Home of Television Personality & Fixture of Houston Political Scene Heads to Luxury Auction®

A longtime fixture of the Houston area’s political and social scenes has hired veteran luxury real estate auction firm Platinum Luxury Auctions for the sale of her multimillion-dollar residence. Nelda Luce Blair, a prominent attorney who is known for her frequent appearances on television shows and her active involvement in politics, is offering the home she owns with husband Jim Blair at a live auction, to be held on April 8, 2017. Located in the Village of Grogan’s Mill in The Woodlands, Texas, the estate was recently listed for sale for $6.1 million, but will now be sold to the highest bidder who meets or exceeds the auction’s reserve bid of only $2 million. Platinum is managing the sale in cooperation with listing agent Nina Marino and the Nina Marino Team of Keller Williams Luxury Homes International in The Woodlands.

The Blairs have lived at the property for nearly fifteen years, and during that time have held countless social and political events there – some hosting hundreds of guests at a time. In fact, the estate has earned the nickname “Blair House” locally, a play on the owners’ last name and the nickname given to the President’s Guest House in Washington, DC.

Mrs. Blair, a former prosecutor who now focuses on legal consulting and transactional work, spent years appearing as an expert guest on television shows hosted on networks such as FOXNews, CNN, MSNBC, CourtTV, and others. She has elected to sell the home at auction after being frustrated with the traditional sales process. The Blairs have already purchased another home in the area.

“It’s our pleasure to work with such a successful, high-energy professional who wants to channel that same type of energy for the sale of her home,” noted Trayor Lesnock, Platinum’s president and founder. “The Blairs understand the need to take meaningful action in order to produce extraordinary results, hence their attraction to ‘take action’ within their marketplace using our luxury auction process.”

The main residence offers more than 12,000 sf of interiors and three living levels, with 5 bedrooms, 5 full and 4 half baths. A guesthouse and pool cabana combine to add another 900 sf of living space, 1 bedroom and 2 full baths. While the residence boasts elegant features such as a palatial foyer with dual staircases and a two-story grand salon, it also offers a very livable floor plan that has suited its owners well for both family functions and for entertaining in grand fashion. Prominent features include a two-story executive study with handsome wood finishes, elevator, gourmet kitchen, fitness center, home theater, and hidden wine room.

Outdoor living areas feature a poolside balcony and loggia, sprawling pool deck and a covered summer kitchen. The estate’s oversized pool was designed by Robert E. Forsythe, and includes a spa and numerous water features. Throughout the five lushly landscaped acres, charming features such as gently winding walking paths, elegant fountains, wrought-iron gazebos, and an elevated trellis collectively create an “enchanted garden” atmosphere of privacy and serenity.

Beginning March 17th, the property will be available for previews between the hours of 12 and 4pm (CST) daily, until the auction. Additional information is available at WoodlandsLuxuryAuction.com, or by calling Platinum’s offices at 800.925.8231.

Platinum Luxury Auctions Extends Perfect Sales Record in Wellington, Florida

WELLINGTON, Fla., Feb. 28, 2017 /PRNewswire/ — Miami-based luxury real estate auction firm Platinum Luxury Auctions has announced the pending sale of an equestrian estate in Wellington, Florida. On February 25th, a live audience of buyers gathered to place their bids for a luxurious horse farm located in the city’s Las Palmas subdivision. While the final sales price will be released upon closing, Platinum reported that the bidding handily exceeded the auction’s $4 million reserve price. Listing brokerage Engel & Völkers of Wellington, represented by agents Carol Sollak and Matt Johnson, worked in tandem with Platinum for the sale.

The transaction marks Platinum’s fourth consecutive auction sale in the world famous horse community, thus extending its flawless performance record there. To date, Platinum has sold and closed three other Wellington properties, including Two Swans Farm ($6.9 million), Wild Orchid Stables ($4.325 million), and a residential home in the area’s Polo Club enclave ($2.365 million).

Although Wellington has become a haven for business moguls and celebrities with equestrian interests, the upper tier of its property market is experiencing a noticeable slowdown. “What is perhaps most significant about this sale is that year-to-date, it’s the only multimillion-dollar horse property in Wellington that is pending,” noted David Enriquez, Platinum’s vice president of operations. “Purchase activity is typically very strong during the first few months of each year due to the Winter Equestrian Festival, but per our research of the Palm Beach County property records and the Multiple Listing Service, only one other Wellington property is currently pending sale above the $4m mark, and it’s a non-farm, single-family home.”

Enriquez added that there are currently 77 listings in Wellington priced at $4 million or more, with approximately 66 of these listings being horse properties or farms. Within the past six months, only five properties have sold in Wellington at more than $4 million, all of which went under contract in 2016. This creates more than 7.5 years of high-priced inventory at the current sales pace.

“When many luxury property markets begin to enter a slow-down, there can be a period of ‘market fog’ wherein nothing is transacting and buyers and sellers don’t really know where the market is,” explained Trayor Lesnock, Platinum’s president and founder. “This can lead to very protracted market adjustments, costing sellers excess time and money. Our luxury auction was able to cut through Wellington’s market stagnation and find the seller a real cash buyer.”

Lesnock added that the property’s seller is, “an incredibly sharp businesswoman” who is selling the custom-built estate in order to spend more time in the northeastern U.S., where much of her business interests are centered. He noted that she was very complimentary of the auction process, in spite of the soft market.

The property’s main residence offers nearly 6,400 sf of living space, with features that include an infinity-edge pool and spa, 1,400-bottle wine cellar, library, media room, office, fitness center, and a yoga studio. Additional amenities include a 3-vehicle garage, guest cottage, 12-stall barn with enclosed lounge and attached loggia, a 215-ft-by-125-ft riding arena, six paddocks, and a dedicated set of grooms’ apartments.

Wellington, Florida has a well-established reputation as one of the world’s most prominent equestrian marketplaces. The area is home to the world’s longest-running horse show and competition – the Winter Equestrian Festival – which draws the Who’s Who of the equestrian world to South Florida each year. The community boasts residents such as Bill Gates, the Jobs family, Tommy Lee Jones, Bruce Springsteen, and billionaire media mogul John Malone.

Additional information on the sale is available at WellingtonLuxuryAuction.com, or by calling Platinum’s offices at 800.262.5132.

The Art of the Auction: Platinum Luxury Auctions Featured in Winter 2016 issue of The Peninsula Magazine

When Rudy and Linda Light decided to sell the dream home they’d spent 20 years perfecting, they called Chris Iverson, a top producing agent with Dreyfus Sotheby’s International Realty in Menlo Park, California. But the ranch–a complicated real estate asset with many of its 1,745 acres preserved for conservation under California’s Williamson Act–didn’t attract the attention of the right buyer, despite Iverson’s robust marketing program.

The lovingly built and maintained Queen Anne Victorian main residence had fewer showings than the owners or Iverson anticipated, and no viable purchase offers were received. Realizing the Property’s unique situation, the listing agent began researching auction firms and presented several companies to the sellers, who ultimately selected Platinum.

Subtitled “Successfully Selling a Challenging Property,” the article details the “full court press on marketing” Platinum conducted over the 6-week international auction-marketing campaign. Featuring nearly 40,000 website visits, 74 bona fide inquiries, and 2 written offers prior to auction, the campaign concluded with five registered bidders competing in real-time to produce a sale price of $6.215 Million, shattering the $3 Million reserve. The sale price equated to 114% of the Property’s most recently appraised value.

Read the full story here: https://issuu.com/dreyfussir/docs/2016-04

Houston Business Journal Covers Platinum Luxury Auctions in The Woodlands

After establishing the resale pricing record for The Woodlands in 2016 with a $7.1 million sale, luxury real estate auction firm Platinum Luxury Auctions has returned to the community with three more “modest” luxury home offerings. On February 4, 2017, the Miami-based firm will offer a brand new estate located in the Carlton Woods Creekside community at a live, on-site auction. Two more elegant properties in the same community will be offered via “High Bidder’s Choice” on February 24. Although recently listed for nearly $2 million, each property will now be sold to the highest bidder who meets or exceeds the auction’s reserve price of only $1 million. Platinum is managing the auction sales of all three properties in cooperation with listing agent Rodrigo Munguia of Houston’s D&R Consulting.

The Houston Business Journal, which previously featured Platinum Luxury Auctions in a cover story detailing the popularity of auctions as a means to sell Houston’s finest homes, has released two new stories in the past two days. Both feature Platinum’s auction efforts prominently, and in one case, exclusively. Platinum acts on behalf of wealthy individuals who want to sell their homes, but don’t have to: they want the benefits of a date certain sale and understand that auctions provide an excellent method to combat the traditional pitfalls of real estate sales by creating urgency in the right audience.

In Houston alone, a home listed at $1 million or more spends almost a month longer on the market than a typical home. Says President Trayor Lesnock, “[Sellers are] looking to the auction as an expeditious and effective way to sell their home. Residential luxury real estate is a competitive and cluttered market where it’s hard for properties to stand out. The auction process cuts through all of that like a hot knife through butter.”

The full articles on Platinum’s new auctions and its 2016 record breaking sale can be found here and here.

 

 

Platinum Luxury Auctions Schedules Wellington Equestrian Estate for Feb Sale

Miami-based luxury real estate auction firm Platinum Luxury Auctions will look to extend its flawless sales record in Wellington, Florida with the offering of a unique, 15-acre equestrian estate this winter. To date, Platinum has closed all of its Wellington auction sales, including the sale of Two Swans Farm ($6.9 million), Wild Orchid Stables ($4.325 million), and a residential home in the area’s Polo Club enclave ($2.365 million).

On February 25th, 2017 a luxurious horse property located in the private and gated community of Las Palmas will be sold at a live auction, to the highest bidder who meets or exceeds the auction’s reserve bid of $4 million. The property was recently asking $11 million prior to the auction announcement. Listing agent Matthew Johnson with Engel & Völkers of Wellington is working in tandem with Platinum for the transaction.

More specifically, the 10-acre portion of the property – which contains all of its structures – will be offered with the $4 million reserve. An additional, 5-acre parcel is available separately, with the price being negotiable between buyer and seller. The undeveloped, 5-acre parcel is contiguous with 10-acre parcel, and is currently used only for additional grazing or riding space.

“This property should readily satisfy those looking for both a luxurious residence and a working horse farm, and those two items can be difficult to find as one unit of sale in Wellington,” stated Trayor Lesnock, Platinum’s president and founder.

The property’s main residence offers nearly 6,400 sf of living space, with 4 bedrooms and 4 full baths. Features include an infinity-edge pool and spa, 1,400-bottle wine cellar, library, media room, office, fitness center, and a “tower” on the second level that is currently outfitted as a yoga studio. There are also two generators, in addition to “Smart Home” technology that is controllable via mobile devices.

Additional structures include a 3-vehicle garage (with A/C), guest cottage, 12-stall barn with enclosed lounge and attached loggia offering views of the riding arena and fields, a dedicated set of grooms’ apartments with an additional garage for larger equipment, a 215-ft-by-125-ft riding arena, and 6 paddocks.

The property is also quite “green:” it draws additional water from both a well and from rain-catchers located in the paddocks, and it also collects energy from solar panels – which can in fact create an energy surplus that can be sold back to Florida Power & Light.

Wellington, Florida has a well-established reputation as one of the world’s most prominent equestrian marketplaces. The area is home to the world’s longest-running horse show and competition – the Winter Equestrian Festival. The event draws the Who’s Who of the equestrian world to South Florida each year, many of whom then lease or purchase property in Wellington. The community boasts residents such as Bill GatesTommy Lee JonesBruce Springsteen, and billionaire media mogul John Malone.

The property is available for previews between the hours of 12 and 4pm (EST) every Friday through Sunday, until the auction. Additional information is available at WellingtonLuxuryAuction.com, or by calling Platinum’s offices at 800.743.1368.

Platinum Luxury Auctions Returns to The Woodlands With February Offering

After establishing the resale pricing record for The Woodlands in 2016 with the $7.1 million sale of a Carlton Woods estate, luxury real estate auction firm Platinum Luxury Auctions has returned to the community with what may be considered a more “modest” luxury home offering. On February 4, 2017, the Miami-based firm will offer a brand new estate located in the Carlton Woods Creekside community at a live, on-site auction. Although recently listed for $1.6 million, the property will now be sold to the highest bidder who meets or exceeds the auction’s reserve price of $1 million. Platinum is managing the auction sale in cooperation with the property’s listing agent, Rodrigo Munguia of D&R Consulting.

“This property occupies a sweet spot in the current marketplace,” stated David Ashcroft, Platinum’s director of business development. “While many of the luxury property markets across the U.S. have experienced softening in the uppermost tiers of pricing, properties in the $1 million to $2.5 million range have performed rather well. This seems to be especially true for newer homes.”

The Creekside estate fits well within Mr. Ashcroft’s parameters, as it combines modest luxury home pricing with brand new construction. It was completed in the fourth quarter of 2016, and is awaiting its first owner.

The two-story home offers approximately 4,907 interior square feet of living space and a total footprint of nearly 6,800 square feet when including outdoor living areas and a 3-car garage. With 5 bedrooms, 5 full and 2 half baths, there is ample room for family and friends. The foyer and great room feature 24-foot ceilings, creating a bright, welcoming space.

Other property features include a gourmet kitchen with oversized center island, formal dining, a “bonus room” suitable for a home theater, fitness center or office, and a lovely outdoor courtyard featuring a summer kitchen and fireplace. The courtyard can also accommodate a pool, should the new owner wish to install one.

Sometimes referred to as the “Beverly Hills of Texas,” Carlton Woods is the premier gated community within The Woodlands, a 44-square-mile, master-planned development located just north of Houston. The amenity-rich area is known for its neatly manicured communities, golf courses and clubs, and its collection of impressive addresses.

Beginning January 11th, the property will be available for previews between the hours of 12 and 4pm (CST) daily, until the auction. Additional information is available at JohnathanCtLuxuryAuction.com, or by calling Platinum’s offices at 800.916.5676.

Buyers Line Up to Purchase Laguna Beach Mansion Sold by Platinum Luxury Auctions

An impressive crowd of ten bidders gathered in the living room of a hilltop estate in Laguna Beach on November 18, 2016, in order to participate in a live auction for the chance to become the multimillion-dollar property’s new owner. Platinum Luxury Auctions, a real estate auction firm specializing in the sale of luxurious properties, was hired by the homeowner to conduct the auction in cooperation with broker John Stanaland of HÔM Sotheby’s International Realty, the listing agency of record.

The price paid by the highest bidder has not yet been revealed, but a Platinum spokesperson noted the winning bid “almost doubled” the auction’s $2 million reserve price.

Platinum’s auction-marketing campaign garnered significant interest from buyers in the U.S. and abroad, with 146 inquiries, 83 on-site property previews and more than 39,000 visits to the property’s webpage during a 5-week period. Coverage of the ocean-view home appeared in the Wall Street JournalThe New York TimesLos Angeles Times and in television commercials on major news networks.

“To have ten bidders for the auction of a property that sat on the market for so many years – especially at the height of a significant political shakeup in the country – is a tremendous feat,” said Kevin Vaughan, Platinum’s project manager for the transaction. “In addition, I believe only one bidder was an investor, meaning the audience was nearly entirely comprised of end-users. It’s certainly a testament to the quality of Platinum’s buyer database and the effectiveness of its luxury auction platform.”

Prior to the auction, the Orange County residence spent more than 6 years on the market, starting at an asking price of $7 million, which was gradually reduced to approximately $4.9 million. Custom built in 1996 and carved into the hillside, the tri-level home features postcard views of the Pacific Ocean. In total, the estate offers 7,200 sq. ft. of living space, seven bedrooms and five baths. Highlights include a gourmet kitchen, home theater, saltwater fish tank, fitness room with sauna and an elevator servicing all three floors.

“With one exception in 2013, we have sold every property we have offered for luxury auction in California,” stated Trayor Lesnock, Platinum’s founder and president. “It’s certainly a fertile market for our platform, and we are expanding our business efforts there going forward.”

For more information on this sale or other upcoming luxury auctions, please contact Platinum Luxury Auctions at 800.262.5132 or visit PlatinumLuxuryAuctions.com.

Platinum Luxury Auctions Succeeds with Sale of Park City Area Home Sites

The upscale Wolf Creek Ranch community in Heber City, Utah has enjoyed a string of new sales as a result of the planned September auction of up to four buildable lots located within the subdivision, according to Platinum Luxury Auctions, the firm that managed the transactions. Platinum is the Miami-based real estate auction firm responsible for developing the luxury auction® model for the non-distressed auction sale of multimillion-dollar properties on behalf of wealthy owners. The auction house worked in cooperation with listing brokerage Summit Sotheby’s International Realty, who served as the broker of record for the sales.

In August, Platinum and Summit announced the planned auction of up to four buildable lots within the development, which is located approximately 15 miles south of Park City. One lot was to be sold to the highest bidder without reserve, while the remaining three lots were offered subject to the seller’s acceptance, meaning that unlike the auction of the first lot, the highest bids could be accepted, countered or rejected.

However, direct negotiations began for one of the properties immediately prior to the planned auction date of September 30 – which quickly led to the negotiation of two more of the lots – in lieu of a live auction sale. “There’s a saying that, ‘Sometimes the best auction is the one that doesn’t happen,’ meaning that the auction event itself was not needed because the mere threat of the auction was enough to produce a sale,” stated David Ashcroft, Platinum’s director of business development. “That is essentially what occurred here, and it resulted in three of the four lots being sold to the seller’s satisfaction, with the sale of the final lot still in negotiations with a small handful of buyers.”

Individual lots within Wolf Creek are large, starting at about 160-acres in size. While some of these parcels previously achieved prices around the $1 million mark, sales within the development cooled significantly in recent years, with pricing adjusting downwards. Final figures for the three lot sales have not yet been released, but Mr. Ashcroft reported that each of the sales, “exceeded the price threshold established by the seller at the outset of the auction process.”

Occupying 13,200 private acres and with only 80 home sites, Wolf Creek Ranch offers its residents a sense of peace and privacy amidst Utah’s beautiful landscape. Community amenities include a well-appointed owners’ lodge, an equestrian center, and even an on-site trout-fishing guide.

Those looking for more information on these sales – or inquiring about the status of the remaining auction parcel – may contact Platinum at 800.262.5132 or visit UtahLuxuryAuction.com.

Colorado’s Historic Redstone Castle Sold by Platinum Luxury Auctions

Redstone, Colorado’s historic Redstone Castle has been successfully sold following a live auction held at the property site on October 7, 2016, according to Platinum Luxury Auctions, the auction house that managed the transaction. The sale was held in cooperation with Aspen-based brokerage Aspen-Snowmass Sotheby’s International Realty, represented by listing agents and top producers Ted Borchelt and Jana Dillard.

Although the price of the sale has not yet been released, representatives for Platinum stated that the high bidder satisfied all of the terms of the auction sale, and that the transaction should close shortly. The auction required that a reserve bid of $2 million be met in order for the property to be sold. The purchaser is also required to put forth an additional 10% in commissions and other transaction fees to consummate the sale.

“We have been quite impressed with PLA since day one!” exclaimed Borchelt, adding that he and the property seller interviewed several luxury real estate auction firms before selecting Platinum. “I cannot imagine the competition doing a better job.”

“We were incredibly pleased with the makeup of inquirers for this auction, which included two billionaires and a sizable pool of wealthy individuals from both U.S. and foreign markets. One would be hard-pressed to think any stone was left unturned in the marketing outreach,” stated Aaron Carmody, Platinum’s project manager for the sale. “Selling an historic property is never an easy feat, especially when that property is a 24,000 square foot castle that is largely original per its 1902 build date.”

To be sure, the property enjoyed a tremendous amount of exposure in the media, such as a televised feature during FoxNews Denver’s primetime evening segment, in addition to articles in Bloomberg, The Wall Street Journal and a series of local and regional publications based in and around Colorado.

A spokesperson for the Aspen-based company that owned and sold the property expressed satisfaction with the sale, stating via email that Platinum and Sotheby’s, “…put forth the best effort possible,” and that the company, “truly appreciated working with” the parties throughout the process.

While the company’s ownership originally had grand plans for the estate, those plans were shelved and the company instead decided to open the property for public tours, relying on the knowledge and experience of a caretaker who has lived at the Castle for nearly twenty years. The tours have maintained public interest in the Castle, continuing its long-held role as centerpiece of the small mountain hamlet of Redstone, located about 30 minutes outside of Aspen, CO.

Built in 1902 for John Cleveland Osgood, a powerful coal and steel industrialist who became the sixth wealthiest person in the country by 1900, the castle was named for the town of Redstone, Colorado, which was in fact founded by Osgood. Also known as “Cleveholm Manor” and “Osgood Castle,” the estate served as Osgood’s personal residence, and as such played host to members of the era’s high society, including American icons such as John D. Rockefeller, J. Pierpont Morgan and Teddy Roosevelt.

The buyer of the property is reported to be private businessman with other commercial property holdings in Colorado’s Roaring Fork Valley region. His future plans for the Castle are yet to be revealed. Additional information on the sale can be found at COLuxuryAuction.com or by contacting a Platinum associate at 800.262.5132.

Platinum Luxury Auctions’ Sale of California Ranch Closes at 114% of Appraisal

After previously reporting the East Ranch estate in California’s Redwood Valley was pending sale following a live auction held on the property site on September 17, 2016, Miami-based auction house Platinum Luxury Auctions has announced that the transaction has closed at a price of $6.215 million. The sale price is equal to 114% of the property’s most recently appraised value, according to an appraisal report furnished by the ranch’s owners. Platinum managed the sale in cooperation with listing agent Chris Iverson of Menlo Park real estate brokerage Dreyfus Sotheby’s International Realty.

“This closing marks our fourth consecutive auction sale in the state of California,” stated Trayor Lesnock, Platinum’s president and founder. “Ironically, we have yet to really focus our business development efforts there, but I expect that to change.” Platinum is also handling the upcoming auction of an ocean view mansion in Laguna Beach, CA, which is scheduled for sale on November 18.

With the plus-$6-million sale price, the auction’s reserve price of $3 million – that is, the lowest price for which the seller was obligated to sell the property – was more than doubled. “Many firms shy away from auctions with reserves, but this is an excellent case study for the results that are produced by a very effective reserve price, especially as opposed to the ‘bait-and-switch’ auction models we unfortunately see many firms using in today’s marketplace,” stated David Ashcroft, Platinum’s director of business development and a spokesman for the sale.

Mr. Ashcroft elaborated that many property auctions in today’s market are promoted as being “absolute” or “without reserve,” but instead of allowing buyers to truly name their price at a live bidding event – the hallmark of an auction with no reserve price – buyers for these auctions are aggressively pursued for bids and offers prior to the live auction sale. This turn of events sours many buyers on the experience, in some cases causing them to abandon their interest in the given property entirely. Further, many auctions are cancelled or withdrawn if these advanced bids or offers are not attractive enough to the seller. “It’s certainly a gray area,” Ashcroft added, “The irony is that the model is promoted as being better for the seller when in fact the opposite is true, as we see time and again.”

Conversely, listing agent Chris Iverson noted that he and his clients were drawn to the straightforward transparency and methodical management of Platinum’s auction process. “Platinum’s program was exceptionally well-managed from start to finish,” said Iverson. “In fact, I sincerely believe that Platinum’s management of the actual, day-of-auction bidding process added another $500,000 to $1 million to the ultimate sales price.”

More information on the sale is available at CaliforniaLuxuryAuction.com, or by contacting Platinum’s corporate offices at 800.262.5132.