Wednesday, March 12, 2008

Solid Teak Rainwater Bath

The nature-lovers and simplicity-dwellers are sure to like this. An unusual and stylish bath, the Rainforest bath is the first to have a hand-made wooden bath.

Hundreds of caringly curved timbers are crafted to make this unique boat bath. Each of these are made in natural Teak hardwood which are waxed for smooth hard-waring finish.

The taps must be wall-mounted or floor mounted. Please note that the bath is without over flow and also the colors may vary as each bath is individual. Each of these retail for $25,105.

Via - Loadedshopper

Simon Turner

Rotating Gas Fireplace

Share the heat with everyone and be the envy of Australian homes, with this Diva Gas Rotating Fireplace, produced by Spartherm.

Control the gas pressure through a remote control and comfort yourself to get heated with the fireplace that rotates as per your convenience.

A glowing sphere of warmth sliced open on two sides to reveal the inner splendor this contemporary fireplace can rotate at your will. This handy function likewise allows you to directly feel the cozy heat of the Diva fireplace wherever you may be in the room. Running on gas, the Diva is easy to use and functions at the touch of a button.

Simon Turner

Tuesday, March 11, 2008

Multi-Functional Pool Table

Pool tables typically dig a huge hole in our pockets resulting into their own marketing pitfalls. Hence, they’re out with new ways to justify their huge expense and massive real estate usage.

Moreover, they need recuperate from their downside caused by all the whacko games offered by Nintendo Wii.

To save their shrinking markets, the Pool table manufacturers are out with a new mantra, the “Fusion” Pool table/dining room table created by Aramith, our long-time leading manufacturer in the billiard industry. The multi-functionality Fusion table combines a dining table, a pool table and a game table all in one. How about a good game of pool after dinner?

Simon Turner

All That: Glitterbox Chandelier

This exclusively designed chandelier breaks all the design barriers and revitalizes the concept of the chandelier, whilst celebrating the rich traditions of this evocative and emotive expression of cut crystal. Vertical Glitterbox Chandelier is designed by George Beadle for Swarovski. Completely out-of-the-box concept, this stands tall. It includes 80 ‘twinkling’ 1 watt LED lights.

You can opt from clear, golden teak and peridot and for $US52,000, these glittering columns are sure to add uber-glamor to your d├ęcor.

Dimension - 98.5″ h a 8″w x 8″d

Simon Turner

The Billionaire Club: The Home of Bill Gates

The Home of Bill Gates

Medina, Washington

Net Worth: $58 billion

Gates' 66,000-square-foot compound is built into a hillside on the edge of Lake Washington, near Seattle. Out-of-shape visitors can skip the 84-step hike to the ground floor and opt for an elevator ride instead. Among its enviable amenities: a 60-foot swimming pool with an underwater music system, a 2,500-square-foot gym and a 1,000-square-foot dining room, which seats 24.

Wednesday, March 5, 2008

This 'Ol House

Where To Start When Renovating an Older-Style Home
The Interior: Things to Note:

Water Stains - stains can be found most commonly in these two places, ceilings and floors. Ceilings usually indicate a leaky roof and that the whole ceiling will need to be replaced. Floors mean either the ceiling has leaked so much onto the floor that now the floor is warped, or that a pipe from a bathroom, water heater, or kitchen is broken. If a pipe is broken, it could mean tearing out the walls to find the source, and if you don't find it right away, the cost to find it adds up and up and up.

Sloping Floors - walk into the home and take a good look at the floors. You will be able to see slopes easily by looking at the baseboards and the floors relation to them. Walk on them and you can tell if you go downhill. Start thinking of foundation problems, or settling issues. We have even seen supporting beams cut to put a pipe through, thus causing floors to sag under the unsupported weight.

Charred Attic Trusses - many historic homes used coal fireplaces instead of wood. The burning embers would sometimes leak through chimney mortar and cause attic fires. In the home above, during the inspection we found a 2200 square foot third level was completely charred. The good news was that by speaking with neighbors, the fire had been 60 years before and the wood was so thick that the fire barely affected the structural integrity. You might not be so lucky and find the damage was so great that the entire truss structure must be replaced.

Original Plumbing & Wiring - if the home still has cast iron pipes and the original electrical system, then you are in for a huge cost to replace these items. But to do a project right and to keep the old wiring from burning the house down, they really need to be replaced. For a 4000 square foot home, it might cost you $15,000 for the electrical and another $15,000 for the plumbing, and that is just to install it. It doesn't include building the bathrooms, or installing fixtures.

Wall and Trim Paint - take a good look at the paint on trim and determine how thick it is. Over the last hundred years there is no telling how many coats have been applied and how much of it is lead based paint. Lead based paint is a health hazard if ingested, especially by young children. It is best to get rid of all paint in the home through stripping (a timely & costly process). But once the original wood is revealed, sanded, and stained, the value of the home has greatly increased in the eye's of a buyer.

Cracks in the Walls - if you see alot of cracks in the walls, beware! Most likely the walls are the original plaster and have been taped repeatedly over the years. As soon as you go to hang a picture with a nail, the "walls will come tumbling down". Replacing the plaster is expensive as most likely you will have to use thicker Sheetrock and account for the higher ceilings. Sometimes the cracks are also a sign of settling issues or structural problems. Best to have a contractor take a look at it to assess any problems.

Cracked Windows, Rotten Sashes, Broken Pulleys - if the original windows are still in the home, make sure to open each window. Check for rotten wood around the frame and on the sashes and cracked windows. If the window won't open, chances are the rope pulleys are broken and need to be repaired. See the costs starting to add up?

How Fix Your Home's Leaky Windows

One of the most common problems found in older homes is a window that leaks air.

In the winter the cold air comes in, condenses on the window, and in some cases freezes. In the summer, your precious air conditioning is sucked out into the warm atmosphere causing your compressor to go into overdrive. What do you do? Here are some options that will not only stop that whistling noise, but save you money as well.

Loose windows - some older homes are not properly weather-stripped. Applying the proper type is the least expensive fix. For some homes, a spring bronze weather-stripping can be used, which is a strip of brass that is inserted between the sash and the jamb. If this is not available, you can also buy a vinyl strip that does on the outside and inside of the window sashes.

Insulation - it might come as a surprise to you, but some older homes are not properly insulated around the windows or in the exterior walls. Fixing this problem might take some time and cause some headaches for you will have to take off the window trim or some of the drywall (maybe even plaster if your home is old enough). The best advice is to call in a professional insulation company who can do the work right and give you an estimate of cost.

Worse case scenario is you might have to replace the window. Vinyl windows are the norm today, but if you have a historic home with double hung wood windows, finding a company that manufactures them could prove difficult. Either shop salvage companies that specialize in old home fixtures, or call someone who can custom make the window.

Simon Turner

LUXURY ESTATES: The $US125million Finest Estate in America

"Fleur De Lys" - The Finest Estate in America

350 Carolwood Holmby Hills, CA 90077