Off the beaten track: Uncrowded national parks-North Carolina

Cataloochee Valley, Great Smoky Mountains National Park, North Carolina

This little-known cousin to Great Smoky's famous Cades Cove was one of the region's most thriving communities a century ago, counting 1,200 residents in 1910. Today, though, it draws no crowds to its historic buildings, rolling orchards, meadows or forests. It does, however, attract elk, wild turkeys and black bear.

You must negotiate a winding, 11-mile gravel road near Dellwood, N.C., to reach Cataloochee, nestled near the park's eastern border. Make the journey, though, and this road will carry you back into a 19th- and early-20th-century landscape rimmed by 6,000-foot mountains and enclosing some of the park's best examples of historic frame buildings from the late 1800s and early 1900s.

Palmer House, a vintage "dog trot" construction, features two log cabins (that later were planked over) tied together by a covered porch popular with dogs on long, hot summer days. Today, the house doubles as a museum of the valley and offers a video that provides an interesting oral history recorded by descendants of the valley's settlers.

Elsewhere in the valley you can find the Palmer Chapel, the Caldwell House that is sandwiched by two covered porches and the Beech Grove Schoolhouse, a two-room structure built in 1901.

There are 27 sites at the Cataloochee Campground, where you can find respectable trout fishing in Cataloohchee Creek.

For a roof overhead at night, check out the Abbey Inn (, 1-800-545-5853) in nearby Maggie Valley, N.C., or head over to Cherokee, N.C. (
1-877-433-6700) with its many options

North Carolina -Number One State for Relcoation

Every year, United Van Lines generates a press release about their annual migration study. Its a fun read, but hardly scientific. The report measures inbound and outbound relocation in each state. In other words, how many of their clients are moving into or out of a particular state.

A strong mobility pattern continued in 2006 as many Americans packed up their belongings and headed to the West and Southeast parts of the country, while the Central Northeast region of the country experienced an increase in residents departing. The statistics are among the findings of United Van Line’s 30th annual “migration” study that tracks where its customers, over the last 12 months, moved from and the most popular destinations.

United classifies each state in one of three categories -- “high inbound” (55% or more of moves going into a state); “high outbound” (55% or more of moves coming out of a state); or “balanced.” Although the majority of states were in the “balanced” category last year, several showed more substantial population shifts.

Known for hospitality and gracious style, the Southeast states welcomed many new residents in 2006, with North Carolina coming in as the top destination (64.0% inbound). South Carolina (60.6%) continued its 13-year inbound tradition, while Alabama (57.5%) experienced its fourth year as a high-inbound location. Although Tennessee saw less people move in this year (55.8% in 2006; 58.0% in 2005), it still captured a spot on the high-inbound list.

Outbound leaders
The midwest is struggling with weakening economic conditions from serious problems with the auto industry.
Michigan leads the pack with 66% outbound traffic.
New York is second with 59.5% outbound traffic. Upstate New York is still struggling economically and largely missed the housing boom like the New York City region did.

For more information regarding Relocation to North Carolina, Real Estate, and Lots for sale or call toll free 888-277--2006 x2

Best Places to Build your Retirement Home, North Carolina

Retirees flocking to North Carolina Golf Communities are representative of a growing trend.

The trend of buyers moving first to Florida and then later selling and moving to South Carolina, North Carolina, or Virginia is what they call the "half-back phenomenon." They love the Florida sun, but then they realize they miss the passing of the four seasons, and in the summer they want to escape the heat. So they move half the way back to where they started -- New England, for example -- and end up in the Carolinas."

Life is full of choices. And perhaps at no time is that more evident than when shopping for a home. Buying a vacation or retirement property can be a full-time job if you're not organized. From location to home type to available ammenties and golf -- just to name a few -- the number of variables to consider can be overwhelming.

One of the most popular states for new golf home purchasers is North Carolina. It is fourth in the nation in the number of golf courses associated with real estate (170), and is the No. 4-ranked state in terms of the percentage of golf courses associated with real estate-nearly 30 percent. It offers prospective buyers three distinct geographic regions -- coastal, central/sandhills, and mountains -- and is a microcosm of some trends in the golf course real estate market.

Champion Hills is in the western mountains of North Carolina, in the town of Hendersonville. An elegant mountain community, its Tom Fazio-designed course has received many accolades. Fazio, who resides in Hendersonville, liked it so much that he made it his home club.

A search for the perfect climate has resulted in the purchasing of multiple golf course homes. Aging baby boomers are in their peak spending years. Statistics show that people buy retirement homes where they go on vacation. Boomers have traveled frequently and all over the world. The mobile society is here to stay.

For more information regarding Golf Course Communities, Retirement Communities, Real Estate, and Lots for sale or call
888-277-2006 x2

Cashiers' NC real estate on par with other resort markets

 Whiteside Mtn. - Cashiers, NC

Whiteside Mountain Views

Cashiers' real estate on par with other resort markets

By Jessica Connor - Editor


Wednesday, Jul 05, 2006 - 09:46:03 am EDT

Cashiers’ real estate market is “on the map” when it comes to other resort areas’ markets, say some local Realtors.The Chronicle surveyed a handful of other resort markets in the country - Highlands; Key West, Fla.; Vail, Colo.; Newport, R.I.; Martha’s Vineyard, Mass.; Hilton Head, S.C.; and Jackson Hole, Wyo.

Though our median and million-dollar home sale figures are not the highest of these markets, they are not the lowest, either.And that spells good things for the community, said Cathy Garren, vice president of the Highlands-Cashiers Board of Realtors.“I think it certainly puts us on the map, so to speak, as being one of the top resort areas in the nation,” Garren said. “We know we are one of the top beautiful areas in the nation, but more people are finding out the same thing that we already know.”

The figures represent single-family houses sold between May 16, 2005, and May 15, 2006, most retrieved through a community’s Multiple Listing Service (MLS).The numbers are as follows:

Cashiers - $510,000 median, 38 sold at $1 million and up (representing the Jackson County area of the Board of Realtors, which comprises primarily Cashiers, Glenville, Sapphire Valley, Yellow Mountain and the Norton Community)

Highlands - $542,500 median, 48 sold at $1 million and up

Key West $775,000 median, 111 sold at $1 million and up

Vail - $698,500 median, 184 sold at $1 million and up

City of Newport - $472,000 median, 27 sold at $1 million and up

Martha’s Vineyard - $712,250 median, 117 sold at $1 million and up (representing all six towns on the island)

Hilton Head - $700,000 median, 323 sold at $1 million and up

Jackson Hole $298,000 median, 170 sold at $1 million and up

For more information regarding Real Estate, and Lots for sale and new developments in the Cashiers, Highlands and Lake Glenville areas please contact us 828-226-8837

Famous names in golf are flocking to WNC to build new golf course communties

Famous names in golf are flocking to WNC to build new courses

Tom Fazio in Linville, Tryon and Cashiers. Jack Nicklaus in South Asheville, Lake Lure and Highlands. Arnold Palmer in Balsam, Etowah and Polk County. Phil Mickelson in Cashiers. Gary Player in Upstate S.C. near the N.C. line. Tom Kite in Watauga … All of a sudden Western North Carolina has become a mecca for famous names in the game of golf who have built or are planning to design golf courses.

It was just a few years ago that this area, while boasting a significant number of layouts by famed architect Donald Ross, was shy in numbers when it came to 18-hole layouts by some of the more famous architects and players who had moved into the field of golf course design.

Nicklaus built Elk River Club in Banner Elk more than 20 years ago, Palmer designed Cullasaja Club in Highlands almost two decades ago and Fazio produced Wade Hampton in Cashiers and Champion Hills in Hendersonville, and that was about it.

But that’s all changed as WNC becomes more and more desirable as a retirement and second-home golf community.

On the assumption that all projects are completed, within a couple of years at least a dozen new designs in WNC with famous names attached will be available for the high-dollar, private-club set to enjoy.

see also:
Golf Course News, North Carolina
Sapphire Mountain Golf Club
Golf Course Communities
Cashiers, Highlands & Franklin Golf Courses
Sapphire Valley Golf Course

For a list of Golf Course Communities in the Western North Carolina area contact or call 828-226-8837

Cashiers, NC History

The Village Green, a two acre park centrally located in the heart of Cashiers, provides walking paths and a pavilion enjoyed by all that visit. Located at the Village is the Village Play. A fantastic playground, designed by the local youngsters and built with love and pride by the area residents. The Cashiers area is blessed to have many social and cultural happenings on a seasonal and year-round basis.

Western Carolina University, located only a short drive "down the mountain", is noted for its many educational, recreational, and cultural events available to the public.

To please those educationally inclined, Clemson University is only about 36 miles in the other direction. The Albert Carlton Cashiers Community Library is a gift to Cashiers from many of its generous citizens and was completed in 1994. The library offers a variety of services including computerization, childrens programs and a community room for meetings.

Lake Glenville with its 26 miles of shoreline nestled at 3500 feet above sea level is the highest man-made lake of its' size east of the Mississippi River. Sports and recreation abound on the 1,400 acres of impounded water, and fishing is good on the lake and in the many local rivers and streams. Being surrounded by thousands of acres of US Forest Service lands, magnificent vistas and dazzling waterfalls, the mountains around Cashiers provide a perfect setting for all types of outdoor activities.

A system of well developed and maintained mountain trails exist for hikers of every ability. Rafting in the nearby Nantahala, Chatooga and Ocoee Rivers, mountain biking, kayaking and fly fishing are all popular pastimes. Many outdoor enthusiasts enjoy the close proximity to Panthertown. Often called the "Yosemite of the East", Panthertown is well known locally for its remote location, rushing streams and creeks and pure unadulterated isolation.

The township of Cashiers is located in Jackson County in the Southwestern part of North Carolina. The state is divided into distinct regions by terrain. The Piedmont is rolling and fertile, the Coastal Plain is of course flat with sand hills and the world famous Outer Banks where Wilbur and Orville Wright launched the first powered, manned flight at Kitty Hawk. Western North Carolina is known for its' mountains.

The Great Smoky Mountains National Park, located about 50 miles north of Cashiers, encompasses over one half million acres and is the most visited National Park in the United States. Visitors in 2000 totaled over 10 million.

The Cashiers area is renowned for its many fine private clubs and summer home communities. Foremost among the golf communities are ones designed by Donald Ross, Arnold Palmer and George Cobb. As a national mecca for golf enthusiasts, Cashiers provides more than 40 miles of golf fairways within a 20 minute drive from the center of town. The Tom Fazio designed Wade Hampton Golf Club is the highest ranked mountain golf course in the world. For the tennis enthusiast, Cedar Creek Racquet Club and Chatooga Club provide excellent tennis facilities and other family oriented amenities. The Chatooga Club is also the site for the World Croquet Championships.

If you are considering moving to the area or just purchasing a second home, you'll want to meet with the local builders. This is an example of the interior of a home built by Koenig Builders. These types of homes are the rage here in the North Carolina Mountains. Rustic, Cabins, Chalet style homes with all the finest touches and details. Koenig Builders have become one of the most recognized and renowned builders in the Highlands - Cashiers area.

For more information regarding Real Estate, Log Home Builders in the Cashiers area and Lots for sale send an email to or call
888-277-2006 x2

Five Stone Mountain View Lots-Cashiers, NC

Five Stone Debuts 11 Mountain-View Lots in Gated Cashiers, N.C. Community

The primary infrastructure is complete and 11 oversized lots with sweeping mountain views are ready for immediate sale at FiveStone, a boutique gated community situated on 53 acres of mountain property in Cashiers, N.C.

Cashiers, NC (PRWEB) May 3, 2007 -- The primary infrastructure is now in place at FiveStone, a boutique gated community situated on 53 acres of mountain property, and 11 oversized lots with sweeping mountain views are ready for immediate viewing and sale.

Earlier this month, the main gate was installed and road construction within the community was completed. Water and electric lines are also in place, and FiveStone is ready to be called home by anyone seeking the beauty and serenity of a mountain retreat.

Four pre-development lots were sold in 2006, meaning just 11 of the 15 oversized home sites remain available, including one of the community's premier lots that offers a stunning 270-degree mountain view. Prices for the remaining lots start at $260,000.

"With spectacular sunset views of both Whiteside and Chimney Top mountains and surrounded by lush national forests, FiveStone offers a unique experience in mountain living," said Steven Umansky, President, Tampa-based LandSource Development Group, Inc., developers of FiveStone. "When compared to home sites in other communities with similar views, FiveStone is not only one of the last choice properties in the area, but also one of the most affordable."

For more information regarding Real Estate, and Lots for sale or call 828-226-8837

Head for the Hills-Cashiers/Highlands North Carolina

Head for the Hills
By Kathy Becker

Dry Falls, Highlands, NC

A change in climate with a change of pace -- the same thing that draws many people to Southwest Florida -- is proving to be an irresistible lure for some working Neapolitans, who find themselves heading for the high hills of Georgia and North Carolina.

In the jargon of the development real estate business, they are called half-backs or boomerangs, because many of them originally came to Florida from the north. Now they are landing about halfway back to their birthplaces, seeking getaways well above sea level.

"We moved down here from the north and find ourselves halfway," says Michael Vranek, vice president of sales at Lely Resort for Stock Development, who has a getaway place he visits nearly every other weekend in Blairsville, Ga., just south of the North Carolina border. "There are four seasons up there, but none of them are so harsh. It's so delightful in the summer. The golf courses are open 12 months of the year. There is some snow or ice, but it's gone in a few hours or a day. And there's unbelievable, true beauty. My wife's family is in Baltimore and Cleveland, and everyone can meet there. We had 13 people for Thanksgiving there last year."

June Mueller, former president of the Naples Area Board of Realtors in 1999, is semi-retired and selling real estate to Neapolitans in Cashiers, N.C. "It's the same issue that drove the baby boomers to Florida looking for a simple, safe place," she says. "They like that kind of lifestyle. It's so similar to Naples. I could see it blossoming in the same way as Naples."

Neapolitans are helping fuel North Carolina's boom. Mueller says about 25 percent of the members of the Country Club of Sapphire Valley near Cashiers are from Naples. "When I built my house three to five years ago, it was $140 a square foot to build," Mueller says. "Now it's between $200 and $450."

This is an article that was published Nov 2006 in the Naples Ilustrated Magazine.