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Members of the Shared Estates team, property service providers and local community leaders discuss the Berkshires, what motivates them and the democratization of some of the world’s most exclusive historic real estate.
Renewable energy pioneer and serial entrepreneur Daniel Dus talks about one of his key motivations for founding the fund: “the lack of asset backed, sustainability-focused investment opportunities that drive social good.”
“We are creating a new way for real estate to be used,” said Orion Parrott, General Partner, Shared Estates, “so that anyone can invest, while we preserve the historic nature of these properties.”
“The Berkshires is thriving economically, culturally, socially, artistically… but what it also has underlying all of that is a foundation of calmness, of natural oneness and stillness… it is a creative community,” says Billy Keane of Jan Perry Associates, rockstar (literally) realtor.
Lindsey Shmid takes a personal look at the abundance of natural, cultural and culinary opportunities the Berkshires has to offer. “I try and get to as many things as I can and I don’t even scratch the surface.”
“Everyone came here for the same reason: to unplug from city life, get a slice of Berkshire life, and slow down.” Jessie Tobin McCauley talks about some of the reasons so many people are coming to the Berkshires from places near and far.
Artist Kamil Peters talks about his passion for mentoring young people as he creates art and builds spaces for Shared Estates properties. “The experience I had growing up, there weren’t a lot of resources, there just weren’t things for me to do as a young person.” Kamil created Diesel Works to provide a safe and creative space for youth.
“The Playhouse was in dire need of restoration… and was completely transformed,” said Jason Dus, General Contractor and Partner. “The Freeman Berkshires was built in a way to basically last forever… That’s always the goal that I have in building. It’s not to get the next paycheck, but to build a structure that is going to last generations.”
David discusses being a first-time real estate investor, the proprietary booking platform being developed in partnership with Shared Estates and how technology is enabling the largest real estate syndication / crowdfunding ever done in the Berkshire Hills.
“What I love about the Berkshires is the tight community we have here,” said Tricia McCormack. “My greatest passion is reflecting back the joy in people’s lives. To rent a bigger piece of property and have all of the people traveling for your event stay together is really an amazing thing.”
“Canna Provisions has an inquisitive and thoughtful community approach… We on purpose chose the Berkshires… it is a tourist destination for ~3 million people per year,” said Meg Sanders, CEO of Canna Provisions.
“I’ve been cooking for 25 years. I love coming to work every day. I love food, even after all of this time,” said Aura Whitman, chef and caterer. “Shared Estates… is real estate with a conscience, and I think that is really important.”
“Because of the amazing natural resources that we have here [in the Berkshires], and the quality of this land, it is a place that for millennia people have come for healing, retreat and renewal,” said Micah Mortali, Author of Rewilding, founder Kripalu School of Mindful Outdoor Leadership and owner Shire Quests.
“Anyone who comes to the Berkshires has their own story, whether they went to school here, camp, vacations or went to Tanglewood. Those stories are the inspiration for their events. My job is to take the story and put it into perspective.” said Magdalena Mieczkowska, owner Magdalena Events & Design.
“We are seeing is a tremendous migration of people out of the cities and up to the Berkshires,” said Henry Baldwin, owner of the A W Baldwin Hardware Store in West Stockbridge, a 150 year old family business. “They’ve discovered they can live out here and work from home… I know countless people that never plan to go back to their office.”
“As an artist in Berkshire County you have these natural surroundings that inspire you,” said Michael Boroniec, renown sculptor and designer, “there is such a rich culture in this area… you’re immersed in a bunch of cultural activities in a rural small area…”
“I think making these estates accessible to middle class families and the ordinary person is amazing because it gives everyone the opportunity to celebrate and spend time in these once unattainable spaces… and gives everyone a part of the historic Berkshires,” said Arielle Picheny Dufour, Event Planner at Magdalena Events.
“There is a saying – wine grapes only grow in beautiful places… Shared Estates‘s vineyards will add to the beautiful landscapes of the company’s properties,” said Ruth Woodin, Shared Estates Viticulture Consultant. “The Berkshires is a cool climate area, so there are only a handful of wineries that are growing their own grapes.”