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Friday, December 12, 2008 / Rubloff Residential Properties

Rubloff Residential Properties:


By DeBat Media Services

CHICAGO—Reconnecting with family and times of earlier innocence this holiday season is only 70 miles away from the Chicago’s Loop in Michigan’s tranquil Harbor Country.

                A tree-trimming contest, sleigh riding and a unique festival of lights show are just a few of the traditional holiday happenings delighting families now and into the New Year.

                “‘It’s A Wonderful Life’ is here in Harbor Country,” said Betty Ramsey, a sales agent at for Rubloff Residential Properties in New Buffalo, MI. “People are reprioritizing and may want a small town lifestyle to relive some of their childhood memories.”

                You’ll find all that and much more during the holidays in all of Harbor Country, the name given to the collection of lakefront communities including Union Pier, Michiana, Grand Beach, Lakeside, Harbert, Sawyer, Three Oaks and New Buffalo, where Rubloff’s office is headquartered.

                “Harbor Country is back to basics,” Ramsey said. “It’s wholesome with strong family values. It’s a place where you can pamper your inner child.”

Ramsey noted that Rubloff is marketing several new residential developments and homesites in Harbor Country. Here are details on some of the properties:

River Bluff. This unique, architecturally significant development of 16 luxury single-family homes is underway on a 78-acre heavily wooded site on the bluffs overlooking the Galien River just five minutes from downtown New Buffalo and Lake Michigan.

Some 35 acres at River Bluff will be dedicated to a nature conservancy. Views from homes will look out onto the Galien River and wetlands. Homesites range in size from 1.5 acres to 4 acres with lot prices starting at $379,000.

“Butler Development invited Stanley Tigerman and Margaret McCurry—two of America’s premier architects—to design the homes, and two are nearing completion,” said Karen Strohl, of Rubloff Residential Properties, who along with Donna Iwamoto, is the exclusive listing agent.

Tigerman’s 3-bedroom, 3-bath residence features 2,550 square feet of living area. The home stands on 2.3 acres is priced at $1.295 million. The McCurry designed home, a spacious 4-bedroom, 3-bath residence showcases 3,465 square feet on 2.8 acres close to the river on a bluff site overlooking wetland. It is priced at $1.395 million.

Oak Grove. This development of six custom cottages in Lakeside offers Arts & Crafts-style homes on half-acre sties. The 2-story cottage on Lot 1 showcases 3 bedrooms, 3 baths and 2,286 square feet of living area, a fireplace, a first floor master suite and a 16-by-13-foot heated enclosed porch. Listed by Iwamoto, it is priced at $499,000. 

Lakeside Village Green. Six charming duplex townhomes are being developed in this development in Lakeside. A 3-bedroom duplex has 2 baths, a fireplace and 2,083 square feet of space. Listed by Gail Lowrie, the townhome is priced at $649,000.  

Hawthorne Lane. This 37-acre development in Lakeside offers 18 homesite, each measuring 1.5 acres. Designed for maximum privacy, each lot has municipal water and sewer, natural gas and cable. Listed by Lowrie, the homesites are each priced at $240,000. 

If you are planning a visit to Harbor Country over the holidays, Rubloff invites you to start your tour at its Harbor Country office at 439 S. Whittaker St. in in New Buffalo. Call 259-469-8300, or visit

       Ramsey said holiday activities abound in Harbor Country. For starters, breakfast with Santa and his helpers at Hannah’s restaurant in New Buffalo will warm the heart of every grinch and charm children naughty or nice.

Reservations are required for this $6-per-person event. Hannah’s restaurant also goes all out for the season with thousands of lights and decorations that make it worth the drive to see.

But don’t stop outside. Inside is a real wonderland with trees in every room, hundreds of decorations and fireplaces draped with holiday sparkle.

                In keeping with the theme “A Time of Giving,” Harbor Country businesses have teamed up with non-profit groups to add to the festivities by participating in the Annual Festival of Trees.  Visitors vote for their favorite tree by contributing $1 per vote in a gift-wrapped box under each tree.

                Other holiday festivities in Harbor Country include:

• The annual “Teddy Bear Tea,” a benefit for Toys for Tots sponsored by The Harbor Grand and Marina Grant Resort in New Buffalo. Children of all ages are invited put on their holiday finery and enjoy a magical afternoon of giving, snacking and dancing.

• An annual “Country Christmas Holiday Parade” sponsored by The Friends of Three Oaks and the Three Oaks Business Association. Before the parade, children are invited to have breakfast with Mrs. Claus and Prancer at the Featherbone Restaurant. After the parade kids can visit with Santa.

Handmade gifts for the holidays are one-of-a-kind finds in Harbor Country. Scour the year-round galleries, shops and boutiques to discover gifts such as homemade candles, hand-blown glass, jewelry, chimes, picture frames, holiday candy, home furnishings and merchandise crafted by local artisans.

Other holiday activities include horse drawn carriage rides through New Buffalo, wine tasting and wine making classes. Many restaurants also offer wine sampling.

Take a horse-drawn carriage to cut down your own Christmas tree at one of Harbor Country’s many tree farms. Afterward, enjoy hot apple cider or wine at one of the many nearby restaurants.

                At the nature preserves and Warren Dunes State Park, snow mobiling and cross country skiing are open while the Deer Creek Hunt Club offers lessons on skeet and game shooting, and duck hunting.

                Enjoy classic and first-run films at the restored Vickers Theatre or renew your spirit at a year-round day spa before a cozy evening dinner by a restaurant fireplace.

                Many Chicagoans are finding they can relax, unwind and rejuvenate year-round in Harbor Country, said Karen Strohl, the manager of Rubloff’s New Buffalo office.

“After the holidays, when 2009 gets off to a hectic start, affordable ‘mini-breaks’ are possible throughout the winter months only a short 70-mile drive from the city,” Strohl said. “It’s the contrast Harbor Country makes to busy city life that’s so revitalizing any time of the year.”

                Visitors can also take their pick of bed and breakfast inns, charming resorts and hotels. Rates range from $80 to $200 per night.

The Harbor Grand in New Buffalo, for example, features prairie design made famous by Frank Lloyd Wright. On a private beach in Union Pier is the romantic Sandpiper Inn with Jacuzzis, screened verandahs and fireplaces.

For more information, please call Rubloff Residential Properties at   312-368-5300    or visit



980 N. Michigan Avenue                          CONTACT: Don DeBat           

Chicago, IL  60614                                                        312-944-1177    

                                                                      OR:              Karen Strohl



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