Castaways Market Update as of March 19, 2011

The Castaways, a favorite Westcliff/Dover Shores area neighborhood, remains one of the most active and sought-after communities—even in this down market.  A flurry of recent activity has resulted in numerous sales in the past few months, plus four new escrows in the past two months.  This is great news in a market where homes above $1,250,000 tend to linger on the market because of buyer lack of confidence and/or the difficulty of securing jumbo financing.  If you live in the Castaways, it signals that the community has much to offer.  Of late, similar sized homes in Cliffhaven and Westcliff/Dover Shores areas have either NOT sold or are selling for less.

Perhaps most encouraging is that both interior and exterior (view) properties are selling.  Two properties on the bluff, 2 and 29 Cape Andover, are in escrow.  The other two properties in “Back-up” status are 14 and 22 Cape Danbury.  Until the banks approve the short sale offers or counter for a new price, there is no way to predict the eventual closing price.  Stay tuned to BixbyBlog for updated information on those short sales as it becomes available.

Two sales not on the RADAR (and therefore not in MLS) are worth noting.  Last year, 18 Cape Woodbury SOLD for $1,710,000.  This month, 28 Cape Andover just closed for $1,750,000.  Also of note, 12 Cape Andover, which recorded at $1,750,000, and 16 Cape Woodbury, which sold for $1,625,000, BOTH had severely reduced Realtor commissions because of their participation as principals in each of those transactions.  The latter two sales, under normal circumstances, might comp out at closer to $1.7M and $1.825M, respectively.

More information will be forthcoming as these Castaways homes close escrow or new homes come to market.


NHHS Print Entry: Luke Upton Memorial by Kerry Hayden

*Note:  This is the first of many submission postings in the Bixby Residential Media Scholarship Competition for Newport Harbor High School seniors.  Stay tuned for more student submissions in print, photography, and video categories.

Luke Upton may be gone, but he is definitely not forgotten.  At his memorial on Saturday, March 5, hundreds of his friends and family arrived to the gazebo at A Street to pay their respects to Luke on a miraculously sunny, beautiful day.  The memorial was organized by Newport Harbor junior Nadja Mustedanagic.  She said “we want to stress the fact that it is not about mourning, it is a celebration of his life.  Luke was upbeat, he wouldn’t have wanted us to be sad.  He loved the beach and he loved riding, they were his two favorite things.”

His two loves were pervasive throughout the day.  At 1:45, a majority of the participants lined up for a ride down the boardwalk in honor of Luke.   Even those without bikes ran or walked down the boardwalk to join in the action.   At the end of the boardwalk, there was a banner that the leaders of the ride broke through.

The ride was led by Diego Vourakis on Luke’s bike.  Diego, a sophomore, said “two months ago, Luke told me he was going to give me his bike when he went to the Marines.  I was like no, but now this happened.  His bike was the most important thing he had.”  Diego plans to hang Luke’s bike on his wall.  Luke’s bike was adorned with lots of blue ribbons because blue was his favorite color.  The riders were also given blue ribbons to tie onto their bikes.  Other blue ribbons, decorated with “5.11.93-2.24.11  RIP Luke G. Upton” were given out as bracelets.

The gazebo, the heart of the event, was decorated with signs and flowers and an contained an area where people could write messages for Luke.  Calum McInulty, a senior, said “it is nice that Nadja got this together.  Luke would be grateful for it.”  Sheridan Ockunzzi, a sophomore, said the event “showed me how many people really did embrace Luke.”

Nadja said of Luke, “everyone loved him.”  Many of the attendees made shirts to celebrate Luke, with messages such as “A fallen soldier, but a rising angel.”  Calum said “He is with his mum and his brother now so he is in a better place.”  Luke’s death is a tragedy because of how much life he had ahead of him, but it is certain that he lived his life to the fullest.  His memory lives on in so many hearts.  Rest in paradise Luke Upton.


NEW LISTING: 9 Castaways North, Newport Beach, CA

CastawaysThis Castaways home offers one of the most desired, functional floorplans available.  The “pride of ownership” property includes many upgrades and is priced aggressively in line with many recent comparable sales (see coming post titled “Castaways Market update”).

Property Features:

  • 4 bedrooms + office
  • 4.5 baths
  • Great room concept with French doors to backyard
  • Kitchen with large center island, dining area
  • Double oven, 6-burner built-in range w/ hood
  • Family room with fireplace & built-in bookshelves & entertainment center
  • Formal living room with two story ceiling and fireplace
  • Formal dining roomCastaways kitchen
  • Master bedroom w/ coffered ceilings & balcony
  • Master bath with separate shower and Jacuzzi tub, plus walk-in closet
  • Downstairs guest bedroom with en-suite bath
  • 2 upstairs bedrooms (one expanded) and each with en suite baths
  • Outdoor gas fireplace, built-in Viking BBQ & burners with mini-fridge
  • 2-car attached garage, plus additional 3rd garage

Amenities and Improvements:

  • 24-hour guard gated community
  • Adjacent to Castaways tree lined walk
  • Easy access to bluff-top Back Bay trail and Castaways parkCastaways Newport living
  • Bob Henry Park with playground & sports fields just outside front gates
  • New distressed walnut hardwood floors
  • New custom Plantation shutters throughout
  • New living room fireplace & surround
  • New front and backyard brick and concrete hardscape
  • Custom built-in bookshelves and moldings in office (5th bedroom)
  • Front and rear irrigation and landscape lights on timers
  • Upgraded epoxy flooring in garages
  • Air-conditioning


Castaways neighborhood rests graciously on one of West Newport’s finest bluff-top locations.  Residents enjoy the security and privacy of the recessed 24-hour guard gated entry, set well back from Dover Drive.  Surrounded by the open space of Bob Henry Park, Castaways Park and Back Bay bluff trails, and miles of ocean, Catalina Island, city lights and mountain views, one finds living in Castaways a breath of fresh air.  With proximity to the everyday shopping & dining of Westcliff and 17th Streets, plus award-winning area schools and easy Pacific Coast Highway & freeway access, the location is unbeatable.  This tastefully upgraded Tradewinds model home awaits the most discerning of buyers, and is priced at a tremendous value.Bob Henry Castaways Newport