The Elite 8: Orange Line Condo and Townhome Madness Continues

by Dan Lesniak

While the NCAA Final Four has ended with the UCONN Huskies defeating the Kentucky Wildcats for the title, the Orange Line Madness Bracket continues. Like we have done in the previous rounds, we took input from some of the top Arlington VA real estate agents to help determine which Orange Line townhomes or condos would move on to the next round. We hope you enjoy reading the results below and remember if you are thinking about buying or selling real estate in Arlington, VA or the surrounding areas call Dan Lesniak and the Orange Line Living team at 571-969-7653 or email us at [email protected]

Clarendon and Courthouse Region

(1) Station Square vs. (4) Odyssey:  The top seed from Clarendon takes on the top seed from Courthouse and Clarendon wins out. The Odyssey building stands out in the skyline as you make your way up the hill from Rosslyn to Courthouse. Its position gives it a many of the condos great views of some of Washington DC’s most famous landmarks (the National Cathedral, the Washington Monument, the Capitol and more). The Odyssey has a very Manhattan building feel, with glass on its eastern facing side, a doorman and a very chic looking lobby. Station Square wins out in the end, again boosted by its location right in the middle of Clarendon, just one block from the metro. Like the Odyssey, some, but not as many, of the condo homes offer monument views. While Station Square does not have quite the amenity package of the Odyssey, it provides great floor plans, quality finishings, and basic amenities with low condo fees.

(2) Clarendon 1021 vs.  (6) Rhodes Hill Square:  In another battle between Courthouse and Clarendon, the newer Courthouse condo pulls off the upset. Clarendon 1021 is located just a few steps away from Station Square in Clarendon and was built around the same time in 2006. Clarendon 1021 offers great amenities (rooftop pool, hotub and grill, fitness center and concierge to name  a few). Rhodes Hill Square is located right next door to the Odyssey in Courthouse. This group of three buildings each has a slightly different feel, but in general the 2 bedroom condos here share a few common themes:  larger floor plans (most are in the 1200 to 1800 square foot range), high end appliances and finishes, and plenty of storage and parking. Amenities are sparse at Rhodes Hill Square, but condo fees are very low. Several units have large outdoor terraces or rooftop decks and like Clarendon 1021 some of DC views. In a close match Rhodes Hill Square makes it to the next round.

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Townhome Region

(1) Clarendon Park vs. (5) Highgate:  One of the top town homes in Clarendon goes up against one of the top town homes in Rosslyn. Highgate offers some of the only front loading garage town homes on Arlington’s Orange Line. Front loading garage townhomes provide a bigger space than most rear loading garage townhomes and Highgate definitely has the advantage of size when compared to Clarendon Park. Highgate residents live close to the Rosslyn stop, giving them access to the Ornage and Blue Line metro, as well as being right across the Key Bridge from Georgetown. The Clarendon Park town homes were built by EYA, a few years after Highgate so they offer homeowners a slightly newer feel and a location that cannot be beat. Located right behind the Clarendon Market Commons, these town homes give residents the luxury of being located less than 2 blocks away from both Whole Foods and Trader Joe’s. In a close call Clarendon Park moves on to the next round.

(2) Bromptons at Clarendon vs.  (11) Courts of Lyon Village:  This match up puts one of the newest townhomes communities on Arlington’s Orange Line against Ed Peete’s Clarendon townhome community built in the early 2000’s. Although the Bromptons at Clarendon are ten years older, they win out against Evergreene’s 3 year old community. While the Courts at Lyon Village is only a half mile or so from the Courthouse Metro and directly across the street from the Mom’s Organic Market project, the Bromptons at Clarendon is very close to the Clarendon Metro. Both communities feature larger floor plans and in the end the Clarendon location wins out.

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Rosslyn Region

(1) Turnberry Tower vs. (4) Gaslight Square:  This match up features two of the newest Rosslyn condos. In the end the winner is Turnberry Tower, with its prominent position in Rosslyn’s downtown area, which is quickly becoming the skyline of Washington DC. Gaslight Square puts up a good fight in this match, however, as Jim Abdo’s latest project combines some of the best elements of his past projects. Like Turnberry Tower, Gaslight Square has private elevators to many of its homes and outdoor spaces as well. Turnberry has the advantage in the amenities department though with its hotel-like concierge service, valet parking, fitness center, personal trainers and massage therapists and more! In a very close match up the edge goes to Turnberry Tower.

(2) Wooster and Mercer Lofts vs. (11) Dakota::  Jim Abdo’s first Arlington condo development gets into the next round. While the Dakota is a great low frills building with large condos that often have Georgetown views, it simply does not have all of the offerings of the Wooster and Mercer Lofts. The Wooster and Mercer buildings share a pool and a fitness center. Units there have high ceilings, some as high as 22 feet and many have outdoor spaces. This building was even featured once on MTV’s Cribs show as it featured the former home of Washington Capitals defenseman, Mike Green.

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The Ballston and Virginia Square Region

(1) Liberty Center vs. (5) Monroe:  The first number one seed of the tournament goes down in an upset. While Liberty Center has the combination of location and amenities, the Monroe wins out because of the 3 bedrooms floorplans that are in abundance. Three bedroom condos are very difficult to find in the Rosslyn-Ballston corridor and the Monroe is one of the places you can consistently find them for a price tag less than a million.

(2) Hawthorn vs. (6) Continental:  In another upset the Continental takes out the second seed of the bracket. While the Hawthorn is a new building, the Continental provides a tall presence and welcome to the edge of the Ballston area. Many of the amenities there have recently been updated. Condos on upper level floors have good views and great light. The Hawthorn does offer some amenities, but in the end the higher quality of amenity found at the Continental puts them into the next round.

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