Weekly Blend: August 14, 2015

The Weekly Blend is your ‘weekly’ source covering real estate news that you just may have missed. Our hard at work Weekly Blend crew scours the web, newsgroups and forums looking for obscure, bizarre, interesting and informative real estate (or real estate related) stories. If you have one you’d like to share please feel free to share it in our comments section or tweet about it using the hashtag #WeeklyBlend. So brew yourself a fresh cup of coffee and enjoy these stories…maybe even share them with friends or colleagues. Happy reading!

Here are my weekly picks:

Let’s begin this week with not one, but two treehouse stories (both courtesy of Devour.com). The first is from Southern Oregon’s ‘Out ‘N’ About Treehouse Treesort and the second is the world’s largest treehouse in Crossville, Tennessee.  (VIDEOS)

It’ll cost you a little more than 50 cents to rent Curtis James Jackson III’s Connecticut home.

Are you sick of paying taxes? How about a Boat House? No land, no taxes.

Here’s an update on The Gladstone Theatre in Ottawa. It’s been sold to an unidentified buyer.

With an upcoming election, it’s important to vote. That’s why I’m encouraging readers to vote online for your favourite new restaurant from a list compiled by Air Canada’s enRoute Magazine.

Downtown Toronto’s historic Loblaw Warehouse is being restored to become an “Urban Community (plus employees have access to an in-store bowling alley – how cool is that?)

When frogs started jumping into her pool, a Penticton, B.C. woman decided to turn that pool into a habitat.

What’s cheaper? A French castle or a Vancouver condo? CTV news has a look and here’s the BuzzFeed story they mention. (VIDEO)

Metropolis Magazine has named Toronto the world’s most livable city.

Calgary’s Cecil Hotel – a permanent fixture since 1912 – will soon be no more. (VIDEO)

An older population looking to downsize is what’s behind this developer’s redesign of his South Windsor housing project.

As it goes through a renovation, have a look inside Kitchener’s 48 Weber Street West apartment building.

People who live in affordable housing units on Halifax’s Brunswick Street are being offered alternative accommodations now that their homes are up for sale.

If one last summer road trip is on your mind, maybe try to visit one of these 11 unique places to catch a movie.

Sitting at the top of Mount Kronplatz, one of the most popular ski resorts in the Italian Alps, the MMM Corones is no ordinary museum.

Did you know that Italy has roughly 670 partially completed, never-opened buildings; all are just sitting in wait, including the Grande Hotel de Calogero – a 61-year old hotel that’s never had a single guest.

Kitchener city council considers whether or not urban chickens belong in residential back yards.

Pack your bathing suit and sunscreen because we’re going to visit the 10 most beautiful beach houses from around the world.

During the cold war The Greenbrier resort in West Virginia was more than a hotel for the rich and famous – it also housed a secret underground bunker built to provide a safe haven for the Legislative Branch of the U.S. Government in the event of a nuclear war.

You’ll be saying “my my, hey, hey” when you get a look at Neil Young’s Hawaiian estate that just hit the market for $24.5 million.

If you want your millennial children to succeed then clean out the spare room and have them move back home – so says one financial expert.

What happens when a smart home is too smart for its (and its owners) own good?

Kansas City, Missouri – the home of blues and barbecue – is quickly drawing young professionals and empty nesters to its million dollar properties.

Those of us “in the know” (count yourselves as one of them) know that former Italian PM Silvio Berlusconi is looking to sell his Sardinian Holiday Villa.

Our friends at REALTOR.com ask the question: “Is your new apartment a nightmare?” And offer five ways to spot problems during the walkthrough.

The CEO of Zappos.com chooses to live, not in a mega-mansion, but in a trailer the size of a shoebox (not really that small but I needed to make a shoe joke).

The Museum of Bad Art is an actual museum and I’d actually love to go visit it.

From the outside it doesn’t look like much but wait till you step inside Lord Street Warehouse in Sydney, Australia.

If you have 12 minutes to spare watch this video about people living the #vanlife.

The one thing I took away from this article is that a famous or high profile architect is known as a ”starchitect.”

Plants and workers intermingle in farms hidden inside the concreate jungles of Japan.

This fall, Quebec plans to be the first province to bring regulations to Airbnb.

Airbnb is offering a night at Fenway Park. I wonder if Wrigley and Yankee stadium will soon follow.

Speaking of Airbnb … hoping to gain exposure in “Hipster” markets, Wisconsin-based Leinenkugel Beer has transformed vacation properties in Brooklyn and Austin into Wisconsin-style lodges and rented them out on Airbnb.

CTV news has provided an update to a story in last week’s Blend about vans being a lodging option for New York Airbnb customers … turns out cabs are an option too.

No Longer Empty is a non-profit arts group that seeks out empty and underutilized spaces for art installations throughout New York City.

Are you interested in owning (or selling) the world’s first portable private island? Christie’s International Real Estate has a new initiative to build and sell self-sufficient, eco-friendly private islands.

Speaking of islands for sale, Whiskey Island (which gets its name from its bootlegging past), located in the St. Lawrence River and just minutes from the Canadian border, can be yours for $3.9 million.

Our friends over at Trulia have created some interesting ads for homeowners. What are your thoughts?

Jonathan Baker, our former Speech Writer, contributed to the development of speeches, advertisements, and communications to our membership. Our staff knew him as the go-to guy at 200 Catherine for some comic relief. Prior to joining CREA, Jon worked in the radio industry in Ottawa. If you meet Jon, be sure to ask him to tell you about his encounters with many famous musicians while volunteering at a local music festival for more than 10 years.

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