25 November 2010

Happy Thanksgiving!

Pepsie ad from the 1950s, source unknown.

Tune in next week: "Lies have short Legs".

05 November 2010

Modern Homes in Germany

End of September and into October, I was working in Germany,  in Munich as well as in Düsseldorf, which is located on the banks of the Rhine river.

Perhaps you're like me: I can't drive or walk around without looking at the architecture that surrounds me. And since it's too early anyway for October market statistics, a few houses that caught my eye:

In Düsseldorf-Kaiserswerth, overlooking the Rhine, a lovingly renovated home from the early '50s. Note flat tile roof, blacked-out window frames and balanced proportions.
On the banks of the Rhine at above location, floodplain and a sliver of water on the left.

New entrance of above house, integrated into existing landscaping.
Same street: Single family home, with ramp to underground garage on right.
Note overall balance, with carefully weighted fields of glass, white stucco and sandstone. No garage doors to disturb the front elevation.
Low-key midcentury home in Düsseldorf-Oberkassel, also on the Rhine. Front is completely clad in white marble, typical for '70s building in the area.
New construction on a hillside in Starnberg, outside Munich. Note drystacked wall - stones are set by master craftsmen as delivered, without additional cutting on site.
Another new construction, overlooking Lake Starnberg. Lot value alone is probably in excess of $2.5M.
View from the terrace, overlooking the lake. Winter view will only improve with less foliage. Photos of the finished home to come after completion.

If you wonder about lack of property details: no, I wasn't too lazy to research. Germans are very private people, and information that is readily available in the US – property sales records, lot sizes, owner names etc. - is all strictly guarded in Germany, protected by privacy laws. Facebook it ain't. From a US Realtor's perspective, it seems odd, but privacy does have advantages, doesn't it?