When he has more ties than Christian Grey. When she already has a reindeer sweater for each of the twelve days of Christmas. Because fruitcake is stale even as a joke. Nothing says love during the holidays like the gift of real estate. Almost everyone you know is living in a house that falls short of his or her high expectations in some way. Perhaps your brother doesn't have the wine cellar he so desperately needs, or your teenage cousin dreams of sneaking through her own secret passageway? We're here to help. Curbed has selected a range of properties to suit every personality, from the uncle who loves to party to the hipster sister-in-law who never lets you forget how cool she is. These 15 homes, while ridiculous and gorgeous to varying degrees, are the sort of presents your loved ones will cherish for years to come.
For the wine snob older brother:
Perfect for the man who doesn't realize he's boring you with the story of his Argentine Malbec voyage, this over-the-top mansion, via Curbed Ski, offers a custom wine tunnel modeled after a silver mine, complete with a vintage miner's trolley. It also has a private funicular and a tree-top fire pit. $13.75M.
For when grandma's ready to downsize:
This adorable cottage, via Curbed Cape Cod, is a diminutive 252 square feet and has neon yellow shutters and a neon yellow crab. $79.9K.
For the big-game hunter in the family:
Looking like Teddy Roosevelt's fantasy den, this four-bedroom house, via Curbed Chicago, is studded with taxidermied horns and heads, and completes the effect with a backyard choo-choo train. $5.2M.
For the uncle who loves to party:
This stately Federal-style house, via Curbed New Orleans, has loads of 19th-century details, including a wet bar and a full wall of French doors that open right into the street. Your drunk uncle can bring half the French Quarter back home with him. $1.25M.
For the cousin who yachts:
This house with a roof like undulating ocean swells, via Curbed Hamptons, will calm with its curves, while ensuring that your beloved family member has a home that serves as a talking point as much as a domicile. $1.95M.
For your dad, the baseball fan:
Just living across the street from A-Rod will give Dad a thrill. They might never play catch, but perhaps the centaur MVP will deign to chat about the weather. The 10,000-square-foot mansion, via Curbed Miami, is pretty gaudy, but that's precisely the point. $5.9M.
For your mom, impatient for the next Danielle Steel book:
This lovely log cabin/castle, via Curbed Ski, comes complete with turrets, vaulted ceilings, and a gothic master bedroom. It's an ideal place to host a murder mystery, or just hunker down and read one. $3.195M.
For the Neanderthal-in-law:
This wacky three-bedroom house, via Curbed Chicago, comes straight out of Bedrock. Mixing modernism with ancient cave vibes for that dear in-law who calls Hillary Clinton a gal after one drink and makes excuses for Bill Cosby after four. $1.15M.
For the hipster-in-law:
Really? A vintage Airstream trailer? As your pool house? Much like your sister-in-law with the two-tone hair, this black house with a bright orange door, via Curbed Hamptons, thinks it's the coolest one in town. $5.595M.
For your aunt who is still on that bad acid trip:
It's a columned colonial with futuristic flourishes, and a tree growing in the living room. Sure, this plantation-style house in the middle of San Francisco makes little or no sense from a taste standpoint. But it's about exploring the horizons of her mind. $6.75M.
For the cousin who still waxes nostalgic about high school:
What better for a cousin who misses his days on the varsity team than a condo inside a redbrick school? This two-bedroom apartment, via Curbed Atlanta, dates to 1911, and comes with a school bell (cheerleader not included, or recommended). $199K.
For your sister, who liked the Princess Diaries more than you did:
Instead of agreeing to watch it with her for the fourth time, buy your sister the converted firehouse, via Curbed San Francisco, where Anne Hathaway's character lived in The Princess Diaries. Designed for fire-fighting horse-drawn carriages in 1911, the building was converted into a private residence for unaware princesses in the 1970s. $2.6M.
For the aspiring [adult] filmmaker:
This bubblegum-pink house, via Curbed New York, has an angular façade and a black-and-white rec room that practically scorches one's retinas. Clearly perfect for the immature auteur in your family. $899K.
For the great-aunt who still hasn't returned that Royal Window Treatments book to the library:
This Edwardian house with ornately carved interiors from 1903, via Curbed Philly, has its own secret passageway. $1M.
For the gadget geek:
This midcentury two-bedroom, via Curbed SF, comes with iPads and Apple computers built right into the walls. In fact, living here would feel something like residing inside an iPhone. The perfect choice for the nephew that never looks up from his device. $3.225M.