Marcy Weinstein & Rex McKown

The distinguished duo behind McKown | Weinstein | Associates—a highly admired and successful agent collaboration at Surterre Properties—has earned widespread recognition for their experience, performance record and mastery of skillsets and strategies. Leveraging their focused local knowledge and power sales approach to lead in a highly competitive arena has invigorated and advanced the luxury real estate market in Southern California since 1991.

As told to Amy Adams

  Photo by Tony Florez

Photo by Tony Florez

Is there a professional philosophy that you follow? Is it one that you developed or was it inspired by a mentor?

Rex McKown: My philosophy comes from my mentor Bill Holden: My actions can have three effects—positive, negative, or none. Choose wisely. 

Marcy Weinstein: The customer comes first. Having been a customer who purchased one of the first lots in Pelican Hill, I realized that this is a service industry where one organization can service all of a client’s needs, which is what we have created at M|W|A.

What are the qualities of your work that you feel have made the most impact in this business?

MW: The fact that I strive to be the most knowledgeable person in all aspects of the real estate industry, and to provide this information to my clients to meet their needs. 

How do you define success, both personally and professionally?

RM: I try to seek happiness in both respects. Many times that requires an intense balancing act. In the end, if I have a positive effect on both my family and my clients, I’ve been successful. 

MW: Success is having successful and positive relationships. If my relationships with family, friends and others are good, then I am too. 

What is the single most important takeaway from your career that you’ve learned thus far—and how has it transformed what you do and how you do it each and every day? 

RM: Once I finally realized that I am not a party to any transaction and removed self-interest from my actions, everything went smoother. It reminded me of when I became a father. Self-interest became secondary and my life became much happier. 

MW: You can never communicate too much. 

What are the qualities you see in others—friends and colleagues—that most impact and inspire you?

RM: Empathy and the ability to see the position of another. Before you can walk in someone else’s shoes, you must first remove your own. 

MW: Anyone who can stay connected as they grow and continue to apply the work ethic that got them to where they are inspires me. Also, the people who strive to stay connected to the things and individuals who helped get them there. 

What does your track record tell us about not only who you are in the real estate world, but your journey to the top?

RM: I would rather be lucky than good, but have found it’s much more productive to be lucky and good. 

MW: That I have never forgotten where I started, and never forgot the goal. 

What gives you energy and makes you thrive?

RM: I work in one of the few businesses in the world where everybody has the same goal: the buyer wants to buy, the seller wants to sell, and both agents want the same. If done correctly, this business can be a happy one for everybody. 

MW: People who are energetic and positive. Equally, the appreciation of this place, and the kaleidoscope of people around us. 

What moves you to act—a cause, something creative, an individual?

RM: I hate to say it, but seeing somebody wronged (including myself) sets me off. I become fully engaged very rapidly and work tirelessly to correct it. 

MW: A need, dancing, and, of course, my mother, Joan Robinson. 

Heritage Flair

San Juan Capistrano’s iconic train depot comes alive with Trevor’s at the Tracks


Written by Susan Irby

Hallway 1.jpg

Billed as Southern California’s loveliest train station, the Capistrano Depot first opened in 1894. At the time, red brick was covered in white plaster to the top of the dome tower. Today, except for the dome, the plaster has been removed revealing the stunning red brick arcades and structures that are home to one of San Juan Capistrano’s newest restaurants, Trevor’s at the Tracks. Named for its owner, Trevor Baird, the restaurant illuminates modern cuisine while honoring the past and the future. “The building itself is a preservation of history,” explains Baird, “and our motto, ‘locally acquired, globally inspired,’ is in essence about preserving our future.” Efficient usage of water, fully utilizing the onsite garden, and locally sourcing ingredients are at the forefront of the restaurant’s environmentally-conscious approach. “Our wine list features all California selections,” says Baird. “But our cuisine embraces the globe.” Dine indoors or on the al fresco patio and bar enjoying scratch-kitchen menu items such as the Taste of San Juan award-winning Vegetarian Meatballs of red quinoa, brown rice, herbs and Arrabiata tomato sauce; Ahi Poke Nachos with sesame soy reduction over wonton chips; the signature Bang Bang Beer Can Chicken with savory local brew jus and garlic mashed potatoes; and the Fig and Fungi Flatbread with balsamic glaze. Among the sweet endings are the Cast Iron Cookie and the Strawberry Shortcake. 

Trevor's at the Tracks 26701 Verdugo Street, San Juan Capistrano, CA 92675 ~ 949 493 9593 |



Photos courtesy of Trevor's at the Tracks

Plaza Party

Segerstrom Center for the Arts celebrated its new Julianne and George Argyros Plaza and Center for Dance and Innovation with a private dinner alfresco and surprise performance by Bandaloop, who quite literally scaled the wall while dancing—in harnesses, of course. The following day, over 10,000 visitors enjoyed more celebratory festivities, including music, dancing, performances, family activities, bands and more. Attendees had an opportunity to explore the Plaza, designed by Michael Maltzan, with its spectacular fountain entry, as well as the new Center 360 outdoor café, shaded seating and dining areas and permanent stages for year-round entertainment. Representing the Center’s resident companies were Pacific Symphony Youth Wind Ensemble and Philharmonic Society of Orange County with South Coast Brass and Pacific Chorale, South Coast Repertory, and the Orange County Museum of Art. Nothing but the finest in art for OC.  

  Bandaloop performance

Bandaloop performance

Argyros Plaza-CDI-BANDALOOP-Oct 27-by-Drew Kelley (5).jpg
  Stephanie, George Jr., Julia, George Sr. and Lisa Argyros

Stephanie, George Jr., Julia, George Sr. and Lisa Argyros

  Jennifer & Anton Segerstrom

Jennifer & Anton Segerstrom

  Joyce Tucker, Zee Allred and Diana Martin

Joyce Tucker, Zee Allred and Diana Martin

  Bill Gillespie, Mary Cramer and Judy Morr

Bill Gillespie, Mary Cramer and Judy Morr

Photos courtesy of Doug Gifford and Drew Kelley (Bandaloop)


Winter's Tales

A bibliophile's lit picks for your library


Curated by Jenn Thornton

  Photo courtesy of Prestel Publishing

Photo courtesy of Prestel Publishing

Hiroshige by Matthi Forrer

Admired as the last great practitioner of ukiyo-e (“pictures of the floating world”), Japanese artist Utagawa Hiroshige is considered the tradition’s most poetic producer, his work an influence on Western art and some of its greatest names: van Gogh, Monet and Cezanne. This lavish, chronically organized survey of his life and work is a jewel for art lovers, featuring Japanese-style binding and a clamshell box. The 300 depictions of Hiroshige’s beloved prints, books and paintings, along with an examination of the historic and cultural environment in which he created them, crowns the oeuvre of a true artistic titan. $149.00,