Luxury Real Estate-Forbes Article Green Real Estate

Real Estate
Millionaires’ Green Mansions

Lucy Maher

With 200-year-old Spanish roof tiles, 18th-century wood doors and flawless terracotta floors, the home developer Geoffrey de Sibert is building on a cul de sac in Monterey, Calif., certainly is a nod to the past.

But don’t let the Old World details fool you. The 11,000-square-foot Mediterranean-inspired manse also boasts cutting-edge, energy-efficient features such as concrete walls with four times the insulation of standard wood walls, solar-powered heating and a water filtration system that recycles rain water to hydrate the lawns.

“We felt that, given that we are dealing with new construction, we should make this house as energy-efficient as possible,” de Sibert says. “If one is prepared to plan ahead and make some sensible decisions, you can be environmentally friendly. It doesn’t in any way interfere with a beautiful home.”

De Sibert is not alone. Hollywood, high-tech and high-powered types are becoming greener and more energy independent. The shift toward more environmentally friendly homes may be prompted by conscience or health concerns. And the 2001 California blackouts, the Northeast blackout of 2003 and the hurricanes that left some Florida residents without power for weeks last year have encouraged more non-tree-huggers to consider alternative power sources–or go off the grid entirely–for their residences.

Luxury Green Home Slide Show Forbes

Meghan Clair of Windermere Real Estate Wailea LLC is the First Female EcoBroker on the Island of Maui. In just this past year, Meghan’s Eco-Efforts have had an integral impact on the community. She has helped raise EcoAwareness through recycling charitys, sponsoring and organizing Green Building Seminars, implementing eco-pracitces in her office, beach clean ups, and assisting her clients with the lastest information on ecofriendly home choices. Look for Meghan’s “Green Home Listings” this fall.


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