Orange County Business Journal

El Sol Neighbor Goes Global for Local Girls

Kylie Schuyler decided to create a mentoring program for girls in grades five through eight in which accomplished college-age women would serve as mentors.

Caritas Turns Mobile Homes Into Upward Mobility

NONPROFITS: Operates 20 parks in region, three in OC

It could be hard to imagine what it must be like to escape one terrible situation, only to be trapped in a nearly identical situation a short time later.

El Sol Neighbor Goes Global for Local Girls

Kylie Schuyler knew this particular group of girls was different.

El Sol’s Sunny Mission

Plenty of Business Backers for Santa Ana School’s Focus on Arts, Academics, Dual Immersion

The idea of charter schools was little-known concept in Orange County in 1999, recalls Susan Mas.


The 2014 Walk To End Alzheimer’s raised $375,000 toward finding a cure for the disease.

How South Coast Repertory Works Neighborhoods

NONPROFITS: Program adapts to schools’ needs

She was about 10 years old, a painfully shy girl with huge brown eyes and a mop of shiny brown hair. She had a nice smile—when it could be coaxed to appear.

Toastmasters Takes on Speakers’ Fears From Historic Home in OC

Nearly three-quarters of the U.S. adult population—74% to be exact—fears the idea of speaking in public, according to a 2013 National Institutes of Health survey.

November Shapes Up to Match October Luxury Sales

Eight $4M-Plus Homes Sold in First Half of Month

In October, Orange County boasted 19 home sales that topped the $4 million mark, with the highest closed transaction fetching $10 million for the 4,000-square-foot oceanfront villa at 11 La Senda Place in Lower Three Arch Bay in Laguna Beach.


More than 450 Southern California business and community leaders helped raise over $900,000 to benefit Big Brothers Big Sisters of Orange County’s professionally supported one-on-one mentoring relationships with at-risk youth.

Some Real Estate Experts Say 2014 Brings Normalcy

Post-Downturn Burst Has Cooled to Stable Market

Consumers, after watching the crash of the housing market in 2008, are wary of another “bubble.”

Therapy Vets Can Embrace

Laguna Hills Nonprofit Taps Business on Mission to Heal

U.S. Marine Sgt. Chris Merkle was one of 20 infantrymen crowded into the back of an unarmored 7-ton truck as it sped along an unmarked dirt road one moonless night headed toward Baghdad.


Global Genes-Allies in Rare Disease raised more than $500,000 at its third annual Tribute to Champions of Hope gala on Sept. 13. The event was held at the Hyatt Regency Huntington Beach.

Billionaires Increasingly Invest in Ultra-Luxury Homes

Diversify Portfolios, Look For Location, Often in OC

Orange County’s coastal region, which stretches from the tip of Seal Beach at its northern edge to the end of San Clemente to the south, includes the most significant communities in the local luxury market.


The Boys & Girls Club of Santa Ana held a grand opening and ribbon cutting on Sept. 11 for its Garage Teen Center and the renovation of the newly named Joe MacPherson Center for Opportunity.

Historic Laguna Home Once Hosted Hollywood Elite

Agent Says Fewer Modern Features Offset by Assets

The historic mansion perched high above a private cove in Laguna Beach at 2592 Coast Highway is reminiscent of an old-time movie setting with its dramatic location overlooking the ocean.

Irvine Cove, Emerald Bay Warm Up Coastal Market

Slow Streak Over as 2 Sales Top $10 Million

The communities of Emerald Bay and Irvine Cove in Laguna Beach capture the character and charm of the California Riviera and command some of the highest sale prices for homes in Orange County.


The Orange County chapter of the Alzheimer’s Association partnered with business and philanthropic leaders throughout OC to create the Go Purple OC campaign, a weeklong event that literally turned well-known OC landmarks purple from Sept. 15 through 21.

Laguna Boasts Biggest Home Price Tag So Far in 2014

Overall Luxury Sales Still Off 5% From Last Year

Almost 200 $4 million-plus homes sold in Orange County from Jan. 1 through Sept. 1, about a 5% drop overall from the same period last year, according to real estate market aggregator DataQuick.


The Cystinosis Research Foundation awarded more than $1.5 million to eight research programs in California, Texas, Belgium, New Zealand, India, Switzerland, Italy and France to enable scientists to investigate improved treatments and a cure for cystinosis, a rare metabolic genetic disease that affects about 500 children and young adults in the United States and 2,000 worldwide.

Online Data Analysis Helps Guide OC Luxury Buyers

Trends, Neighborhood Facts Help Agents Sell

Orange County luxury-home clients are increasingly turning toward online sources to determine the latest in market data to help them make informed decisions about their investments in one-of-a-kind homes, according to Rick Brotherton, vice president of marketing at First Team Real Estate-Christie’s International.

Next Generation of Philanthropists Changes Giving

Savvy, Tech-Smart Gen Y Maps Out Its Own Way

Look who grew up. Generation Y, born roughly between 1980 and 2000 and also known as the Millennials, is leaving its mark on everything it comes into contact with, and that includes philanthropy.

Segerstrom Center’s Street Smarts

Education Programs Aim for Neighborhoods

Luis Castillo experienced something entirely new when he was touched by the Summer at the Center program back in 1994.

How Thompsons Took Up Cause

Daughter’s Accounts of Autism Led Pimco Vet, Wife on Journey

What happens when an executive who spent a career trying to stay ahead of where markets might move hears a story that leads him on a different journey?


David Wilson’s Wilson Automotive Group donated a Toyota Prius c to Orangewood Children’s Foundation to celebrate the sale of its 500th car.

Freeman’s Long Road to Philanthropy Day Observance

Reagan Proclamation Came After Years of Efforts

On Nov. 14, 1986, President Ronald Reagan took the podium in a room crowded with reporters, photographers, and camera operators, ready to make a proclamation about an event five years in the making.

Multimillion-Dollar Mobile Homes New Beachfront Niche

Most Potential Buyers Live Within 75 Miles of Coast

The waterfront home on North El Camino Real in San Clemente boasts all the accoutrements buyers expect from a house with a million-dollar-plus price tag: It has direct access to the beach, hardwood floors, exquisite tile work in the kitchen, high-end stainless appliances, a luxurious spa-like master bath, and floor-to-ceiling windows in the living room that frame the blue of the ocean just steps from the brand-new brick deck.


The Pimco Foundation, Pacific Investment Management Co.’s charitable arm, held its sixth annual Global Week of Volunteering from July 20 to 25.

Luxury Market Embraces Multigenerational Homes

International Buyers Seek Private-Communal Combo

Overseas buyers are driving the latest luxury homebuilding trend: multigenerational living.

Hughes Marino’s 10 Core Values

Always do the right thing. Ask yourself these five questions: Is it right for the client? Is it right for the company? Is it ethical? Is it something you are willing to be held accountable for? Is it the right thing to do?

How High-End Agents Master Marketing of Luxe Homes

Prospect Perks Range From Cocktails to Tennis

There are distinctive techniques for marketing a luxury home that go beyond listing the house on the Multiple Listing Service and hosting an open house.

Company Culture Breeds Independence, Commitment

Tech Firm Zumasys Uses Trust to Tap Workers’ Best

Nine years ago, someone special walked into Zumasys Inc.’s Irvine headquarters for a job interview for a warehouse position.

Real Estate Company’s ‘Core Value’ Its People

Hughes Marino Involves, Builds Up Employees

When Shay Hughes, chief operating officer of commercial real estate company Hughes Marino, started to plan the business’ quarterly retreat three years ago, she wanted it to be memorable, not only for its stunning location—Pelican Hills Golf Club—but also for what people would take away from the event.


Nearly 300 guests donned their best party clothes during a night of Las Vegas-style poker at the Muscular Dystrophy Association’s 19th Annual Gift of Hope Gala on May 31.

Different Extras Catch Luxury Homebuyers’ Eyes

Marble Baths, Wine Rooms Coveted; Others Less So

Marketing a luxury home in coastal Orange County is a science.


Pacific Investment Management Co. founder Bill Gross, and his wife, Sue, president of the Gross Family Foundation, donated $1.5 million in May to the Charles R. Drew University of Medicine and Science’s nursing school in Los Angeles.

Luxury Sales Thaw Helps Strengthen Larger Market

Average Price Per Square Foot Up 25%

The luxury market is a unique animal that responds to its own set of economic parameters.

Dream Builders

Golden State Foods Foundation Does It One Bike at a Time

Some children start to take their bicycles for granted as soon as the newness wears off.

Report Reveals What Wealthy Homebuyers Crave

Want Waterfronts, Luxury For Primary Residences

A new report on the home-purchasing behaviors of high-net-worth buyers in the U.S., U.K., Brazil and China reveals interesting insights into their needs and desires.


United Cerebral Palsy of Orange County generated an estimated $437,000 in net proceeds at the annual Life Without Limits gala on May 9 at the Island Hotel in Newport Beach.

Luxury Home Builders Add ‘Green’ Elegance

Sustainability, Energy Efficiency Now in Demand

Soaring ceilings, marble floors and large windows that frame stunning views are hallmarks of luxury homes.


Community and business leaders attending the UC Irvine Health gala, “Healers & Heroes,” proved to be the evening’s heroes, donating more than $530,000 in only 15 minutes for an intraoperative radiation therapy device with the potential to reduce breast cancer treatment and recovery times for many patients.

Sparse Inventory Leads to Slower Sales, Higher Prices

But Prices Rose in Many OC Coastal Areas

The Orange County luxury market is its own unique entity.

PHILANTHROPY--Week of May 12

Court Appointed Special Advocates of Orange County, a nonprofit organization that trains and supervises community volunteers to mentor and advocate for children in the foster care system, honored its leading supporters and volunteers at the annual Celebration of Children Black & White Ball at the Island Hotel on April 25. 

Area High-End Homes Sell Close to Listing Prices

Styles From Nantucket to Modern Living by the Beach

The classic midcentury, single-level home at 2480 Monaco Drive in Laguna Beach, nestled among some of the most valuable real estate in Orange County, offers ocean, whitewater and Catalina Island views.

PHILANTHROPY--Week of April 28

More than 300 business and community leaders attended the 15th annual Orange County Council, Boy Scouts of America Men of Character Dinner on April 9 at the Irvine Marriott.

OC Fourth in Country for $1M-Plus Home Listings

Behind Only SF, Fairfield Co., Conn., San Jose

Almost one out of every four Orange County homesellers is seeking $1 million or more for their properties, according to the quarterly Orange County Real Estate Market Update compiled by Newport Beach-based Surterre Properties Inc. and released March 25.

Another Walk Down Green Carpet

Film Festival in 15th Year; Fuels Economic Activity

The Newport Beach Film Festival kicks off April 24. The event, which is in its 15th year, has attracted film aficionados with its multigenre slate of studio and independent films from emerging and seasoned filmmakers from around the world.

PHILANTHROPY -- Week of April 14

The Juvenile Diabetes Research Foundation hosted its annual JDRF Dream Gala, “Let’s Misbehave!”, on March 29 at the St. Regis Monarch Beach Resort in Dana Point. More than 500 of Orange County’s leading business executives, philanthropists and donors raised more than $1 million net for diabetes research.

Executives With Endurance

Company Leaders Use Skills on Marathon Route

Cary Hyden, chairman of law firm Latham & Watkins LLP’s corporate department, had been working around the clock for 18 days on an initial public offering when he paused to travel to the New Orleans Rock ‘n’ Roll Marathon.

Sale Prices Closer to Listings Despite Slowdown

Sample Ranges From 94% to 98% of Asking

Sellers of luxury homes have been pricing them closer to new market levels since the pace of sales slowed late last year after rapid acceleration in the first half of 2013

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