• “‘You have reached the number of a business that has closed.’ That’s what you’ll hear if you call the phone number for Sugar Mom’s, the storied Old City bar at 225 Church Street.” [Foobooz via Glamorosi Magazine]
• SA VA’s owner on her store closing: “It’s as much a personal life choice as it is a business decision. If I was 27 instead of 37 I would have likely made a different choice.” [Shoppist]
• North Philly’s new Paseo Verde, a project from Asociacíon Puertorriqueños en Marcha, “is transit-oriented, sustainable — receiving LEED Platinum— and community-oriented with housing and a technology center as well as retail space.” Sigue adelante! [Phila Biz Journal]
Read more »
Habitat: French Country Meets Philly Contemporary in Point Breeze
A husband-and-wife design team initially clashed on ideas, but ultimately found a balance.
Scientologists’ Disregard of Architectural Treasure Goes International
Tony Goldman's onetime condo building is a cause célèbre.
Exquisite, Architecturally Restored Rittenhouse Condo
Celebrity real estate of the historic variety.
Property’s Picks for the Philebrity Awards
Our fave enrtrants in Philly's vaguely Oscar-Webby-Nobel-Pulitzer awards thing.
Name(s): Antoinette Marie Johnson (CEO/Founder at At Media), Tyler Westnedge (Director at At Media)
Neighborhood: Point Breeze
How long have you lived in your house?
Antoinette: “We purchased our home in 2009, from a builder who was frustrated at the market and about to list the home for rent. We used that to our advantage and bought it at much lower than market value.”
Trulia just released a list of the Philadelphia neighborhoods that were most viewed in 2013, including Fairmount, pictured at left. The list isn’t necessarily what you’d expect.
Trulia’s Top 10 Most Popular Neighborhoods in Philadelphia
1. Bella Vista/ Southwark
2. Fairmount/Art Museum
5. Northern Liberties/ Fishtown
Unless you’ve been buried alive by Thanksgiving leftovers and holiday circulars, you have probably heard a little something about the #whyilovephilly party happening this Friday. The hashtag-movement-turned-annual-party is being thrown by a who’s-who list of civic organizations and local media and includes food, drinks, music and performances. We’re getting into the spirit by making our own list and love note to the celebration.
1. Have we mentioned the ice cream? Every Philly party has good local food and excellent craft beer these days. What they don’t all have is a Little Baby’s special recipe ice cream flavor created specifically for their event. Philly Love Notes documented the magic at Little Baby’s yesterday. If the Peanut Chews don’t get you, the Krimpets will. Just to recap, that’s Tastykake Butterscotch Krimpets with a soft pretzel swirl, topped with Goldenberg Peanut Chews.
The building owned by the Church of Scientology at 1312-1314 Chestnut – 57,720 square feet on a 38′ x 103′ lot — was originally home to the Cunningham Piano Company. The company was founded in the late 19th century at 11th and Chestnut when, according to Hidden City, Chestnut Street East was known as Piano Row. But the company outgrew its beginnings, and bought the double-mansion Irwin Estate for an eventual transformation into a 15-story tower designed by Andrew J. Sauer.
Writing for HC, the ever illuminating Grojlart called the building a “damn near a religious experience” for him and said Sauer’s firm “knocked it out of the park” with its “beautiful slender facade from top to bottom.”
Before we get into the historical aspect of Waterford Farm’s interior, let’s take a moment to appreciate its vast acreage, which is enough to encompass a pond and the Muddy Run stream. No wonder the current owners use it for eventing!
Located on approximately 80 acres of hilly land, the farm has eventing fences and an an outdoor sand ring for equestrian activities. There’s also a dressage ring, horse walker, and 12-stall bank barn with a tack room and wash stall.
Inside the 18th-century farmhouse, impressive views of the property from the living room could leave anyone speechless.
The city’s new tax relief program, PHL Tax LOOP, is part snappy acronym; LOOP stands for Longtime Owner Occupants Program (oh, to have been a fly on the wall during City Hall acronym idea meetings). Those people who have owned their property since at least 2003 and are up to date on their property taxes are eligible, as long as the property hasn’t ever had a tax abatement.
There are income requirements and specs for what kind of properties qualify for the tax break, but based on the city’s preliminary estimates, 80,000 properties are eligible. Those 80,000 will get info packets in the mail, but if you don’t receive one automatically, that doesn’t mean you aren’t eligible.
Nutter’s statement indicates his acknowledgement of one of the few AVI hiccups: “Our new property tax system is fair and accurate for all Philadelphians – but fairer and more accurate values meant large Real Estate Tax increases for some homeowners.”
Advocates of AVI prior to its implementation claimed that such inequities would ultimately get resolved — precisely with programs of this kind. It should certainly help.
For more information, go to the city’s LOOP site or call 215-686-9200.
Remember the Poconos lodge with the ample 100-acre outdoors and rustic interior with unique lifelike decor? If not, maybe the gallery or our last post about it will jog your memory.
The price for this custom-built home got a $195k price cut in September (a fact we thought might be attributable to the unconventional furnishings), only to see a $100k increase two months later. Extreme taxidermy aside, maybe the price change is justifiable.
The condo building now named Chandler Place was built in roughly 1904 as a family home for Alexander Mackay-Smith, bishop of Pennsylvania’s Episcopal Church from 1902 to 1911. The bishop was in fragile health during the years he lived in the home designed by architect Theophilus Chandler. According to a November 16, 1911 edition of the Pittsburgh Press, Mackay-Smith arrived at 251 S. 22nd Street shortly before midnight after a reception for his successor and went to his library to read for an hour or so. The next morning, he died in his bed, and a memorial was immediately planned at Holy Trinity Church on Rittenhouse Square.
As for the house, a Pittsburgh bishop told the Press: “Not so very long ago, [Mackay-Smith] and his wife built a handsome home in Philadelphia, and when he knew he was to die, Bishop Mackay-Smith said the house would be given to the Philadelphia diocese for the residence of the bishop there.”
Good news comes to three Hagert Street homes that were caught in a fiery blaze last February. The buildings are owned by the Fishtown Redevelopment Authority, which bought them in April 2008. The purchase took an even more optimistic turn when plans were announced to renovate the properties. Since last summer, the permits have been renewed and talks of restorations have recommenced. From NakedPhilly:
The owners should have an easy time finding tenants, as the neighborhood is experiencing a consistently heavy dose of redevelopment, both along the Frankford Ave. commercial corridor and on the surrounding blocks as well.