When I popped open my favorite section of the Wall Street Journal this morning – The Mansion section (of course!), this headline caught my eye – “Charleston Lures the Young and the Restless.” My first thought was that the story was going to be about Millennials moving here, but I was dead wrong.
It’s all about the GenXers and young Boomers coming to Charleston – not to retire, but to live – vivaciously and delightedly. After all, isn’t 40 the new 20? Yes, this article speaks the truth. I encounter scads of people in their 40s and 50s, tired of the noise and the rat race of larger cities (particularly New York), who decide to dump it all and head South. Life is easier here. Slower? Yes. But never ever boring.
I also noted the article covers two of my favorites homes in Downtown Charleston, worlds apart architecturally, but equally as magnificent.
The Villa Margherita
I wrote of this stunning manse back in October 2012, via a post called the “Sale of the Mysterious Villa Margherita…“. Every time I went for a walk around White Point Gardens, I would stop and gaze at its crumbling, neglected facade. To me there is always beauty in ruin, so occasionally I would take some photographs. You’ll find them in the September 2015 issue of Charleston Magazine, in the article Vive La Villa! Today, I still stop and gaze. In awe. In wonder. In appreciation to the Hammonds for bringing this beauty back to life. And I am gaga over that blue door color.
The Sky Residence
This. This changed what I think Charleston can be. When I first heard of this project by well-known local architect Kevan Hoertdoerfer and GC Renew Urban, frankly, I couldn’t believe they had the you-know-whats to pull it off. Air rights?? Who ever heard of air rights in Charleston?? And contemporary architecture? I know someone must have turned over in their grave. But this incredible team and the owner did it. And it is extraordinary. A couple months ago I hiked up to the top of a nearby parking garage, taking photos from every landing.
If you haven’t already noticed, we are in the midst of a new Charleston ya’ll. Not just a Charleston for Charlestonians. Nor a Charleston for just college students, tourists and retirees. A Charleston for everyone. And not just a Charleston of history and the past, but one with an innovative, energetic, and refreshingly eccentric approach to living life in this beautiful Lowcountry we all call home.
(If you don’t have an online WSJ account so you can read the full article, here’s a handy dandy PDF – “Charleston Charms Home Buyers – WSJ”)