“There’s no place like home.” Dorothy was right on the money when she whispered these now immortal words in the landmark film Wizard of Oz. A couple of quick clicks of her ruby slippers and she and Toto were magically transported back to their Kansas farm, a modest homestead that in reality wasnít the stuff of dreams. Among the nuggets of wisdom sewn throughout the entire Technicolor classic is the message that oneís home is more than just the collected pieces of wood siding, roofing shingles and floorboards.
Beautiful Homes of Jacksonville, the first coffee table-style publication ever created by Jacksonville Magazine, is an attempt to capture some of that same spirit. Northeast Florida has no shortage of gorgeous houses, some big, some small. The stories featured within its 100, full-color pages were selected from dozens of local home profiles included in the pages of Jacksonville Magazine over the past few years. In picking stories for the book, our goal wasnít to focus exclusively on grand showplaces. We set out to highlight stories about homes of various styles and sizes, and we looked to select dwellings found across the region that had great tales to tell.
Inside these pages we invite readers to wander the oldest house in Jacksonville continuously occupied as a residence. Take a tour of a spectacular riverfront mansion in Ortega. Relax overlooking the ocean in a contemporary stunner in Neptune Beach. Nuzzle up next to a miniature donkey at a farm in rural St. Johns County. Or take a seat by the fire at a rustic creekside retreat not far from Ft. George Island.