOL Real Estate.

    More on AOL Real Estate:
    Find out how to
    calculate mortgage payments.
    Find
    homes for sale in your area.
    Find
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    See celebrity real estate.

     

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    Richard Gere place

    There are certain sites of hallowed ground when it comes to properties in Los Angeles and this is one of them. The land was once owned by Ronald Reagan (who lived next door and bought this lot for privacy). And later, with a house built on the lot, actor Richard Gere (pictured at left) bought it when it was being leased to singer-songwriter Bob Dylan.

    Today, it's being sold by no one that the tabloids would care about, so we'll just focus on the drop-dead jetliner views of the city and ocean and state-of-the-art everything. Listed at $9,975,000, the contemporary gated estate has three bedroom suites and six bathrooms and is as much a resort as it is a house. There is a two-story entry with gallery and bar. The private master-bedroom suite has its own secluded sundeck. There is a top-of-the-line home theater with powder room.

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    The kind of Hollywood entertainment palace that mere mortals only dream about, it has a resort pool, spa, deck, outdoor living room, kitchen, fire features and pool spa.

    Michael Eisenberg of Keller Williams Realty, Beverly Hills, has the listing.

    Also see:
    Joel Madden's Oh-So-Sedate House for Rent

    'Homer Simpson' on the Move
    Miley Cyrus Spends $3.9 Million on Studio City Home

    See more homes for sale in Hollywood on AOL Real Estate.

    See more celebrity real estate.

    More on AOL Real Estate:
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    Back in January, the Temple of the Muses in Malibu was listed at $2.975 million. It didn't sell, so what would any logical seller in today's market do? Right. Not this guy. The price was raised and is now $3.5 million. "This guy," by the way, is architect Cho Yiu Kwan and his Temple of the Muses is one of Los Angeles' most iconic residential structures.

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    The 8,000-square-foot five-bedroom house on five acres was built in 1993 and has been described as "playful" and "whimsical." Even the MLS listing can't quite nail it but tries with: an "artistic expression and way of life, elements of abstract geometry, modern, post-modern, deconstruction, raw and natural materials, transparent and fortress, light and heavy."

    Perhaps this is one of those times when it's just best to let the pictures tell the story.

    The current listing agent is William Johnson of Realty Solution, who did not return AOL Real Estate's call.

    Got a tip for House of the Day? Know of an exceptional or unusual property currently listed for sale? Please email ann.brenoff@huffingtonpost.com with your suggestions and be sure to include links to listing details and photos. (Due to the volume of response, we unfortunately are unable to respond to each submission.)

    See more Houses of the Day and homes for sale in Malibu, Calif., on AOL Real Estate.

    More on AOL Real Estate:
    Find out how to
    calculate mortgage payments.
    Find
    homes for sale in your area.
    Find
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    P!nk Home

    P!nk homeEvery once in a while, along comes a house that reminds us that celebrities, well, they really do just put their pants on one leg at a time. Take this house owned by singer P!nk in the San Fernando Valley community of Sherman Oaks. It's a nice enough house but sure doesn't scream "celebrity" at you, does it?

    For $4 million, I personally wouldn't mind a little more scream in a house. Or at least an exclamation point like the one she insists we use in her name.

    P!nk, by the way, calls Malibu home these days. She spent $11,850,000 on a home there less than a year ago and is certainly photographed enough around town with her baby to write off the property ownership as a publicity expense.

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    But back to the Valley home: 4,435 square feet on about a half acre lot; infinity pool, grotto cave spa and waterfall; flat grassy yard; gourmet kitchen, wine storage, four bedrooms. Wake me when the house tour is over.

    The three-time Grammy-winning singer is one of the bestselling artists of all time, says Forbes magazine, which in 2010 named her the 27th most powerful celebrity, having earned $44 million between June 2009 and June 2010.

    Lou Woolf of Rodeo Realty has the listing, according to the MLS.

    See rentals and homes for sale in the Sherman Oaks, Calif., area on AOL Real Estate.

    See more celebrity real estate.

    Also see:
    Charlie Chaplin, Robert Downey Both Called This Home

    Joel Madden's Oh-So-Sedate House for Rent

    Helen Mirren's Hollywood Hills House for Lease


    More on AOL Real Estate:
    Find out how to
    calculate mortgage payments.
    Find
    homes for sale in your area.
    Find
    foreclosures in your area.
    Get
    property tax help from our experts.

     

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    House of the Day

    Sometimes, beauty is simply in the eye of the beholder. We leave it to you, readers, to decide whether this Huntington Beach, Calif., place is over-the-top ornate or worth every shiny nickel of the $2.15 million the owner is asking.

    The 411: It's a 4,025-square-foot Mediterranean in a gated community within walking distance of the beach in "Surf City USA." Built in 2001, it has four bedrooms and pretty much every inch has custom wood carvings, custom-made tiles, Venetian plaster, coffered ceilings, stained glass, granite.

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    There are four fireplaces, all with custom-made mantles. It has hand-crafted doors, wrought iron banisters, restaurant-quality kitchen appliances. Every bedroom has custom closets with stained woods.

    The master suite has a steam room, fireplace, balcony -- there are 600 square feet of balconies and patios.

    The home has two wine cellars, including one underground that looks into the glass see-through to the rock pool with a grotto.

    The home is listed with David MacLeod of Century 21 Beachside Realtors.

    Also see:
    Own What the Clintons Rent
    Historic Beacon Hill Beauty


    And more Houses of the Day and other homes for sale in Huntington Beach, Calif., on AOL Real Estate.

    Got a tip for House of the Day? Know of an exceptional or unusual property currently listed for sale? Please email ann.brenoff@huffingtonpost.com with your suggestions and be sure to include links to listing details and photos. (Due to the volume of response, we unfortunately are unable to respond to each submission.)

    More on AOL Real Estate:
    Find out how to
    calculate mortgage payments.
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    homes for sale in your area.
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    Vera Wang, best-known for her wedding gown designs, bought herself a picture-perfect midcentury modern home in Beverly Hills, reports Realtor.com. The Wall Street Journal put the sales price at about $10 million. The home had been listed at $10.9 million.

    The glass-and-steel four-bedroom home sits perched above Coldwater Canyon and has views out to the Pacific. It was built in 1967. For the full story, see Realtor.

    See rentals and homes for sale in Beverly Hills, Calif., on AOL Real Estate.

    See more celebrity real estate.

    Also see:
    Charlie Chaplin, Robert Downey Both Called This Home

    Joel Madden's Oh-So-Sedate House for Rent

    Helen Mirren's Hollywood Hills House for Lease


    More on AOL Real Estate:
    Find out how to
    calculate mortgage payments.
    Find
    homes for sale in your area.
    Find
    foreclosures in your area.
    Get
    property tax help from our experts.

     

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    Many investors have Miami Beach in their sights, so we thought we'd do a little bargain-hunting ourselves. We turned up this uber-sophisticated 20th-floor condo on Miami Beach's Millionaires' Row with a price tag of $1.2 million. At the market's peak, it would have been listed at least 30 percent more.

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    The two-bedroom, two-bath unit was built in 2008, a year that will likely go down in Florida real estate annuals as the year they wished never happened. But as a result of the housing market crash, there's this 1,322-square-foot marbled-floor gem with ocean views, glass sliding interior doors that replace room partitions, and loaded up with designer fixtures and appliances.

    The kitchen has glass counter-tops and top-of-the-line everything. And the master suite has a heated Neorest toilet, spa tub and a rain shower.

    The unit is in Mei, an Asian-influenced building. It's located on 175 feet of beachfront and the building is covered in shimmering glass, surrounded by flowing water.

    Amenities include a lagoon pool, 24-hour concierge, valet parking, tea lounge, Zen library, spa, yoga studio, and a state-of-the-art fitness facility with private massage rooms.

    Judy Zeder at The Zeder Team has the listing.

     

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    At nearly 2,000 square feet, the home gym in this Reno contemporary is bigger than many houses. The indoor/outdoor workout space is in addition to 6,000 square feet of living space, which also features another grown-up play area in the form of an incredibly cool movie screening room.

    Listed at $2.36 million, the house a Brazilian slate and stucco exterior, a custom curved metal roof, and a large entertaining deck off the game room with city views. It has three bedrooms and sits on 2.42 acres. Plus, it's in Reno, which is Las Vegas without the steroids.

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    Rebecca Dickson of Dickson Realty has the listing.

    See more Houses of the Day and other homes for sale in Reno, Nev. on AOL Real Estate.

    Got a tip for House of the Day? Know of an exceptional or unusual property currently listed for sale? Please email ann.brenoff@huffingtonpost.com with your suggestions and be sure to include links to listing details and photos. (Due to the volume of response, we unfortunately are unable to respond to each submission.)

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    Re-purposing has certainly become the buzzword of the day. We've had former grain silos turned into homes, as well as a military base, a post office and even the Watchtower printing press in Brooklyn is now a condo complex. But taking a sidelined nuclear plant and making it into a theme park may be pushing the envelope. Think they sell glow sticks in the gift shop?

    The Wunderland theme park near Kalkar, Germany, has transformed the never-used multi-million-pound reactor into a Disney-like adventure with hotel rooms, bars, restaurants and kiddie rides that include a merry-go-round, log flume and Ferris wheel. There's a wing ride inside the cooling tower and you can even climb up the 130-foot-tall wall on the outside, reports the Daily Mail.

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    The SNR-300 nuclear power plant was originally built in 1972 and was billed to be the world's most technologically advanced nuke plant. Then along came Chernobyl and a lot of public protests and construction stopped dead in its tracks in 1991 -- despite the $4 billion already spent. The complex was bought in 1995 by a Dutch businessman, Hennie van der Most. Now, it's a tourist destination and sees 600,000 visitors a year, according to a spokesperson. The site is radiation-free but you can't minimize the thrill of spinning around the inside with scenes from "The China Syndrome" racing through your mind.

    The movement to find new uses for the no-longer used has it's own core (sorry, can't help our inner punster) following. Try on these converted-use homes for size:

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    CORRECTION: An earlier version of this story said that construction on the SNR-300 power plant stopped in 1981. It ended in 1991.

    Also see:
    Unreal Estate: Model Keeps 300 'Children' In 3-BR Apartment

    Now Cheaper to Buy Than to Rent In Many Cities

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    What was once just a diamond in the rough is now a beautiful gemstone. Carmel's legendary Butterfly House -- one of only five true ocean front properties in Carmel -- has emerged from a major renovation and is back on the market at $19.2 million.

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    The three-bedroom 3,041-square-foot home is anchored into California's rocky Pacific shoreline and is perched cliffside. It provides panoramic views from Point Lobos to Pebble Beach (golfers, perhaps you've heard of it?). The home is within walking distance of the artsy town of Carmel.

    Focal point of the open-floor-plan home is an interior courtyard that houses a swimming pool and allows views of the Pacific through glass walls. The property is a half acre.

    Mike Canning of Carmel Realty Co. has the listing.

    See more Houses of the Day and other homes for sale in Carmel, Calif., on AOL Real Estate.

    Got a tip for House of the Day? Know of an exceptional or unusual property currently listed for sale? Please email ann.brenoff@huffingtonpost.com with your suggestions and be sure to include links to listing details and photos. (Due to the volume of response, we unfortunately are unable to respond to each submission.)


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