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STONE MANOR

The place sits there quietly, the passing Gage Marine boats having their talking heads comment about who owns what, and who lives where, in the super rich homes of the super-rich occupying the shores of Lake Geneva. But they don’t talk about some places. It seems, if you are among the super-rich, you simply tell the Gage people to shut up about you and your place…and the Gage people do.

And then there’s the mystery of Stone Manor, not talked about either. There’s no secret about when the place was built, or by whom, or even why. It’s all there in the history books, or if you take one of those boat tours. What’s not discussed is who owns the place now, and what the plans are for it on into the future? That’s pretty much what is called proprietary data, or if it’s written somewhere, it’s redacted with a black felt tip pen, like some of that FBI or CIA stuff coming out of Washington. We’ll tell you, but not about government of stuff.

Stone Manor is owned by two entities. One small unit, of what used to be a bunch of condos, is owned by a man named Craig, who sort of lives there with his sort of partner in life, although you won’t find him around much. He has a full-size home on the other side of the lake where he spends most of his time when he’s not in Illinois. His small condo is the holdout condo. A woman owns the rest. That’s right, a woman named Tina Trahan owns the rest of Stone Manor, and her plan for it is all about doing away with the last condo and the concept of condominiums for the place. She owns all but that one small unit, she’s the entire property owner’s association. Since she is having developers sweep through the building from top to bottom (even the basement has been rebuilt) to accomplish her goal…but there sits Craig.

Tina has been paying around three million for each condo. Eight million for the whole first floor. Her bid to purchase the whole thing, once Craig figures out he’s gotten pretty lonely and the property association might not smile on him anymore, has so far cost her about 18 million dollars. Craig does not want to sell. Tina could make him sell because the paperwork the residents and owners all signed to be in there gave the association the right to force him to sell, if it so votes. But, of course, there is only one real vote. Knowing Tina, as the staff of the Geneva Shore Report does, she is not the kind of person who wants to force anyone, out of anything anywhere. But what is she to do with her very expensive dream home?

She currently lives in Malibu, California, and owns another big residence in Elmhurst, Illinois where she originated. She graduated from Illinois State years ago, and has come a long way in Hollywood. Some of the nearby property owners are not tickled to death with what’s going on. They don’t like the fact that she paid so much for the condos, one after another. That will cause their own properties to go up in assessed value for tax purposes. Of course, it also makes their property values go up for every other purpose, which certainly can’t be bad news. The northern part of the many acres of the Manor property has a narrow easement running down from the road all the way to the lake. Some of those property owners park their cars on that access, and play in the lake during the summer. Those property owners have got to be worried that their “Downton Abbey” kind of neighbor might grow tired of such bothersome incursions into her privacy.

Will Stone Manor become the single largest vacation home on the shores of Lake Geneva, or will it be something else? It comes down to physics (Tina is certainly the owner, paying in cash, for all the other condos and rest of the building) and then conjecture. Tina has no real motivation, other than that she appears to be a really neat person, who speaks straight from the shoulder, to tell the world or even the local community what her real plans are.

 

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