Vail Daily obituary: Robert Harris Nott, 1932-2013
December 2, 2013
Early Wednesday morning, Robert Harris Nott, former long-term resident of Vail, peacefully passed away of natural causes. In 1969, Bob relocated from Ross, Calif., when he was hired by then-president of Vail Associates Pete Seibert to establish and act as vice president and managing broker for Vail Associates Real Estate. He went on to build Vail Associates Real Estate into the company that not only promoted development throughout the valley, such as in Lionshead, but attracted many second homeowners and residents to Vail. Vail Associates Real Estate later merged with Rod Slifer’s company to form Slifer Smith & Frampton Real Estate.
Nott had many notable achievements in real estate brokerage, but he is most known for his insightful, caring and patient mentoring of many of the real estate brokers in Vail and Beaver Creek, initially from his office adjacent to the Lionshead gondola and later in Beaver Creek. Many give him credit for helping them establish successful careers
Nott was born July 9, 1932, in Charlotte, N.C., to Susan Harris Nott and Thomas Edwin Nott III. He prepared for college at the Darlington School in Rome, Ga. At Clemson University, he was the No. 1 seed for the tennis team, a sport he continued to be passionate about throughout his life. He graduated from Clemson with a degree in civil engineering.
He was a great story teller and shared some of his memories of real estate adventures with his daughters. One notable recollection was drinking pot after pot of coffee in a cabin in Beaver Creek during the negotiation and purchase of the land from the Nottingham family, where Beaver Creek is now located. Afterward, he established the real estate sales team there. In 1995, he acquired the Avon-based Century 21 Vail Valley, fulfilling a dream to run his own brokerage.
His career began with Coldwell Banker and Co. in San Francisco, where he specialized in commercial acquisitions. He also worked for the DiGorgio company, in their real estate division, before arriving in Vail. After his career with Vail Associates, he was recruited to manage marketing and sales for several golf course developments, including Singletree, Forest Highlands in Flagstaff, Ariz., the Semiahmoo Resort in Blaine, Wash., and the Sonoma Golf Club at the Sonoma Mission Inn in Sonoma, Calif., among others.
Before beginning his real estate career, he served as a naval aviator and officer, with the rank of lieutenant, JG. He remembered his service fondly and related stores of the adventure of learning to land on aircraft carriers. He was stationed in the South Pacific and flew on classified intelligence missions which he kept close to the chest, until recently when they were declassified.
In 1962, Bob married Eve Bascom Nott (now divorced) and fathered three daughters: Sara Divya, formerly Sara Argueso-Nott, of Edwards; Karen Fleming Nott, of Tiruvannamalai, India; and Susan Harris Nott (now deceased). He is also survived by his grandchildren, Austin Harris Argueso-Nott and Megan Rose Argueso-Nott. He is predeceased by his brother, Thomas Edwin Nott IV.
He was a dedicated father, dutiful provider and loving mentor to his daughters. He closely followed and encouraged his daughters to pursue advanced academic learning, world travel and adventure. All his daughters are grateful for his wisdom and support.
Bob was known for his passion for life, including his infectious laugh. Since his passing, his friends are circulating stories from the early days of Vail and more recent times. In fledgling Vail, he was a regular fixture at the Ore House, in its former location. Many remember him reciting “Gunga Din,” by Rudyard Kipling, with a glass of scotch in hand and other antics in those days.
He maintained a longtime membership to the Lagunitas Country Club in Ross, Calif. He was a member of the Bohemian Club, San Francisco, and enjoyed the summer encampment at “the Grove” in Sonoma County with his fellow members of the Whiskey Flat camp.
Bob’s passion for life and intelligent “deal making” will be missed by many. Details of a memorial service will be provided at a later date. To share stories or for more information, please contact Sara Divya at firstname.lastname@example.org.