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June 16, 2014
Wonky DC is known for boxy buildings. Aren't there any cool ones out there?
Gensler's Jordan Goldstein says he's fond of the Finnish Embassy on Mass Ave. The Finns eschewed the typical classic brick embassy design for a copper look, which Jordan likes since it aged and turned green. Coincidentally, it was the first green embassy in the US and won LEED Gold in 2010. Other designs Jordan digs: the Brazilian Embassy (just down the street from the Finns), as well as the newly delivered Boilermaker building at The Yards in Southeast, a factory during both World Wars that now includes the wildly popular Bluejacket Brewery.
Shalom Baranes has shown some edginess in lots of his DC designs like CityCenter, CityMarket at O, and soon, Burnham Place at Union Station. But he tells us he's a fan of fellow starchitect Suzane Reatig's work, including the design seen here at 625 Rhode Island Ave. The colorful apartment building won two AIA DC awards last year.
David M. Schwarz's Gregory Hoss points to the grand Art Deco design of Penn Theater near Eastern Market. The building, constructed in 1935 but renovated several times over the years, now serves as mixed-use, and Gregory says the building stands out since it shows three different personalities: the Art Deco facade seen here on Pennsylvania Ave, a red-brick facade that faces C Street, and a modern courtyard in between. (Having multiple personalities is so popular, many politicians have tried it, depending on their audience.)
Your DC reporter loves this unique design at 1077 31st St in Georgetown, which serves as the DC HQ for German TV station ZDF. It's a refreshing, modern change-up to the standard brick rowhouses of the neighborhood. What's your favorite funky design in DC? Email Chris Baird with your picks and we'll publish more in a future issue.
Chevy Chase Embassy Suites Gets Makeover
Come this fall, this will be the look of the Embassy Suites hotel at Chevy Chase Pavilion, as just unveiled by hotel manager Destination Hotels & Resorts. (Hopefully there will a few more "World Series Champion Nats" t-shirts than the rendering shows.) Destination says a $10.5M renovation is in store, including this upgraded entrance on Wisconsin Ave, a revamped lobby, new restaurant, bar, and health club, and upgraded suites, too. HVS Design and Jonathan Nehmer & Associates are handling design for the renovation of the 198-suite property, slated to finish by late October.
Destination says it will get started with the renovations in mid-July. (Even contractors want to watch the World Cup.) It'll be the latest in a string of updates to Clarion Partners' Chevy Chase Pavilion, which last year underwent a major makeover to its common areas and atrium (which we snapped at an event celebrating those upgrades). The revamp has paid off so far: in the last year, H&M has opened up a big new location there, and superchef Bryan Voltaggio's Range restaurant has been very successful.
Fair Winds Locks Up Lorton Lease
Beer lovers: rejoice! Fair Winds Brewing Company has officially signed a lease at PS Business Parks' Gunston Industrial Park in Lorton, where it will soon open up a 12k SF brewery and tasting room. JLL's John Dettleff (third from right, celebrating the lease last week with a few cold ones), who represented Fair Winds with colleague Tucker Farman (to his left), says the growth of nearby spots Ft. Belvoir and Kingstowne made Gunston Industrial Park a target for Fair Winds, as well as offering the proper industrial zoning Virginia requires for breweries. With John and Tucker: NAI KLNB's Ryan Moody, PS Business Parks' Kevin McCormack, Fair Winds owner Casey Jones, Fair Winds lead brewer Todd Parker and NAI KLNB's Marc Tasker; Ryan and Marc repped PS Business Parks.
Bisnow's Federal Property Summit Tomorrow
Though the government's footprint continues to shrink, GSA will always be a critical part of DC real estate. And how private development partners up with local, state, and federal stakeholders is equally as critical, which is why we're holding our Federal Property & Public/Private Partnerships Summittomorrow at the Willard. New Public Buildings Commissioner Norman Dong will be on hand to update you on the biggest GSA building topics, such as the future of the FBI. We'll also hear from GSA National Capital Region chief Julia Hudson, as well as a take on the private world from Trammell Crow's Tom Finan and JBG's Rod Lawrence, among others. More info on Tuesday's event.
NEW BISNOW VIDEO: Are YOU Investing in Real Estate?
Sure, you work for real estate companies. But do you own and invest yourself? Well, maybe it's time. We asked prof. Peter Linneman to record 90 minutes just for our readers on how he'd advise you to do it. Here's some topics he takes up:
Should you invest in REITS or private deals?
Visiting the real estate you invest in
Do you need spreadsheets?
Evaluating the people in a deal
An unexpected danger of good credit quality tenants
Understanding the bet you're making
What to negotiate
Operating risk v. financial risk
Learning from the competition
Different kinds of property
The best time to buy or sell
The biggest skill you need
Remembering the fundamentals
Tip for short-term investments
A secret about high quality real estate
We've specially priced this tape to make it as widely available as possible. Just $59!