True Back Bay Lofts

We oftentimes get questions from condo buyers about what loft style condo options there are in the Back Bay.  Boston’s Back Bay is considered one of the most premier and desirable neighborhoods to call home, and historical rowhouses and ornate townhomes dominate the tree lined streets.  That said, finding a trendy loft-style condo in the heart of the Back Bay is naturally difficult.

Buyers won’t be able to find a classic exposed brick and beam loft-style condo in the Back Bay, it’s just not really an option.  What condo buyers do have access to is 360 Newbury, which represents probably the most modern and contemporary living option in the Back Bay, and gets you the closest to Back Bay lofts. From the entrance (picture below), and up through the elevator ride to the units with big windows and big views, 360 Newbury exudes the hip, slightly edgy, but luxurious feel of loft-style living.

Turnover in the 54-unit building is relatively low, however, there are currently four units available for sale at 360 Newbury, two one-bedroom units and two two-bedroom units, ranging in size from 869 to 1,626 square feet, and in price from $699,000 to $1,599,000.


Recently Sold Condos at 360 Newbury

Since it was converted in 2005 to a luxury loft-style condo development, 360 Newbury in Boston’s Back Bay has been coveted as a true urban oasis.  On the southeast corner of Newbury Street and Massachusetts Avenue (above Best Buy), the 360 Newbury development greets residents with a sleek concierge-served lobby off of a Newbury Street entrance, and condos boast downtown skyline views, and high-end finishes and fixtures.

Boston 360 Newbury Lobby

In 2008, there have been two 360 Newbury condos that have sold, and there is currently one on the market for sale. Average price per square foot for the units that sold in the building was approximately $767.  Unit 405, a 1,342 square foot two-bedroom two-bathroom unit sold for $1,125,000 after 47 days on the market, and unit 603, an 847 square foot one-bedroom one-bathroom condo sold for $590,000 after 52 days on the market.  Neither of the units came with a parking space.

Turning to the present, unit 508, a 1,141 square foot one-bedroom two-bathroom unit is listed at $885,000 ($776 per square foot), and has been on the market for 21 days now.

Boston 360 Newbury Unit 508

Boston 360 Newbury Unit 508

285 Columbus Lofts Open for Business

We had the opportunity stop into the 285 Columbus Lofts development this week. Closings began last week at the development after receiving its certificate of occupancy (ahead of the originally proposed June 2008 opening, which puts them well ahead of the Mandarin, FP3, and the Bryant), and some residents have already moved in and have begun customizing their units. We have to say, 285 Columbus Lofts is slick, the finishes are excellent, and it just feels “plush” and has an aura of calm luxury.

Upon entering the development from the Columbus Avenue main entrance, you’re greeted by the 285 Columbus Lofts Concierge who is on duty Monday – Friday 8 am to 6pm and Saturday and Sunday Noon to 5pm. With only 19 units remaining, nearly 70% of the building is sold – phenomenal pace and numbers that are setting the new baseline for success in the luxury market.

An exclusive video below of the 285 Columbus Lofts lobby and concierge:

If there are any drawbacks to this development, the list is short, namely, lack of views in some units on the north side of the building and no direct access parking. Unit floor plans 01, 02, and 03, which overlook the Back Bay Orange Line T Stop, do not offer great views – you really need to get on floor 7 and 8 (penthouse) before you get above the adjacent parking garage (see exclusive photos below). Parking is, unfortunately, not direct access – garage parking is a 25 year deeded lease at $320 per month (which is on top of monthly HOA fees at approximately 60 cents per square foot).

Interested Buyers can contact us to learn more about available units – the development is move in ready.

The below exclusive photos provide views from floors 2, 4, and 8 respectively of the north facing views overlooking the Back Bay transit station. 285 Columbus has done a superior job of insulating both interior noise, as well as exterior noise.

285 Columbus Lofts - 2nd Floor

285 Columbus Lofts - 4th Floor

285 Columbus Lofts - 8th Floor

Condo Sales Strong at 285 Columbus Lofts

Sales continue to be strong as closings begin at the Back Bay’s (on the border of the South End) newest luxury condo development, 285 Columbus Lofts. Many higher floor units still remain for sale, as well as some of the lower priced one-bedrooms (starting at $525K), but the building is now over 60% sold – a very strong showing in comparison to other developments around the city when comparing sales cycles.

285 Columbus Lofts is being developed by the same team that brought you 360 Newbury, another boutique luxury development in an iconic building. You’ll notice similarities in entrances to the buildings of all things with the exclusive photos below. For more information on 285 Columbus Lofts, or any other luxury Boston condo development, please contact us using the link at the top of this page.

285 Columbus Lofts Entrance


360 Newbury Penthouse Finally Sells

It was back in October 2007 that we wrote a blog post on the single remaining developer’s unit at 360 Newbury (see One Condo Left at 360 Newbury…Still). Originally priced at $1,995,000 when it hit the market in early February 2007, and after going through a significant price reduction, was finally sold on December 31, 2007 for $1,530,000.

360 Newbury, the 54-unit luxury development in Back Bay, is now completely resale as units become available. Currently, one unit is for sale in the development (see Resale Opportunity at 360 Newbury).

Resale Opportunity at 360 Newbury

With the final penthouse at 360 Newbury still languishing on the market (see One Condo Left at 360 Newbury…Still), a new resale opportunity has come along. Unit 405 at 360 Newbury is a 1,342 square foot two-bedroom, two-bathroom unit listed at $1,250,000 ($931 per square foot). For comparison, the remaining penthouse unit is priced at $870 per square foot.

360 Newbury is an iconic building built in 1918 and renovated in 2005 that sits at the southeast corner of Newbury Street and Massachusetts Avenue. Designed by Frank Gehry, the building houses luxury condominiums, a T stop, and a three floor commercial space (currently occupied by the Back Bay Best Buy).

Unit 405 was purchased just over a year ago for $1,005,000. 360 Newbury is one of the anchor condo developments in the Back Bay, however, the double digit appreciation that the Seller is striving for is bold. For more information on either of the available units at 360 Newbury, please contact us.


One Condo Left at 360 Newbury…Still

You have more than likely seen the advertisements, walked by and/or stopped into Tower Records Virgin Megastore Best Buy on the ground floor of this loft-style condo development, you guessed it, 360 Newbury, at the intersection of Massachusetts Avenue and Newbury Street.

There is currently one unit remaining in this luxury development of 54 high-end condos with soaring ceilings, huge windows, high-end finishes, and a sophisticated loft feel. 360 Newbury, a Frank Gehry design, renovated in 2005, and the remaining unit, penthouse number 7, has been on the market for well over 200 days. It’s a 2,062 square foot, one-bedroom two-bathroom $1.795 million unit that does not come with parking, and has gone through a $200K price drop this year alone.

What’s keeping this unit from selling? The $870 price per square foot is somewhat typical of high-end concierge buildings in the Back Bay. The HOA fee of approximately $1,000 a month sounds relatively high, but 50 cents a square foot is a fair price given the amenities. The views, amenities, and craftsmanship are stellar in the unit. What’s missing? Parking – we hear repeatedly from buyers that they have no desire to drive around the neighborhood looking for a parking spot when they come home at night (especially if they are paying more than $1 million).

The Listing Brokerages, Otis & Ahearn, are currently offering the brokerage who represents the Buyer on the unit a $25K gift certificate to Best Buy. Boston Condo Guy would be committed to putting those funds towards the purchase or rental of a parking spot in the Back Bay area, please contact us more details about penthouse number 7, and the possibility of including parking in the purchase.

360 Newbury Condos

360 Newbury Condos

360 Newbury Condos

285 Columbus Lofts

The former Boston American Red Cross building at the corner of Columbus Avenue and Clarendon Street, on the border of Boston’s Back Bay and South End, is being redeveloped by Boston Residential Group into 63 high-end loft-style condos. Boston Residential Group is no stranger to working on landmark buildings, such as 360 Newbury, and they are quickly moving forward on the conversion of the former eight-story Red Cross building into what they are calling 285 Columbus Lofts.

285 Columbus Boston Lofts

The lofts at 285 Columbus add to a growing conglomerate of high-end new developments within a several block radius, including the Bryant on Columbus, the D4 condos, and the Clarendon Back Bay. 285 Columbus will add 55 market rate (which leads us to believe that there will be 8 affordable units – more information on Boston affordable housing) loft-style condos to the area, ranging in size from 753 square feet to 1,579 square feet, with prices ranging from the high $500’s up to approximately $1,500,000.

The units are slated to include high-end, sophisticated finishes, hardwood floors, large windows and high ceilings. The building has double loaded corridors with front units on Columbus Avenue, back units fronting the Hancock Tower, and back and side units on Clarendon Street. There will be nine (9) units per floor, along with extra storage in the basement.

Parking will be available behind the building at 131 Dartmouth Street – unfortunately, parking will be leased, however, 285 Columbus Lofts is negotiating exclusive long-term rates with the garage. A restaurant (name not announced yet) will occupy the 9,000 square foot commercial space on the ground floor. The tentative occupancy date is June 2008 – matching the Bryant on Columbus, FP3 Boston, and the Boston Mandarin Oriental (it’s going to be a busy June).

For more information on unit statistics, please see the 285 Columbus Lofts page at Boston Condo Guy.