Real estate broker with Sotheby’s International Realty in New York.

What is your Irish background?

My mother is from Kerry and my father's family was from the north of Ireland. My sisters, brother and I spent many wonderful childhood summers on our grandparents’ 300 acre dairy farm in Kerry. We grew up in Bronxville, New York, and our house was featured in "Traditional Homes" magazine entitled "An Irish Christmas."

How did you get involved in real estate?

I now work for Sotheby's International Realty in New York after living for 10 years in Ireland, working as director of International Property Investment for CBRE and previously Hamilton Osborne King. I specialized in property in the south of France, Paris, London, Tuscany and New York, sourcing property for Irish and European investor and second home buyers.

I spent at least five days a month based in Nice in the south of France. I commuted weekly to London at one point and brokered a $28 million deal in London.

My favorite project was marketing a charming chateau in Provence, only an hour from the coast and St. Tropez, owned by a French lawyer and his Irish wife. His grandmother had acquired the chateau during World War II when the Germans were advancing on Paris in order to move her family to the safety of the Provencal countryside; they never returned to Paris. The couple had met at Galway University and with their seven young children were delightful hosts during my visit.

You worked in Ireland for a while. What do you think of the Irish real estate market?

The Dublin residential market is rebounding and the commercial real estate market has been very active for the past couple of years with foreign investors and big funds investing in the capital.

I have always had a passion for interesting travel and have traveled all over Ireland, staying in some wonderful places not generally known. I advised property clients on trips and lifestyle in Ireland, France and areas I worked in; this developed into a luxury cultural and adventure travel company, Ultimate Ireland.

I love putting together the most wonderful trips for people, giving them access to places they would never see and will never forget. Last year I planned a trip around Ireland for a senior executive at J.P. Morgan Chase Bank NA and her extended family of all ages; they had an incredible time. One of their favorite parts was a day field trip to Connemara and the Burren in Clare with an Indiana Jones style archaeologist.

What’s trending in New York real estate circles?

I am very excited to be in New York again. The market is strong and there are fantastic properties on the market, both pre-war and modern. There are many new buildings under construction in Manhattan attracting great interest from foreign buyers.

With my years in Europe, I have overseas clients as well as US. I source property for buyers and represent sellers who own property in New York and wish to sell. The strong dollar is encouraging Eurozone owners to sell, and at Sotheby’s International Realty we have access to a very high caliber of buyers. I also handle corporate rentals and manage property for overseas and out of town clients.

I would be delighted to meet with any readers who are interested in buying, selling or renting real estate and/or would like to work with me on planning a special trip, whether corporate or private.

Contact me at Maura.Kinney@sothebyshomes.com.