Charleston, SC Real Estate News

By Carolyn Dubrofsky
(Charleston Your Home )
When you plan your holidays, do you ever factor in the local cuisine when deciding where to go? The number of travelers seeking culinary adventures has definitely risen over the past few years, in fact, according to the Travel Industry Association of America, more than 58% of American leisure travelers take culinary or wine-related activities at their destination into account before booking.With this in mind, editors of travel Web site Travelocity ranked international cities as top “foodie” destinations and Charleston, SC made the 10-city list. I've had the good fortune to live in two of the destinations on the list and can attest to the wonderful food scenes in both cities. As a self proclaimed "foodie" I consider Charleston a foodie's paradise with a seemingly never ending supply of n...
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By Jim & Maria Hart, Charleston, SC Real Estate
(Brand Name Real Estate)
Yesterday, June 14th, the residents of North Charleston headed to the polls to elect their mayor for the next four years. It was a victory for the incumbent, Keith Summey.  He has held the position since 1994, and is happy to continue leading his city for the next four years. His competition, Hillary Douglas, did give the mayor a run for his money.  Summey received 67% of the votes, while Douglas received the other 33%. Mayor Summey says, "It's an outstanding margin over a tough candidate. He ran a good campaign, but the people of North Charleston have spoken and we'll have to move along for another four years." Mayor Summey hopes the huge support will help him in meeting his goals for North Charleston in his upcoming term.  
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By Jim & Maria Hart, Charleston, SC Real Estate
(Brand Name Real Estate)
Today I was listening to the afternoon news, and I heard a story that I'm still having a hard time believing. They said that the remains of a leatherback sea turtle were found in the Brandymill subdivision in Summerville, SC.  The unbelievable part is that they claim that these remains are 30 million years old! I can't even fathom that length of time.  If they would have said 3000 or even 300,000 years, then I could see that.  But 30 million years is so much harder to wrap my head around. We have friends who actually just moved out of that subdivision.  If they were still there, I would have been on the phone to them to start digging up their backyard! We all know that at one time all of this land was completely under water, and this is just a bit more evidence of that.  I might see wh...
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By Jim & Maria Hart, Charleston, SC Real Estate
(Brand Name Real Estate)
What awesome news! We have been begging for some relief, and it's finally here! It's just been released that Governor Mark Sanford will sign a bill to help alleviate the problems coastal homeowners in South Carolina have been facing.  This is a huge victory for homeowners in South Carolina.  The press release is as follows: "Columbia, S.C. - June 8, 2007 - Gov. Mark Sanford will travel to Charleston and Myrtle Beach this Monday (June 11, 2007) to sign newly passed legislation aimed at alleviating insurance costs for coastal homeowners. The legislation creates incentives for insurers to do business in South Carolina, and creates tax credits for people who make their homes more storm resistant or choose to self-insure. The bill signings will take place at the following times and location...
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By Lee and Katherine Keadle
(Carolina One Real Estate)
We are writing to let you know about a big event coming up in the Charleston area.  The Spoleto Festival USA will take place from May 25 to June 10.  This seventeen-day arts festival will feature a broad range of performances, including theater, classical ballet, jazz, chamber music, and modern dance.  There will also be local artists displaying their work in Marion Square.A Pulitzer Prize-winning composer, Gian Carlo Menotti, began the Spoleto Festival in Italy in 1958 to showcase new American artists in Europe.  As Spoleto's popularity grew, the organizers started an American version of the festival in 1977.  Of all the American cities, they chose Charleston to be the  permanent host for the festival because of the city's small size, cultured audience, and history of supporting the ar...
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By Lee and Katherine Keadle
(Carolina One Real Estate)
When I talk to clients about living in Charleston, I am always interested to hear the different reasons they have for moving to (or remaining in) Charleston.  Over the years I have heard probably hundreds of reasons, but I've managed to narrow it down to the top ten reasons to live in Charleston:1.  "I want to live near the beach!"  With all the beaches Charleston has to offer, we have to ask clients what kind of beach they're looking for.  Folly Beach is a favorite among surfers and other laid-back individuals.  If you're looking for seclusion, then maybe a private beach like Kiawah, Seabrook, or Wild Dunes is a good start.  Isle of Palms and Sullivan's Island fall somewhere in between, and they both have public access areas.    2.  "There are always things to do."  A lot of people mus...
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King Street is a shopper's fantasy come to life. Imagine it, a shopping street nearly 20 blocks long, adorned with palmetto trees, charming architecture, inns, cafes, and extraordinary shops. But don’t take my word for it. An urban retail consultant who in 2003 presented the city of Charleston with a 10-year plan to improve its central business district recently returned to check on the city’s progress.Guess what? – He liked what he saw. Cleaner sidewalks, less graffiti, well-lit parking garages and blocks of new streetscape were positive signs for Robert Gibbs, a specialist in the urban retail component and president of Gibbs Planning Group of Birmingham, MI. Gibbs said that in less than five years, 70% to 80% of his plan has been implemented. Gibbs now ranks Charleston’s central busin...
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By Carolyn Dubrofsky
(Charleston Your Home )
The creators of CoolPeopleCare.org, a philanthropic Web site based in Nashville, announced today the expansion of the Web site to Charleston, SC. The addition is part of CoolPeopleCare's month-long initiative to expand the site into 30 new cities during the month of June. The initiative is called "CoolPeopleCare's 30/30."Charleston will be added this Friday.Charleston is the 15th featured city for CoolPeopleCare that highlights the little things individuals can do to improve their community. The site also lists nonprofit and charitable events for each city. For its launch in South Carolina, CoolPeopleCare partnered with Trio Solutions Inc., a Charleston-based marketing firm that has a long history of working with non-profits.“As soon as we heard about CoolPeopleCare we wanted to get inv...
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By Carolyn Dubrofsky
(Charleston Your Home )
Make sure you visit Charleston’s newest sustainable “community:” GoGreenCharleston.org.It’s a great new online community for all things green and sustainable here in the Charleston area. Kudos to Chad Norman and his crew for putting together a beautiful site with great analysis and community-building features, including:ForumsGoogle Maps Mashup of Recycling Locations in CharlestonFrequently updated blogWays to go greenVisit GoGreenCharleston.org and join the conversation.   
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By Jim & Maria Hart, Charleston, SC Real Estate
(Brand Name Real Estate)
So as of yesterday, June 1st, an extra 1% has been added to the state sales tax.  The South Carolina sales tax was 5%, so now we are up to 6%. The items that will not be affected by this increase are items with a set tax, like cars and boats, and groceries.  The grocery tax was lowered earlier this year to 3.5%, and is scheduled to be lowered even more later this year. But this increase is really not all that bad.  Why, you ask?  Because of what we will get in return.  South Carolinians have been fighting to have property taxes reduced or abolished for years and years.  The onset of this additional state sales tax is a preempt to just that. By the end of the year, the state is set to get rid of all property taxes on primary residences.  Yay!  This is a savings of thousands of dollars, ...
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By Carolyn Dubrofsky
(Charleston Your Home )
The city of Charleston’s Board of Architectural Review on Wednesday voted 5-1 against preliminary approval of plans for Marion Square Hotel, a 185-room structure that would replace the former Charleston County Library at 404 King St.Downtown area residents, officials from preservation organizations, developers, architects and city officials crammed a meeting room in the Charleston County School District Building on Calhoun Street for about two hours to debate the design of the eight-story hotel, which would cap the northwest corner of Marion Square across from St. Matthew’s Lutheran Church and next to the Old Citadel.Officials from the Historic Charleston Foundation and the Preservation Society of Charleston said they did not oppose plans for a hotel on the site, but think the current d...
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By Carolyn Dubrofsky
(Charleston Your Home )
It’s the show everyone is barking about. “Dogs: The Musical” premieres at Piccolo Spoleto this year. The show is an innovative work by South Carolinian Paddy Bell and features the musical wizardry of composer/arranger Dick Goodwin. Although this quest-like adventure follows the classical model of comedy and tragedy through the perspective of dogs, don’t be fooled, this is as much about humans as canines. The show explores the unique relationship between humans and dogs and their common desires to belong and to be loved. The canine commentary provides high comedy but also profound drama as dogs discover that life is not all bones and biscuits.  The only pedigree required to enter the DOGS House is an age limit of 10 (no younger pups, please). WOOF WOOF.Footlight Players Theatre20 Queen S...
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By Carolyn Dubrofsky
(Charleston Your Home )
   Piccolo Spoleto joins forces with the Charleston Jazz Initiative and Fotos for Humanity to bring you a tale of two cities’ jazz traditions: Charleston and New Orleans. The high-energy block party will shine the spotlight on some of the finest jazz musicians from both cities, each showing off their musical skills individually and then together in an unforgettable combined performance. Check out the Sister City Jazz Block Party from 7-10 p.m. Saturday at the U.S. Custom House (corner of Concord and Market streets). Downtown will be transformed into the perfect blend of New Orleans French Quarter and Holy City in this tribute to the rebirth of New Orleans jazz since Hurricane Katrina. And the best part: there is no charge to attend. Hope to see you there!
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By Carolyn Dubrofsky
(Charleston Your Home )
Secret Tribunals—Coercion—Torture—Missing Weapons of Mass Destruction The Time is 1822; the Place is Charleston, South Carolina. Denmark Vesey: Insurrection brings to life the dramatic story of Denmark Vesey, a free black man, who along with 34 others, was executed in the summer of 1822 for allegedly plotting a massive slave uprising in Charleston. But was Denmark Vesey’s fate sealed by insurrection or injustice? Even at the time, troubling questions were raised about the very nature of the secret tribunals convened to try Vesey and his co-defendants. Set on the eve of Vesey’s execution, Denmark Vesey: Insurrection ponders the lingering and unanswered questions of this controversial case, a case that remains relevant even to the present day. From Charleston Stage playwright Julian Wiles...
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By Carolyn Dubrofsky
(Charleston Your Home )
Peninsula shoppers can now get a taste of Key West fashion without traveling to the Sunshine State.Key West, Fla.-based Biton, an upscale men's and women's clothing retailer, opened a store last week at 275 King Street in Downtown Charleston, SC.The new owners have completely revamped the large, long-vacant property at King and Wentworth Street, using two of the building's three stories as selling space.The co-owners are husband and wife Yoram and Courtney Biton. The local store managers are Shelby Tant and Danny Shemesh.In business since the 1990s, the company has four stores in Florida under the Biton and Evan & Elle banners, including two locations in Key West.The company's Web site, www.shopbiton.com, describes its merchandise as "designer clothing and accessories, including the Bit...
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By Carolyn Dubrofsky
(Charleston Your Home )
 Love it or hate it, Spoleto is without question the most frenetic, vibrant, passionate 17 days of Charleston’s year (May 25 - June 10), two and a half extraordinary weeks during which our city’s love affair with itself seems entirely justified. Don’t let the cynics tell you Spoleto is just another arts festival. It’s anything but. Spoleto Festival USA with envelope-pushing theatre companies from as far away as Ireland, France, the Netherlands, and the hinterlands of New York City; three full-scale operatic productions, each created from scratch just for us by internationally acclaimed artists; a dance program that draws equally from Tel Aviv, Tbilisi, Montreal, and New England; more than 100 of the finest young symphonic musicians on earth. There are only a handful of festivals in the ...
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By Jim & Maria Hart, Charleston, SC Real Estate
(Brand Name Real Estate)
The new forecast is out, and it doesn't look very good. The forecasters at NOAA (The National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration) are calling for: 13-17 Tropical Storms 7-10 Hurricanes 3-5 Major Hurricanes (Category 3,4 or 5) This year we seem to have switched from the El Nino activity we've seen the past few years to La Nina, which is the reason for the increase in expected hurricane activity.  I'm not sure how these things are determined, but what I do know is the threat that Charleston faces every single hurricane season, starting June 1st and lasting until November 30th.    I was here in 1989 when our last major storm hit - Hurricane Hugo.  My family decided to ride out the storm at home.  We spent all day preparing - pulling plants inside, tying down everything imaginable in t...
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By Jim & Maria Hart, Charleston, SC Real Estate
(Brand Name Real Estate)
Ginn Clubs & Resorts will sponsor and stage its second LPGA tournament - the Ginn Tribute Hosted by Annika Sorenstam at the Arnold Palmer designed Rivertowne Country Club Course, May 31-June 3, 2007.Being offered is the third largest purse in the 2007 LPGA schedule - $2.6 million, with the champion's check being $390,000.Among the LPGA's world class players that will be vying for the $390,000 winner's check at the Ginn Tribute Hosted by Annika are reigning Player of the Year, LPGA money list and Vare Trophy winner Lorena Ochoa, LPGA Tour Hall of Famer Karrie Webb, ever-popular fan favorites Paula Creamer and Natalie Gulbis, as well as 2007 Kraft Nabisco Championship winner Morgan Pressel, 2006 ADT Championship ($1 million) winner Julieta Granada and 2006 Louise Suggs Rolex Rookie of th...
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By Jim & Maria Hart, Charleston, SC Real Estate
(Brand Name Real Estate)
On Friday, May 18th, the Charleston Visitors Center Bus Shed on John Street will come alive with the rhythmic melodies of Jamaica during Reggae Fever.  This event is going to feature Shalin from Trinidad and Tobago, Gemini 1820, Coolie G from Belize with Soul Lion, and the famous Mystic Vibrations from Jamaica. The doors are going to open at 6pm and the bands will start around 7pm.  There will be an array of Caribbean food and drinks available for purchase. All of the proceeds from this event will benefit two nonprofit organizations: the SC Caribbean Festival, Inc. and Healthy Lifestyle Network. Tickets are $7 in advance, and can be purchased at the Majestic Music Store in West Ashley or at the West Indian Mini Mart on Dorchester Road.  Tickets are also available at the door, but those...
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By Jim & Maria Hart, Charleston, SC Real Estate
(Brand Name Real Estate)
Tall Ships Charleston 2007 will feature the Charleston Maritime Festival on land and majestic tall ships from around the globe on water. Many of the world's most famous classic tall ships will descend on the waterfront starting May 17, 2007 to be viewed from several waterfront locales. Governor Sanford will greet the ships and that evening honor the Captains and Naval Officers at the Governor's Celebration of Sailing. Tall Ships Charleston is an official port of the Tall Ships Challenge series managed by the American Sail Training Association (ASTA). In fact Charleston is the very first port of this multi-ship voyage traveling north up the eastern seaboard. Tall ships from around the globe will gather here to celebrate the launch of the Spirit of South Carolina ship, before departing f...
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