When we last talked here, I was telling you about my trip to Serenbe a few years ago. I commented that at the time of our visit, I was afraid that the little town wasn’t going to “make it,” but since that time they have had some really MAJOR good publicity. Today, I want to show you some of the reasons for that publicity. These homes have brought scores of people to tour them. I don’t know if the “tourists” are buying real estate in the community, but the number of homes available for sale in Serenbe is quite low compared to what it once was. So I feel like they are doing very well now.
One of the reasons for great publicity has been this Bosch Net Zero model home in Serenbe that features many of the Bosch energy saving products – their appliances, a geothermal heat pump, and a solar energy system – among other things. Additionally, they have built a Bosch Experience Center in Serenbe to not only showcase these products, but to also be a place to discuss sustainability research and education. Sounds like a good place for a field trip for high school and college students to me!
Not only has the home had all these great energy saving features, but it has also been decorated by Ballard Designs – making it a very popular place to tour.
In fact, it looks just like you jumped right into a Ballard Designs catalog. I love those wicker chairs at the dining table above and the green fabric in the bedroom below.
I am not sure, but I believe the tours for it closed Labor Day weekend, but it IS for sale if you are interested. Here is a view of the living room from the stairs. I like this brown and green color scheme. It seems very fitting for Serenbe.
And here is another view of the porch.serenbecommunity.com
Another home that has generated a lot of interest in Serenbe is the HGTV Green Home that was built there.
It is quite a bit more modern than the other tour house (at least in my mind it is.)
I really don’t care for the kitchen and dining area – just too modern for my tastes, but there are some very nice gathering spaces in the home that I could be quite happy in – like this room that they are calling “the Georgia room”….
and this colorful living space…hgtv.com
and this great outdoor gathering space. (I really prefer their outdoor spaces over their interiors.)
This one is my favorite of all the outdoor areas. Isn’t that stonework beautiful?
This is my favorite of the interior rooms – a positively precious child’s bedroom!
On June 27th of this year, the home was given away to Mary Jones from Katy, Texas. The “green home” from HGTV for next year is being renamed as the “Smart Home” – I assume because of the integrated Smart Technology being planned for it. It is being built in Paradise Key, near Jacksonville Beach, Florida – 5 blocks from the Atlantic Ocean. Maybe one of us will be the lucky winner!
And now to the last of the “famous” homes in Serenbe.
There are different “sections” within the Serenbe community, and one section is named The Nest Cottages. Each cottage has a smaller footprint than most of the rest of the development. Each is also highly energy efficient and makes use of natural landscaping. The Nest Cottage model home is an Earthcraft home built to showcase that energy efficiency with its geothermal heating and cooling system. Here are some photographs of the interior of the model home.
Again, it is a mix of modern with traditional and farmhouse all blended together.
And if all these homes don’t make you want to visit or live in Serenbe, then let’s talk food for a minute. The Southern Chefs series is an unbelievable experience if you are a foodie. For one weekend you stay at the Serenbe Inn, cook in Marie Nygren’s kitchen alongside 9 other students under the direction of one of the best chefs in the South. In the past, they have featured Nathalie Dupree, Virginia Willis, Frank Stitt, Hugh Acheson (whose cookbook just won the James Beard Foundation award), Steven Satterfield, Anne Quatrano, and others. The series is sold out for 2012, and they have just released the calendar for 2013 – which sells out rather quickly. So if you are interested, just click here for more info.
I hope you have enjoyed our virtual tour of Serenbe, and maybe one day soon you will get to visit it in person. Or better yet, you will get to live there and enjoy the community full time. I hope we get to make a roadtrip back there again soon.
Until next time….