Wednesday, February 25, 2015

The 7 man made Wonders of the World - the greatest real estate ever built!

Where can we find the greatest real estate ever built? That’s easy; it’s the 7 Man-Made Wonders of the World, of course. But when we talk about the Wonders of the World it tends to get confusing, because there are many lists, including the 7 Ancient Wonders of the World, the 7 Natural Wonders of the World, and even New 7 Wonders of the World. But when it comes to the 7 most awe inspiring man-made architectural marvels in world, we’ve got them covered here. So whether you have one or all of them on your bucket list, you’re a history buff, or you just appreciate the most amazing real estate ever built, we hope you enjoy this journey across the world! 

Chichen Itza
Yukatan, Mexico
In the southeastern region of Yukatan in Mexico lies Chichen Itza, the cornerstone of the great Mayan civilization and now one of the most visited sites in the world. The mighty Mayan empire ruled between 600-900 AD and displayed incredible advanced techniques in science, math, astrology, and building, as evidenced by Chichen Itza with its paved roads, dozens of stone buildings, and diverse architectural styles spanning 5 square kilometers.

Christ the Redeemer
Rio De Janiero Brazil
Watching over South America’s beach-lined city of Samba and soccer sits the iconic Christ the Redeemer statue, the subject of some of the most breathtaking photographic images ever taken. This statue of Christ stands high up on top of Mount Corcovado in the Tijuca Forest National Park in Brazil, the largest national park in the center of a city in the world. Built between 1922 and 1931 with 635 tons of materials, including an outer fa├žade in soapstone, this 130 foot high statue is the largest in the word and offers breathtaking views of Rio, Copacabana and Ipanema beaches, and even the famous soccer stadium where Pele played, Mericana.

The Colosseum
Rome, Italy
The Colosseum is a testament to the mighty Roman Empire, the ruins of an open-air amphitheater that hosted up to 80,000 spectators watching gladiators fight to the death during its high point. It’s the largest the Romans ever built, beginning in 72 AD and completed in 80 AD. In addition to gladiatorial fights, the Colosseum thrilled the citizens of Rome with grand events such as mock sea battles, animal hunts, executions, re-enactments of famous battles and drama's based on classical mythology. These days, crowds of tourists wait in long lines and fight to get in to glimpse the great architectural spectacle.

The Great Wall of China
Perhaps the most impressive feat of building based on sheer scale, the Great Wall of China extends 3,460 kilometers – with an additional 2,860 of branches – across the northern frontier of China. It was originally built around 2,500 years ago by two separate Dynasties as a defensive abutment against invaders. Although it’s crumbling and damaged in some parts the wall is still remarkably intact, standing from 30-100 feet wide and anywhere from 10 to 80 feet tall. It crosses desserts, forests, and mountain ranges and is the only man made structure visible from outer space.

Machu Picchu
Nestled in the rugged mountain ranges of the Urubamba Valley in the Andes Mountains in Peru, just 70km north of the charming and festive high-elevation town of Cusco, Machu Picchu is the stronghold that was the heart of the ancient Inca civilization. It sits on a narrow and sheer plateau over 8,000 feet above sea level. It’s widely believed that the Inca Empire built Machu Picchu around the 15th century, including advanced irrigations and water catching mechanisms, precise stonework, and scores of buildings. The Inca civilization mysteriously disappeared, whether from famine, war, or disease it’s not known, but the jungle swallowed up the city for centuries. It was rediscovered in 1911 by an Austrian explorer, Hiram Bingham, and so is called “The Lost City.” If a tourist wants to earn the once-in-a-lifetime views from Machu Picchu, they can hike up the unforgiving Inca Trail from Cusco for a 4-day journey to the summit.

Petra is entire ancient city literally carved into the red sandstone mountains of Hor in the arid desert of Jordan. The city was one of the finest in the world as far back as 106 AD, where it served as a stopping point for traders and spice merchants coming and going throughout the Middle East and capital of the Nabataean empire. Due to it’s red hue and ancient origins, Petra is called ''A rose red city half as old as time.” But the thriving civilization was wiped out of existence by floods and buried by sandstorms, and replaced by maritime trading routes. So Petra sat beneath the earth for centuries and lost to the world, only a very small amount of buildings used as shelter by the nomadic Bedouin tribes. But in 1812 a Swiss explorer, Johann Ludwig Burckhardt, stumbled upon Petra during an archeological dig, one of the greatest finds in history.  Even two hundred years later Petra is still less than half excavated, with stunning 150 foot high ornate buildings like the Treasury –featured in the Indian Jones movie – one of the most stunning spectacles in the world.

Taj Mahal
Agra, India
Called “The greatest love story ever built,” the Taj Mahal was built as a mausoleum by the emperor Shah Jahan to his beautiful wife Mumtaz Mahal, who died during childbirth. Construction started in 1632 as the heartbroken Emperor wanted to build a structure as a tribute to the beauty of his departed bride. It took 20,000 laborers, artisans, and engineers from India, Persia, and Rajasthan and other countries in the region. The result, completed in 1653, is the world’s most stunning structure, with 28 kinds of precious and semi-precious stones used to bejewel the carved marble edifice. Unfortunately the story has a tragic ending; the Emperor Mumtza Mahal wanted to build an equally impressive mausoleum, all in black to match the white Taj Mahal, across the river and connected by a bridge. But his son, who feared his love-struck father was going to spend his whole family fortune on such frivolities, had him imprisoned and assumed power. Mumtaz Mahal spent the rest of his days locked in a cell in a nearby tower, though he did have a view of the Taj Mahal, his late wife’s burial place, to keep him company.

Honorable mention and the 8th Wonder of the World:

The Great Pyramid of Egypt
Gza, Cairo, Egypt 

Largely assumed to be a Wonder of the World, the pyramids outside Cairo go back thousands of years and are a marvel of architecture, consisting of 2,300,000 blocks of solid stone weighing anywhere from 2-30 tons all the way up to 70 tons! The Pyramids didn't make the list of 7 man made Wonders of the World because it was already included on the list of 7 Natural Wonders of the World, so it's widely include with an honorable mention on this list.


Look for our upcoming blog where we name our own 7 Architectural Wonders of the World in honor of the real estate profession!

Tuesday, February 24, 2015

15 Private islands for sale all around the world.

Isla de sa Ferradura

This idyllic island sits in the Bay of San Miguel off the North coast of Ibiza, Spain. Of course Ibiza is the international party and vacation hotspot where the Who’s Who can soak up sun 300 days a year and cool off in the sparking blue Mediterranean sea The 14-acre island is fully developed with a resort, hacienda, kitchen, pool, bar and wine cellar. The price tag to buy Isla de sa Ferradura is only $39,700,000, but you can also rent out the island for about $230,000 a week.

Nananu Island
This island in the south Pacific island nation of Fiji includes 242 hectares of pristine and undeveloped land. But at night you can relax in comfort in the four-bedroom main house. Just in case you’re planning to have lots of friends on your island, there are also two guest cottages and three homes for staff. The price is not publically listed.

Tetiaroa Island
French Polynesia
Tetiaroa Island sits 40 miles north of Tahiti, and is actually an atoll comprised of 12 small islands. The island is famous for being home of the late iconic actor, Marlon Brando, and currently his son, Teihotu, is the island’s only resident. The Brandos must like their privacy because they are not accommodations for guests on the island, although the Brando Hotel is expected to be completed soon. The price is not publically listed.

Necker Island
British Virgin Islands
Billionaire and Virgin Records founder Richard Branson purchased Necker Island in the late 1970s and built an incredible resort on it. He doesn't spend much time there so vacationers can rent the resort for $329,000 per week, or $47,000 per day. The sales price is not publically listed.

Turtle Island,
On the other side of the world, sitting nearly alone in the southern hemisphere of the Pacific is the huge island nation of Australia. Off its Queensland coast sits Turtle Island, with a spacious home with views of the Great Barrier Reef. The asking price to buy this island is $640,000,000

Ariari Island
The country of the Philippines is actually made up of over 7,000 islands, and Ariari is one of the nicest. In the Palawan archipelago with some of the best beaches in the world, it’s still only 60 minutes form the main city of Manila. The price tag is $7,050,000 million.

Children’s Bay Cay
You’ll want for nothing if you live on Children’s Bay Cay, an island with 167-acres of tranquil coconut trees, lush jungle, and seven beaches. The island comes with three homes and private marina to dock your boats and is going for a cool $29,000,000.

Buck Island, 
British Virgin Islands
This pristine island in the B.V.I.’s includes rugged, cliff-lined coasts that lead down to white sand beaches, and enough accommodations for twenty people. The price is not publically listed.

James Island
British Columbia, Canada
Not all island real estate is tropical, as we move north of James Island in Canada. It’s the second biggest privately owned island in the Gulf Islands archipelago and spans 780 acres. A large luxury retreat, 18-hole golf course, and airstrip have been built on that land. It’s asking price is $72,400,000.

John Island, 
Rhode Island, USA
There are even some islands for sale in the United Sates, like John Island on the eastern seaboard. It’s perfect for fisherman and nature lovers, as the main building is a charming two-bedroom cottage with 360-degree views from the top floor. The asking price is a surprisingly modest $1,200,000.

Cabbage Cay
We got back to the Bahamas for this 35-acre private island in the famous Bonefish flats, within the inner bay of North Eleuthera in the Bahamas. It includes three white sand beaches, plenty of undisturbed jungle, and protected bay to dock your boat, but no resort has been built as of yet. It’s going for $2,500,000.

Cerralvo Island
Gulf of California, Mexico
Sitting in Cerralvo Channel in the Sea of Cortez off the coast of Baja Mexico, this undeveloped, naturally beautiful island is a fisherman or nature lover’s haven. But it’s not cheap at a $35,000,000 asking price.

Singer Castle
Dark Island,
Nestled in the St. Lawrence River between Ontario and New York, Dark Island is truly stunning. It boasts a century old castle on the island that was originally built in 1905 as a hunting lodge for Fredrick Bourne, who was then the president of the Singer Sewing Machine Company. The price is not publically listed.

Singer Castle
Dark Island,
Nestled in the St. Lawrence River between Ontario and New York, Dark Island is truly stunning. It boasts a century old castle on the island that was originally built in 1905 as a hunting lodge for Fredrick Bourne, who was then the president of the Singer Sewing Machine Company. The price is not publically listed.