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Featured Open Homes

OPEN HOUSE: 33 Pigeon Hollow Road in San Rafael

November 21, 2014

002_Front Garden
Where: 33 Pigeon Hollow Road in San Rafael (listing | virtual tour)
Open: Sunday, November 23rd, from 2:00 to 4:00 pm.
This exquisite contemporary remodeled almost new home sits on a gorgeous sun-filled 1+ acre. Knoll-top setting provides privacy, serenity and gorgeous views for this gated estate. Custom new interior with high-end modern finishes. The main home is four bedrooms and three bathrooms – with a separate guest suite. The home also features a beautiful kitchen with Ceasarstone countertops and a great room with vaulted ceilings and a fireplace.
This home is listed by Shelley Reynolds of Alain Pinel Realtors Corte Madera.
Offered at: $1,999,000
See more homes for sale in San Rafael. | Visit our Marin community page.

Notable Listings / Sales

Featured Home: 110 Mountain View Ave in San Rafael

August 22, 2014

001_The Dominican Rose
Where: 110 Mountain View Avenue in San Rafael (listing | virtual tour)
This magnificent Georgian Estate covers nearly two beautifully landscaped level acres in the heart of Dominican. A three-time Marin Designer Showcase, this exquisitely remodeled home of approx. 8000 sf. features 5 en-suite bedroom / baths & 2.5 additional bathroom. The remodeled kitchen and family room open to outside. The home also features a separate media room, a classic formal dining room, library and a 700 bottle, temperature controlled wine cellar. The grounds include heritage trees, roses, a fountain, huge resort like pool with 2 diving boards and 2 slides, a spa, pool cabana with kitchen and 2 baths, and a secret pond with waterfall and bocce ball court. This home truly is resort-style living
This home is listed by Lindy Emrich of Alain Pinel Realtors Corte Madera – Central Marin.
Offered at: $4,995,000
See more homes for sale in San Rafael. | Visit our Marin community page.

APR in the News

Alain Pinel Realtors Strengthens Presence in San Francisco and Wine Country

August 13, 2014

Rick Turley promoted to Managing Broker of San Francisco and Sonoma offices; Tim Freeman named North Bay Director of Career Development

Rick Turley and Tim Freeman
SARATOGA, California (August 13, 2014) — Alain Pinel Realtors (APR), the fifth largest residential real estate firm in the United States, announced the promotion of Rick Turley to Vice President & Managing Broker of the San Francisco and Sonoma offices, effective August 12. The firm also named Tim Freeman, formerly Manager of Coldwell Banker’s largest residential real estate office in Sonoma, as North Bay Director of Career Development.
Turley replaces Tim Murray, who will continue with the firm, transitioning into a role as a Realtor focusing on high-end properties and international investors in both the San Francisco and Wine Country markets. Murray, who has been with APR for seven years, opened the firm’s San Francisco office locations and oversaw over 100 sales associates. He helped develop the firm’s commercial presence by overseeing the APR Investment Group, who are now the #1 sellers of apartment buildings in the city.
“With the real estate market booming in San Francisco and more Silicon Valley entrepreneurs investing in high-end homes in the Wine Country, this is an opportune time to broaden our presence in these regions,” said Paul Hulme, APR President, Founder and CEO. “Rick’s strong leadership and Tim’s deep knowledge of the real estate market and coaching skills bring the best of both worlds to our clients –comprehensive real estate services and the most knowledgeable agents in the business.”
Turley previously served as APR’s VP of Strategic Planning and Growth for San Francisco and Wine Country. In his new role, he will be responsible for day-to-day operations and growing APR’s presence in The City and North Bay. Turley brings 28 years of real estate experience, including 14 years as a high performing sales agent, and the remaining 14 in managerial roles including manager of a high volume San Frnacisco office and as President of Coldwell Banker Residential Brokerage’s San Francisco Bay Area Regions.
Freeman will be responsible for training new and current agents, as well as providing mentoring, marketing and on-going coaching assistance. Prior to joining APR, Freeman managed Coldwell Banker’s largest office by dollar volume in Sonoma County and Wine Country. Before working in real estate, he was Principal of Neveric, LLC, an investment banking company and Assistant Corporate Controller at Informix Corporation. He holds a bachelor’s degree in Business Administration from California State University, Hayward; and is a California certified public accountant.

APR in the News

Alain Pinel Realtors Hires Tim Freeman as North Bay Director of Career Development

August 4, 2014

Seasoned Real Estate Professional Will Oversee Training and Coaching in Eight Offices

Tim Freeman
Alain Pinel Realtors (APR), the fifth largest real estate firm in the United States, today announced the hiring of Tim Freeman, former Manager of Coldwell Banker’s largest office in Sonoma County, as North Bay Director of Career Development.  In his new role, Freeman will be responsible for training new and current agents, including mentoring and on-going coaching assistance for agents at APR’s eight San Francisco and North Bay offices.
Freeman brings over a decade of real estate experience both as a sales professional and office manager to APR. After beginning his real estate career as a successful sales agent in Chicago, he was quickly promoted to an assistant managing broker where he coached and mentored the office’s 250 associates. He went on to become managing broker of Coldwell Banker’s Gold Coast office, a “luxury boutique” office with the highest average sales price in the city. He led the office until returning to the Bay Area and his most recent role as manager of the Santa Rosa office overseeing 100 sales professionals.
Prior to working in real estate, Freeman was Principal of Neveric, LLC, an investment banking company and Assistant Corporate Controller at Informix Corporation. He also held a number of positions in the accounting, finance, strategic planning and organization building for a number of firms including Deloitte & Touche, as well as major retail companies including The Gap, Inc. and The Nature Company.  A Bay Area native, Freeman holds a bachelor’s degree in Business Administration from California State University, Hayward; and is a retired California certified public accountant.
“We are very proud of and committed to our superior and comprehensive training programs for our agents and Tim is a great addition to our team,” says Executive Vice President Rainy Hake. “His wide-ranging background spanning real estate, finance, technology, and coaching make him a uniquely valuable asset in enhancing our agents’ skills and capabilities to better serve our growing client base in the North Bay.” This marks APR’s continued commitment and increased presence in the region, following last month’s hiring of Rick Turley, former President of Coldwell Banker Northern California, as VP of Strategic Planning and Growth for San Francisco and the Wine Country.

Featured Open Homes

Featured Home: 20 Montecito Road in San Rafael

June 20, 2014

Where: 20 Montecito Road in San Rafael (listing | virtual tour)
Gated entry leads to this private, resort-like retreat on an estimated 1.6 acres of level land with panoramic views of the bay, bridges, islands and Mt. Tam. The 6,000+/- square foot residence has twice been a Marin Designers Showcase. In 2013, the property was exquisitely updated again. The home features 5 bedrooms, 6 bathrooms, 2 family rooms, 2 kitchens, large office, a spa room, gracious formal and informal living areas all on 1-level and open to outside living, including: sprawling lawns, bountiful gardens tennis court, and pool. It truly has it all.
The home is listed by Lindy Emrich of Alain Pinel Realtors Corte Madera – Central Marin.
Offered at: $6,500,000
See more homes for sale in San Rafael. | Visit our Marin community page.

Notable Listings / Sales

12 Bay Area Pools on the Market Now

May 1, 2014

Luxury comes in all shapes and sizes – different things appeal to different people. But as the Bay Area is reaching record temperatures as we enter May, I think most us can agree – it certainly would be nice to have a pool. We’ve taken a look at our current inventory and found our favorite Bay Area pools from homes that are currently on the market. It’s worth taking a look and perhaps a warm day dream.
1 Faxon Road in Atherton
1 Faxon Road in Atherton
91 Isabella Avenue in Atherton
91 Isabella Avenue Atherton
166 Olive Hill Drive in Woodside
166 Olive Hill Drive Woodside
9548 Estates Drive in Gilroy
9548 Estates Drive Gilroy
499 Aguajito Road in Carmel
499 Aguajito Road Carmel
11640 Jessica Lane in Los Altos Hills
11640 Jessica Lane Los Altos Hills
19711 Canon Drive in Los Gatos
19711 Canon Drive Los Gatos
94 Laurel Grove in Ross
94 Laurel Grove Ross
117 Laurel Grove in Ross
117 Laurel Grove Ross
25 Macomber Road in Danville
25 Macomber Road Danville
5239 Blackhawk Drive in Danville
5239 Blackhawk Drive Danville
1632 Via Romero in Alamo
1632 Via Romero Alamo

Featured Open Homes

OPEN HOUSE: 555 Oak Avenue in San Anselmo

April 18, 2014


Where: 555 Oak Avenue in San Anselmo (listing | virtual tour)
When: Sunday, April 20th, from 2:00 – 4:00 pm.
Magical panoramic views across the Bay through the entire Ross Valley enchant you from this over 1.5, mostly level acre, retreat. The gated compound consists of a charming three bedroom, two bath updated main house with open floor plan, separate office, one bedroom, one bath apartment and two car garage. There is an expansive patio with center fountain and big stone fireplace, pool and large parking area. This very special property inspires peace and creativity.
The home is listed by Lindy Emrich of Alain Pinel Realtors Corte Madera – Central Marin. See more at
Offered at: $1,275,000
See more homes for sale in San Anselmo. | Visit our Marin community page.

Notable Listings / Sales

Happy Valentine's Day: The Love Story Behind Exquisite Ross Estate

February 14, 2014

Where: 94 Laurel Grove in Ross (listing | property site)
Located in one of three estate areas of Ross, 94 Laurel Grove features a peerless location, exquisite new construction, acreage, and accessibility. This coveted grey shingle home is listed for $7,495,000 by Donna Goldman of Alain Pinel Realtors Ross office, a top agent handling purchases and sales for her many satisfied clients, who is also known for securing superb off-market properties for her buyers.
The seller of 94 Laurel Grove, Dr. Frederic Newton, thought it would be a fun adventure to develop the property, and set out to create a home that would take full advantage of its sunny and private park-like setting. Every last detail was incorporated to enable a family-oriented lifestyle.
“This is a story of how dreams really do come true,” said Goldman. “My client built this incredible home, all the while noting that it was fabulous in every way – except he was lacking what he considered the most important finishing touch: a wife to enjoy it with.”
And that’s just what happened when Newton built his dream home. Newton lived as an eligible bachelor in the original Laurel Grove home for many years with his children. As fate would have it, while the house was under construction, Newton met his wife through a blind date. During their courtship they often stopped by the house during construction and enjoyed discussing the numerous finish options and making the seemingly daily decisions on one thing or another. The result of this effort is indeed exactly what Newton set out to create.
The couple is off to new adventures, circumnavigating the world on their luxury residence at sea. Thus, the sale of 94 Laurel Grove.
The exceptional, single-story 5bd/4.5ba home features 10-foot-high ceilings, black walnut floors, CATV wiring, and air conditioning throughout. The formal living room and dining room, and large front porch and poolside patios are spacious gathering spots perfect for entertaining. The eat-in kitchen features marble countertops and an adjacent media room. The multi-functional suite could be used as an office or guest room, or fifth bedroom. In addition, a separate guest house with a full kitchen sits over the carriage house-style 3-car garage.
The 1+/- mostly level acre offers lush, manicured grounds including extensive use of Connecticut blue stone and New York cobblestone. The heated pool and spa area are reminiscent of a private resort. For animal lovers, the spectacular property also includes a private dog run.
For more information about the property, visit
Listed at: $7,495,000
See more homes for sale in Ross. | Visit our Marin community page.

Market Updates

Bay Area Market Summary 2013

February 12, 2014

Overall, 2013 was a banner year in the Bay Area real estate market – especially in the luxury and higher end markets our region is known for. While we have known the real estate market has been rebounding, this past year we saw that recovery dramatically accelerate. While the numbers showed limited inventory and historically low interest rates, the headlines told stories of multiple offers and bidding wars. With an influx of cash from booming tech companies and international buyers, sales and prices reached or exceeded pre-recession peaks in many of our communities. In some areas, year-over-year numbers show double-digit increases. For Alain Pinel Realtors, this meant a record breaking year in which we closed $10.5 billion, a 19% increase over our 2012 sales.
For a more detailed look at 2013 and the year ahead, check out our summaries on specific regions below:
East Bay: Limited inventory of homes for sale continued to keep a lid on the number of sales while driving sales prices upward and time on the market downward. Unlike buying frenzies of the past, overpriced and/or poorly prepared properties didn’t attract buyers, while properties that were priced well received a lot of attention, resulting in many multiple-offer situations.  We anticipate a more moderate increase in home prices as inventory begins to increase and the anticipated increase in interest rates somewhat dampen demand compared to 2013 levels.
Marin: 2013 was the best of times, and it was the worst of times. We struggled with a low inventory of houses all year, yet the number of homes sold was very good. In terms of homes sold, 2013 was significantly ahead of 2012 (California’s first year of recovery after the recession), and in May, July and December, even outperformed pre-recession numbers. All-in-all, this is a very strong indication that the recovery is alive and well.
Monterey Bay: The Monterey Bay is probably one of the most diverse areas of California, with prices ranging from $80,000 to $80,000,000. While total number of sales remained relatively level, we’ve seen an increase in median home price. In Santa Cruz County, we have seen a new energy in sales of $1 million or more. In Monterey County, we are experiencing more sales and fewer listings, which means that prices will go up even more. The overall market is now on solid footing and we project that 2014 should show continued growth.
Peninsula: The entire region is experiencing one of the shortest inventory selections in years. Multiple offers still abound, yet in most cases, fewer than earlier last year. Agents are finding themselves reaching out to their co-workers for upcoming offerings and priming their clients to react as quickly as possible when the right property comes on the market. The coastal area had a phenomenal increase in activity in 2013 and offers tremendous value in 2014 compared to many Peninsula areas. Although multiple offers are somewhat common in that market as well, they are not experiencing the frenzy that many Peninsula communities are.
San Francisco: The market continues to be a seller’s market with price appreciation continuing to rise in 2014. In most San Francisco neighborhoods, there is a shortage of available homes; however, record-low rates continue to drive buyers into the City. In addition, cash offers are plentiful, fueled by Silicon Valley and Pacific Rim buyers. New condominium developments will provide much needed product in 2014 on the Van Ness Corridor and Market Street. Multi-family and apartment buildings will continue to be sought after by value investors, motivated by record high rents paid by newcomers.
Silicon Valley: Because of the shortage of inventory and an excess of buyers, many transactions experienced multiple offers, with most properties selling over the listed price. Although the total number of sales was off slightly from 2012 (-5%), there was a dramatic increase in the median sale price (+23%). It is expected this robust marketplace to continue into 2014, especially during the first six months. Elements that will influence the rate of appreciation and level of activity in 2014 are: interest rates (it is anticipated they will rise), scarcity of inventory, and overall economic health.
Wine Country: While generally speaking the number of sales in the region was slightly fewer in 2013 than 2012, the average sales prices were significantly higher. 2014 is starting very strong as dryer conditions and warmer weather have resulted in many consumers flocking to the region. The hills may be brown instead of their lush winter green, but it’s great for wine country real estate, which traditionally doesn’t take off until the second quarter.
Overall, as we look towards 2014 in the Bay Area, we expect a healthier, balanced market. Lured by increasing prices, and new-found equity in their homes, we expect more sellers to enter the market, slowly increasing inventory. Some wild cards for buyers include interest rates, interest deductions and mortgage reform, and the actions of the Federal Reserve, which all can impact housing affordability. However, we expect sustained demand for home ownership and continued, but slower, growth in sales and home prices – leaving plenty of opportunity for buyers and sellers in 2014.
This article recently published in the Winter 2014 Exquisite Living.

About Exquisite Living

Exquisite Living is a premier digital luxury magazine presented by Alain Pinel Realtors. The magazine immerses readers in the luxuries of the Bay Area and beyond as one flips through luxury trends, market updates, community spotlights, and of course some of the most magnificent homes and estates.
Featured Open Homes

OPEN HOUSE: 1 El Capitan Avenue in Mill Valley

December 20, 2013

Where: 1 El Capitan Avenue in Mill Valley (listing | virtual tour)
When: Sunday, December 20th, from 12:00-2:00 pm.
Listed at: $1,950,000
1 El Capitan Avenue in Mill Valley is an exclusive middle ridge retreat. The mid-century home, once owned by the historic Ralston family, is nestled in a private secluded setting. The 3 bedroom / 2.5 bathroom includes a spacious living room, beautiful kitchen, a formal dining room (as well as a less formal), and a family room with a fireplace. The home takes complete advantage of the temperate weather, with lovely level outdoor areas perfect for entertaining with gorgeous ridge line views – and on clear days you can even see the city lights of San Francisco.
The home is listed by Kristine Tiret of the Alain Pinel Realtors Corte Madera office and will be open Sunday.
See more homes for sale in Mill Valley. | Visit our Marin community page.