There's No Recession in the New York Times Homes Section


Image credit: Joe Fletcher

The rich are different from you and me; they read the New York Times Home and Garden section on Thursdays, and don't seem to know that there is a recession. But they are beginning to deal with the concept of living with less, and show a couple squeezing into a modest 1100 square foot house in Mill Valley, designed by Frank Lloyd Wright disciple Daniel J. Liebermann- that cost $1,125,000 to purchase and over $ 400 a foot to renovate. But it is a gem of a thing. More at New York Times
Image credit: Justin Mott

Then there is John Flinton, a contractor "who is known (at least to his press agent) as "a modern day Indiana Jones," in a long piece entitled Trophy Hunters With Their Eye on Interiors.

He has gone to China for cobblestones from a road that was being demolished, to pave a client's driveway; to the jungles of Nicaragua -- by jeep, if you please -- because another client wanted an authentic and rustic clay tile with colors that would have variations, but not too many variations; to Jerusalem, to make sure the so-called biblical stone his client had ordered was coming from a school that really was hundreds of years old....For a client in Russia building a rather large country estate (55,000 square feet, with 880 windows), Mr. Finton arranged to have thick slate for the roof brought in from Vermont.

It gets worse. It would make Thorstein Veblen throw up. More in the New York Times and watch the slideshow.

Image credit: Steve Payne

And then there are the "catios"; enclosed spaces of mesh to protect cats but let them play outside. Some are modest, as minimal as an enclosure of a balcony, and some are extreme. One cat habitat builder notes:

"We have some clients that decorate the inside as if it's just another room -- a picnic table, cat grass -- so they can hang out there with their cats," said Kris Kischer, founder of Habitat Haven in Toronto, which sells dog and cat enclosures.

He built a wild one in Toronto that connects the house to a tree 25 feet away, but that's nothing compared to one in Port Jefferson, New York that is bigger than some apartments we have shown on TreeHugger: two 10 foot square rooms connected with a 44 foot tunnel. For cats. They are renovating soon, and adding a second floor. More in the New York Times.

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