A Third Residence Is for Sale on Historic Elfreth’s Alley

Elfreth's Alley

Last week’s real estate blue moon is turning out to have quite the pull! Two Elfreth’s Alley homes were serendipitously put on the market just in time for Independence Day, and now a third one has jumped on the bandwagon.

Unlike the first two, however, this piece of history is divided into two units, one of which occupies the first two floors and has access to the back garden. Both units have an open floor plan with two bedrooms, but the second unit has only one full bathroom.

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Historic Townhouse in Old City Has a Secret

TREND photo courtesy Maxwell Realty.

TREND photo courtesy Maxwell Realty.

From the outside, this Old City home looks like any other brick townhouse on tiny Cuthbert Street. Which is to say, darling and vaguely historic. What is not immediately discernible from the cobblestones outside is that this home was honored twice in 2006: once with the AIA Philadelphia Honor Award and once with the AIA Pennsylvania Citation of Merit Winning for a Renovated Home. From the inside, the meticulous rehab becomes apparent.

The two-bedroom house was renovated with a contemporary style which – frankly – feels refreshing on a tiny and storied Old City street. Floors are made from Brazilian walnut and the walls have been replastered. Lines are sleek and clean, and details like pocket doors and transoms have been transformed into chic, modern elements that now hardly evoke the home’s 1850s construction date. The gourmet kitchen features a hidden table that springs out from under a double-sided fireplace.

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Philadelphia’s “Real World” House, aka Trust, Is for Sale

249 Arch Street

“This is the story…of seven strangers…picked to live in a house…” that used to be a bank.

No? Okay, well the building at 3rd and Arch, which did house seven strangers, is currently on the market. Again.

Designed by noted bank architect John T. Brugger in the neoclassical style and constructed in 1902, the current TRUST event space has had many incarnations. First, it was the Union National Bank; next, the Corn Exchange National Bank and Trust Company, its longest-running iteration to date (1907-1970) whose title is still engraved over the entrance; and finally, as the setting for MTV’s Real World: Philadelphia in 2004.

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Two Elfreth’s Alley Options to Celebrate Independence Day

TREND photo courtesy Keller Williams.

TREND photo courtesy Keller Williams.

Property is available relatively rarely on America’s oldest continually inhabited residential street. Elfreth’s Alley hosts only 32 homes, and two of them being on the market simultaneously is the real estate equivalent of a blue moon.

First up: 133-35 Elfreth’s Alley. A double lot means 45 glorious feet of width to this three-bedroom home. It also means two decks, a side garden and a tremendous master suite. A finished basement includes a spa-like bathroom. Plenty of period details, including exposed stonework and brick. Our favorite room is the basement, with its romantic canopied ceiling, dreamy lighting and old fireplace.

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Renderings: Eight Townhomes Planned for Old City

Revolution Development Group says it plans to construct eight new townhomes, to be called Bread Street Estates, on the site of a parking lot at the corner of Race and Bread streets in Old City. The project’s leasing agent told Curbed Philly that the developer will break ground in August with the hope of finishing construction in 10 months, though that may only be the first four homes since the developer’s website says that this will be a two-phase project. According to city records, L&I granted a construction permit for the project in April.

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Field Guide: The 10 Best Shops in Old City

Marquee-Old-City

United by Blue, left, and Erdon, right. | Photos by Courtney Apple.

The Market Street divide is perhaps never so stark as in Old City. Head south and find a desert of fading bars and restaurants, but wander north and discover one of the best clusters of boutiques in the entire city.

Old City packs in some of the best shopping in the city. From indie boutiques to local designers to a hidden stash of specs, here are 10 reasons to make this your next shopping jaunt.

Click here for your Old City shopping guide!

Restaurant Review: The Gaslight

Chips with charred eggplant salsa | Photo by Courtney Apple

Chips with charred eggplant salsa | Photo by Courtney Apple

If you’re comfortable looking a bartender straight in the eye and asking for a Sex Panther, then girl, does Jason Cichonski have the bar for you.

That Granny Smith-and-cranberry cosmo isn’t the only cocktail on offer, of course. You could also order a Red Hot Mama (black cherry margarita) or a Mr. Muffin (gin and tonic with strawberry and sage) — though, as with the Pirate Hooker (red currant Bellini), propriety would seem to dictate tacking a “for my friend” onto such requests.

But then, hitting Old City for the propriety is like going to Thailand for the cheese.

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9 Things to Do This Week in Philly: Clue at the Franklin Institute, Rad Girls Quizzo, Night Market in Old City and More

We recommend doing each and every one of these things this week:



New Construction in Old City: Ben Franklin Views for Miles

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Winter is dead. We’re all drinking outside now and wearing open-toed shoes and counting down until we get to this place so we can lay in hammocks adjacent to the Delaware and forget that snow ever happened.

The blush of spring is when bright, fresh places like this modern Old City townhome look especially appealing. Yes, the appeal of living in Philadelphia is often found in period details and cobblestone streets. But sometimes we just want a brand new bathtub.

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