Homes that Could Have Been in ‘The Grand Budapest Hotel’

While movie pundits expect ‘Boyhood‘ will sweep the Oscars this Sunday, many “in the know” seem to think ‘The Grand Budapest Hotel‘ (with its 9 Oscar nominations) will play spoiler and grab a few of the coveted golden statues. As is the case with all Wes Anderson films, ‘The Grand Budapest Hotel’ is absolutely spectacular to look at. From the striking color palettes and charming Eastern European scenery, to the meticulously crafted Art Noveau decor that exudes old world luxury – the world of ‘The Grand Budapest Hotel’ is a world most of us wouldn’t mind living in.

While the fictional city of Lutz in the imagined country of Zubrovka means living in that world would be impossible, there are plenty of current Coldwell Banker listings that would be a more than fine substitute. One look at these homes and you just might say they could have played a role in the movie I’m predicting will win Best Picture at the Oscars in a few short days (if Boyhood doesn’t win).

Take a look below!

Art Deco 

According to, the film’s design aesthetic is mostly Art Noveau, but there are clear Art Deco influences that can be noticed in the Hotel’s decor. Art Deco uses rich colors and bold geometric shapes, as exemplified by these arches that can be found in the Hotel.

If you want the real thing, this French home is right up Wes Anderson’s alley.

Art Deco Geometry 1

Art Deco Geometry 2

Large Drawing Rooms

The large rooms in The Grand Budapest Hotel are highlighted by ornate custom beams on the ceilings, fine hand carved wood floors, beautiful rugs, french doors that let in wonderful views and paneled walls with some of the more intricate but subtle detailing you’ll see anywhere.

The two listings below, one from Chatillon En Bazois and another from Paris, both capture the look in the film almost to perfection. You can almost imagine the main character M. Gustave pacing or ordering Hotel employees to get things in proper shape for special guests.

Paneled Wall Listing 1

Paneled Wall Listing 2

Soaking Spa Tub

This may be a potential spoiler alert, but the inciting incident of the film is when Jude Law’s character meets and begins chatting with F. Murray Abraham’s character in the very large room with various different spa-like tubs.

This scene depicted takes place in the present day when the Hotel isn’t in its best shape. The listing below has a very similar spa-like tub, except it is in pristine condition in a beautiful Villa in the Italian countryside.

Indoor Tub 1

Indoor Pool

Being located somewhere in the cold mountains of Eastern Europe, the owners of The Grand Budapest Hotel were smart when they opted to put a pool inside of the premises as opposed to outside. Pardon the 21st century lingo that would not apply to this movie, but indoor pools are also very baller. Note the Art Deco arches and use of geometric shapes in this room as well.

This $54 million dollar home in Greenwich, Connecticut is more modern than the Hotel, but the pool coupled with its novel use of shapes makes it a space that Wes Anderson could have used.

Indoor Pool

 The Entrance

Any truly luxurious home or property needs to make a grand first impression, and The Grand Budapest Hotel does just that. As soon as you walk through those doors you’re greeted by an enormous space with a beautiful chandelier, stairs, balconies and some seriously fine trimmings just to name a few. When you walk in those doors you know you are in for a special experience.

An entryway as large and beautiful as the one from the movie is hard to replicate, but if any home can do it, the $195 million Palazzo di’ Amore is more than up to the task. Having had the good fortune to tour this property while we filmed World’s Most Expensive Homes, I can personally attest to just how world class it is. I’m sure M. Gustave would approve of these “quarters”.

Entryway 1


The Setting

The Grand Budapest Hotel is located in a fictional town in a fictional country, but inspiration for the area surrounding the hotel comes from Eastern European classic countries like the Czech Republic. The Hotel’s beauty is only rivaled by the land that surrounds it. One would think that the exterior shots were all CGI, but Wes Anderson shot most of the exteriors in Gorlitz, Eastern Germany, close to the border of Poland.

Who wouldn’t want to vacation or even live somewhere as magical and pleasant as that? Anderson’s movies are usually made up “worlds”, but the fact is there are actual places as beautiful as Lutz. Case in point, take a look at what surrounds this one-of-a-kind property nestled between snow-capped mountains in Aspen, Colorado.

Mountains 1


The suites at The Grand Budapest Hotel are outfitted with all the amenities you could ask for, but one of the highlights of the suites would be the large french doors that open up to small balconies. You can either keep the doors open to let in light, fresh air and stunning views; or you can stand out and get a first-hand look at the gorgeous landscape.

The colors might not completely match, but the balcony in this Roman Palazzo listed for $5.5 million seems like it could have been plucked right off the set.

Balcony 1


The Grand Budapest Hotel Exterior

The exterior of the Hotel that you see in the Oscar nominated film is actual footage of a real life model that Wes Anderson’s art department built from scratch. In any event, the exterior is striking nonetheless! The Hotel appears to be a wonderfully kept up castle with two different but complimentary shades of pink. Highlights of the exterior are the towers on the left and right sides, the windows, balconies and classic European architecture.

Grand Budapest Hotel Exterior

We have castles, villas, palazzos and basically every “style” of home you could think of Here are three real homes that resemble the exterior of The Grand Budapest Hotel in some way or another.

This pink home in the heart of the Italian countryside seems like it could be the little brother or sister to the Hotel.

Exterior listing 1

The large towers and ornate facade of this Roman castle certainly do appear to be every bit as Grand as the Hotel.

Exterior listing 2

Last but certainly not least, this castle on 16 acres of French countryside may not be as colorful as the Hotel, but there is a definite resemblance!

Exterior listing 3


- -

At Coldwell Banker Real Estate, we’re always excited for the Academy Awards, but even more so this year. We’re excited to see who will take home statues, but we’re even more pumped for the TV debut of our “Home’s Best Friend” commercial that we released online a week ago. If you’d like to learn more about how we’re looking to find 20,000 adoptable dogs homes this year, click here!




The post Homes that Could Have Been in ‘The Grand Budapest Hotel’ appeared first on Coldwell Banker Blue Matter.

Why Realtors Say You Should Rethink Your Floor

Guest Post via Colby Walker, Director of Marketing & E-Commerce at Lumber Liquidators

At Lumber Liquidators, we’ll admit an obvious bias toward hardwood and laminate. Simply put, we think our products will outshine carpet anywhere, anytime. So we decided to check ourselves against the opinions of those in the business of assessing homeowner preferences. We asked more than 100 real estate agents a simple question: Would you rather sell a home with hardwood or carpet?

In the eyes of those who sell homes for a living, wood is the unanimous choice. Why exactly? For one thing, most real estate agents feel that hardwood makes selling a given home a lot more likely. For real estate agents and the sellers they serve, that’s a no-brainer:  Whatever your local market looks like, everyone appreciates a leg up on the competition.

But homes with hardwood aren’t just more likely to sell period; they also sell for more. According to the National Association of Realtors, buyers pay $2,080 more on average for a home with hardwood over comparable properties. Consider our rock-bottom prices to find out just how much your profit margin could be on a hardwood upgrade.

After consulting the real estate agents, we also wondered how much hardwood could spruce up a room in the eyes of the average person. We polled more than 1,000 individuals from across the U.S., presenting them with photos of 10 homes before and after real LL customers installed hardwood. (For thousands of transformation photos like these submitted by actual customers, check out our remodelling page.) Here’s the effect of hardwood on the crowd’s perception of these homeowners:

That’s right: Having hardwood in your home might make a more powerful impression than you think. The crowd perceived hardwood homeowners to be almost one-third more stylish, and 20.5% wealthier. How about 14% happier, and 13.9% more welcoming? For good measure, try 17% smarter on for size: If hardwood provides all these benefits, maybe those with wood floors really are that much smarter (check out a full graphic with more results here). They say there’s no accounting for taste, but in these surveys, we’ve tried to do just that. When it comes to being crazy about hardwood, looks like we’re not alone.

The post Why Realtors Say You Should Rethink Your Floor appeared first on Coldwell Banker Blue Matter.

An Expert Guide to Choosing the Right Window Treatments for your Living Room

Guest post by Bali Blinds & Somfy Systems

Installing new window treatments is a quick home improvement project that immediately adds style and personality to bedrooms, living rooms, and beyond. Whether you’re excited about adding color, texture, and volume to a space, or simply rejuvenating a room by playing with the light, the 5 beautiful window treatments below provide plenty of inspiration.

Roman Shades

roman shades

Above: Flat Roman Shades with 6″ Valance and 1″ Teardrop Crystal Bead Trim in Light Gold 202 and Motorized Lift: Damask, Warm Amber 3264, Square Pillows: Dover, Rainy Afternoon 3721

Want to transform your space with the touch of a button? Pair the relaxed folds of a Roman shade with motorized lift. Motorization allows you to use a handheld remote control, wall switch or programmable timer to adjust out-of-the-way window coverings, lower an entire room full of shades to enjoy the last rays of the sunset, or dim the light (and reduce glare) to sharpen the picture of your favorite TV show.

Natural Shades


Above: Standard Bali Roman Natural Shades with Cordless Lift: Highpoint, Brook 35113 with 2″ Edge Banding: Taupe 1007, Room Darkening Liner, and 6″ Standard Valance.

Natural shades bring a rustic look to your windows, playing off of this season’s popular rough hewn wood furniture and accents, as well as other natural fabrics. Taking elements of the landscape inside, natural shades are hand woven with bamboo, jute, grasses, and other sustainable materials, adding an earth-friendly vibe your space.

Solar and Roller Dual Shades

solar shades

Above: Dual Shades with Motorized Lift and Cassette Valance: Roller Shade (Back): Rowland, Slate 20004; Solar Shade (Front): Terrace, Sterling 40233.

Two great shades that go even better together: Sheer solar shades protect your furnishings and rugs from harmful UV rays, while softening natural light. Room darkening or blackout roller shades can block out the sun like you’re flipping a switch.
Put them together in a dual shade and you have ultimate flexibility: either shade can be lowered or raised to match your mood, your activities, or even the time of day.

Wood Blinds with Drapery

wood and drapery

Above: 2″ Wood Blinds with Cord Lift/Wand Tilt and 4-1/2″ Eloquence Valance: Fig 1851, Cloth Tape: Willow Dark Taupe G696 and Bali Custom Drapery: Dresden, Olde Town 3443

Wood blinds offer great light control—adjust the slats just so, to let in as much sunshine as you need. When lowered and tilted closed, these blinds also let you enjoy total privacy. Add drapery panels to accentuate (or create!) long lines, cool contrasts in texture, or to make wall colors pop. Full folds of fabric can both brighten and soften the space.

Sun Up/Sun Down Cellular Shades 

sun up

Above: Cordless Sun Up/Sun Down Cellular Shade in 3/8″ Single Cell Sheer Bliss, Butter Cream 0161 (top) and 3/8″ Double Cell Storm, Lemon Drop 3938 (bottom)

With the Sun Up/Sun Down cellular option, it’s a snap to pair fabrics of different styles, colors, and privacy levels to create the perfect combination shade. The split makes all the difference when you mix sheer and blackout fabrics to let in light through the day and have absolute privacy when you need it.

These are just a few of the possibilities. Are you ready to re-do a room? Or overhaul the whole house? Remember, if you can dream it you can do it. And Bali can help.

For more great information and galleries of pictures to add to your inspiration wall visit Bali Blinds powered by Somfy or the Bali Blinds blog.

The post An Expert Guide to Choosing the Right Window Treatments for your Living Room appeared first on Coldwell Banker Blue Matter.

Getting Your Potted Plants Ready for Cooler Weather

Now that the evenings have dipped into the low 60s in most of the U.S., it’s time to begin your potted garden transition. If you’re like me, you have tons of terra cotta containers spread out on your porch or deck, and maybe a few scattered in the yard. Now’s the time to devise your plan. Here are four steps for finding new indoor homes for your potted garden during the cooler season ahead.

1. New Spaces. Set aside this weekend to clear out new indoor spaces for your potted friends. The south, southeast and southwest corners of your home receive the most light so look to these rooms first when deciding your cooler season redecorating layout.

2. Light a Fire. The south area of your home is the Fame and Reputation center in Feng Shui. Fire is the element for this bagua, and wood fuels fire so your plants will do well here. Think about borrowing a floor lamp from another room to add more light so your plants continue to thrive indoors this season.

3. Creepy Crawlies. You’ll want to inspect and treat your plants for any insects before you bring them indoors. Of course using natural remedies versus toxic chemicals is the way to go.

4. Temperature Check. Now that you have your new space ready, be sure to bring in your potted plants a few weeks before you turn on the indoor heating. Your plants need some transition time.

The post Getting Your Potted Plants Ready for Cooler Weather appeared first on Coldwell Banker Blue Matter.

5 Ultimate Entertaining Homes

All of us remember that one friend growing up that had the ultimate party house.  Maybe he had a pool or a basketball hoop or the latest gaming console. While we’ve grown up a bit since then, we still love a great party.  These 5 Ultimate Entertaining Homes take the house party to a whole new level.


The Bowling Lane

This home spared no expense in the fun department.  It certainly strikes the right cord with us!

Firepit in pool

The Firepit Pool

On a cool night this would be THE spot!  Take a quick refreshing dip in the infinity pool and then warm up around the fire pit. Rinse and repeat!



The (Real) Home Theater

This home takes home movie to a whole new level.  Pick up junior mints and a soda at the in-house concession stand, plop down in one of the plush red velvet cinema-style seats and launch your own private screening.

Command center

The Command Center

I don’t know about you, but when I was younger I dreamed of being an astronaut.  I built a “space shuttle” in my closet.  This command center is my childhood fantasy come to life.  This interactive space ship arcade was built for playing video games! The entire unique home in Weston, MA has plenty of fun features, including an indoor basketball court, media room and art-inspired decor throughout.


The Game Center

Practice your jump shot or your serve on this multi-tasking home court.  Can’t you just picture your fans cheering you on from the second floor balconies?


If you can dream it, we can find it.  Start your home search on

The post 5 Ultimate Entertaining Homes appeared first on Coldwell Banker Blue Matter.

How to Make a Grey Color Palette Work for Your Home

Guest post by interior designer John Douglas Eason.

Long before the hair on my head turned silver-grey, even before my wardrobe evolved towards similar hues, I realized that my favorite rooms were almost always in shades of grey. Tonal grey rooms are among the most dramatic and glamorous rooms in which to reside.

To my eye a grey room is timeless, but at this moment is it also quite on trend. Chances are that a glance through a current design magazine or book will turn up a moody grey room or two. Compared to their more colorful counterparts they are as easy on the camera as they are on the eyes.

Flecked with taupe, brown or a shot of black, a grey room exudes a sense of quiet sophistication. And yet, a grey room needn’t feel as though it is lodged in a somnambulist state of dreary haze; they are fantastically receptive to doses of pink, purple, yellow or turquoise. A pale grey room with bright yellow accents can feel as fresh as spring. A pop of shiny gold against a grey backdrop is anything but dull.

living room_eason

My own very gentlemanly grey living room, with its large windows onto the steely New York skyline, incorporates purple mid-century Blenko glass to lively effect as an accent on a console. I also used purple accents in a smoky grey bedroom – pulling the color out of a Hudson River school landscape painting above the bedside table. In another client’s guest bedroom I selected pale grey for the walls and deep Down Pipe grey by Farrow & Ball for the cabinets and trim. This very serious backdrop became the perfect foil for the client’s collection of multi-colored antique carnival prizes.



Color, however, is by no means required to make a grey room a success. For the annual Kips Bay Show House I lacquered the ceiling of a twenty-five foot high stairwell of a Romanesque mansion with Benjamin Moore’s classic Gray and then suspended a cloud-like gold Ingo Maurer chandelier to give a sexy update to the staid McKim, Mead and White building. I covered the walls with a hand painted horizontal stripe of metallic silver, platinum, pearl and gold. Grey anchors and enhances the otherwise glitzy metallic colors.

Kips Bay

In my years of favoring it I have learned that much like white, grey is a ‘color’ with many subtle personalities. Grey can be warm or cool, it can have hints of red or blue, it can be dark or light. Yet as it reads easily as neutral it can accommodate the companionship of color, either by toning it down or providing a dramatic contrast. I value it for its magical versatility and sophistication and I hope I’ve inspired you to consider how it might work in your own home.


John Douglas Eason is a New York based interior designer with more than twenty years experience decorating homes in New York City and its surrounding communities. His sophisticated urban sensibility is tempered by his foundational years working in Greenwich Connecticut’s grand homes. From Manhattan pied-à-terre’s to country estates as far-flung as Texas, John’s serene and smoky interiors are curated for the cultured but also built for living.

The post How to Make a Grey Color Palette Work for Your Home appeared first on Coldwell Banker Blue Matter.

Creating a Zenful Yoga and Meditation Space in Your Home

September is national yoga month, and I haven’t been to my local yoga studio once this month. However, I did make sure to designate a place for my yoga and meditation practice when I moved into my new house a few months ago. I love taking classes at my yoga studio, but sometimes it can be difficult to fit in a class during the work week. Creating your own personal zen spot at home can be the perfect remedy to releasing the day’s pressures while also having another reason to love home. Here are 9 things to keep in mind when creating your yoga and meditation space at home.

1. Choosing the location: I used fung shui to help guide me to the area of my home that I set up as my yoga and meditation spot. The front left corner of your home is called the knowledge and wisdom bagua (area), which I thought was the perfect location for my personal zen corner.

2. Flooring: If you already have hardwood floors, you don’t need to incorporate a different surface into your space. However, if you have carpet you’ll need to consider bringing in a board to place under your mat.

3. Mirror mirror on the wall: There’s no need to bring mirrors into your yoga space. If you already have them in this room, consider relocating them to another spot in your home. Why bring potential judgment of your practice (and yourself) into the space that you’re setting up for well-being?

4. Alter of thanks: Why not find a small piece of furniture to place in your yoga and meditation spot that you can place items that remind you of gratitude? Consider filling it with intentions of the commitment you are making to yourself.

5. Flora friends: Maybe you already have some house plants that might want to join you in your new zen spot, or perhaps the next time you’re in the garden center you might want to pick up a few new friends to green up your new yoga and meditation space. Either way, bringing in plant life helps improve the indoor air quality.

6. Soothing sounds: Don’t forget to find a spot for a speaker so that you can bring in those zenful sounds of nature.

7. Lighting: If your yoga spot is located in an area of the home that doesn’t get much natural light, think about adding a dimmer so you can adjust the lighting during your practice.

8. No pet zone: I learned the hard way during my first meditation at home that my cat didn’t understand why I was sitting on the floor and had to come sniff me out. Talk about jolting me right out of my skin.

9. Clearing the room: Now that you have your new home yoga and meditation space set up, be sure to clear it energetically by burning some sage in the room.

Looking for some visual inspiration, check out this Coldwell Banker Pinterest board.

The post Creating a Zenful Yoga and Meditation Space in Your Home appeared first on Coldwell Banker Blue Matter.

Callowhill: A Music Lover’s Dream Come True

The Callowhill section of Philly might not appeal to everyone. It’s got a bit of an industrial feel to it, thanks to the presence of a number of old warehouses and factories, many of them converted to lofts (giving the area its other name, The Loft District). The neighborhood is also partly cut off from the rest of Center City thanks to Interstate 676, or the Vine Street Expressway.

But for people looking to buy a home in an area full of music and art, the neighborhood is somewhat perfect. Although the area’s reputation as a place for avant-garde art dates back to the 1970s (it is even said to have inspired David Lynch’s surreal first film, Eraserhead), in recent years a number of new venues for music and art have popped up, cementing its reputation as the place to be for music fans.

Music Venues Galore

One of the older venues in the Callowhill area is the Electric Factory. While the name of the venue dates back to the late 1960s, it’s been in its current location (an actual old electric factory) since the mid-1990s. Concerts at the Electric Factory typically feature nationally known acts.

Two newer venues in the neighborhood include Underground Arts and Union Transfer. Union Transfer is located in the sprawling building that once housed a Spaghetti Warehouse restaurant. It features a main floor area, balcony space, a few bars, and a concession stand. Shows in the space are typically all-ages, although there are a few 21-plus events. While the concert schedule leans heavily towards indie rock, a few shows feature hip-hop, soul, or classic punk rock acts. Located in the basement of the Wolf Building, Underground Arts is committed to being just a little bit weird and to providing support to artists. It’s not just a concert venue. It also features local theater productions and art shows.

Punk Rock Flea Market

Held twice a year on N. 9th street, the Punk Rock Flea Market gives you a chance to score vinyl records, as well as various odds and ends, such as handmade jewelry, electronic equipment, and vintage toys. The $3 admission fee supports R5 Productions, the company that books shows at Union Transfer and a number of other venues around the city.

Check Out Visual Arts, Too

If you enjoy visual art as well as music, Callowhill turns out to be home to a few up and coming galleries. The address 319 N. 11th Street is home to two galleries. Vox Populi, located on the third floor, has a long history of supporting local artists. One floor below Vox Populi is Grizzly Grizzly, whose gallery features a rotating exhibition of works from contemporary artists.

Don’t Forget to Eat

All that music and art might make you hungry. Luckily, you’ll find plenty of restaurants in this neighborhood. Cafe Lift, on N. 13th Street, is committed to serving brunch all day, every day. The nearby Prohibition Taproom features an extensive beer list, as well as lunch and dinner options. Spring Garden Street restaurant Llama Tooth has a funny name, lovely garden seating area, and a classic New American menu.

Whether you decide to live in the area or not, Callowhill is a great neighborhood to check out if you want to get an idea of what’s going on in Philly’s arts and music scene.

Image Source: Flickr

The post Callowhill: A Music Lover’s Dream Come True appeared first on Coldwell Banker Blue Matter.

5 Laundry Rooms That Sparkle

The laundry room is one of the most utilitarian rooms in the house.  But, these beautiful Coldwell Banker homes prove that the laundry room can be both functional and beautiful.  Take inspiration from these 5 fabulous laundry retreats where dirty linens don’t stand a chance.


Plenty of storage, clean lines and top-of-the-line appliances make this modern laundry room both pretty and functional.


We’ve heard of double ovens, but how about double washers & dryers?  This laundry room layout could handle the loads of a family the size of the Brady Bunch.


Sleek Italian-style black cabinetry is an instant upgrade for your laundry nook.  Designing your laundry room to incorporate natural light can also make a huge difference.  No more matching blue socks with black ones!


Adding a washer/dryer to a butler’s pantry makes tackling table linens a piece of cake.

Mud Room

Incorporating laundry into a mud room makes perfect sense.  Grass-stained soccer uniforms and mud-spattered socks go right into the hamper before the grime gets any further into the home.


Adding under-counter lighting can turn a drab laundry room into a bright folding station.


The post 5 Laundry Rooms That Sparkle appeared first on Coldwell Banker Blue Matter.

The Cutest Baby Nurseries

The arrival of a baby is probably one of the most exciting things in the entire universe. Before he or she comes you’re understandably overwhelmed with all kinds of preparation that will ultimately ensure that your baby is as safe and happy as possible.

Included in baby prep is completing the nursery. It’s a crazy feat because decorating for someone you’ve yet to meet can be a little scary. The way I see it, your nursery should be an equal reflection of both mommy and baby.

Here are 10 very different but equally stunning design inspirations that will hopefully guide you or someone you know that is expecting along their design journey.

This is a unique nursery because one doesn’t often see this sort of crib placement. 

The perfect nursery for a princess in the making. 

A great neutral nursery for either a boy or a girl. 

The frames on the wall are an original way to decorate. This nursery is very vintage chic.     

Certainly the most luxurious nursery I’ve ever seen.     

A bohemian style baby nursery that is also very gender neutral.     

This nursery does a beautiful job as using wallpaper and a statement chandelier to make the room pop.   

A very simple nursery.   

Again, the use of wallpaper takes this room to the next level. 

This nursery is would be perfect for any little gentleman. 

Keep up-to-date with Coldwell Banker by checking out our Pinterest page: 

Visit Coldwell Banker’s profile on Pinterest.


The post The Cutest Baby Nurseries appeared first on Coldwell Banker Blue Matter.