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Best of Penn Quarter: City Living

New condo and apartment buildings that have lots of amenities and are close to the action.

Photograph courtesy of City Vista.

>> See the full best of Penn Quarter guide here

The 1997 opening of the Verizon Center marked a fresh start for Penn Quarter. “Back then, there was literally one place to eat,” says Aidan Duffy, a real-estate agent with Long & Foster. “Then the Starbucks starting popping up.” Next came a flood of condo and apartment buildings, restaurants, and shops. Today Penn Quarter is one of DC’s liveliest neighborhoods.

Because most of Penn Quarter’s condos and apartments were built within the last decade, many are contemporary—granite countertops, lots of windows. Robin Waugh of Weichert Realtors says properties sell quickly, but new listings come on the market often. Penn Quarter is pretty well built out. To find new buildings with units for sale and lease, we looked to nearby areas such as Mount Vernon Square.

Most Convenient

At the K at CityVista (1045 Fifth St., NW; 202-640-1302), condo owners have a dry cleaner, Busboys and Poets restaurant, Starbucks, and Safeway downstairs. The 12-story, 292-unit building has a rooftop pool and a one-acre private park. Floor plans range from one-bedrooms to two-bedrooms with dens. Prices for remaining units—the building is about 80 percent sold—start around $400,000 for a one-bedroom with den and go up to about $600,000 for a two-bedroom.

Best Incentives

The V at CityVista (460 L St., NW; 866-928-3578), an apartment building across the private park from the K, is offering promotional deals. New renters get one month free rent or an equal amount in gift cards to restaurants and businesses in the development. Parking, usually $200, is going for $100 for the first six months of a lease. The 244-unit building features studios and one-, two-, and three-bedrooms; available apartments range from $1,545 to about $7,000 a month.

Coziest Lobby

Residents at Madrigal Lofts (811 Fourth St., NW; 202-408-0007) come home to a marble-and-stone lobby with a 15-foot-wide gas-burning fireplace. More than half of the building’s 259 homes, about 45 of which are still on the market, have floor-to-ceiling windows. The building has a fitness center and a rooftop deck with grills. Prices range from about $350,000 for a one-bedroom with bath to $700,000 for a two-bedroom with two baths and a den.

Best Back Story

When the Yale Steam Laundry was in operation, the White House was a client. Now called Yale Steam Laundry Condominium (437 New York Ave., NW; 202-628-0460), the 107-year-old facility has been transformed into 149 condos—16 lofts in the original building, 133 new units in an adjoining tower. Floor plans include one-bedrooms, one-bedrooms with dens, and two-bedrooms ranging from $350,000 to $685,000. About 30 units are still on the market.

Best View

The roof deck of the Newseum Residences (565 Pennsylvania Ave., NW; 866-593-3660) offers a view of Pennsylvania Avenue, the Capitol, and the Washington Monument. Residents have access to a gym, business center, and lounge—as well as free membership to the attached Newseum. Rents in the 135-unit apartment building start at $1,770 for a studio and top out around $6,510 for a two-bedroom.

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