Can a not-great Winnetka neighborhood fetch $16.7 million?

If the notion of a second-rate neighborhood in Winnetka seems strange to you, you probably don’t live in Winnetka.

“That’s not a great neighborhood. It’s just north of Elder Lane [park]. I think he’s smoking something,” was the off-the-cuff reaction from a knowledgeable Winnetka agent I called for a quick take on a newly-listed lakefront home on just over an acre at 319 Sheridan Rd in Winnetka. The asking price: $16,749,000.

Other considerations, according to my contact, are the mood of high-end buyers, the options they have available to them, and the limited appeal of homes by Heritage Luxury Builders, the developer of 319 Sheridan.

“Everyone’s queasy right now. Everyone is pulling back. There are a number of larger sites available in the $3 to $4M range in Winnetka. Add $5 million to build, and you can have what you want for half that price. And, not everyone likes the Birov [Heritage] product.”

According to Redfin sold data, the highest-priced sale in Winnetka in the last 3 years was also built by Heritage. The 10,400 square foot home, at 523 Hoyt Ln, sold for $6,621,300 in March of 2010.


  • Mary Jo A. 6 years

    I cannot believe this house. It is over the top and ridiculous looking! Leo Birov has littered the North Shore with this type of ostentatious building that never fits in to its surroundings. I pity the person who thinks this would be a good buy and who has the bad taste to want to live in it.

  • Mary Jo A.

    You’re new here, so you may not know that I pity people who make such harsh judgments on other people’s taste in their homes.

  • anon 6 years

    It seems that many of the Hinsdale developers build homes that would suit the North Shore. Less over the top and fit the historical surroundings. Why don’t these builders also build on the North Shore? I’m interested in moving to the North Shore from the city, am considering building (if not tons more than buying an existing property and land prices have dropped), but can’t find a decent piece of property or a home advertised by Birov that I would live in. I did like his 562 Cherry Street home but none of those he currently is advertising. I find many nice houses in Hinsdale but sadly it doesn’t fit my commute. What is happening to the North Shore…I always thought understated elegance was preferred there?

  • anon,

    Tastes vary, and North Shore new construction has accordingly been very much a mixed bag during the past decade.

    You’ll find the more classic newer homes in Wilmette, east of Green Bay Rd, and in Kenilworth.

    If you find a piece of ground you like you won’t have any difficulty finding a builder to suit your taste.

  • Paul 5 years

    I love the look of this house I would knock down the one in front of it and make a great looking drive though. Its one of the few places with a good amount of sandy beach, dont know how people can complain about something like this. Also don’t agree with this being in a bad neighborhood its the best spot with the most beach. It sold on June 24th 2013 for 12.7 mil.