Jawdropper of the Week: Contemporary History in Old City

149 S. Hancock St., Philadelphia, Pa. 19106 | Images via Redfin

149 S. Hancock St., Philadelphia, Pa. 19106 | Images via Redfin

“Everything old is new again” is probably the best phrase one can use to describe this stunning renovation of a historic 19th-century commercial building on Hancock Street in Old City.

This building is the sole survivor of a row of similar buildings, and it has a pedigree: Cabinetmaker Michael Bouvier, the great-great-grandfather of Jacqueline Bouvier Kennedy Onassis, bought the vintage-1816 structure in 1834 for use as his workshop. It came awfully close to meeting the fate of its neighbors before a couple bought the structure in 2010 and turned it into a super-spacious single-family residence.

While traditional in its details — crown moldings, classic baseboards, period doors — the home is at the same time thoroughly modern in its design sensibility and amenities. Read more »

Hard Hat Tour: The Fairmount @ Brewerytown

The living room of one of the model apartments at the Fairmount @ Brewerytown. | Photos: Sandy Smith unless otherwise indicated

The living room of one of the model apartments at the Fairmount @ Brewerytown. | Photos: Sandy Smith unless otherwise indicated

When Westrum Development Corporation built the Brewerytown Square townhouse development on 31st Street between Master and Thompson streets in the early 1990s, getting people to consider Brewerytown as a place to live was a tough sell. The location of the homes across from an Acme Markets warehouse probably didn’t help things either.

But sell they did, and now, some 15 years later, Brewerytown has come back into its own, this time not as an industrial hub but as an increasingly lively residential neighborhood anchored by a revitalizing commercial district. The latest project to join the steady parade of new construction and adaptive reuse is reclaiming the last untouched portion of that former Acme warehouse and turning it into luxury loft-style apartments. Read more »

First-Time Find: A Fresh Update on a Classic in Mt. Airy

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334 E. Meehan Ave., Philadelphia, Pa. 19119 | TREND Images via the Zach Behr Group

At first glance, one would think this English-style home on a quiet street in East Mt. Airy is an old historic charmer. On the outside, a beautiful stone facade and a tiny, green garden greet you as you enter the front door of this townhome. But inside, this home is something much more. With modern updates completed in 2006, this home is sure to be an incredible first place for the right buyer. Read more »

Trinity Tuesday: Move-In Ready in Queen Village

136 Carpenter St., Unit A, Philadelphia, Pa. 19147 | TREND Images via BHHS Fox & Roach

136 Carpenter St., Unit A, Philadelphia, Pa. 19147 | TREND Images via BHHS Fox & Roach

So you’ve saved up enough money to strike out on your own and get out from under your parents (or roommates). Philly’s trinities make great starter homes, as they’re big enough for one (or a young couple) and attractively priced.

This classy trinity on a quiet street in Queen Village is typical in that regard. Situated next to a gated side courtyard, it offers space for relaxation both indoors and out and presents a cheerful face to the street with its bright yellow front door.

Inside, it’s a little homier than many houses in its class thanks to such touches as beamed ceilings and decorative fireplaces. The living room has an attractive one as a centerpiece, and the decorative hearth in the kitchen adds a bit of coziness to its dining area. Read more »

Main Line Monday: A Piece of France in Wayne

300 Valley Pl., Wayne, Pa. 19087 | TREND Images via BHHS Fox & Roach

300 Valley Pl., Wayne, Pa. 19087 | TREND Images via BHHS Fox & Roach

This French-inspired beauty is giving us an “Ooh la la” moment. With a substantial amount of outdoor and garden space and an informal layout, this home is a gem and a departure from the usual Main Line fare.

The enchantment begins at curbside, where the home is fronted by a landscaped garden laced with pea gravel paths and surrounded by a charming picket fence with arbor gate; a flagstone walkway leads up to the entrance to this showcase front yard.

Step inside the front door and what makes this home distinctive should be obvious. Recent renovations and extensions have created a traditional home with a decidedly contemporary layout whose open feel begins in the foyer, where you can take in almost the entire main living area in a single glance. Read more »

Farmhouse Friday: Roadside Rest in Riegelsville

6014 Route 412, Riegelsville, Pa., 18077 | TREND Images via Addison Wolfe Real Estate

6014 Route 412, Riegelsville, Pa., 18077 | TREND Images via Addison Wolfe Real Estate

You’ve seen classic Pennsylvania farmhouses like this one before: they’re almost kissing the road they’re situated on, either because they were plunked alongside it back when they were built or the road’s been widened since then.

This early 1840s Bucks County farmhouse known as Springfield Cottage looks like one of the former, for it appears that Route 412 retains its original dimensions. One sometimes wonders how a family might live in such a place. A look inside and behind this one reveals the answer. Read more »

Jawdropper of the Week: A More Stately Manor in Lafayette Hill

741 Thomas Rd., Lafayette Hill, Pa. 19118 | Photos by Herb Engelsberg via The Sivel Group

731 Thomas Rd., Lafayette Hill, Pa. 19118 | Photos by Herb Engelsberg via The Sivel Group

Does the home whose rear portico you see above call to mind images of country clubs or mansions from the movies?

If it doesn’t, maybe you haven’t been watching the right movies, for this beautifully restored 1920 center-hall Colonial is so photogenic it hurts.

Designed by Robert McGoodwin and built for Andorra Nursery owner William Harper, “Andorra House” is the beneficiary of a top-to-bottom renovation that has both restored and renewed its original historic details and updated it for today’s way of life, with plenty of gracious spaces for everyday living and entertaining. Read more »

Residences at the Ritz-Carlton: The Movie

Oscar-worthy? Cobble Hill's professional-quality video promoting the Residences at the Ritz-Carlton was directed by a local pro with Hollywood experience and featured a professional cast of actors. The RATR's chief marketing honcho was duly impressed with the end result. | Still from Cobble Hill Real Estate YouTube video

Oscar-worthy? Copper Hill’s professional-quality video promoting the Residences at the Ritz-Carlton was directed by Neal Dhand, a local pro with Hollywood experience, and featured a professional cast of actors. The RATR’s chief marketing honcho was duly impressed with the end result. | Still from Copper Hill Real Estate YouTube video

One of the perennial challenges people who market residential buildings and communities face is giving prospective residents an idea of what it would be like to live in them.

Model units, tours of amenities and slick brochures help but only go so far.

A trio of real estate entrepreneurs came up with a different idea: Why not show prospective residents what a day in the life might look like for an actual resident?

Well, maybe not an actual resident, but someone who could play one on YouTube.

So Tim and Ryan Garrity and Andrew Janos, the trio behind the real estate startup firm Copper Hill Real Estate, decided to bet the farm, so to speak, on producing a “day in the life” video for a luxury residential development they figured could use a little marketing boost: The Residences at the Ritz-Carlton. Read more »

First-Time Find: A Budget-Friendly Banquet in Chinatown

1100 Vine St. #506, Philadelphia, Pa. 19107 | TREND Images via Coldwell Banker Preferred

1100 Vine St. #506, Philadelphia, Pa. 19107 | TREND Images via Coldwell Banker Preferred

Want to wake up to the rising sun?

Love good food but don’t want to cook all the time?

Are you the type that wants to be in the center of it all, but also enjoys getting out of town?

Have we got a condo for you.

This light-filled unit is part of a 194-unit high-rise condo on Chinatown’s western fringe. Both it and the building have a number of nice amenities that make it a great place to live, not the least of which is its location, which we will get to shortly. Read more »

Trinity Tuesday: A Renovated Rare Find on Rodman Street

1721 Rodman St., Philadelphia, Pa. 19146 | TREND Images via BHHS Fox & Roach

1721 Rodman St., Philadelphia, Pa. 19146 | TREND Images via BHHS Fox & Roach

The streets that usually come to mind when we think of “Old Philadelphia” are the “little streets” — the Quince Streets and Elfreth’s Alleys that grace a million picture postcards. And the house type that so many think of when they say that phrase is the trinity, the uniquely Philadelphian form that generations of working people called home. Many of these homes are highly coveted pieces of property, not just for their location and history, but for their rarity, and it’s a special find when one happens to pop up on the market.

Today, however, you happen to be in luck!  This week we found you a gem, located in the heart of Rittenhouse Square, and is your chance to own a little bit of history. Built in 1925, this trinity on Rodman Street is the perfect place to build your nest on a quiet street that allows you to be in the heart of it all within minutes. Read more »

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