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In Florida we frequently see a Vanishing Edge pool or an Infinity Edge pool. You often see them in locations where beyond the pool edge you just see water, whether a lake beyond, or open ocean. Sometimes, when there is a traditional light pool surface, the edge intrudes, even though it's not very wide. Here, in this pool in Costa Rica, you have a dark pool surface, which gives the impression of a natural lagoon rather than a modern pool. This one is well done, and from this edge it looks as though you might fall off with the water, (7 comments)
Along the road from San Jose, Costa Rica, to the Jaco and Esterillos areas on the Pacific Coast, we always stop about half-way at a delightful Costa Rican restaurant for a cold drink and snack. There's the restaurant with hot and cold foods, and tables on a covered patio; there's the produce and grocery section; and there's the handicrafts section, with hats, handbags, and hanging chairs like this one. The scene was so colorful I thought it was worth the photo.
USB upgrade for Verizon air card - 05/31/09 01:16 PM
I've had a Verizon aircard for a few years, one that fits into a PCMCIA slot in my computer, and I love the flexibility of having broadband access wherever there's cell phone reception, instead of having to depend on a wireless network. Recently I bought a netbook, which I really like, but haven't used as much as I could because it has built-in wireless but not a PCMCIA slot for my Aircard. In the Vinoy lobby there isn't any free wireless, so the netbook isn't much use there. Ah, well, everything has disadvantages. Last week Tami wanted to borrow my Aircard (2 comments)
There's lots to like at the new Signature Place condominiums in downtown St Petersburg Florida. Their garden - on the 6th floor, not on the roof - has a pool and putting green, but on a nice sunny day lounge chairs like this are inviting places. If you're inside working out in the gym, you can look forward to a post-workout dip in the pool, followed by relaxing here. Note that all the "grass" is artificial turf. No brown lawns here, and no noisy lawnmowers on an early morning. The bushes and trees are live, though. Signature Place, 3 (0 comments)
Parking Meters create Poor Publicity and Punctures Profits - 05/31/09 12:42 PM
Recently the City of St Petersburg installed parking meters along Beach Drive - ostensibly to prevent employees from taking parking spaces away from customers - but we all know it's to increase revenue to the City. 50 cents an hour, two hour max, with a 2 hour limit. 8 am to 11 pm. 7 days a week! Different blocks have different maximum times and different enforcement hours, but that - which creates lots of confusion - is a topic for another blog! Poor Publicity when visitors to downtown St Pete don't have change.Poor Publicity when someone dines at a local restaurant, (8 comments)
Question I can't answer - 05/30/09 07:23 PM
When we write about the local market and the lifestyle here, we often blog about what's happening with the schools. I'm no exception, and have blogged about our Pinellas County schools as well. Sometimes our readers think we have all the answers. Today I received this e-mail: My son attends Pinellas Park High School and will continue for the next two years as I was told he will be grandfathered in since are area's zoned high school has changed. What I would like to be assured is that he will continue to be able to catch a bus to and from (11 comments)
Bayfront Medical Center - St Petersburg - 05/30/09 07:17 PM
One of the concerns people have when moving to a new area is medical care. There are several good hospitals in or close to downtown St Petersburg. One of them right in downtown St Petersburg is Bayfront Medical Center. Over 600 doctors serve Bayfront. It's a full service hospital, starting with a very active Emergency/Trauma center. Bayfront has continued to expand, and actually turned itself around - the front entrance moved from the east side to the west side! From obstetrics to cancer care to neurology and sports medicine, you can find help at Bayfront. Often the trauma helicopters that you (2 comments)
Nonbinding offers don't always indicate trouble - 05/30/09 07:07 PM
Signature Place - newest condo in downtown St Pete For the last couple of weeks Signature Place has been accepting Nonbinding Offers. This has led to rumors of trouble, as 400 Beach, a downtown luxury condo whose developer has recently filed bankruptcy, has also been soliciting Nonbinding Offers. Not the case for Signature Place, according to the sales staff. Previous contracts were all Unfinished Building contracts, and now that the building is done, new contracts had to be approved by the State of Florida, appropriate to a finished building. In the meantime, they were accepting Nonbinding Offers. They expect this coming (0 comments)
Lost baggage - 05/30/09 04:48 PM
Be prepared for lost luggage.
It's not uncommon these days for airlines to lose some of your luggage. So - yours doesn't show up on the baggage carousel and you're over at the Lost Baggage counter, trying to describe your luggage.
You probably remember the color, and probably the shape, but do you remember the brand? Do you have the size right?
Since most of us travel with a digital camera these days, why not take a photo of each piece of your luggage - both those you check and those you carry onboard - and have these (3 comments)
Taste of Pinellas 2009 - 05/30/09 04:39 PM
This weekend at Vinoy Park in downtown St Petersburg is the Taste of Pinellas 2009. A fundraiser for All Children's Hospital which is opening a new facility later this year, Taste of Pinellas is a popular annual event. Walk over to this waterfront park, admission is free and food tickets are 8 for $5, with selections from over 40 local restaurants ranging from 2-12 tickets per selection. From fried clams to vanilla bean creme brulee, from jambalaya to grouper, from seafood Louis salad to blue cheese stuffed meatballs, there are delights for everyone. Even the soon-to-be open 400 Beach Seafood & (0 comments)
St Petersburg College downtown arts complex - 05/23/09 03:25 PM
The new arts building, built and operated by St Petersburg College, was the location for last night's preopening reception for the new exhibit at the Florida International Museum, one part of this arts complex. American Stage Theater has also relocated here and their first production will begin June 5th. The Florida Orchestra has its headquarters here, and The Palladium, another St Petersburg College "acquire and rejuvenate" projects is within walking distance. The contemporary shapes remind me of the swimming dolphins that I so enjoy seeing all around our area. The light ring changes colors, albeit a bit too fast for my (1 comments)
Signature Place Market Update - 05/22/09 04:02 PM
Signature Place condominiums, downtown St Petersburg After years of watching the construction of this unique building, it's finally finished. The sales office has moved from its temporary location to the main Signature Place tower, and the models are being shown By Appointment. Your real estate agent can make the arrangements for you. Signature Place expects to be closing on its preconstruction contracts during the month of June 2009. I was worried that the water wall would be too loud, but it isn't. The sound is really relaxing and has great design and engineering. Tower units are available from $375,000 to $3,255,000. (4 comments)
The Florencia is a luxury condominium in downtown St Petersburg, built by JMC Corporation, with 49 residential units.
This is a very stable building with few units coming on the market for resale. The last unit sold was in December 2007, an 03 (south) unit that sold for $1,050,000.
There are currently only 2 condominiums offered for rent. One is an 02 unit (facing directly east toward Tampa Bay), offered for $1,650,000. The other is an 01 unit (on the north side of the building) which has just been reduced from $990,000 to $875,000.
When a storm is coming or going, it's always interesting to see the contracts of light and dark. When you have a wide view, it's also interesting to watch a storm coming. You can actually see the wall of rain as it approaches. This evening there was a lot of lightning as well, but it was always faster than my shutter. This is the view from a penthouse at 475. Though it's only 7 stories up, the surrounding area is low enough that you get a panoramic view. We're now on our 11th day of rain, some days or (0 comments)
Ikea has a Room To Go - 05/22/09 03:13 PM
Living Room With a View of the Plaza Courtyard in downtown St Petersburg. Look below to see why I titled this "Ikea has Room To Go": When I drove past this ROOM parked beside BayWalk in downtown St Petersburg, I did a double take - drove around the block again, parked, and took these photos. IKEA this month opened a new store in Tampa. What a creative way to advertise! (2 comments)
Lifestyle Liquidation - 05/19/09 04:39 PM
Lifestyle Liquidation is a term I read in this morning's Wall St Journal, in an article by Robert Frank about the End of the Gilded Age. Yes, it's partly about money, as the economic crunch is hitting the wealthy now, not just the middle class. More than half of all millionaires have lost 30% of their assets in this economy. Auctions abound, whether for a single property or for a collection of properties. (Our experience has been that auctions work for unique properties that can be advertised to a worldwide audience, but don't do much for typical homes, whatever the price (4 comments)
Why do we have clients buying in Costa Rica? - 05/15/09 08:07 PM
Why are some of our clients buying properties and/or land in Costa Rica? Of course there's the weather, the views, the wonderful Costa Rican people ... but why are they buying now? For many people, our current economic conditions are scary. What if ... we have super inflation when the bailout bills come due? What if ... our taxes become the majority of our income? What if ... there's a "one time" tax or fee on our savings and investments? What if ... there's a "temporary emergency" and temporarily we can't get our money out of savings or stocks? What if (24 comments)
What's a non-binding offer? - 05/15/09 07:55 PM
Obviously a non-binding offer is an offer that isn't binding. But beyond the semantics - what is it really? Two of the condo projects in our area, one that recently filed bankruptcy (Opus South who has 400 Beach in downtown St Petersburg and Water's Edge in downtown Clearwater, as well as others) and one that hasn't filed bankruptcy. They are single sheets of paper where a buyer makes an offer on a particular condo unit. The "buyer" is not required to put down any deposit or earnest money and obviously neither the buyer nor the owner is committed. So what's the (5 comments)
Why has slang taken over? - 05/15/09 07:47 PM
It's interesting to watch how the English language has developed. Sometimes terms come up for new situations; sometimes one word can substitute for many - i.e., "google" has become a verb. I'm ok with hearing, "I google my prospects" rather than saying "I search for information on my prospects by searching their name on the web through the google site." Language evolves. What I don't understand is expressions that are neither new nor time-saving - i.e, "It's my bad" instead of the traditional "It's my fault." It's not easier to say, and it certainly doesn't make grammatical sense. What are we (8 comments)
Kahwa is dog friendly as is downtown St Petersburg - 05/12/09 11:38 AM
This morning I stopped for a cup of latte at Kahwa Coffee Shop here in downtown St Petersburg. The usual neighborhood folk were there, before school or before work. When I stepped back outside the door (it's getting warm here in Florida so I had my coffee inside instead at one of the outside tables) here were these two adorable dogs, basking in the morning sunshine. Attached to a nearby tree by their leashes, they were snuggly and apparently happy. This is one more pet friendly place in downtown St Petersburg. Stop and enjoy a freshly brewed cup of coffee and (5 comments)
3 Ps to Selling Your Home Faster - 05/10/09 12:54 PM
There are 3 Ps to selling your home quickly: Price - Prepare - Present Price it right. It doesn’t matter what you paid for it or how much you have in it. It doesn’t matter if it’s “fair”. It doesn’t matter what you could have sold it for 2 years ago. It’s all about what’s actually selling - which do include short sales and foreclosures - and also what other homes are on the market. If you want to sell quickly, price it below those. If you want to sell “in the herd” price with the ones that are low. If (7 comments)
Obama should appoint a Secretary of Blogging - 05/10/09 10:45 AM
Christopher Bean suggests that resident Obama should enhance transparency through the new media and appoint a Secretary of Blogging. Perhaps this is a bit tongue-in-cheek, but his article in this morning's St Petersburg Times did make reference to an interesting government blog (that's not an oxymoron) for the TSA. It's written with a human voice, not governmentese, and you can learn - and sometimes laugh - about knitting needles, and why a book and wires might look like a bomb on the security screen.
Save time and steps - put this on your desk - 05/07/09 03:10 PM
This week My wonderful new Fujitsu Scansnap S1500 scanner arrived, and I love it even more than the ones that preceeded it. For $450 you can save more time than you ever thought by not having to walk to the office scanner. This is so fast and convenient you'll want one right on your desk, and the space it takes up is about half of an 8.5 x 11 sheet of paper. Flip it up, flip it out, and in less than a second it's ready to scan a single business card or a 50 page contract.
Condo Rentals in downtown St Petersburg Florida - Market Update May 1, 2009 - 05/04/09 03:41 AM
At the end of April 2009 there were 44 condos listed for rent in the MLS, ranging from $750/month for a 1 bedroom condo at The Beacon to $4,800/month for a 3 bedroom luxury condo at Parkshore Plaza. During April 14 condos were leased, giving a 3.4 month supply of rental condos in downtown St Petersburg. Leases ranged from $850 for a 1 bedroom condo at Bay Villas to $3,300 for a 3 bedroom luxury condo at 400 Beach. The average condo leased ws 1m291 sq ft and rented for $1,569. The largest supply of condos has switched from 3 bedroom (3 comments)
Information on Real Estate, Properties, Traditions, Neighborhoods, Market Activity and other items of interest in the Tampa Bay area (St Petersburg, Clearwater, Tampa, Bradenton) and the Gulf Beaches, Florida.
Disclaimer: ActiveRain Corp. does not necessarily endorse the real estate agents, loan officers and brokers listed on this site. These real estate profiles, blogs and blog entries are provided here as a courtesy to our visitors to help them make an informed decision when buying or selling a house. ActiveRain Corp. takes no responsibility for the content in these profiles, that are written by the members of this community.