Sunday Star Ledger
Gracious Living - Resort-At-Home Living Along The Water

By Jessica Jones - Special to The Star-Ledger

One of the most highly coveted amenities at most waterfront communities is the view.  The landscape of homes at water’s edge-overlooking tranquil bays, serene lakes or endless strips of ocean-is priceless.  But designer appliances, custom finishes and concierge conveniences rapidly are becoming a major secondary selling point for these harborside enclaves.

“We are extremely proud of our concierge services,” said Eustace Mita, chairman and chief executive officer of Achristavest, the waterfront development agency that is constructed the Grand at Diamond Beach, just south of Atlantic City.

“The community will have a doctor on cal 24 hours a day, as well as a nutritionist, and a stylist for hair and makeup services,” Mita said.  “Dinner reservations or tickets for a show can be obtained by our staff, and we’re also in the process of negotiating gift and flower design services as well as an on-site household cleaning staff.  We’ve found that buyers in the baby boom generation want to have a key and a bathing suit, that’s it-so we’ve taken care of the rest.”

The Grand at Diamond Beach, a 12-story building situated on the privately owned six-block patch of Diamond Beach, provides that sort of oasis.

“From their homes, residents can watch the sunrise in the morning and the sunset in the evening,” Mita said.  “And the old seashore feel of the architecture blends nicely with the community’s modern amenities,” including pet care, dog walking, cabana service and prepackaged picnic baskets for spontaneous family outings.

A major trend in waterfront real estate is the introduction of vacation-style services normally reserved for five-star resorts, which have become the norm for buyers in Oceanside developments. 

“The views of the bay, combined with the pool, clubhouse and fitness center, is a major draw for buyers,” said Glenn Ward, vice-president of sales and marketing for Matzel and Mumford, which recently unveiled a new collection of 131 townhomes in West Atlantic City, dubbed Bayport on Lake’s Bay.  Bayport’s homes feature expansive living spaces with a large family room and full bath on the first floor; a gourmet island kitchen, with a breakfast nook, and dining and living areas on the second floor; and a generous master suite and second bedroom on the third level.

“Residents will also enjoy a private clubhouse and outdoor swimming pool overlooking the bay,” Ward said.  “The amenities complement the waterfront ambiance to create a resort like at-home experience that’s ideal for full-time and second-home buyers.”

Paramount Homes, a development firm that also has concentrated some of its efforts on luxury oceanfront living, recently debuted North Beach, an upscale set of Mediterranean-style condominium homes, in Asbury Park.

North Beach is a part of Asbury Park’s much-publicized revitalization.  All residences make good use of their Ocean Avenue addresses, which offer ocean views, a pool, a sundeck and a garden courtyard.  A 24 hour doorman and on-site concierge service adds a resort like atmosphere to the property.

Metro Homes LLC, one of the region’s leading developers of luxury condominium residences in sought-after urban locales, has created a few upscale waterfront properties in Jersey City, all featuring views of New York Harbor.

Gull’s Cover, a 16 story development featuring 323 luxury condominium residences above ground-floor retail space, which features a steakhouse and sushi bar, was desiged by architect Dean Marchetto.  The downtown area features a landscaped plaza with putting green, state-of-the art fitness center and “At Your Service,” a concierge that takes care of everything from dog walking to maid service.

Metro Homes also developed Trump Plaza Jersey City, a 55-story building with 444 condominium homes that was created by Trump Organization.

Located at Washington and Morgan streets, five-star hotel style service is also a highlight for this property.  The Roman style Aqua Grotto spa offers classical social steam, sauna, 25 foot heated thermal bath and tranquil treatment rooms.

There also will be an indoor entertainment lounge with a plasma TV and fireplace, a heated rooftop pool with salt water, a screening room, a billiard room a golf simulator, a business bar, a children’s playroom, a 3,000 square foot fitness center, a landscaped plaza, maid and valet service, dry cleaning, tailoring, dog walking, porter service and on-site Zipcar rental.


EXECUTIVE OFFICES . 2501 Seaport Drive . Suite SH400 . Chester, PA  19013 . P 610-497-9700 . F 610-497-9100