Richie’s Gourmet Ital­ian Ices clos­ing

South Florida Sun-Sentinel Palm Beach (Sunday) - - MONEY -

For more than a quar­ter cen­tury, Richie

Childs has been sell­ing gourmet Ital­ian ices through the win­dow of a tiny store on Com­mer­cial Boule­vard in Oak­land Park. Not for much longer. Richie’s Gourmet Ital­ian Ices will be clos­ing on Dec. 16 to make way for a Star­bucks.

Never mind that there are 30,000 cof­fee shops around the world and only one Richie’s. Pave par­adise and put up a cof­fee shop.

“On Aug. 13, I got a no­tice from Safe­way to va­cate within 15 days be­cause they were sell­ing to Publix,” Richie says. “I pan­icked. I called Publix in Lake­land and asked them to give me more time. Publix agreed and was nice enough to let me stay un­til Dec. 31. They were very fair to me.”

A Publix spokes­woman was look­ing into the mat­ter, but had no im­me­di­ate com­ment.

The af­fa­ble Richie has been sell­ing his home­made gourmet ices, cof­fees and soft pret­zels out of the 150-square-foot store at 898 E. Com­mer­cial Blvd., for 26 years. The shop sits catty-cor­ner to the new Publix, which opened on Nov. 1 at 950 E. Com­mer­cial Blvd.

It’s quite pos­si­ble Richie’s is the small­est store in South Florida. Cer­tainly, his is one of the few in­de­pen­dent busi­ness sell­ing the spe­cialty ices, which are a cross be­tween a sor­bet and a snow cone. Yelpers rave about them.

Richie says his lit­tle lo­ca­tion also is con­ve­nient be­cause of the drive-through. Customers, many of them busy moms who pick up their kids from nearby schools, can pull off the boule­vard to grab a frosty treat and quickly be on their way with­out get­ting out of the car.

“I opened up on Black Fri­day in 1992, and I’ve been scoop­ing ices ever since,” he says.

Even though he’s served thou­sands of customers, Richie doesn’t know them by name. “I know them by fla­vor and by their cars. You’re lemon, right?” he asks with grin in his dis­tinc­tive South Philly ac­cent.

Like so many oth­ers in our neigh­bor­hood, my hus­band, Dan, and I have been bring­ing our (now-grown) kids to Richie’s since we moved in more than 25 years ago.

Richie’s pint-size store is pop­u­lar. He makes 25 buck­ets fresh ev­ery day us­ing nat­u­ral in­gre­di­ents and hunks of real fruit. Fla­vors change daily and in­clude tra­di­tional lemon, choco­late, straw­berry and cherry, along with ex­otic com­bi­na­tions such as lemon-ginger, pineap­ple-basil, mango, co­conut, tan­ger­ine and wa­ter­melon. There are kid fa­vorites rain­bow, birth­day cake and

We knew it was one of the most ex­pen­sive houses in the coun­try: A Hills­boro Beach man­sion dubbed Playa Vista Isle was listed for $159 mil­lion, after all.

But now the real es­tate web­site Prop­er­tyShark has made it of­fi­cial.

The man­sion with its 3,000-bot­tle wine cel­lar, six wa­ter­falls and a putting green with its own sand trap has been ranked No. 3 on a list of top 10 most ex­pen­sive homes for sale na­tion­wide.

The top 10 lo­ca­tions of sin­gle-fam­ily homes “for the rich­est of the rich” range be­tween $50 mil­lion and $500 mil­lion, ac­cord­ing to Prop­er­tyShark, which pro­vides data for 90 mil­lion prop­er­ties in ma­jor U.S. mar­kets.

El­iza Theiss, real es­tate writer and study au­thor, said it’s pos­si­ble some of the homes will see a price cut. For oth­ers, “it’s a ques­tion of find­ing the right buyer.”

These homes are “for the 1 per­cent of the 1 per­cent. It’s be­yond what a house would mean for you and me,” she said. These are “iconic sta­tus prop­er­ties. It’s not just to live in, but to en­ter­tain in.”

The Hills­boro Beach prop­erty, at 935 and 939 Hills­boro Mile, in­cludes the house and an ad­ja­cent 2-acre piece of land along State Road A1A. It has 30,000 square feet of liv­ing space, with 11 bed­rooms; 22 bath­rooms; a 3D-IMAX, in-home the­ater with 18 re­clin­ers; 20-car garage with se­cure tun­nel ac­cess; wine cel­lar with in­di­vid­u­ally con­trolled tem­per­a­ture and hu­mid­ity with an ad­ja­cent tast­ing room; a pool with a slide; and a Jacuzzi with ocean views.

The 58,000-square-foot es­tate will be up for sale at a live auc­tion on Nov. 15 through the real es­tate auc­tion com­pany, Concierge Auc­tions. One Sotheby’s In­ter­na­tional Realty has the list­ing along with the auc­tion house.

The other homes on the top 10 list of­fer ev­ery­thing from a work­ing farm com­plete with co­conut and cit­rus trees (that would be No. 7 in Hawaii, with an ask­ing price of $70 mil­lion), to 7,000 acres shared with bears, bi­son and moun­tain li­ons and fea­tur-

Doreen Chris­tensen

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