Windermere's W Collection: A High Point Market

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This $10 million 1933 home was commissioned by nautical author James A. Gibbs, who later moved to an Oregon Coast lighthouse; meticulously restored, it is a typically lavish luxury property from Windermere’s W Collection

It’s no secret that Seattle home prices are rising dramatically. These days, even a relatively modest Seattle Craftsman can command a price topping $1 million. But the growth of the city—particularly in the tech sector—soaring incomes among some locals and the influence of international buyers have combined to increase demand in the luxury market. 

It’s this market that was the impetus behind the recent launch of Windermere Real Estate’s new ultra-luxury arm, the W Collection. Spearheaded by Leigh Canlis—who brings a familiarity with the luxury market from previous roles with Canlis Glass and JPMorgan Chase—the W Collection is a new real estate division catering to clients looking for homes in the $3 million-plus range. "Windermere is one of those companies that has been around for years," says Canlis. "But there is a new market and we needed to create an upper tier division to cater to the uber luxury clientele. I was brought in because I know this market so well and to make the W Collection stand out.” 

A high price tag isn’t the only criterion for homes featured in the W Collection. “There needs to be some pizzazz, a wow factor,” says president John “OB” Jacobi, son of John Jacobi, who founded the company in 1972. 


Images by: Matt Eddington
Above: Traditional furnishings complement the home’s architecture. Below: The adjoining lot was purchased to accommodate a pool and cabana

QUEEN ANNE MANSION

PRICE: $10,450,000 

SQUARE FOOTAGE: 6,820; 3 bedrooms, 3.75 baths 

LOT SIZE: 0.43 acre 

COMMUNITY: Queen Anne 

PROPERTY TAXES: $86,545 (2015) 

YEAR BUILT: 1933 

LISTED: April 2016 

KEY DETAILS: Secluded in-city compound with views of the Seattle skyline and Elliott Bay; an elevated pool plus hot tub with an adjoining 530-square foot-cabana, outdoor kitchen space and a fire-lit rooftop patio seating area. The home was commissioned in 1928 by James A. Gibbs, city planner, local historian, politician and founding member of the Puget Sound Maritime Historical Society, and completed in 1933. 

 

Canlis notes that W Collection clients are likely to be much more understated than the properties they’re shopping for. “For the most part, Seattle millionaires look like everyone else up here. They want to stand out for their accomplishments rather than their affluence,” Canlis says. “That’s what is different about Seattle. You never know who you’re talking to here, and that’s fun.” 

Jacobi predicts a bright future for the luxury home market. “Our local economy is super strong, tech jobs are creating some pretty wealthy people pretty quickly, so price points are going to continue to grow. Seattle [may] have this issue forever.”  


Images by: Nolan Green
This $8 million property’s pool, hot tub and multiple patio spaces offer no shortage of ways to enjoy the backyard of this north-end Mercer Island home

MERCER ISLAND MANSION

Above: 22-foot ceilings top off floor-to-ceiling windows in the living room with views of Lake Washington. Below: The home’s luxe features include a wine cellar, dog run and sauna

PRICE: $8,480,000 

SQUARE FOOTAGE: 8,579; 4 bedrooms, 4 baths 

LOT SIZE: 0.44 acre 

COMMUNITY: Mercer Island

YEAR BUILT: 1992  

LISTED: June 2016 

KEY DETAILS: 65 feet of lakeside waterfront, a wine cellar, pool and hot tub combo, sauna, three fireplaces, a dog run, and views of Lake Washington and West Bellevue; dock space for a yacht; 22-foot ceilings in the living room; three kitchens (the main kitchen, full kitchen in basement and a butler’s kitchen); custom-stained white oak floors cover the first floor, and the master suite’s walk-in closet includes two washer-dryer sets (one for him and one for her), with drying closet.

Mazama Mountain Cabin Makes a Cozy, Stylish Retreat: A Home Tour

Mazama Mountain Cabin Makes a Cozy, Stylish Retreat: A Home Tour

In Washington’s North Cascades, a wood-paneled vacation home provides access to views and outdoor activities
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This article originally appeared on Houzz.com.

This house nestled in the North Cascades mountains in Mazama, Washington, reflects the rugged landscape around it while also possessing a modern, airy and stylish vibe. The remote vacation house is owned by a Seattle couple who were instinctively drawn to the beautiful setting of pine forests, crystal clear rivers and diverse topography, and where they spend their free time skiing, rock climbing and hiking. 

Big Rock House
Photo by Johnston Architects - Search rustic patio pictures

Walkways lined with concrete and bluestone surround the back deck. An outdoor fire pit and teak chairs from a friend create a timeless setting for entertaining.
 
Metal fire pit: custom made by Alpine Welding and Equipment
 

Houzz at a Glance
Who lives here: A couple who live full time in Seattle and work for Boeing
Location: Mazama, Washington
Size: 1,370 square feet (127 square meters); two bedrooms, two bathrooms

After finding a 1-acre plot with killer views, the couple collaborated with Mary Johnston of Johnston Architects to build a second home that would be cozy and easy to maintain. “All of the finishes used add to the rich simplicity of the home,” Johnston says. Although the site was challenging, Johnston and her team were able to incorporate the location’s spectacular views into the planning of the 1,370-square-foot residence, which has an open-plan living area, two bedrooms and ski-in, ski-out access.

Big Rock House
 
 

The unpretentiousness of the foursquare house begins with its exterior. The cedar siding and bluestone and concrete walkways also are durable and low-maintenance materials. Since most of their time is spent engaging in the outdoors, the couple felt it was important to have designated areas for storing sporting equipment. A long bench provides a spot for removing skis and boots. A contemporary glass door contrasts nicely with the adjacent metal grating, which offers a surface on which to lean skis and bikes while providing some lightness and texture.

Big Rock House

The clean look and rustic design continue past the front door and concrete floors of the entry, providing an unobstructed view to the back of the house. Pine-paneled ceilings flow throughout the house. At the far end of the hall, a custom sliding barn door leads to a gear room where the couple store sporting equipment and can sharpen their skis. The other oversized doors lead to a closet.

Paint throughout: Camouflage, Benjamin Moore

The warm wood tones are punctuated by blackened-steel pendants on the entry hallway ceiling.

Pendants: Caravaggio

Big Rock House
 

A dining room table and chairs sit between the kitchen and great room. The shelving was custom made to display accessories such as teapots, photographs and books. The couple wanted to have some fun with their other lighting choices, so instead of selecting traditional recessed lighting, they opted for black outdoor sconces that are typically used for signage lighting.

Lighting: B-K Lighting; dining room table and chairs: Room & Board

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In the sitting area of the great room, a sliding barn door hides a flat-screen TV and video equipment. A built-in bench runs the width of the room, inviting guests to curl up with a book or take in the fabulous mountain views. It is also long and deep enough to convert into a bed for two children.

Bench cushion and pillows: custom made by Manning & Son Upholstery, Seattle

Related: Cleaning Tips for Leather Furniture 

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Brown leather chairs and a sofa provide ample seating for gazing at the landscape through rows of expansive windows. A wood-burning stove brings a collected feel to the home and keeps it cozy and warm when temperatures plunge. “The homeowners spend very little time inside, but they wanted to make sure that it was very comfortable when they did,” Johnston says.

Sofa, chairs and tables: Room & Board; stove: Rais

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Sliding glass doors open the great room to the back deck.

Deck: ipe wood

Related: Why You Should Install a Sliding Barn Door in Your Home 

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The couple kept the master bedroom clean and sparsely decorated with only a bed and two end tables. Adding a bit of drama, the fir wood paneling was continued from the wall onto the ceiling.

Bed and end tables: Room & Board

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Mesh fencing on the master bedroom balcony keeps the space from appearing too dark.