Afternoon Tea At The Huntington Rose Garden Tea Room

Arbor Leading to Huntington Rose Garden Tea Room

I am always looking for new places for Afternoon Tea near Palos Verdes.  Several friends have recommended the Afternoon Tea At the Huntington Rose Garden Tea Room.  Last Friday night, we decided that we would visit The Huntington the next day and I checked online and there was only one reservation left for Afternoon Tea.  I happily made the reservation feeling very lucky.

After wandering the Gardens – we loved the Japanese Garden and Chinese Gardens the best, we went to the Huntington Art Gallery and enjoyed the European art including the famous Blue Boy and Pinkie.  Next we visited the Library with its incredible collection of rare books and manuscripts – the Gutenberg Bible on velum was awesome.

Buffet at Huntington Rose Garden Tea Room

Afternoon Tea was a perfect break in our day.  The Huntington serves it buffet style which is different from the traditional Afternoon Tea with its 3-tier presentation.  The advantage was that I could go back for seconds of my favorite Tarragon Chicken sandwich and several different kinds of salads.  Their Raspberry Black Tea was my favorite tea.  They also served a delicious pecan bar.

In order to enjoy Afternoon Tea at The Huntington Rose Garden Tea Room you must pay for admission into The Huntington Library, Art Collections and Botanical Gardens itself.  Plan to make a day of it.  It is only a hour’s drive to San Marino/Pasadena.  For more information go to http://www.huntington.org/  For more information on the Afternoon Tea, click here or call 626-683-8131.

Top Photo is Arbor leading to Huntington Rose Garden Tea Room

Palos Verdes Concours D’Elegance 2012 Event

The Palos Verdes Concours d’Elegance will be holding it’s 20th annual event, on Sunday, September 16, from 10:00 a.m. to 4:00 p.m. at the Trump National Golf Club.  This years event will feature classic French curves.  You will be able to see the featured marque Delahaye, which made some of the most elegant and luxurious French cars.  There will be cars of coachbuilders or carrossiers, famous for their graceful designs, such as Bugatti, Chapron, Pourtout, Figoni et Falaschi, Franay, Delages, Hispano-Suiza and others.

In addition to viewing more than 200 exhibited cars, there will be craftsmen at work in Restoration Alley, shopping area for gifts, dining at the elegant Club House, and many show cars to examine in the display areas.

Tickets may be purchased the day of the event for $40, or you can purchase tickets in advance for $35.  For more information and reservations, go to www.pvconcours.org.  Proceeds  from this event benefit the Palos Verdes Art Center, and Palos Verdes Rotary Foundation Charities, including Harbor Area Boys & Girls Clubs.

Information and Photo courtesy of Palos Verdes Concours D’Elegance

Palos Verdes Homes Top Tuesday Tour Tips

There were 31 homes on the January 24, 2012, Palos Verdes real estate Broker’s Tour.  I was able to see 13 homes today in the allotted two hours.  More than half the homes on tour today were new listings; we are happy to see our inventory increasing.  We currently have 204 single family Palos Verdes homes for sale ranging in price from $725,000 in Rolling Hills Estates 90274 to $10,500,000 in Palos Verdes Estates 90274 (the low in Eastview is $597,400).  There are 51 Palos Verdes townhomes for sale priced between $171,000 and $2,595,000.  My favorite Palos Verdes homes today were:

2240 Via La Brea, Palos Verdes Estates, CA 90274 3 Pleasant Hill Drive, Rolling Hills Estates, CA 90274

Rick and Kitty Edler’s (Peninsula Sotheby’s Int’l Realty) 2240 Via La Brea, Palos Verdes Estates 90274 (above left) is a 5 bedroom, 7 bath, 5,084 square foot home for $3,299,000. This Monte Malaga masterpiece features panoramic Queen’s Necklace ocean/coastline views, a gourmet kitchen, a luxurious master suite and a pool/spa. Kathy Trutanich’s (RE/MAX Palos Verdes Realty) 3 Pleasant Hill Drive, Rolling Hills Estates 90274 (above right) is a 5 bedroom, 3 bath, 2,430 square foot home for $1,299,000.  This sprawling one-level remodeled Palos Verdes Drive North home features a beautiful kitchen, a home theater, central air conditioning and is zoned for horses.

32 Strawberry Lane, Rolling Hills Estates, CA 90274 27514 Fawnskin Drive, Rancho Palos Verdes, CA 90275

Cindy Chew’s (Coldwell Banker-PV/Beach Cities) 32 Strawberry Lane, Rolling Hills Estates 90274 (above left) is a 3 bedroom, 3 bath, 3,246 square foot home for $1,950,000.  This fabulous Palos Verdes Drive North equestrian estate features a 20×50 meter dressage riding ring, steel barn, solar heated pool and cabana on a 50,090 square foot lot.  David Clayton’s (RE/MAX Execs South Bay) 27514 Fawnskin, Rancho Palos Verdes 90275 (above right) is a 4 bedroom, 2 bath, 1,701 square foot home for $799,000.  This immaculate Peninsula Center home features an upgraded kitchen, an oversized two-car finished garage,  and a beautiful pool and yard area.

Photos courtesy of CRMLS

Palos Verdes Real Estate Area MLS #171, Country Club Neighborhood

Los Verdes Country Club, Rancho Palos Verdes, CA 90275

Palos Verdes real estate area 171 is known as Country Club, and is located in the city of Rancho Palos Verdes. Multiple listing Service Area 171 includes the neighborhoods around the Los Verdes Golf Course.  Hawthorne Boulevard is the eastern and southern boundary (as the street curves), Hess Park is the northern boundary, and Calle De Suenos is the western boundary.

This area is called “Country Club” as the Los Verdes Golf Course is located here.  It is a 18 hole public golf course with clubhouse and banquet facilities and is owned by the County of Los Angeles.  Los Verdes Golf Course’s beautiful ocean views make this location one of the popular wedding venues on the Peninsula.  Ralph’s Market is located at the corner on Crest Road and Hawthorne Boulevard.  There is also a large apartment complex located off Los Verdes Drive.

Ryan Community Park is also located in this area.  This park undertook a large upgrade in the past couple of years.  Ryan Community Park was the first park to be annexed by the city in 1973 from Los Angeles County.  The park is 10 acres, with wonderful sports areas, and has a large play area that includes a ship which children love to climb on.  This facility also has community areas that can be rented out for private parties.  It can be accessed from Hawthorne Boulevard, and it has its own parking area.

Currently there are 12 condo/townhouses in this area.  They range from $199,000 for a 1 bedroom/1 bath, 778 square foot condo, to $509,000 for a 2 bedroom/3bath, 1,365 square foot townhouse.  There are 18 single family homes for sale in this area.  They range from $1,185,000 for a 4 bedroom/3bath, 2,432 square foot single family residence, to $2,300,000 for a 5 bedroom/6bath, 5,705 square foot single family residence.

Photo courtesy of Los Verdes Golf Course/American Golf Corporation

365 Things To Do In Palos Verdes – Farnham Martin Park

Farnham Martin Park in Palos Verdes Estates is located adjacent to the Malaga Cove Library. It sits directly behind the stone wall and large fountain, with steps leading up to an open lawn area.  The lawn is the setting for free concerts in the summer starting the first Wednesday after the fourth of July.  Occasionally you will see wedding pictures being taken here or peacocks running through the grounds.

The area has a stone marker that reads the following…”This park, latest of the many cherished things which the Palos Verdes community owes to his abounding devotion to his artistry, and to the spirit which he kindled in all his associates, whether in work of in play is dedicated by his neighbors and friends to the bright memory of Farnham Battles Martin.”

Photo Courtesy of Joan S

Financial/Mortgage Update

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The news today from the Federal Housing Finance Agency was that conforming loan limits will remain at $417,000 in the continental United States for 2009. There are higher loan amounts for certain counties. These are known as ‘High Cost Areas” and we are one of them. Our conforming loan limits will be $625,000 (In 2008, we enjoyed a higher limit of $729,750). Any loans above $625,500 will be at the higher Jumbo Rate shown above.

This has been such an interesting week for our Country. With the elections over, there seems to be more focus and forward movement. There was so much excitement by so many at the possibilities of our desires like peace and equality. This can only translate positively for us in the future.

Financial/Mortgage Update

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30-year fixed interest rates are down today compared to the beginning of the month. Jumbo loans actually went down 1/2% today (30-year fixed). The remainder of the loan products quoted above are up one-eighth of a percent since the beginning of the month.

There are many changes in the wind for mortgages. The word is that by December jumbo conforming loans will be gone. No income verification loans are forecasted to be obsolete any day making it harder for self-employed borrowers to get loans. There will also be less choices in loan programs as the current financial chaos settles. For example, negative amortization loans and interest only loans are currently illegal in some states.

It is more important now than ever to get the counsel of a knowledgable, well-connected loan officer who can get you the loan.

Above loan information is provided by Jim Kurata, Peninsula Mortgage/Chase.