As Featured in Seattle Luxury Living Magazine: Perfect Getaways Near Seattle

Perfect Places for Weekend Warriors to Explore

To celebrate the publication of the all-Chinese Seattle Luxury Living magazineRealogics Sotheby’s International Realty (RSIR) is introducing a special English language content series, which highlights select articles from the magazine. From small towns to luxe resorts, the third post in the series highlights nearby spots to recharge in 48 hours including San Juan Islands, home to the majestic Madroneagle. 

San Juan Islands

These green islands are as beloved for their food as for their beauty – especially San Juan and Orcas Islands. Think: Oysters you shuck and slurp on the beach, fat pears, spicy cider. These taste sensations are farmed, fished and foraged in such small quantities that they get gobbled up on the islands and never make it to the mainland.

On Orcas Island, Pebble Cove Farm features goats, chickens, an orchard and big garden from which guests are encouraged to harvest dinner. Your pretty room’s kitchenette is supplied with the staples you need to whip up a feast. Once in a Blue Moon Farm is not as polished, but in your big unit above the barn, you get a real kitchen and homey furniture. Head to Island Hoppin’ Brewery to find your new favorite beer.

Over on San Juan Island, go directly to the iconic Westcott Bay Shellfish Company for crisp, creamy and salty oysters, clams and mussels. Chase them with local spirits at the nearby San Juan Island Distillery.

If you don’t want to wait for the ferry, a quicker option for reaching the islands is via Kenmore Air. Seaplanes depart from Kenmore, Lake Union or Boeing Field and arrive on Orcas, San Juan or Lopez Island.

Do You Hear That? It's Mansion Global Revealing the "Secret of the San Juans"

On May 19th, Mansion Global shared the “Secret of the San Juans” with its readers, celebrating the beloved archipelago for its “remoteness and simplicity,” and highlighting its most recent achievement as “the hottest luxury real-estate market in the country.” As Nancy Keates writes, the growth in the area “has been fueled in recent years by an influx of high-tech companies to Seattle, where soaring home prices make the San Juans look like a bargain,” and for its allure as an idyllic retreat.

The article features a number of luxury estates in the area including Madroneagle, listed by Realogics Sotheby's International Realty (RSIR).  Of Madroneagle, Keates writes that “it took three years and about $12 million for Kathleen Dickinson and her late husband Ron McDowell to build their house, which was finished in 2007. On 41 acres on Orcas, it is filled with reclaimed wood and intricate architectural details. It first went on to the market in April, 2016 for $11.6 million, and was reduced last year to $10 million, a price she says is under the cost of construction.” In the property feature video below, Dickinson can be seen in her state-of-the-art kitchen putting the finishing touches on a culinary creation.

This article appeared in the May 19th, 2017 print edition of Mansion Global and is available to subscribers of The Wall Street Journal at

The 12 Listings of Christmas: Twelve Well-Kept Kitchens

Realogics Sotheby's International Realty presents the 12 Listings of Christmas series, featuring properties centered around a different theme. This week's highlight was "Twelve Delicious Dishes," which included Madroneagle. 

An island sanctuary of superlatives and an architectural achievement beyond compare. Enviable Southwest land portfolio along East Sound ranges from beachfront to high bank. Gated and ultimately private. Reclaimed timbers, matchless craftsmanship and artisan features too numerous to list. Property consists of the main estate, workshop plus guest house.

Life in the San Juans

Realogics Sotheby's International Realty collaborates to host "Legacy Home Tour" of luxury properties in the San Juan Island archipelago October 4-9.

High Profile event attracts lifestyle sponsors as new report compares San Juan Islands to New York's Long Island; targets brokers and prospective buyers.

Realogics Sotheby’s International Realty (RSIR) announced today a progressive tour of legacy homes in the San Juan Island archipelago from October 4-9, which is scheduled during the Savor the San Juansinitiative managed by the San Juan Islands Visitors Bureau. A matchless collection of up to ten properties ranging from below $2,000,0000 to $17,000,000 will be available to preview for registered brokers on October 4th and 5th followed by open house viewings, by invitation, with prospective homebuyers on October 8th and 9th (by appointment). Participating lifestyle sponsors include Windermere Real Estate / Orcas Island, Kenmore AirRosario ResortSeattle MagazineSea MagazinePuget Sound Business JournalSundance Yachts, and GeekWire.

“This is a matchless opportunity to experience some of the most extraordinary legacy homes available for purchase in the San Juan Islands and beyond,” said Dean Jones, President and CEO of RSIR. “Attending brokers and their clients will discover why this storybook lifestyle is such a well-kept secret and a relative value compared with our East Coast peer group. They will also discover considerable value being offered with these move-in ready estates.”

Among the properties on tour is Madroneagle, situated on more than 40 acres of pristine land with a half-mile of natural, untamed shoreline upon East Sound on Orcas Island. 

Jones recently commissioned a research study, the “Legacy Home Report” to explore property values with the San Juan Islands compared to New York’s Long Island. He concluded that not only are the homes in the Pacific Northwest a fraction of property prices in popular harbinger markets like the Hamptons but, in fact, several are being offered below replacement costs – but perhaps not for much longer.

“As the Seattle/Bellevue metro area continues to prosper as the next global city on the rise, so, too will the concept of legacy home acquisitions in the destination communities that surround this booming economy,” adds Wally Gudgell of Windermere Real Estate and longtime resident of Orcas Island. “Our property tour and the Savor the San Juans promotion will provide a convenient and seamless lifestyle experience for locals and newcomers alike.”

Gudgell says island living spans a broad spectrum of lifestyles from modest farmers and craftsmen to Hollywood A-listers and tech titans, which helps create the diverse and dynamic culture scene supporting demand for all property types and price points. An enviable lifestyle and a lack of a state income tax in Washington have encouraged many to seek residency in the San Juan Islands for the majority of the year while traveling the world or enjoying a second home in warmer climates during the winter months.

The Legacy Home Tour will officially commence on October 4th where attending brokers will arrive to Rosario Resort and enjoy a wine tasting reception at a nearby listing for sale. On October 5th a series of shuttles will tour an Orcas Island estate before returning to the marina where guests will board a collection of yachts to visit or float by waterfront estates on San Juan Island, Shaw Island and Reef Island. The flotilla will return to Orcas Island where chartered flights operated by Kenmore Air will return guests to Seattle while others will stay to enjoy other festivities. Along the way, event sponsors promise to stimulate the senses with the sights, sounds, smells, tastes and touch that is unique to the region. John Spear, Director of Custom Publishing and Associate Publisher at Large for Tiger Oak Publishing, owner of Seattle Magazine will attend the festivities to document the experience for his readers.

During the weekend on October 8th and 9th the properties will be available for private showings by appointment with qualified homebuyers. Guests are encouraged to enjoy commercial flights operated by Kenmore Air and stay at the famous Rosario Resort, which was once a legacy home built by philanthropist Robert Moran that was later converted to a hotel and is featured in the report.

“We welcome guests to experience the natural wonder that we live in every day,” said Lance Evans, Director of Orcas Island Chamber of Commerce. “Most people think of our community as a destination resort but the islands are home to full time residents with year-round services and amenities, renowned schools, and a robust cultural scene.”

The Savor the San Juans campaign spans seven weeks from September 22nd through November 12th, which promotes food, farm and film experiences throughout the three main islands that comprise San Juan County – Lopez, Orcas and San Juan. The program includes an abundance of wine tastings, harvest dinners, farmers’ markets, film festivals and cultural experiences,


The Seattle Times Lists the 10 Most Expensive Homes in Washington State; Includes Madroneagle

The Seattle Times  recently put together a list of “The 10 most expensive real-estate listings in Washington state,” which includes Madroneagle, listed by Realogics Sotheby’s International Realty (RSIR). As Matt Grady suggests, take your mind off the hot Seattle real estate market marked by “bidding wars, $1,000 rent hikes, and ongoing discussions about equitable housing practices,” and “distract yourself by checking out the 10 most expensive real-estate listings in Washington state. With the entry-level price point being about $10 million, the data about rising statewide real estate doesn’t begin to touch these luxury home listings. It’s interesting to consider the locations: Seattle and Bellevue claim one apiece, with two each for Vashon and Mercer islands. The remaining homes are sprinkled across the shorelines of Puget Sound.” Read an exploration of Madroneagle's highlight below. 

Madroneagle  |  512 Catspaw Lane, Eastsound  |  Offered at $10 million

A majestic estate situated on an astounding 42 acres, Madroneagle “borrows accents from a rustic lodge – wood floors, exposed wooden beams, barn-like bathroom doors” yet “is anything but unrefined.” A highlight? “The property’s shoreline gradually tapers from steep banks to a beach.”

Madroneagle, Listed by Realogics Sotheby's International Realty, is Featured in the Puget Sound Business Journal's "Cool Pads"

Madroneagle, an extraordinary waterfront estate represented by Realogics Sotheby’s International Realty, was featured on Patti Payne’s latest edition of “Cool Pads.” In the feature, Payne interviews owner Kathleen Dickinson McDowell, outlines the extraordinary craftsmanship and proclaims that it’s “arguably one of the most unusual to ever hit the market.”

As Payne begins, “way more than a getaway, this is an astounding property. The main house and workshop were lovingly designed by a couple as their ultimate dream, with a half-mile of waterfront, beach, several houses, a greenhouse, a huge shop and a mother-in-law apartment.”

McDowell told Payne that she and her husband were involved in every aspect of the home: “they wanted a house that grew organically from the land. ‘This definitely grows out of the earth,’ she says. ‘It is very warm – lots of rock and lots of wood.”

When Payne asked McDowell to outline her favorite areas in the 7,303 square foot home, she immediately spoke of the “hallway that has lockers from a Japanese bathhouse [pictured above] – the whole hallway is little cubbies” and the kitchen, pictured below, “with a huge wooden centerpiece island, pizza oven and everything” where she’s seen “lots of parties centered around that area.”

In a home that exudes perfection and a tranquil spirit of place, it is no surprise that when asked about the restoration process, McDowell says she wouldn’t have done a thing differently.

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