The editors at TopTenRealEstateDeals.com have just released their 2011 list of The Top Ten Island Enclaves For Sale, complied with assistance from Realogics Sotheby's International Realty in Seattle. As Americans work longer hours and technology enables professionals to be ever more on-call, getaways and vacations are needed more than ever. Too bad vacation days have not increased along with employee availability. But now that so many professionals can work from home, who’s to say that home can’t look and feel more like a vacation spot?
For those with the right situation and enough determination, one man can be an island—or at least he can live on one. Their criteria for choosing the homes, as stated on the Top Ten website: “Islands for your great escape, where you can actually live year-round within electronic distance of your new, more sophisticated life requirements, but still on an island.”
So click on ahead to see the 10 amazing island outposts currently for sale. They are located everywhere across the U.S., from the Puget Sound to the Thousand Islands, from Cape Cod to Miami to the San Francisco Bay Area and beyond.
By Colleen KanePosted 10 August 2011
Price: $8.5 million
Bedrooms/Baths: 6/5 Full 1 Half
Square Footage: 7,529
Island Size: 27.6 square miles
This clapboard home wouldn’t be out of place in the Hamptons, but it’s on the opposite coast. As TopTenRealEstateDeals.com notes, it’s not a bad location, after being chosen the second best place to live in the U.S. by CNN/Money and Money magazine and only a short 35-minute ferry ride from Pier 52 in downtown Seattle. It’s got views of Mount Ranier and all water-facing walls open up for unencumbered views of the Puget Sound. The home has three fireplaces, including one outdoors, a guest house, and more than an acre of gated lowbank waterfront property.
Price: $22.25 million
Square Footage: 7,900
This stunning, low-slung modern home has sweeping Richardson Bay and San Francisco Bay views, including the Golden Gate Bridge—residents can take in the vista from the patio, from the 220 feet of shoreline, from the living room, the bedrooms, the office, the soaking tub, and even from the chef’s kitchen. The property also features a two-bedroom guesthouse and wine cave.
Price: $27.9 million
Square Footage: 5,415
The car-free enclave of Bay Island in Newport Beach, accessed by a private footbridge, is the site of just 23 homes, many occupied by the same families for generations. This elegant resort-like Asian-inspired house is surrounded on three sides by water. With its outdoor rooms, decks, terraces, and glass doors, it blurs the line between indoor and outdoor space.
Price: $14.95 million
Bedrooms/Baths: 3/3 full, 1 half
Square Footage: 6,505
In the South Carolina low country, situated between the Kiawah River, salt-water marshes, and winding creeks, is the extremely private estate at No. 1 Captain Maynards Island. The weathered-wood exterior hides a thoroughly modern interior, with vaulted ceilings, a fireplace, and hardwood floors. For enjoying all the surrounding nature, the residence has a huge screened porch (2,049 square feet), with its own vaulted ceiling, a fireplace, and rockers that look out onto trees draped in Spanish moss.
Price: $5.195 million
Bedrooms/Baths: 4/5 full, 2 half
Square Footage: 5,500
This Mediterranean(-ish) house is one of the 12 estates on Fisher Island, located just south of Miami Beach, which is only accessible via helicopter, seaplane, or a private ferry that runs on the quarter hour. The house, which is being sold with its furnishings, has pillars and archways, a wood-paneled study, a pool and hot tub, a master bath with his and her sinks, and dual walk-in showers. Views include a golf course, South Beach, and Government Cut.
Price: $4.5 million
Bedrooms/Baths: 8/5 full, 1 half
Square Footage: 5,554
This shingled house is affectionately known as Seven Bells. Built in 1920, it’s been renovated numerous times and now includes the expected chef’s kitchen, as well as Brazilian cherry wood floors. Six of its eight bedrooms offer views of Lewis Bay. Outdoor features include a gunite pool, a full outdoor kitchen, a widow’s walk, and a stand-alone garage with guest apartment. Plus, among the mature trees and landscaping are more than 100 hydrangea bushes.
Price: $12.5 million
Bedrooms/Baths: 8/7 full, 1 half
Square Footage: 7,700
Acreage: Almost 3
Sands Point was settled by Vanderbilts and other shapers of the Gold Coast, but is perhaps better known as “East Egg” in "The Great Gatsby." This circa-1930 colonial on Boulder Beach offers views across the Long Island Sound. It has a wrap-around covered porch, a dining room that seats 30-plus, and 145 feet of shoreline with new dock and boathouse. The gatehouse has 2 bedrooms and 1.5 baths. The décor of the sitting room features a most intriguing combination of ginghams, plaid, and old-timey ships, while the central hall has landscape murals. The manly wood-paneled office is not afraid to pair tartan carpeting with equally plaid armchairs.
Price: $10.3 million
Square Footage: 9,025
Anyone who wants to visit this narrow, 14-mile long island will have to get to it by ferry or air taxi. Islesboro was formed in the Gilded Age as a resort community and it continues to be an exclusive summer spot. This 1918 Renaissance Revival estate is situated on the Keller Point peninsula. The property features a saltwater swimming pool, a paddle tennis court, a pro putting green (right on the water), formal and informal gardens, landscaping, a boathouse, a stone guesthouse, and more than 3,500 feet of waterfront.
Price: $6.5 million
Square Footage: 7,970
A few unexpected features of this Seattle-area retreat include extensive earthquake engineering, geothermal heating and cooling, drought-tolerant gardens, and even an easy commute to Seattle. Other features include several fireplaces, wood floors, a wine cellar, media room, fitness center, 275 feet of waterfront, guest house, art studio, and a caretaker’s cottage.
Price: $1.495 million (taking bids for a late summer auction starting at $595,000)
Square Footage: 4,680
This house has been owned by the original family (the heirs of industrialist Alson E. Clark) since it was built in 1883, and almost everything about the place—save for the exterior paint job and a new roof—is still the original. It’s filled with antiques, such as an original wood cook stove. It occupies its own island in the “Millionaire’s Row” of the Thousand Islands Region of Alexandria Bay, N.Y., but judging by the interior photos on the house’s website, it may take a millionaire to bring this property back up to snuff.