Mill Valley at Christmas

This is a true Christmas town, with all these redwood slat and shingle homes set amid huge redwoods, all it’s missing is snow.

mill valley house
In the canyon

and there were reindeer in a paddock in the back  of the science museum in San Francisco!

looking from tower
The Academy of Science as seen from the Art Museum tower

I had forgotten how cold it can get in San Francisco. We saw plenty of rain and gray skies, but that didn’t stop us.

Here are some interior views of the science museum.

under water
He’s just strolling around saying hi!
jelly fish
These jelly fish were having a blue Christmas.
art museum
Art Museum

Martha said this was a must see, and of course, I always do what Martha says. The architects, Herzog and de Meuron, are quite the rage now. Note how the tower lines up with the mass of the main building. And unfortunately, the show, and exhibition of Impressionist paintings from the Musee D’Orsay, was sold out.

I was missing nature, sounds of rushing water, trees, the scents of moss on the rocks and deep forest. Want more of that on my last day (which is today).

rushing water
In the canyon
Looking up through the redwoods

We had fun, too. One of our first days here, we went to the House of Air, one big trampoline. Here’s one picture in motion, and one at rest.

House of air
Jumping around
a moment of stillness
Sitting out for a second
max christmas
Christmas Max
james christmas
Christmas James

We did have a happy holiday!

Discover Local Artsts: art basel

went down on a sunday afternoon. took some photos to share.


Professor Rodewald went with me to offer insights… I’ll ask her to add some comments…

Sound suits

Another version — Nick Cage’s Sound Suits are still at the Norton. Saw them in action. impressive.


This is multi-layered and actually dimensional.

up close

Center panel was made entirely of stickers. side panels were built out somehow.

Complete with water sounds

This moves (the views outside the windows). and from what i can recall, it included the sound of water lapping… am i remembering correctly?

People who live in glass houses should not throw stones

You do agree, don’t you?

And princesses shouldn’t fall asleep so easily

Don’t you agree?

And I’m partial to blackbirds
And here’s a partial of a blackbird

Go here for sound effects.

ok. i don’t have a clue

Michael’s a fourth mousquetaire?

pieter breugel

Breugelesque, don’t you think? Beate says no. Should be Hieronymus Bosch…

Magic Carpets

On wheels…

At dusk, and in honor of Cheryl Maeder

And here’s a last thought. Across the street from the Bass Museum.

Storm Troopers and Einstein

dribble about michael jordan’s house

For Palm2Jupiter…

Jeff and Cary Lichtenstein, realtors with Illustrated Properties and Christies Great Estate provided these aerial shots of Michael Jordan’s estate in the Bear’s Club, which is presently under construction.

michael jordan elevations sm
Michael Jordan house elevations – courtesy Carey and Jeff Lichtenstein

“I was having some aerials done of the Bear’s Club and got this shot. It came out nice,” Jeff Lichtenstein said.

Lichtenstein has been interested in Michael Jordan since he was a teenager.

“I’m from Chicago and Michael lived in my hometown of Highland Park, Illinois, when I was in high school and he had been drafted by the Bulls. He bought a small house and lived there a long time. I was always surprised that he didn’t move to a big house.”

Jordan did, though eventually, Lichtenstein said. “He moved outside Highland Park to Bannockburn on Half Day Road and built a gargantuan house there. It had a three or four-hole golf course and the number 23 was on the gate – that was his number and everybody in Chicago knew that house.”

Michael and Juanita divorced in 2007, and “probably she still lives over there,” Lichtenstein said. “Their two boys (Jeffrey Michael and Marcus James) both play college basketball (the Jordans also have a daughter, Jasmine). I’m wondering if he’ll get the gates with #23 transferred down here.”

So, Lichtenstein’s aerials and comments got the Michael Jordan ball rolling (or dribbling), so to speak, and the following was gleaned from public records.

According to a warranty deed and a special warranty deed both dated February 2008, Bull & Bear LLC, an Illinois limited liability company whose post office address is Attn: Curtis Polk, 5335 Wisconsin NW, Suite 580, Washington DC purchased two parcels of land in the Bears Club: lot 28, from Michael W. Lane, whose address is 4908 Rosewood Lane, Melbourne, Florida for $2.4 million, and lot 27 from GCC Realty Company, LLC, a Delaware liability company (successor by merger to GCC Franklin Holding Co., LLC) whose post office address is care of Prism Venture Partners, LLC, 675 West Indiantown Road, Jupiter for $2.403 million.

Curtis Polk manages the business and investment interests of Jordon and his related companies. Prior to forming his own consulting business in 2001, Polk, an attorney and CPA, negotiated player contracts for the SFX Basketball Group and managed the firm’s operations in Washington DC. He also served as the group’s executive vice president and was president of its related financial services affiliate, SFX Financial Advisory Management Enterprises.

In July 2008, lots 27 and 28 were replotted and according to public records, the physical address is now 172 Bears Club Drive.

On June 16, 2009, for Bull & Bear LLC, Lavelle Construction and Development Corporation submitted a building permit application naming Z.W. Jarosz of Coconut Grove as the architect. It stated that the value of the new construction, which will have 26,033 square feet under air and 37,943 total square feet, will be $7,627,669. On June 25, 2009, Lavelle Construction of Jupiter filed a notice of commencement with an expiration date of May 1, 2012.

Could construction be ahead of schedule, Jeff Lichtenstein wonders? “They have the first coat of stucco on it. There’s lots to be done yet, but, from what can be seen from the aerial shot, it looks like completion is three to six months away.”

At least…

Besides the price of the land and estimated construction costs, adding up to around $12.4 million, “this mansion probably the most expensive non-waterfront home in the Palm Beaches,” Lichtenstein said. “MJ’s total commitment when the house is finished with all the custom finishes and decorating will probably exceed $20 million, It would be interesting to see what the Jordan home resells for, being that its location, while great for MJ’s privacy, is not ideal for resale to the trophy and yacht buyer.”

Looking at the architectural drawings for the stucco-and-stone main house, covered with a slate roof, there is a grand entry foyer that is flanked by two ponds. Straight on from the foyer are a gallery and the great room. According to the permit information supplied by Lavelle Construction, the great room will have an 11-foot fireplace. A covered lanai stretches across most of the back of the home.

In the east wing, from the foyer is a stair vestibule, elevator, and the main circular staircase. The cigar room with a bar and humidor, an office and a library lounge are also in this part of the house.

Just adjacent to the family room, in the west wing are the dining room and an island kitchen. Other rooms in this area of the house include a back staircase, bedroom suite 2, a mud room, laundry, golf room, golf garage and fitness room. An auto court and bridge lead to the porte cochere. Opposite the auto court are the six-car garage and utility rooms.

Upstairs, in the east section of the house is the master bedroom suite, which includes a large closet, Nike room, watch room and bar. The large bathroom features a Jacuzzi.

In the west wing are bedroom suites 5, 6 and 7 along with an upstairs sitting room.

Over the porte cochere is bedroom suite #9.

In the north part of the property, connected to the main house by a bridge is a cottage. On the first floor are a sitting room, kitchenette, bedroom suites 3 and 4, along with a pavilion. A stairway leads to bedroom suite #8.

Also in the north end of the property are a storage facility and a two-story cabana tower.

Concerning the pool and a possible gym / basketball court, additional permits would have to be pulled, noted Juan Diaz, plans inspector for the Town of Jupiter, and, so far, nothing has been filed. Staff at Lavelle Construction did not comment, stating that they had signed a confidentiality agreement.

Looks like Lichetenstein will have to do another fly-by when the house is completed to get a look at those features…

tiger wood’s humble abode

For Palm2Jupiter…

Now that Tiger Woods’ 10,000-square-foot house is completed at 462 South Beach Road on Jupiter Island, will he swing on down to hole up there between the 18-player Chevron World Championship December 2-5 and the Omega Dubai Desert Classic, February 10 – 13?

Tiger's place 128
Courtesy of Jeff Lichtenstein

If he does – in his blog and on twitter, he did say “it’s great to be home for the holidays” – he can get some R&R relaxing by his new lap pool, exercise in his gym, heal up (some say) in his oxygen therapy room, and play a little tennis on his private courts.

He certainly won’t have to worry about security. The Town of Jupiter Island is taking great care of that, only allowing public documents that Tiger’s attorney has Okayed to be seen.

“Philippe Jeck (of Jeck, Harris, Raynor & Jones, PA, Juno Beach) came in here, marked what could and could not be seen and said this is what I could give you,” said Terri Lynn Morgan, of the Town’s building department.

Welcome to Jupiter Island, where lawyers for property owners are allowed to interpret Florida open records statutes, deciding what should be held back from public view. Based on some coaching from Town Clerk Gwen Carlisle, Jeck cited an exemption to public records law for security systems in private homes in telling the town that any document or drawing that included information on security should be kept secret.

Three days later, the town government provided this reporter with a citation of the exemption it was claiming. But the exemption cited was for security systems in government buildings, not private homes.

So, because this reporter is still waiting to see if the architectural drawings for the 5,977-square-foot studio will be made part of the “okay to be seen” set, suffice it to say, according to other documents on file, this huge space has two bathrooms and two half-baths. The rest, at this point, is anybody’s guess.

But here’s what could be gleaned from Martin County public records along with Town of Jupiter Island files and architectural blueprints by Dailey Janssen Architects, along with a fly-by courtesy of local realtors, Jeff and Cary Lichtenstein.

In addition to the main house itself, which sits on a little over 11 acres, there are a 5,865-square-foot guesthouse and boathouse, the aforementioned 5,977-square-foot golf studio, and a gatehouse. The architectural blueprints also make note of a 1,063-square-foot beach house that already existed.

According to Martin County public records, there were two entities connected to Woods’ purchases — Christopher J. Hubman, as Trustee of the Jupiter Island Revocable Trust, and Denton Capital CO LLC, a Connecticut limited liability company, both listing as their address Tiger’s Orlando address at 8934 Windermere Road. The seller was Sag Hobe Sound, LLC a Delaware limited liability company, whose address was listed as 100 Horseshow Road, Mill Neck, New York. On January 24, 2006, Hubman purchased two parts for $22 million and $5.6 million. Denton Capital purchased another part for $10.4 million.

Also found in the public records is a trustee’s deed of August 2006, showing that Sand Turtle LLC, a Connecticut limited liability company listing 8934 Windermere Road as its address, paid $6.5 million to the Seymour St. John Family Trust for some adjoining property.

Tiger had some of the existing buildings torn down, and he built the contemporary-style house, which was just completed.

On the architectural blueprints, in the main house there is a basement which has a wine cellar, media room, cabana bath and grill room.

On the first floor, the foyer opens to a stair hall with a circular stairway and reflecting pool. To the right of this area are a bedroom suite, library and covered terrace. To the left are the den and living room. And to the left of those rooms are the laundry, kitchen, and dining room.

Upstairs, to the right of the stair hall are three bedroom suites, and to the left is the master suite, which includes a bedroom, sitting room, bathrooms, closets and a roof terrace.

Also in the public records, recorded on August 25, 2010, there is a mortgage document noting the Mortgagor to be collectively Christopher J. Hubman, Sand Turtle, and Denton Capital. The Obligee is JRD Florida Ventures LLC, a Virginia limited liability company listing 8815 Conroy-Windermere Road, #361, Orlando as its address.

The Obligor is Eldrick Woods (Tiger’s real name). The obligation states that Obligor owes Obligee the sum of $54.5 million. Each Mortgager mortgages, grants and conveys to Obligee, with power of sale, the real property owned by each of the Mortgagers located in Martin County (specifically 463, 467 and 469 South Beach Road).

According to the Commonwealth State Corporation Commission’s website, Dennis I. Belcher is the registered agent for JRD Florida Ventures; he’s also a partner in McGuireWoods, the Richmond, Va., law firm that represented Elin Nordegren in the divorce. Woods and Nordegren finalized their divorce Aug. 23 at the Bay County Courthouse in Panama City.

Now, back to the property, with a look at its private backyard golf complex, built by Medalist Golf, Inc., as seen in an aerial shot taken by Terry Yeager of Above and Beyond Aviation Services commissioned by Realtor Jeff Lichtenstein.

“It was a fluke,” Jeff Lichtenstein said. “Terry was taking a shot of another property, so I just asked him to take a shot of Tiger’s new house, too.

“When he delivered it, I thought, what a beautiful picture with the ocean and the Intracoastal, and then I saw the golf course and the property looked life a big golf course with a club house.”

Cary Lichtenstein, Jeff’s father, is a “total golf enthusiast,” Jeff said, “He’s played all the courses and he’s worked on golf-course design. I sent him the picture to him for his perspective. He did an analysis and sent it back in 20 minutes, so I wrote a blog on it.”

Said Jeff’s father, Cary, a Realtor and an ex-golf-course rater: “Tiger has enough open space to practice his short game from any angle and any wind condition. He’s not a member of a local private club yet, and by creating this golf course, he now has a practice area that is very varied, so he can prepare himself for his tournaments in his own back yard.”

There looks to be one tee box in the southeast corner to hit drivers and Woods can hit long, medium and short irons into any of the four greens in the areas west of the lap pool, he added, and each of those greens are “guarded by a single trap, except the green in the northwest corner, which appears to have three pot bunkers.”

His putting green is totally surrounded by dense vegetation. So, there will be no spying on Tiger, there.

And, Cary wonders, since practice in the Florida’s summer heat is out of the question, could Tiger have put in a sub-air temperature and humidity control system beneath the green? And what kind of grass did he plant in the whole area?

“The denser Florida or tropical grasses react quite differently with the club head and ball, and Tiger may find he is switching grasses a number of times until he finds the right mix.

“I would have thought he’d have two putting greens, each with different grasses.”

And something else, he muses, Tiger’s home is not placed on the property to take advantage of Intracoastal views. What could that mean? He’s guessing that by placing the practice area near the water, Tiger is reversing the norm, “and creating another unique signature estate on Jupiter Island.”

The course, Cary said, is situated on the land where the construction vehicles had been parked, and, as far as he knows – he’s been to Tiger’s home in Orlando – it’s the only private course Tiger has. “I looked at his house in Orlando on Windermere. I didn’t see one, there,” he said. And although unusual – most golfers belong to clubs — it’s not uncommon for a golfer to have a private course, “Jack Nicklaus has one,” Cary said.

“Tiger doesn’t like gawkers,” and, he adds, “Jupiter Island is a very private place, which is why celebrities like it.

“When Woods and other celebrity golfers go to a club with 1,000 members, everybody feels a sense of entitlement that they can go up and talk to them and they want to be left alone.”

Other golfers who call this area home are Greg Norman, Raymond Floyd, Lee Trevino, Nick Price, Gary Player, Robert Allenby and Jesper Parnevik – Tiger’s ex-wife Elin Nordegren, had been the Parneviks’ nanny, which is how she met Tiger.

So, how much could Tiger get for it if he put it on the market? Jeff couldn’t say.

“Tiger’s home is incredibly difficult (to appraise) because the architecture is not in keeping with the feel of Jupiter Island.

“It is very much European and will probably need that type of buyer,” he said. “An alternative would be to subdivide the property and sell the house alone, since it is in the front, anyway. Then sell the land in the back where the golf course is. All of this would have to be approved by Jupiter Island.

“As for a fantasy number to put on it, I decline on this one. A true appraisal would be needed. An appraisal on Tiger’s home would start somewhere in the neighborhood of $10 million for a home Tiger’s size.  With the lots starting at $38 million, plus the cost of building, Tiger would expect to take a hit like everyone else, who purchased and built at the height of the market. Hopefully he will enjoy it for a while.”

Said Cary: “I think he’s going to live in that house for a time. It was custom designed to fit his athletic needs.”

Note: This reporter received the following notice today from the Town of Jupiter Island — looks like there’s more security related to the “golf studio” than the main house itself. Makes me wonder…

Please see the attached letter. Unfortunately, your request for the inspection of the floor plans for the Studio building at 462 South Beach Road are exempt from inspection under Florida Law. If you have further questions, please feel free to call me.

Gwen Carlisle
Town Clerk
Town of Jupiter Island
(772) 545-0103

From: Philippe Jeck []
Sent: Thursday, December 02, 2010 11:38 AM
To: Gwen Carlisle
Subject: 462 South Beach Road

Ms. Carlisle,

Attached is a copy of the letter previously sent to you requesting that the Town comply with certain Florida Statutes requiring the Town to keep certain records confidential with respect to our client.  We respectfully request that the Town continue to honor this request in response to any current inquiries being made for such protected records.  Please note that the F.S. 119.071(3) defines “security systems” quite broadly and includes records relating directly to the physical security of the facility or revealing security systems, sheltering arrangements, evacuation plans, etc.  Thank you for your attention to this matter.  Please call me if you have any questions.

Attorneys and Counselors at Law
Writer’s Direct Line: (561) 746-1344 Ext. 306
Writer’s E-Mail Address: BKRATZ@JHRJPA.COM
February 25, 2008
(561) 746-1002 (800) 479-0867 (TOLL FREE) FAX: (561) 747-4113
Gwen Carlisle
Town of Jupiter Island
2 Bridge Road
P.O. Box 7
Hobe Sound, FL 33475-0007
RE: Christopher J. Hubman, as Trustee of the Jupiter Island
Revocable Trust as to Lots 1 and 1A, 462 South Beach Road and
463 South Beach Road; and
Sand Turtle, LLC as to Lots 2 and 2A, 468 South Beach Road
Dear Ms. Carlisle:
In accordance with Florida Statutes §§ 119.071, 281.301 and 286.0113, all information (i.e. plans, schematic diagrams, surveys, photographs, audio and/or visual presentations, etc.) related to the security system for the above property is exempt from public access or disclosure. In addition, all meetings relating directly to or that would reveal such security systems or information should be held in private with the governmental office, committee, board or commission without the public present.
Based on the confidentiality of security systems, we request that any submittals or portion thereof, made to the Town, including but not limited to, for permitting, impact review or Board of Adjustment, which includes security features are sealed and kept confidential by the Town and all its employees, appointees, elected officials and agents. We shall advise our contractors, architects and other owner representatives to indicate on any submittals which are considered to be related to the security systems so that they can be segregated and kept confidential by the Town.
Thank you for your help on this important and sensitive matter.
Very truly yours,
D. Bruce Kratz
cc: Christopher J. Hubman
Thomas Little
Daniel Constantakos
Roger Janssen
Charles Yannette
12625.05006-2008.02.25 Ltr.Gwen Carlisle.Town of Jupiter Island.doc