Internet Provides Incorruptible System?

A new restaurant in New York City has ditched the phone and adopted a unique reservation system: the Internet. Momofuku Ko, a new French Asian restaurant (perhaps similar to our own new French Asian house, see Banq Restaurant) by famed chef David Chang, runs a no favor or hook-up gathering place.

The only way to land a spot is to log on to Ko’s web site, create an account, register with a credit card and take a shot at finding an empty space on a bingo-like grid. Seats are released at 10 a.m. everyday for the current seven-day period.

It wasn’t the intent to make people frustrated,” Chang said. “It was just something we thought would be easier. Why would we need a phone? People have the Internet. At the end of the day, it’s a silly, silly reservation system. But we have to be straight up. We are trying our best to make some system work that is not corruptible.”

Are people scalping reservations? Yes. But, Chang is not a fan of that,”I … loathe reservation scalpers,” Chang said. “I’d take a bat to their head if I could. You can quote me on that.”

Is this action by Chang a forerunner to relying exclusively on the Internet here in Boston, including other industries, such as Boston real estate? Time will tell.

Penny Savings Bank Featured Open House

The 23-unique boutique luxury condo development in the former Penny Savings Bank is our Featured Open House of the week. Earlier this year, The pre-war bank in Boston’s South End was completely renovated and a glass enclosure was added to the top of the original structure to create what is now The Residences at Penny Savings Bank.

The white marble and granite exterior of the Bank offers various layouts from studios (roughly 800 square feet and an HOA fee of $239) to two-bedroom two-bathroom condos (roughly 1,600 square feet and an HOA fee of $494). Living areas offer finished concrete floors (perhaps not as nice as our favorites stained and scored floors at the Lofts at 36 A) or walnut hardwood floors. All kitchens feature Viking and Best appointments. The master baths have limestone floors and “river rock” shower enclosures. Some units include private terraces or roof decks. Parking is available in the onsite underground garage for an additional charge.

Note that with a new marketing agent taking over the property, the price range for units has been slightly updated, moving the low-end down from $665,000 to $595,000 ($730 per square foot).

The Penny Savings Bank joins the recently opened D4 Police Station Condo Development as a true landmark property in Boston real estate. Along Washington Street, the ground floor of the development will house two commercial units, the banQ Restaurant, as well as a Citibank branch.

Remember that Daylight Saving Time has ended today, so turn your clocks back before heading out to see these units. The Open House will take place on Sunday, November 4, 2007 from 2 – 4pm at 30 Union Park Street in Boston’s South End (northeast corner of Washington and Union Park).

For Buyer Representation by Boston Condo Guy, or for more information, use the ‘Contact Us’ link at the top of this page.



Boston banQ Restaurant Seeks New Chef

As we reported back in July, the boutique luxury Penny Savings Bank condo development in the South End will house a new restaurant called banQ – what an appropriate play on words. The restaurant is moving towards a grand opening, and they are on the lookout for a new chef.

Boston Chefs recently reported the following:

banQ Restaurant is currently seeking a dynamic, creative and energetic sous chef for a start up restaurant team. The ideal candidate will be actively involved in menu development, training and staff education. The qualified applicant will have five years restaurant experience, understanding of food and labor costs. They seek someone who is as passionate about food and service as they are. They offer a competitive salary, benefits and the opportunity to grow with a new company.

The banQ Restaurant, along with a new Citibank branch will round out the commercial ground floor spaces below the 23 luxury condos at the Penny Savings Bank.

Banq Restaurant to Open at Penny Savings Bank

As you may know, the 23-unit luxury condo development, Penny Savings Bank, in the South End recently opened to residents. In addition to the residential units that fill the former bank, two commercial spaces exist along Washington Street. One of those commercial spaces will be filled by Citibank (you cannot have a condo development called Penny Savings Bank without a bank involved, can you?). The second of the commercial spaces will be occupied by the Banq Restaurant, offering French cuisine with an Asian flare.

The Banq Restaurant will occupy approximately 6,600 square feet on the ground floor of the Penny Savings Bank development at Washington Street and Union Park Street at 1375 Washington Street (click for Google Map) in the South End.

Banq officially opened in February 2008.  Reservations can be made by calling 617.451.0077.  Their hours of operation are Monday – Saturday from 5:30pm to 1am, and Sunday from 5:30pm to 11pm.