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Villas With Views

Part wildlife haven, part mediterranean villa, the Townhomes at Mineola have been designed to combine the natural beauty of the Lowcountry with the elegance of the Med. When the luxurious townhomes are completed, residents will be able to make the most of some of the loveliest views around the Intracoastal Waterway, nearby marsh areas and the development-s own spring-fed lake.

For now, the model home stands as a promise of what will come. Standing elegantly in its serene surroundings with its impeccably landscaped lot in Little River, the spacious three-story structure offers a warm invitation to potential homeowners.

The model and the Townhomes at Mineola themselves are the vision of real estate developer Mark Hardee, who has gone all out to show prospective buyers the amount of detail their own homes will enjoy.

"As a developer, these are my tastes," says Hardee. "This style is a favorite of mine and seems to be very popular in the coastal regions of South Carolina. Mount Pleasant is an example. It-s what I like and where I would like to live."

The surroundings play an intricate role in both the design of the homes and the way they will be situated in the 7.5-acre development. Almost every window in the model offers a spectacular view, as do the home-s three balconies.

"Boats cruising the Intracoastal Waterway can be seen from most of the rooms," he says. "You can even sit in the large tub of the master bath and watch the yachts, sailboats, shrimp boats and Jet Skis cruise by."

While you-re taking in the scenery, there is also plenty of nature to enjoy. Mineola lies close to a private migratory island that is home to blue herons, American bald eagles, and other marsh animals.

Balconies such as those found on the model home will be a feature in each of the townhomes as well, but the model has many amenities that set it apart from the rest, such as a mahogany-paneled elevator to ease the three-story ascent, Cape Fear heart of pine flooring, a large bar, a 22-person hot tub and a pool. The pine flooring is just one of the upgrade options available in the townhomes.

At 4,800 square feet, the model is a larger version of the 42 townhomes planned. The 2,450-square-foot homes will be built in two-, three- and four-unit buildings. All will have three bedrooms and three baths with 9-foot ceilings with custom moldings. They also include such details as ceramic tile in both the kitchen and the baths, a fireplace, a two-car garage and a spectacular second-floor entrance.

"Our signature feature for Townhomes at Mineola is the inviting Mediterranean cast stone stairway entrance," Hardee says. "These cast stone stairways are the most beautiful entrances that we have seen."

For Hardee, a native of the Lowcountry, the Townhomes at Mineola are the development he has always wanted to build. This is the first development he has undertaken on his own, having worked in real estate for many years. He says he chose the name because he had been told it was an Indian name meaning "Little River." He chose the site itself for a host of other reasons, most of which can simply be described as: location, location, location.

"I was looking at building deep Charleston Lowcountry homes," he says. "I loved the lay of the land here in Little River it just set right."

He believes those who see his plans for Mineola will feel the same.

"These homeowners are provided the opportunity to effortlessly enjoy gracious living while experiencing Little River and all that it has to offer," he says, adding that among those conveniences are "beautiful golf courses, delicious fresh seafood right off the boat, fantastic restaurants with decks overlooking the Intracoastal Waterway, and just minutes from the Grand Strand."

More than a year in the planning already, construction of the townhome units is scheduled to begin in August. To ensure that they withstand hurricane season, windows and construction are designed to sustain 140-mph winds. Another plus for Mineola: No flood insurance is required.

Prices for the Townhomes at Mineola range from $310,000 to the present high of $455,000 for units with a view of the river. Only on the market since February, over half of the units have already been claimed.


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