Oct. 22--If you've been in the Art Museum area looking for the Best Western hotel, you're too late.
That spot, a few steps northeast of the Rodin Museum in a block bounded by Hamilton, 21st, 22nd, and Spring Garden Streets and Pennsylvania Avenue, is now home to Dalian on the Park, a $160 million mixed-use building with 293 rental apartments and, on much of the first floor, the new 55,000-square-foot Whole Foods Market, relocated from 20th Street and Pennsylvania Avenue.
"This has been two years in the making," Madeline Parker, a marketing and sales associate for the Bozzuto Group of Greenbelt, Md., said as she took a visitor on a tour. Bozzuto is managing the property for Dalian Development of Washington, which developed it with International Financial Co. of Philadelphia.
Dalian on the Park opened Sept. 1. As of late that month, Parker said, there were seven move-ins, while preleasing was going fast and furiously.
"It is nice seeing the place coming together," Parker said as she greeted a maintenance worker vacuuming some stray construction dust from the carpet in a hallway.
Although many of the new multifamily apartment buildings in Center City and adjacent neighborhoods, as well as those in the suburbs, are being designed and built for the so-called millennial market, Dalian on the Park is targeting "anyone who would like to live here," Parker said.
That includes downsizing empty-nesters, many of whom came to the Art Museum area in the 1970s and bought and rehabbed Victorian rowhouses that offered spacious city living at low prices.
The neighborhood, and home prices there, continues to evolve, and Dalian on the Park is one part of that evolutionary process.
Completion of the Barnes Foundation's building on Benjamin Franklin Parkway accelerated the process, with more than one million visitors since it opened in 2012.
Among Dalian on the Park's almost 300 studio, one-bedroom, and two-bedroom units are four spacious 10th-floor penthouses, the largest 1,900 square feet, with the three others having larger outdoor space, she said.
"Everything has an open floor plan," Parker said, just like new for-sale construction, which reinforces the multifamily-industry view of these rental units as "apartment homes."
What all share are "beautiful views of the Art Museum and the city, although sunset over the Art Museum is unbelievable," Parker said.
Windows in the penthouse extend from the floor to the nine-foot ceiling -- "they bring in a tremendous amount of natural light," Parker said. And, as the gaze is lowered from the Art Museum to the second-floor roof below, they let in something else as well: a saltwater infinity pool overlooking the Parkway.
"Saltwater pools are a trend," Parker said as she admired it from above.
The pool, on Floor 21/2, is just part of a 30,000-square-foot green-roof Sky Terrace with a heated cabana, a grill and bar area, and outdoor televisions.
With Whole Foods' new flagship store, a CVS, and a Santander Bank branch taking over the ground floor, Dalian on the Park begins in a hotel-style lobby on the second floor, with apartments starting on the same level.
The lobby has an "architectural garage door" to the adjoining media room that can be lowered to create an intimate movie-night setting.
Among the 13,000 square feet of indoor amenities are a yoga studio, a fitness room, a library, a demonstration kitchen, and a media bar to which you can bring your own electronics or use one of the iPads provided by Dalian.
There is bike rental if you don't have one and a storage room if you do.
Pets are allowed for a $50-per fee, with a limit of two, and a dog-washing room is available. There also is a one-time, $350 nonrefundable pet fee.
Monthly rents start at $1,899 for a 713-square-foot studio and rise to $7,250 for a 1,900-square-foot penthouse.
Parking is $250 a month per car (with a limit of two).
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