Different is a beautiful thing. After 20 years of showing properties, different is welcome. I recently showed a client some apartment options in the CBD/Warehouse district, and they were what you’d expect, until we got to The Garage.
I’ll freely admit that The Garage hits me squarely in my Motor City roots. The building opened in 1949 as Stephens Garage, a Chevrolet and Buick car dealership. In keeping with the theme, a rotating collection of cool, car-centric art adorns the common areas.
As a multi-level car dealership, the owners needed some way to get move their inventory around the building; thus the car elevators. They’ve been updated to the 21st century, and it’s amazing. When residents drive home, they enter the secure garage, which summons one of the two lifts. (Video screens let the driver know which one.) The transmitter in the car that calls for the elevator also communicates which parking space is assigned to that car, so there’s no need to get out and push a button for the corresponding floor. Once the vehicle is in the lift and the laser guidance system determines it’s centered properly, the doors close. About a minute later, they open again, now on the same floor as the assigned parking space and apartment.
The apartments themselves are worthy of the method of arrival, with a smart, modern, yet comfortable design.
Some have balconies, and the views from those balconies vary quite a bit. As you’d expect, you’ll pay extra for the balcony and extra again for the great views, which are typically reserved for the two-bedroom units.
Each apartment has one bedroom that utilizes the automotive theme with an overhead garage door that opens to the great room. If you have guests over and you didn’t bother making the bed, close the door. If you want to wake up with a view, open it up when you go to sleep.
They’re marketed as luxury apartments, and they are, without being all fussy about it. There’s the obligatory rooftop pool and “lounge”, with some fitness equipment. The tech throughout the building is pretty outrageous. If you want keys to your apartment, you can have them, but there’s a smartphone-based app that can unlock your door for you. You can even assign guests a virtual key on their phone that expires after they leave.
The Garage is also pricey. One bedroom, one bath units without balconies start at $2,050/month. Two bed, two bath starts at $2,750/month and the penthouse units max out at $5,050/month. They all include a period of “free” parking, but you’ll eventually pay extra for your spot in the super cool garage.
Having said that, I’ve seen plenty of luxury properties that don’t come close to living up to the billing. All they have to offer is more, mediocre square footage and a Viking range. That’s absolutely not the case here. The Garage is well conceived, well designed and well done. It’s also different, in the best sense of the word.
If you’re looking to rent a swanky city pad – or better yet, have a friend who is – send me an email and I’ll be happy to set up a showing.