It’s beginning to look a lot like Christmas…

Hopefully you have recovered from your turkey hangover (and/or your alcohol hangover) because now it’s time to get ready for Christmas.  I love everything about Christmas:  decorating, shopping, spending time with family and friends, eating, drinking, and being merry.  It’s my most favorite time of year and I will admit, I am one of those people who starts listening to Christmas music in early November and our Christmas tree was decorated before Thanksgiving.  I can’t help it.

I also enjoy everything Charleston has to offer during the Christmas season.  Here are some of my must-do’s for Christmas and New Years Eve:

  •  Holiday Festival of Lights:  2016 marks the 27th Annual Holiday Festival of Lights in James Island County Park.  Year after year, my family and I have enjoyed riding through the 3 illuminated miles of light displays while listening to Christmas music.  So far, my most favorite memories have been riding through with my two young nieces and seeing their faces light up while oh-ing and ah-ing over all the light displays.  After the driving tour, you can park your car and enjoy all the family friendly activities which include and meet and greet with Santa and roasting marshmallows.  You can enjoy the lights from November 11, 2016 until January 1, 2017.
  • Christmas Tree Lighting in Marion Square: Mayor John Tecklenburg and Santa Claus will join forces to light a gorgeous 60 foot Christmas tree in the heart of Marion Square.  There will be live music and is a great time for everyone.
  • City of Charleston Holiday Parade: Hosted by the City of Charleston and the Charleston Fire Department, the parade will begin on Broad Street at Barre Street, travel North on King Street, and conclude on Calhoun Street at Meeting Street.  This year, Todd and I will be joining some of my fellow Dunes Properties agents at our King Street office for some snacks and libations.  The parade will be on Sunday, December 4th at 2pm. 
  • The Nutcracker at the Charleston Gaillard Center:  This is one of my absolute favorite things to do during Christmas time.  This year’s performances will be on December 10th and 11th.
  • New Years Eve at Circa 1886:  Located in the original carriage house of the Wentworth Mansion, Circa 1886 is one of the best restaurants in downtown Charleston.  You can enjoy a 6 course pre fixe dinner along with a complimentary glass of champagne.  It is both a cozy and romantic way to ring in the New Year with your special someone.

Even if you aren’t able to make it to any of these, pick a day and walk around downtown Charleston.  It really is incredible this time of year, and I promise you won’t be disappointed!

traditions

I hope you and your family have a wonderful Holiday Season!  There will be a lot of new things coming to the blog in 2017 so stay tuned! Cheers to 2017!

 

The Top Ten Things to do in Charleston – Fall Edition

Oh October, how lovely to see you finally!  I never thought I’d be so happy to turn off my AC and open all the windows but after the brutal summer we had, it is a welcomed change.
Lately, I have had a multitude of people ask me  “What is there to do in Charleston in the Fall?”
The answer:  So many I don’t even know where to begin!

  1.  The 40th Annual Fall Tour of Homes, History and Architecture: Organized by the Preservation Society of Charleston, The Fall Tour allows you to experience the absolute best of historic Charleston.  You’re able to tour different areas of historic Charleston each day while simultaneously enjoying the pleasant Lowcountry weather. The tour starts on October 6th and ends on October 30th.
  2. Charleston Gallery Association Art Walk:  Over 40 art galleries in historic Charleston open their doors to anyone interested in art and photography.  It’s a free, self guided tour and most, if not all, of the galleries offer refreshments (wine, anyone?).  The next art walk is scheduled for Friday, October 14th from 5pm-8pm.
  3.  Second Sunday on King Street:  On the second Sunday of every month from 12-4pm, a portion of King Street closes to vehicular traffic (starts at the intersection of King and Calhoun Streets, and ends at the intersection of King and Broad Streets).  It’s a great way to explore local shops and eateries while having a cocktail or two and spending time with family and friends.  (It’s also a great time to come check out The Real Estate Studio of Dunes Properties at 214 King Street)
  4. Boone Hall Pumpkin Patch:  Nothing will get you into the Halloween spirit like visiting the Boone Hall Pumpkin Patch.  Other attractions include a corn maze, rock climbing wall, and hayride.  The pumpkin patch is open from October 1st-31st.  It’s a great time for the kids and adults!
  5. Bark in the Park – Oktoberfest:  This is a fun way to spend quality time with your beloved four legged friend while treating yourself to delicious German food and beer.  The bark-tastic good time is scheduled for Sunday, October 16th from 11am-4pm at Wannamaker County Park.
  6. Charleston Farmers Market in Marion Square:  Every Saturday from 8am to 2pm from April to November, people gather in the heart of historic downtown Charleston to support local farmers, growers, artisans, and performers.  It’s a great time for both locals and tourists to support the beautiful Lowcountry.  And who wouldn’t love some fresh Fall produce?
  7. Moonlight Sails on the Schooner Pride:  Sit back , relax, and enjoy a magical moonlight sail while seeing Charleston in the most romantic way possible.  You’ll be able to capture night time views of historic Charleston while listening to live acoustic music by a local musician.  The final two sails of the year will occur on October 16th and 17th at 7:30pm.
  8. The Third Annual Folly Beach Battle of the Bags:  I am proud to say this event is hosted by Dunes Properties!   All proceeds from this event benefit the Folly Angels, a non-profit organization dedicated to supporting the people of Folly Beach who are battling cancer.  The cornhole tournament is organized by Holy City Cornhole and will start at 12pm.  Not the best cornhole player?  That’s ok, you can still come out and cheer on those playing while eating from some of Charleston’s best food trucks and having some adult beverages!  This year’s event is scheduled for Sunday, October 30th from 12pm-5pm at the Folly Beach County Park.  Don’t forget your costume!
  9. Party for the Parks:  Come one, come all to the recently renovated Colonial Lake for a circus themed bash with signature cocktails, treats from some of the best restaurants in Charleston and live music.  All proceeds will go the Charleston Parks Conservancy to help benefit over 25 Charleston area parks.  If you haven’t been to Colonial Lake since it’s re-opening then this would be a great time to check it out!  This great time is currently scheduled for Saturday, November 5th from 6-10pm.
  10. Charleston International Film Festival:  Since 2007, The Charleston IFF’s mission has been “to educate, entertain, and inspire through the art and science of film”.  I’ve had the privilege of attending this event multiple times over the years and each year it gets better and better.  Films have made me laugh to the point of tears and cry to the point of weeping, but most importantly, I’ve been inspired by people whom I never would have known about without this platform for their creativity. This year’s festival will be held from November 2nd through 6th at the Charleston Music Hall.

    Those are just a few events Charleston has to offer.  Are you planning a trip to Charleston and want to know more?  Comment below or email me!

What September means to me…

The month of September has many different meanings.  Maybe it’s your birthday month (if it is, you’re lucky to have sapphire as your birthstone).  Maybe you’re excited about the Fall season being right around the corner (I am currently sipping on a pumpkin spice latte while writing this).   For me, and most Southerners, September means FOOTBALL SEASON!  Yes sir, the sweet season of football is upon us so it’s time to get your jerseys out and put those tailgate recipes you’ve been Pinteresting all off season to good use because its time for family, friends, and FOOTBALL!

Todd and I love football so much that he built a brick patio and fire pit (with my dad) for the sole purpose of watching football.  It’s great being able to sit around the fire, entertain guests, and watch football outside.
(Even though, as you can see, Miss Gracie thinks it’s another place for her to nap)

Nope… Gracie isn't spoiled at all 😂 #gracielee #noworkingduringdrinkinghours #collegefootballsaturday

A photo posted by Taylor Tillman (@taylortillman) on

 

Some of my favorite childhood memories revolve around watching football with my family…they were mostly of my grandfather and father yelling at the television. Even if you are not a fan of football, it is still a great time to spend with friends and family.  I have a few friends who don’t give a hoot about football games and rivalries but they always show up to get-togethers for the laughs and memories.

I have quite a few clients who are avid football fans and I enjoy finding out where their allegiance lies.  Why?  Well, for a couple reasons…1. It’s another way for me to connect with them.  One of the things I love about my job is connecting with my clients on both a professional level as well as a personal one. 2. Football paraphernalia make GREAT housewarming gifts.   What football fan wouldn’t love a brand new house flag from their favorite Realtor?


And last but certainly, not least, the Fall season is a great time to visit Charleston.  If you’re thinking of relocating to Charleston or investing in a second home, it’s a great time to come and enjoy everything this city has to offer without frantically searching for AC.  Are you thinking of visiting Charleston?  Feel free to email or call me for the inside scoop of some fun things to do!

The Story of Poinsett Street: Part 1

 

If you’re an avid HGTV watcher, like myself, you’ve probably seen one of the many shows geared toward house flipping and renovation.  While the entire process is condensed into either a 30 or 60 minute show, I didn’t realize everything else that occurs behind the scenes but thanks to my parents, I have learned quite a bit about house renovation in the past year.

My parents started their adventure into the house renovation business in the Summer of 2015 after starting a business with my brother, Trey, and family friend and contractor, Rick Rockwell.  Rick specializes in restoring historic Charleston homes to their original character and since my dad, who grew up in downtown Charleston, wanted his focus to be on historic downtown Charleston, the pairing could not have been better.

The lucky winner ended up being a house on Poinsett street, located in the North Central neighborhood.  North Central is close to Upper King Street and Rutledge Ave.  It is also a hop, skip, and a jump away from Morrison Drive which is home to both Edmund’s Oast and Tattooed Moose (two of my favorites).   It is also a neighborhood with a great deal of real estate investment potential so I can absolutely see why my dad chose this area.

And now I present to you, 40 Poinsett Street:

Poinsett

She’s a beaut, right?

To say this house was a fixer upper was the understatement of the year.  I am sure you are asking yourself   “Why wouldn’t you just tear it down and start fresh?”.  Downtown Charleston has a governing body known as the Board of Architectural Review whose purpose is “preservation and protection of the old historic or architecturally worthy structures and quaint neighborhoods which impart a distinct aspect to the city and which serve as visible reminders of the historical and cultural heritage of the city, the state, and the nation.” This means that in addition to the permits one has to get when building or renovating a property, you also have to get the approval from the BAR.  Thankfully, my dad knew all this this before buying the property so he was prepared for the extra hoops to jump through.

October 2015 comes around and my parents close on the house.  My dad’s first order of business was clearing out the yard.  He’s a DIY kind of guy so he was able to get a lot done himself along with some help from my brother and boyfriend.  The house had been abandoned for approximately 40 years so he definitely had his hands full with the yard for a couple months.  February 2016 began the start of obtaining permits and getting the green light from the BAR to proceed with the design plan.  (This can be an arduous process because it is generally unheard of to obtain the go ahead on the first try with the BAR) After months of speed bumps and probably a few “Why did we decide to do this again?” conversations, we are now in August 2016 and my parents are finally able to talk about an interior design plan.  My mom has quite the knack for interior design so this is right up her alley. I also love interior design so it was fun for my mom and I to discuss different options.

I’ll be posting another update in the coming months so be on the look out.  This house is going to look great when it’s all said and done.

Do you have any questions about historic downtown Charleston or maybe you want to invest in a fixer upper?
Call or email me, I would love to help!

Where it all began…

12935108_440388246170880_1083530305_n(1)My love for real estate began in the place where I grew up and still call home today… Riverland Terrace.   Upon entering Riverland Terrace, you are captured by the gorgeous sight of more than seventy live oak trees cascading their branches down Wappoo Drive.  Homes in Riverland Terrace start around 300,000 all the way up to the 3 million dollar range for a waterfront home on either the Intercoastal Waterway or The Stono River.  Riverland Terrace really has something for everyone.

Fun facts about The Terrace:  It is James Island’s oldest neighborhood and has approximately 800 homes.  Residents have access to the Riverland Terrace Public Boat Landing and the City of Charleston Golf Course (a.k.a. “The Muni”).  Residents recently started a community garden at Medway Park.  I walked by there about a week ago and it really is a wonderful thing to see members of the community coming together to promote urban farming.

One of the reasons why I have never moved out of The Terrace (I currently live one street over from the house I grew up in) is the location.  I’m only a few minutes from historic downtown Charleston (which is great if you work or study at College of Charleston or the Medical University of South Carolina) and a few minutes from Folly beach.  Not to mention that I am only walking distance from some great restaurants, such as: Maybank Public House, The Lot, Zia, and Crust.  And on Sundays, Todd and I can usually be found at the Sunday Brunch Farmers Market behind the Charleston Pour House.

I could go on and on forever about the place I’ve called home for so many years but I prefer the pictures to do the talking…to see fantastic homes in Riverland Terrace Click Here!