From the category archives:

Luxury Parade Homes

Parade of Homes Fall 2013

Dream Home by Nor-Son, Inc in Chanhassen

If you have been wanting to get out of the house to see some really beautiful homes, then don’t waste anymore time. This is the final week of the Fall 2013 Parade of Homes, which runs until Sunday, September 29th. The Remodeler Showcase is also this week, running Friday through Sunday.

I stopped by one of the Dream Homes last week in Chanhassen, and it is definitely one I would recommend viewing. The interior design and decor might be more Northern Minnesota, but it was nice to see something different in the Twin Cities. The home owner obviously hunts, what with all the stuffed animals in the lower level, but they fit nicely with the theme of the home. Luxury radiates from the master suite, and the kitchen is stunning. My favorite space by far is the outdoor screened in patio. I could sit out there all night (and so could my husband) and enjoy the wood burning fire, sipping on some wine. Check it out…I’m sure you’ll love it too!


You may not be in the market for a new home, but that doesn’t mean you can’t enjoy looking at other people’s homes and possibly finding your “dream” home. Of course your dream home will most likely be out of your price range, but hey, that’s why it’s called a dream home!

  • Fall Parade of Homes – while I personally feel there should only be one Parade Tour each year, instead of two, for the next couple of weekends you can peruse through the model homes of local builders. The Tour runs from September 8th-30th and is open Thursday-Sunday from Noon-6pm. The last weekend also features the Remodelers Showcase which is open Friday 1-7pm and Sat-Sun from Noon-6pm.
  • Homes by Architects Tour – The AIA Minnesota is putting on its 5th Architects Home Tour featuring 16 new and remodeled homes located throughout the Twin Cities, greater Minnesota and western Wisconsin, all designed by registered architect members of the American Institute of Architects Minnesota. Some of these homes are not in the Metro, so if you want to see a specific home, expect a drive and plan your day accordingly. The tour runs September 22-23,  10am-5pm.
  • Summit Hill Association House Tour – if you love historic homes, than don’t miss this tour in St. Paul. It always has amazing homes featured that you just don’t get to see very often and is only on for one day, September 9th, Noon-6pm.


If you forgot about the Minneapolis-St. Paul-Lake Minnetonka Luxury Home Tour, aka the Twin Cities, then you have one more weekend to get off the couch and out of the house to view some major architectural homes for sale. Half of the homes surround Lake Minnetonka, and the rest are mostly in Edina, Prior Lake, Credit River Township, so there should be no excuse that the homes are too spread out.

If you have been on the tour in the past few years, you might have already visited a few of the homes as they are repeats, but hey, sometimes it’s fun to keep dreaming. I have always like the home in Credit River Township, so it might be interesting to see it again, but I know I just have to visit the home on Palmer Pointe in Minnetrista.

Tickets cost $20 at Caribou Coffee, or $25 at the luxury homes, but if you only want to see one or two of them, you can always just go the $5 route for each single home. Let me know which homes you liked the best!


It’s finally here. The 2009 Fall Parade of Homes Tour begins a week from now, September 11th. One dramatic change to the event is the integration of the Parade of Homes Remodelers Showcase, which will be hosted the first weekend of the tour, September 11-13th. Usually this event is scheduled outside the Home Tour, but I honestly feel this is the best thing to do. I continually miss the Remodelers Showcase because I simply forget about it.

The Parade of Homes

From September 11 – October 4,

The Remodelers Showcase

One weekend only – September 11 – 13

For three days only, visitors will have the chance to walk through 94 remodeling projects and see almost every type of makeover available. Seeing as the kitchen is the most popular project for home owners to redo, there are over 60 to see on the tour this year. Other projects include entire house makeovers, innovative bathroom design, and stylish basement finishes.

The crowing jewels are the two Dream Remodeled Homes, where a $5 entry donation goes directly to the Builders Outreach Foundation:

  • Famous architect Edwin Lundie designed this 1930’s home at 277 Woodlawn Avenue, Saint Paul. Seeing as I specialize in old homes, it will be interesting to see what this whole house renovation, completed by Authentic Construction, looks like, in keeping with the original vision.
  • Located next to the Riley Creek developlment in Eden Prairie, 9820 Sky Lane is another whole house renovation. Originally built in 1991, the new remodel brings the home up to today’s lifestyle and was completed by JMS Custom Homes.


Save the date to tour homes in the Twin Cities designed by licensed architects and brought to you by the AIA Minnesota chapter. Set for one weekend only, the tour is open September 19-20 from 10 am – 5 pm. Tickets are available online for $25.

This year twenty homes will be on the tour giving attendees the chance to view architectural design and how it can make the difference in a home. Thankfully, the planners have grouped the homes in a way so people can see homes that interest them:

  • “City Growers” features homes in Minneapolis
  • “Love of the Landscape” includes homes sensitive to the landscape surrounding them
  • “Lofty Spaces” feature three lofts in Minneapolis and one in Saint Paul
  • “Green Ideas”
  • “Entertaining Spaces”
  • “Craftsmanship” highlights details in design, woodwork and more
  • “Suburban Redo” lets visitors see how a home can transform from the original design

The tour is comprised of 14 architectural firms from the Twin Cities, varying from 1-50 person offices. It is meant to show visitors the range in talent available and how architectural design can span small jobs to luxury masterpieces.


If you’ve got some time over the next few weeks, make sure to check out the luxury home tour presented by Midwest Home Magazine. There are 15 new construction homes on the tour found from Stillwater, across the Twin Cities, to Lake Minnetonka. Estimated prices of the homes range from the low $1 Million to as high at $3.59 Million. Tickets can be purchased at Caribou Coffee locations.

Twin Cities Luxury Home Tour
June 12-14, 19-21, 26-28, 2009
Friday 1-7pm
Sat/Sun 12-6pm


The Twin Cities Parade of Homes Tour is going full strength this month and has not disappointed. I had the opportunity to visit one of the “Dream Homes” located in Credit River Township, just 30 minutes south of Minneapolis.

CressView Estates is a Luxury community with 44 lots ranging in size from 2.5 acres to 13. The Parade Home, built by John Kramer and Sons, sits on 2.74 acres and is for sale at $2.25 Million. It has a beautiful grand staircase, walnut floors on the main level, and a large two-island kitchen. The main floor master suite has a relaxing master bath with travertine floors and a custom walk in closet that girls would kill for. OK, well maybe it’s not that extreme, but it is a home well worth visiting before the tour ends. I won’t give away all the cool surprises here so make sure to check it out.

Please know that this home will cost you $5 admission, with proceeds going to the Builders Outreach Foundation. The Foundation is the charitable arm of the Twin Cities Builders Association and constructs homes for low-income families. Last fall alone the Dream Home program raised almost $50,000! So don’t balk at five dollars…they give you a receipt to right off for charitable donations on your taxes.


I took the weekend off today, from clients, and spent this afternoon on the Ramsey Hill Historic Home Tour. I walked all over the historic home area and saw 16 homes, including the St Paul Cathedral. Yes, my feet hurt, but it was a beautiful day and I wanted the exercise. It looked to be a success as there were tons of people out.

Even though my blogs are about Minneapolis, one of my specialties is historic homes, no matter where they are. So it is my job to know the historic home areas in Minneapolis, St Paul, and the surrounding towns. Viewing homes on tours, or as soon as they list for sale, is the best way for me to know the historic inventory. It doesn’t matter if they are million dollar luxury homes, or small little Arts and Crafts bungalow, as a historic home expert, I need to know what they look like.

It’s not all work though on these long walks, as I truly love old homes. I get to enjoy all the great architecture. Another great thing about the historic districts in Minneapolis and St Paul is that the neighborhoods have giant trees that line the streets. Sometimes it is hard to get a good photo of a home because the trees get in the way, like the home pictured above. When you walk down one of these old streets, you can almost imagine it being home.


Time to get your walking shoes ready and plan out your weekend because the Fall Parade of Homes is set to start in a couple of weeks. From September 8th – October 7th, homes will be open Thursdays-Sundays from noon – 6 pm.

This year’s tour features a staggering 843 model homes built by 334 local builders. If you are looking to build a home, and can’t find something you like in this tour, then I am sorry to say but you are out of luck! For the last 59 years, the tour has showcased new construction from spec homes to custom builds. Prices on the tour range from the low $100,000s to the most expensive home on the tour in Minnetrista priced at $2.95 Million. This tour is a metropolitan event not just for Minneapolis and St Paul but includes 135 total communities.

Another highlight of the Parade of Homes is the two homes selected to be the “Dream Homes”. These multi-million dollar homes are packed with all that befits a luxury home. You will be sure to walk away with many “oohs and aahs”. Just know that you will be asked for a $5 donation when entering, with proceeds going to the Builders Outreach Foundation. The Foundation helps build homes for low-income families around the Twin Cities.

Don’t forget to pick up your tour book at local Holiday gas stations, or you can visit the Parade of Homes website for more information.


If you have nothing to do the next couple of weekends and are looking to view some local luxury home builders, then plan on attending the 7th Annual Luxury Home Tour. Available for your viewing pleasure are 22 spectacular, one-of-a-kind homes in the Twin Cities area.

  • When : June 8-10, 15-17, 22-24 Noon-6pm
  • Where : Blaine, Champlin, Gem Lake, Greenfield, Eden Prairie, Edina, Lake Elmo, Mahtomedi, Medina, Minneapolis, Minnetonka, Minnetrista, Prior Lake, Wayzata
  • Cost : Purchase Passport Tickets in advance for $20, or $25 at the homes. Each Passport allows one-time admittance into all the homes, or, you can pay $5 per home if you only plan on attending a couple showings.

What to Bring : Wear socks and easily removable shoes, as you cannot wear shoes or go barefoot in the homes.

No Photos allowed and children under 5 get in for free!