If your dream home idea incorporates a combination of golf, nature, quality architecture and fine wine, there are planned communities around the world that offer the best of all four.
"Some of the best golf clubs in the world also have some of the best wine cellars," said Greg Nathan, chief business officer of the National Golf Foundation.
Maybe the combination shouldn't be & # 39; It should come as no surprise: After all, the coveted British Open trophy is shaped like a burgundy jug – traditionally used to serve Bordeaux wine in the 19th century. And top golfers like Jack Nicklaus, Greg Norman, Ernie Els, David Frost and Luke Donald all have their own wine labels, says Paul T. Stringer, president of Nicklaus Design.
Here's a selection of lifestyle-driven communities tailored for bon vivants looking for world-class chipping and sipping in breathtaking surroundings.
Toscana Resort Castelfalfi is located in the Tuscan hills where the Medici family used to vacation. la dolce vita. The fertile 2,700-acre retreat is a patchwork of vineyards, olive groves, lakes and forests centered around a medieval village of stone structures fitted with modern amenities.
"Unlike other golf communities, this doesn't have a suburban feel," said Marco Boni, a home owner who lives in Dubai, United Arab Emirates.
Six locations for golf course view villas start at 1.7 million Euros (approximately $ 2 million) for an area of 2,580 square feet. -foot property. New construction (a rarity in Tuscany) must comply with strict green building rules. For those looking for a fixer-upper, 14 additional farm ruins, some dating back to the 15th century, are scattered around the property and available for restoration. Renovation (done through the resort) will cost approximately € 740 per square foot. (Homeowners' resort fees start at $ 4,000 per year.)
Two hillside golf courses cover approximately 32,000 square feet of varied terrain. The 18-hole Mountain Course, designed by Wilfried Moroder and Rainer Preissmann, tests experienced golfers, while the nine-hole Lake Course is suitable for beginners.
"If I wasn't playing golf, I would walk the course every day because the views are so visually appealing," said Tim Wade, a homeowner who lives in London.
To enjoy the literal fruits of Tuscany, homeowners can adopt a row of grape vines or an olive grove to buy personalized bottles of wine or extra virgin olive oil, refined in the hotel's organic winery. Homeowners also have exclusive access to wine tours, tastings, and discounts on the resort's various wine labels.
The 2,265-hectare Val de Vie estate is located in the heart of the vineyard-lined Paarl-Franschhoek Valley in the Western Cape of South Africa.
Pearl Valley, the residential development's 18-hole golf course, was designed by Jack Nicklaus and is consistently considered a top course by Golf Digest magazine.
"It's such a memorable trail because the layout is challenging and the mountain backdrops are beautiful," said Hein Koegelenberg, a Val de Vie resident and owner of the on-site winery, L & # 39; # 39; Huguenot Cellar, which is the five signature wines. Residents can also make their own wine blends at the winery; prices start at $ 700 a barrel.
While a barrel of wine will go a long way toward pleasing adults, Val de Vie also places a great emphasis on family entertainment, said Mr. Koegelenberg, citing a list of children. friendly facilities including junior golf, tennis and equestrian academies, cricket, football, batting cages, polo fields, a game camp and 42 miles of trails.
About 80 of the 1,700 lots are currently available. Homes have French Provencal or Cape folk styles with prices ranging from $ 250,000 for a 1,990-square-foot entry-level model to $ 5 million for a 15,000-square-foot home. Construction rates are approximately $ 100 per square foot, and monthly costs start at $ 225.
Jack & # 39; s Point is located near Queenstown on New Zealand's South Island , a lake development of 3,138 hectares at the base. of the Remarkables mountain range.
Thirteen hundred lots ranging from 3,230 square feet to more than 12 acres have prices of 350,000 to 3 million New Zealand dollars (about $ 231,000 to $ 2 million), with construction costs starting from about 325 New Zealand dollars per square foot. (The homeowners association costs start at 3,500 New Zealand dollars a year.)
Thirty-six homes with mountain and lake views are located in The Preserve, a neighborhood along the 18-hole golf course that was designed by the developer of the project, John Darby.
"Our home is low-slung and built with local slate, dark-colored timber and a flat, pebbled roof to blend into the natural landscape," said Jude Roberts, a time resident whose sun-drenched four-bedroom house overlooks about the view.
The developer said residents were drawn to Jack & # 39; s Point for its four distinct seasons and recreational amenities, including tennis, water sports, 25 miles of trails, local golf courses and ski areas.
Oenophiles can sample the terroir at Gibbston, a nearby wine-growing area famous for its pinot noir and home to dozens of wineries and cellars.
Algodon Wine Estates in San Rafael, Mendoza, has a luxury vineyard in a 4,138 acre estate planted with historic vines, olive groves and fruit orchards at the foot of the Sierra Pintada mountains .
The region's sunny climate is ideal for producing the estate's signature Bonarda and Malbec wines, as well as playing on the nine-hole golf course designed by Ricardo Jurado Jr., the grandson of the Argentinian golf legend José Jurado.
More than 100 vineyard plots, some with Spanish Revival houses, overlook the golf course. (Nine more holes with adjacent lots are in the works.) Home locations range from 21,527 square feet ($ 105,000) to nearly seven acres ($ 785,000), with construction costs about $ 80 per square foot. The homeowners association cost is approximately $ 350 per month.
"I quickly realized that I could get a lot more for my money in Mendoza than in Napa, Tuscany or Provence," said John Raffaeli, a homeowner and wine entrepreneur.
At the on-site winery, homeowners can create their own private label in partnership with winemaker Mauro Nosenzo. Rates start at $ 2900 and include labor costs, a new French oak barrel, and approximately 290 bottles of wine.
Further north in the province of Salta is La Estancia de Cafayate, a vineyard of 1,360 hectares. in the Calchaqui Valley, a premier wine region known for its Torrontes.
The 400 lot development, featuring an 18-hole Bob Cupp-designed golf course, will debut 17 vineyard houses with rustic touches such as terracotta roofs, wrought iron and verandas with typical Argentinean grills. Prices start at $ 290,000 plus homeowners association fees.
"Cafayate is a quaint town of boutique wineries – think Napa 50 years ago," said David Galland, a homeowner and minority partner at La Estancia de Cafayate.
Predator Ridge, a 1,200-acre residential community with more than 700 homes and fitness and wellness facilities in the lush Okanagan countryside, British Columbia, has attracted Canadians from across the country – Partly because of the amenities, said Rob Davidson, Predator Ridge vice president of product and planning.
"People buy our community before they buy a home," said Mr. Davidson. "We have over 1,000 community events each year for residents to participate in, from fitness classes to wine pairing dinners, cooking classes and hiking trails."
Predator Ridge has 36 holes of championship golf, including the par-72 Ridge course designed by Doug Carrick that stretches 7,000 yards over rolling hills. The similarly sized Predator course has a par-71 Les Furber layout.
Homes in the Commonage neighborhood overlooking Predator Course have modern ranch architecture, outdoor living spaces, and low impact landscaping. Many start at 270,000 Canadian dollars (about $ 202,550) for 7,405 square feet, with construction costs around 265 Canadian dollars per square foot. The homeowners association costs are approximately 200 Canadian dollars per month.
Wine aficionados don't need to drive more than 15 minutes along scenic back roads to enjoy grape varieties such as pinot gris and pinot noir at a handful of over 180 wineries that criss-cross the surrounding Okanagan Valley wine region.