10 Ultra-Modern Homes Fit for the ‘Hunger Games’ Capitol

Whatever their shortcomings, residents of The Capitol in “The Hunger Games” undeniably have style. It’s clear from their clothing and their gleaming high-rises. Here’s a roundup of ultra-modern homes that envisions Capitol-style architecture outside the big city.

Provincetown Village, MA

6 Pilgrims Landing, Provincetown Village, MA
For sale: $3.399 million

Provincetown Village, MA

Dune living doesn’t get any lovelier than this home overlooking a salt marsh and Cape Cod Bay. The ceilings soar, and the walls of glass ensure nature is visible from every angle.

See more homes for sale in Provincetown.

Ketchum, ID

214 Timber Ln, Ketchum, ID
For sale: $5.8 million

Ketchum, ID

Set on 4.5 acres in the mountains, this luxury home spans more than 6,000 square feet and includes a wine room and a four-car garage.

Check out more listings in Ketchum.

Napa, CA

7830 Silverado Trl, Napa, CA
For sale: $19.95 million

Napa, CA

Topping 8,000 square feet, this ultra-modern home sits on 60 acres in America’s wine country and boasts a home theater, infinity-edge pool and 2,000-bottle wine cave.

Check out more listings in the Napa area.

Sedona, AZ

105 Canyon Vista Rd, Sedona, AZ
For sale: $4.74 million

Sedona, AZ

This home in the heart of red rock country uses natural materials and modern lines to create a work of art with stunning views.

Check out what else is on the market in Sedona.

Seattle, WA

2304 37th Ave SW, Seattle, WA
For sale: $2.385 million


Whatever the weather, this modern home’s enormous sliding glass doors let you take in views of Seattle, Puget Sound and the mountains.

See more homes for sale in Seattle.

Kula, HI

83 Ikena Kai Pl, Kula, HI
For sale: $2.75 million

Kula, HI

From this home’s 20-foot atrium, you can take in lush gardens and a 50-foot infinity edge pool that seems to flow into the home.

Check out more homes on the market in Maui County.

Dana Point, CA

43 Beach View Ave, Dana Point, CA
For sale: $14.5 million

Dana Point, CA

This coastal home is surrounded by water: a pool, fountain and water cascading down a tile glass wall. That’s in addition to the expansive ocean views visible through its glass walls and doors.

See more homes for sale in Dana Point.

Destin, FL

932 Bambi Dr, Destin, FL
For sale: $2.495 million

Destin, FL

The glass entrance to this home opens into a three-story living space with walls of windows facing a bay. A floating staircase and high-design kitchen complete the contemporary artistic vibe.

Check out more homes for sale in Destin.

Boulder, CO

1133 Timber Ln, Boulder, CO
For sale: $8.9 million

Boulder, CO

Bringing nature indoors is a hallmark of modern architecture, and this home takes that literally with its indoor waterfall and faux starlit foyer.

View more listings in Boulder.

Jackson, WY

50 W Calliope Dr, Jackson, WY
For sale: $15 million

Jackson, WY

Built of concrete, glass and Kota stone imported from India, this low-slung, ultra-modern home calls to mind Frank Lloyd Wright, but with more modern materials and technology.

See what else is listed in Jackson.


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What It’s Really Like to Live in Boise

Whether you’re considering a long-term move to Boise or are planning a short term visit, the Boise real estate market is hot.

Boise offers a plethora of outdoor amenities, including stunning views of the Great Basin desert to the south, multiple rivers meandering throughout the city and the Rocky Mountains to the east. Additionally, this city includes several tight-knit communities where culture flourishes. Head to the Boise’s Basque Block for a unique meal, the Hyde Park Street Fair for local crafts or Table Rock for a scenic hike.

Check out the locals’ scoop on Boise’s best places to move, shop, dine and hike.

First image

The Boise Train Depot

1. What’s the best free attraction in Boise?

I’ve always loved visiting the park outside the Boise Train Depot. Not only do you get to see an old Union Pacific train, but the park gives you a fantastic view of the city; it never fails to amaze me. — Mariella Hunt of Life, Literature, Coffee 

First Thursday offers free wine sampling and art in Downtown Boise and has my vote for best free attraction. It is fun to taste different wines from the surrounding region and check out our local artists at the same time. It is a great way to spend an evening in downtown Boise. — Shari of Pure Grace Farm

The best free attraction would have to be Table Rock. I know hiking isn’t for everyone, but you would be crazy to pass up on a Table Rock hike. It is a fairly easy hike; you’ll see kids, parents, teenagers, grandparents and dogs making the trek on any given day. Once you get to the top you’ll understand why Boise is called the City of Trees. It is absolutely breathtaking. — Deidre of Deidre Emme

2. What neighborhood would you move to if you’re seeking a beautiful view?

Quail Ridge, in the surrounding Boise foothills (or anything in the foothills for that matter!), offers stunning views of the entire Treasure Valley, but is a little pricey. If you’re looking for a view of the foothills, choose a location in South Boise or Meridian on the Bench! — Annelise Rowe of Aunie Sauce

I would have to say anywhere in the North End. It isn’t a view of the city, but it without a doubt the best view from your front porch. There is so much character on the North End because it is full of historic homes. The streets are lined with beautiful tall trees. And, as you drive down the streets, you feel like you just entered a movie. — Deidre of Deidre Emme 

3. What are your favorite potato toppings? 

The Great Potato Truck. Source: Deidre of Deidre Emme

Chili, sour cream and cheese. — Emily Benson of The Benson Street

I love my potatoes with classic chili, or else with a Peruvian cream called huancaina sauce; it’s a spicy cheese sauce traditionally served with potatoes and eggs. — Mariella Hunt of Life, Literature, Coffee

I grew up putting homemade ranch dressing and grated cheese on my baked potatoes. I also love real bacon bits and steamed broccoli on mine with cheese! Mmmmm! — Tonia L. Clark of Whynotmom

4. What’s your favorite venue at the Hyde Park Street Fair?

Any or all of the food! Funnel cakes by far are my favorite! — Jess of Positively Oakes

Spending time in the Hyde Park area is always fun, but add a street fair with live music, great food and a wine garden … perfection. — Shari of Purse Grace Farms

5. Why do you think Boise was ranked #1 as the best city for kids? 

Home grown values and respect for others is ingrained in the Boisean culture, making it a safe place and a great environment to raise a family. — Shari of Pure Grace Farms

Boise may have a “big city” feel (a nice variety of events are always going on!), but overall the community is very much small-town minded. We look out for each other. — Linda Greaves of The Dragonfruit Diaries

6. What’s your favorite mural in “Freak Alley”?

Jess and family enjoying a mural at Freak Alley. Source: Jess of Positively Oakes

I absolutely love the MLK mural made of broken glass. It is stunning! — McKenzie Guymon of Girl Loves Glam

The Jimi Hendrix mural is unique because it is constructed out of small mirrors. The poetry is also striking. — Mariella Hunt of Life, Literature, Coffee

There are so many good ones up right now, and that happens to be one of my favorite spots to walk to when I’m downtown. Recently, I can’t get over this colorful, monster-themed mural by Dane Goodwin. The pastel shades chosen are playful. Cartoon monsters are so fun! — Linda Greaves of The Dragonfruit Diaries

7. What’s your favorite restaurant on Boise’s Basque Block? What would you order?

I actually love Epi’s which is in downtown Meridian (near Boise). The mushroom soup is the best I’ve EVER had to this day! — Tonia L. Clark of Whynotmom

The Basque Market! Order the paella … it’s divine! They only serve it on Wednesdays and Fridays at noon for lunch or Thursdays for dinner at 6:00 PM. Be sure to be there right on time because they sell out quick! — Annelise Rowe of Aunie Sauce

8. Would you rather visit Bogus Basin Mountain during the summer or winter?

Winter. The snow is just as nice as the snow in Sun Valley, only you aren’t paying the price of a “celebrity” ski hill! — McKenzie Guymon of Girl Loves Glam

Summer — technically FALL, the leaves are falling and it’s gorgeous! Go up there on a fall night with hot cocoa and blankets and it’s so much fun to watch the stars! — Jess of Positively Oakes 

9. What’s your favorite item at the Boise Farmer’s Market?

Farmers Market-Deidre Emme

Deidre enjoying food at the Boise Farmer’s Market. Source: Deidre of Deidre Emme

This may be odd, but there’s this lady who sells really cute, handmade soaps. My most recent purchase was a white tea and ginger soap that resembles a cupcake more than a bar of soap! — Linda Greaves of The Dragonfruit Diaries

There is the best booth with handmade wood signs that are full of great quotes and a lot of different designs that have to do with Idaho pride. I love that people can celebrate this great state in their decor. — McKenzie Guymon of Girl Loves Glam

I can’t get enough of the fresh baked croissants at the Boise Farmer’s Market. I head straight for them whenever I am there. The next step is coffee. After that I can take my time and meander as I fill up my basket. There is always something new to see. I am a huge fan. — Shari of Pure Grace Farms

10. What’s your favorite downtown boutique? Why?

Apricot Lane! They have cute style, are priced well and have a lot to choose from for the whole family! — Jess of Positively Oakes

There are a lot of fun shops downtown that you will be drawn to because the name is familiar, but my favorite is Swank Boutique because it is unique to Boise. They’ve got a little of everything to make you feel like you entered a different shop than any other in downtown. Plus they have a Swank a-go-go truck which brings the boutique around town which I think is the most fun feature! — Deidre of Deidre Emme

11. Since it’s nicknamed the City of Trees, what’s your favorite hike in Boise?


Oh wow, there are so many great hiking places here. My favorite by far would have to be Table Rock. But if you go make sure you get there just as the sun is setting for a superb view! But bring flashlights for the hike back down! — Tonia L. Clark of Whynotmom

We like to hike at the Military reserve downtown, because there are cool rock formations such as Elephant Rock. There are some nice creeks there. A few creeks run beside beautiful red, iron-filled rock faces; the striking colors of those rocks are a memorable landmark. It’s also fun to hike Table Rock because of the view of the city. The caves up on top are fun to explore; it’s a challenging hike, but worth it. — Mariella Hunt of Life, Literature, Coffee

12. What’s the best way to spend an afternoon on the Boise Greenbelt?

Drop your bikes at Joe’s Crab Shack in Garden City. Maybe enjoy a margarita (or two!). Then bike east all the way to Lucky 13 and grab a slice of pie and a cookie. Don’t worry, you’ll burn off all those delicious calories on your bike back! — Annelise Rose of Aunie Sauce 

Floating the river is by far the best way to spend your time on the Greenbelt. The water temperatures can get cold for some, so I recommend going on a good hot summer day. Plan on it taking up about 3 to 4 hours of your day and bring snacks and drinks in a waterproof cooler you can put on your raft. The view along the way is worth every minute! — Tonia L. Clark of Whynotmom

13. What’s the best way to show your BSU football pride?

Aunie Sauce BSU

Annelise showing her true colors at BSU. Source: Annelise Rowe of Aunie Sauce

Be sure to go to a game and experience the blue turf in person — dressed in your Boise State gear of course. — Emily Benson of The Benson Street

Deck yourself out in blue and orange, and if you happen to own a horse head mask, rock it with pride! The home games are always very exciting and the amount of team spirit is incredibly infectious. You’ll be swept away by the Bronco fans surrounding you! — Linda Greaves of The Dragonfruit Diaries 

14. What’s Boise’s next up and coming neighborhood? Why?

I believe Hidden Springs is the new up and coming neighborhood in Boise. Nestled in the foothills it offers lovely views and is close to a network of walking trails. The new housing, restaurants and schools nearby are sure to attract attention. It is easy to see how it could become the “place to be.” — Shari of Pure Grace Farms

Meridian! The corner of Linder and Chinden is alive and bustling with new commercial buildings and residential homes going in. You can bike to school, the store or a local eatery and it’s very close to the new hoppin’ place in town, The Village at Meridian.  — Annelise Rowe of Aunie Sauce


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Get a Black Friday Deal on a Home This Holiday Season

The day after Thanksgiving is universally known as the day to get started on holiday shopping and score big savings on the hottest gifts for friends and family.

But what about finding deals on a new home? It turns out, shoppers can get those, too. Zillow’s second annual analysis on bargain home shopping is here, revealing the cities offering the biggest home discounts and the most price cuts.

Zillow looked at two metrics for the analysis: the actual home discount as a percentage of the original listing price, and the percentage of listings with a recent price cut, as of September 2015.

And now — drum roll, please — for the winners:

Detroit comes in at number one, for the second year in a row, as the city to get the biggest home discount. The median discount given on a home in Detroit is 16.7 percent. Detroit leads by a large margin; Cleveland, OH is the next-best city to get a discount, with a median discount of 7.6 percent.

Check out Albuquerque, NM and Omaha, NE for the greatest odds of finding a home with a price cut: 23.6 percent of homes in Albuquerque have a price cut, and 23.5 percent of homes in Omaha.

Below is the complete list of city winners. Happy Black Friday, and happy shopping!


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House of the Week: Ski Into This Log Home and Catch the Sunset

Growing up in New Jersey, Mike Donnelly used to sketch log homes with mountains behind them and the sun coming up.

Decades later, the Florida landscaper and his wife, Mary, built a house in Colorado that fits that bill — except it faces the sunset.

The 6,000-plus-square-foot log home in Steamboat Springs boasts 5 bedrooms and 5 bathrooms, plus a detached guesthouse with a bedroom and loft — all with sweeping views of the Yampa Valley, beloved for its beauty and ski slopes.

It’s on the market for $4.95 million, and Donnelly is careful to explain that you can ski in, but not ski out. The home is a couple of blocks to the slope that leads to a gondola.

One of Donnelly’s favorite rooms is the octagonal “cocktail room” that sits at the corner of the house and has “such an awesome view, you could just hang there and have your coffee or morning devotions,” Donnelly said.

A second octagonal room sits off the master suite, and it’s dubbed the sunset room. There’s a second master suite on the upper level, beside a bar and pool room where the family and their guests also play cards and throw darts.

Donnelly says his porches are “the best in all of Steamboat Springs. I’m still in love with those views … I hear John Denver. ‘Rocky Mountain High’ plays in my head when I’m out on my porch just walking around.”

Twelve rock columns support the decks, matching the grand scale of the home’s giant logs. “Instead of the standard 12 or 16 inches, we did 18 to 24 inches, and it gives it such a strong-yet-pleasant look,” Donnelly said.

He’s proud of the landscaping, which includes boulder retaining walls and trees ranging from aspen to blue spruce to white pine and junipers.

The listing agent is Chris Paoli of The Paoli Group.

Photos by Roger Wade and David Patterson


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How Household Spending Changes in Retirement

Senior Couple With Credit Card Doing Online Shopping On LaptopOn average, households spend less once they retire—but not all households, and not in the same ways. New research from the nonpartisan Employee Benefit Research Institute (EBRI) finds that while average spending in retirement falls in the first two years in retirement, nearly half (45.9 percent) of retired households actually spent more than they did just before retirement. That declines over time, and by the sixth year of retirement, just a third (33.4 percent) spend more than they did preretirement.

“We also found that households that spent more in the first two years of retirement were not exclusively high-income households,” says Sudipto Banerjee, research associate at EBRI and author of the report. “Rather, they were distributed across all income levels.” 

EBRI’s analysis examines how household spending changes in the immediate years following retirement by analyzing the spending patterns of a fixed group of households up to six years after they retire. It uses data from the Health and Retirement Study (HRS), which is a survey of a nationally representative sample of U.S. households with individuals over age 50 and is the most comprehensive survey of older Americans in the nation and covers topics such as health, assets, income, and labor-force status in detail. 

Additional data come from Consumption and Activities Mail Survey (CAMS), which was started in 2001 as a supplement to the HRS and contains detailed household spending information. 

Among the major findings in the EBRI report:

  • In the first two years of retirement, median household spending dropped by 5.5 percent from preretirement spending levels, and by 12.5 percent by the fourth year of retirement. But the spending reduction slowed down after the fourth year.
  • In the first two years of retirement, 2 in 5 households (39.3 percent) spent less than 80 percent of their preretirement spending. By the sixth year of retirement, a majority (53.1 percent) of households did so.
  • In the first two years of retirement, 28.0 percent of households spent more than 120 percent of their preretirement spending. By the sixth year of retirement 23.4 percent of households still did so.
  • The median household has a home mortgage payment before retirement but none after retirement, indicating paying off mortgage could be a factor in the timing of retirement.

The full report, “Change in Household Spending After Retirement: Results from a Longitudinal Sample,” can be found here.

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