Hot Houses: Private island in the Florida Keys and Tuscan villa in Tennessee

Hot Houses: A $95 million private island,  golfer's fantasy retreat, and Tuscan villa in Tennessee


Each week picks its Top 3 over-the-top luxury listings from Mansion Global.

This week we have a private island, a golfer’s fantasy retreat, and a Tuscan-inspired mansion that will make your honeymoon last forever.

What’s it cost to buy your very own private island these days? Oh, just about $95 million.

Pumpkin Key, an awe-inspiring 26-acre island in the tropics of Card Sound Bay, off the coast of Florida, has just hit the market for that amount.

But this isn’t just a home, it’s an opportunity for development.

Currently the island is the absolute pinnacle of privacy, but if you want some company, there is plenty of room for growth. It is already home to a three-bedroom main residence, two caretaker cottages, and a dock master’s apartment. But, the buyer of Pumpkin Key is allowed to build up to 12 half-acre homes on the bay. Each house site is already equipped for both water and electricity.

Worried about where to park your yacht? Don’t. The island has its own 20-slip marina with more than 18 feet of draft, which means it can accommodate even the largest of luxury vehicles.  

But if you’d rather arrive by air, the tennis court in the middle of the island can easily serve as a helipad.

Don’t worry about being isolated.  The island’s owner automatically becomes a member of the elite Ocean Reef Club on the mainland in Key Largo, Fla., home to 1,700 estates, two of which will also be owned by the buyer of Pumpkin Key. The private island is just a three-minute boat ride away from Key Largo.

Looking for island living for a little less money. Look no further than this gorgeous property on South Carolina’s Kiawah Island, one of the nation’s best spots for boating, fly fishing and golfing.

A private dock, with a boatlift, offers direct access to one of the most pristine and secluded river and marsh systems in the country, perfect for sailing kayaking and paddle boarding.

The property just hit the market at $6.5 million. The 7,427-square-foot home has six bedrooms, five bathrooms and two partial baths. With more than 3,000 square feet of decking there are pristine river views from nearly every room in the house, making everywhere an ideal spot for dolphin watching. Residents can opt to dine in the classically designed formal dining room with serene views of the Kiawah River and surrounding marshlands, or opt to eat al fresco on the screened in porch. 

Kiawah itself is a paradise for golfers, with nine golf courses on the island, including the private Ocean Course, designed by Pete Dye in 1991. Just minutes from the property sits the private Kiawah Island Club is home to the Tom Watson-designed Cassique Golf Course.

The gourmet mecca of Charleston is only 25 minutes away, a quick 40-minute drive, or boat ride from the property.

Talk about making your honeymoon last forever. A romantic Italian honeymoon inspired this property’s owners to build this glorious mansion on the shores of Fort Loudon Lake in Knoxville, Tennessee.

The couple enlisted the celebrated  Nashville interior designer Landy Gardner to help them replicate the antique-style and sun-bleached tones typical of the old Tuscan homes they fell in love with shortly after their own wedding. She did such a good job that the house has even been featured in Tuscan Style magazine.

“As a luxury real estate agent, I see a lot of beautiful homes, and sometimes they all sort of run together,” said listing agent Debbie Elliott-Sexton of Alliance Sotheby’s International Realty. “But every once in a while, one house comes along, and you think, oh, this is fun!”

Offered at $5.5. million the 12,500-square-foot home has eight bedrooms, eight full bathrooms and three partial baths.

The property also features a well-appointed wine cellar, a game room and a spacious media room. The backyard is home to an infinity-edge swimming pool as well as a pool house with a bathroom, fireplace and outdoor kitchen. There’s also a 70-foot boat slip with storage on the lake.

For more on our hot house pics and other stunning luxury properties check out Mansion