Someone should alert the Governor’s Office of Economic Development of Southern Nevada’s newest cottage industry — reality TV show stars.
Joining the existing half-dozen or so media personalities who have planted roots in Las Vegas are Camila and Brent Lincowski, whose new show “Say Yes to the Nest” premiered Jan. 5 on HGTV. The program is a 30-minute pilot for a series that follows a different set of newlyweds each episode, as a Realtor leads them on a search for potential first-shared homes.
If this sounds like many of the house hunting-type shows already on the air, here is how it’s different.
Instead of the serious tone of a typical HGTV show, “Say Yes to the Nest” has more of the personality driven characteristics of a Bravo or TLC-style production. And, that is no coincidence because it’s produced by the same team that brought us “Say Yes to the Dress,” a TLC show on which the couple also appeared twice.
”They liked her personality so much they ended up filming our whole Miami wedding,” Brent said.
Joining them on their search was Camila’s mother, Oni Correa, who will live with them and was an important part of the decision process, something that would come as no shock to anyone who watched them interact on “SYTTD.”
With a budget set at around $1 million, their friend and Realtor Steve Hawks of Platinum Real Estate Professionals showed them three homes.
The first, a move-in-ready Summerlin resale at $775,000 was rejected due to lack of a casita, and having the wrong type of pool.
“I love the modern-looking pools,” Camila said.
“Water is water to me,” Brent said.
But the veto factor was Oni’s negative reaction to the home.
“It’s like having two couples,” said Hawks, of the debate between the mother and the kids.
The next stop was at a large, 1980s-built home in Quail Ridge Estates on the east side of town priced at $865,000. Brent felt it had a lot of potential, but Camila rejected it because it needed a lot of updating.
She hated the carpeted master bath, and it came with an atrium in the foyer, which she feared would create a beeline of bugs traveling straight into the master bedroom in the middle of the night, destroying her ability to get a good night’s sleep.
The final home, which they chose, is in a new, contemporary community in Henderson with 78 lots and prices starting at $840,000. Called Axis, the Pardee community features lots carved out of a low mountain ridge south of Horizon Ridge Parkway, and west of MacDonald Highlands in Henderson.
The small neighborhood offers lots 8,000 square feet to 10,000 square feet, designed to maximize the view, explained Sarah Lockhart, a new home advisor for Pardee at Axis.
The couple were deciding between two opposing lots at the top of community on a street with just four choices.
“It kind of makes you feel like you’re king of the hill,” said Lockhart, who worked with the Lincowskis to make their selection. One with a Strip view was quite a bit pricier than the one they chose with a mountain view, which better fit their budget and allows them to do more of the upgrades they want to do in the future, Lockhart said. “I think that she is a very confident, knowledgeable buyer.”
There are seven floor plans, ranging from about 3,115 square feet to 4,450 square feet. The Lincowskis chose the biggest floor plan, The Wall, with five bedrooms, (one of which will become a media room), 5½ baths and a three-car garage.
The Wall model features the typical amenities of homes in that price range, including courtyards, a glass-lined stairway, and a well-designed kitchen including an island with waterfall countertop. But the exterior is quite remarkable for the price range.
It is painted sage and rust, colors that blend nicely into the landscape. A vertical element separates the two sides of the house at the entrance, which features a trio of horizontal water fountains, plus another one for good measure by the large glass pivot point front door, (a $14,000 upgrade). Several outdoor designated seating areas include a fixed shade canopy.
They ended up spending well above their budget, close to $1.5 million for a model that started at $1.06 million.
Axis is carved into the McCullough Mountain range and features beautiful, contemporary home designs.
John Simmons, the project director for Ascaya, and his wife, Monica Martinez Simmons, live in Axis and attended a party celebrating the sneak preview of “Say Yes to the Nest” at the Wall model home.
They bought a lot with the mountain behind them, which was strategic, Monica said, because they also added collapsing glass door walls that provide a view of the city.
“From our front deck, we see what other people see from their backyard.”
Pardee Homes has been building in Southern Nevada since 1952, starting with Spring Valley, the first master-planned community in Las Vegas. The company plans on introducing at least six new neighborhoods this year.
Camila moved here in 2015, after lasting 28 days as a contestant on “Celebrity Big Brother UK,” Season 15, where she was known as Cami Li. She is a Nevada-licensed Realtor with Platinum Real Estate Professionals’ Henderson office. She considers Hawks and his partner Noah Herrera to be professional mentors.
“The first year as a Realtor was difficult,” she said. “If I didn’t have Steve and Noah by my side, I probably would have dropped out by now. People think it’s so easy, but it’s quite difficult.”
Brent has been a mortgage banker since 2006. He graduated from UNLV in 2005.
In the last several years, the four of them have successfully invested in and resold numerous homes around the valley for as much as a $75,000 profit, she said.
While their dream home is being built, they live in the Paradise house Brent bought in 2011.
“It looks like ‘Game of Thrones’ threw up in it,” is Camila’s assessment of the home’s style. She is busy mining Pinterest and Instagram for design ideas for their new home. Her taste runs toward “modern, ultra-modern, and I have to thank Pinterest and Instagram for that because it’s definitely helping all the ideas come together,” she said.
She believes in shopping locally. “I don’t care whether I find it at Z Gallerie or a consignment shop. If I can find it cheaper, I’m going there. I don’t care about name brands; (just) how good it looks. The cheaper, the better. But I like supporting local businesses.”