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A Survey of Luxury Condos and Price Per Square Foot in Beacon Hill
As one of the most picturesque neighborhoods in the city, Boston’s Beacon Hill not only has a rich history, but a prosperous future. Numerous brick townhouses and older apartment buildings have been retrofitted into gorgeous new luxury condominiums, elevating both the neighborhood and its overall property values. Within easy distance of the Boston Common, Downtown Crossing and Little Italy, the area is not only beautiful, but dynamic. So what is the luxury condo market like in Beacon Hill? Here is an overview of some of the properties, prices, and other real estate facts that are defining this highly desirable locale.
EXCEPTIONAL REFURBISHED PROPERTIES AND SALES RECORDS IN BEACON HILL
How hot is the condo market right now? In this year, Beacon Hill set new sales records for its top luxury condos, starting with the sale of 25 Commonwealth Avenue, a 14 room, 5 bedroom, 4 full and 2 half bathroom, 7,554 square foot property originally built in 1890. With fifteen foot ceilings and a fully detailed, woodworked library, the condo was among the most magnificent in the city. In addition to being within close walking distance of the numerous cultural institutions and recreational facilities of the area, five gas fireplaces, two separate laundry rooms, and a private patio and entrance helped round out the amenities. It sold for $17.2 million, setting a new record for the area, with an impressive price per square foot of $2,277. A similarly stunning property, the 7,575 square foot, 12 room residence at 197 Marlborough Street sold for $13 million, for a price per square foot of $1,716. The six-level townhouse, which was originally built in 1891, was remarkable for how thoroughly it had been refurbished for the 21st century. The residence, which was outfitted with smart home technology, included a private elevator that opened on each floor, as well as a media room, hot tub, mud room, and a separate garden suite to handily accommodate guests. Of course, with over five bedrooms, five full bathrooms and 2 half bathrooms, the property already had ample space for visitors and denizens, featuring an “open-concept” living room that allowed for creative decor and furnishing placement. Reflecting the area’s tendency to embrace both its history and future, the parlor level offered a slice of traditional Beacon Hill living, with a formal dining and living room to capture the atmosphere of tradition.
The redeveloped six unit condominium building at 25 Beacon Street, meanwhile, set records of its own with three of the priciest sales in the area. Unlike the older refurbished record-setting properties, 25 Beacon Street was a brand-new development that had never been lived in before. Each of the record-setting units had seven rooms along one full floor each. The first property, which sold for $11.833 million, was a three bedroom, three and a half bathroom luxury condo with 4,044 square feet, which had the eye-popping price per square foot of $2,926. Featuring a gorgeously wood-worked wine cellar, an elegant and exquisitely outfitted kitchen, as well as sophisticated modern decor finishes such as hardwood floors and tiled bathrooms all bathed in natural light, the unit also came with bike storage. The second similarly outfitted although altogether smaller unit in the building, which had 3,583 square feet, sold for $8.85 million for a price per square foot of $2,469, while the third unit, which had 3,577 square feet, sold for $8.8 million for a price per square foot of $2,460. The spectacular range of prices within this one building within only one year is an excellent case study in how quickly property values in Beacon Hill can increase.
There were three record-setting units in 1 Franklin Street, a building which had been constructed in 2016. Unlike the boutique properties listed above, this property, known as “The Millennium Tower,” is officially a high-rise residential tower with over 50 stories built on the footprint of a former department store. The tower was initially designed to contain approximately 450 luxury condos. The first record-setting unit had five rooms, with 4,110 square feet, and sold for $10.65 million, a price per square foot of $2,591. The unit featured the finest in new, top of the line appliances, including Poggenpohl cabinets, Creme Quartz counters, and travertine marble baths. The building itself listed a litany of onsite amenities, including an outdoor terrace with sweeping views of the city and the Charles River, a billiard parlor, a private bar and dining area, and a private screening room. The second unit, which also had five rooms spread out over 3,435 square feet, sold for $9.25 million, for a price per square foot of $2,692. The third unit, which much like the second had 3,435 square feet, sold for $9 million dollars for a total price per square foot of $2,620.
Millennium Tower represents one of the newest trends in the area’s real estate, creating relatively tall buildings in a neighborhood of otherwise low-rise or boutique properties, and then selling or renting each unit for a remarkable sum. As an example, smaller units in the building, such a two bedroom, two bath property with 1,498 square feet, sold for $2,525 million, for a price per square foot of $1,685. Although this price falls within the average range of Beacon Hill luxury condominiums (see the section below for more details) it is still notable for maintaining the building’s overall high property values.
The fifth most expensive residence sold in Beacon Hill was the property at 32 Derne Street, a 7 room, 6,022 square foot luxury condo located on the fifth floor of a redeveloped 47,000 square foot building that was formerly a part of Suffolk University and is now known as “The Whitwell.” The building, which was built in 1880, was redesigned to feature 14 new condos. Featuring a shared roof deck with curated landscaping and 360 degree city views, the unit itself boasted seven inch wide oak flooring with nuanced decor finishes and grand, naturally lit spaces that looked out on the city. The condo sold for $9.035 million, for a price per square foot of $1,500.
The final record-setting sale for the Beacon Hill area took place at 448 Beacon Street, a property which is part of the Hooper Mansion, a redeveloped building with six luxury condos that was originally built in 1888. Unlike the newer high-rise tower developments, 448 Beacon Street offers residents the joy of living in a vintage brick building that has been updated to the latest luxury standards. Units here feature ample, curved living spaces that look out on the neighborhood streets, as well as curved roof turrets that line the perimeter of a charming rooftop garden. Certain units feature direct elevator access, as well as marble tile, hardwood floors, and kitchens outfitted with the finest new stainless steel appliances. The record-setting unit, which featured 11 rooms spread out over 4,069 square feet, sold for $9 million, for a price per square foot of $2,211.
Also in 2017, a 2,138 square foot refurbished three bedroom condo in a twelve-unit Beacon Hill complex dating from 1850 was listed on the market for $2.1 million, for a price per square foot of $982. The property sale was notable primarily for the rarity of the listing; with a private courtyard entrance in an already exclusive enclave that hadn’t seen a listing in over 20 years, the unit offered a rare entry into a historic street. The property was also notable for its beautifully furnished interiors, which featured elegant white walls next to four artfully restored brick fireplaces. In this way, the property retained its historic exterior while offering residents the finest materials and furnishings in luxury living.
PRICE PER SQUARE FOOT
The high property values for refurbished condos continues to rise; a property purchased only a few years ago in this neighborhood may easily see a twenty to thirty percent increase in its new sale price. Therefore, prices per square foot are reflective not only of the value of a particular building, but the year in which a particular unit was sold. Although this figure can vary greatly, the average current price per square foot for a luxury condo in Beacon Hill is between approximately $900 and $1,600. What exactly does that price range procure?
We’ve provided a summary of some of the luxury properties in Beacon Hill that fall within the average price range to give a better idea of the amenities and services that these buildings provide, as well as their specific locales. Several of the most desirable listings in Beacon Hill are housed within buildings that date from the 19th century, although a few properties have been built as recently as this year. These include:
21 Beacon Street
Built in 1899 as a hotel, 21 Beacon Street has become one of the area’s best places to buy or rent a luxury condo. With roof decks and views of the Charles River, this building also offers a variety of different sized units, from studio apartments to multi-bedroom suites. The renovations have added carrara marble countertops and brand new appliances in both the bedroom and the kitchen. A studio apartment in this building currently rents for $5.02 a square foot per month.
The Lincolnshire Residences
Built in 1900, this former apartment building is now home to luxury condominiums that feature glass showers, brand new kitchen appliances, and a shared roof deck. Located at 15 River Street, this building is only a block away from the gorgeous Boston Common, which features an unforgettable array of public gardens and historic monuments. A two bedroom, one bath apartment with 778 square feet in The Lincolnshire Residences was recently listed for $937,029, for a price per square foot of $1,204. The rental price for this unit is estimated to be $3,295 for a price per square foot of $4.23 a month.
10 Bowdoin Street
One of the newer properties in the neighborhood, Bowdoin Place was built in 2003, and offers the charm of a brick building with the convenience of modern appliances and furnishings. The kitchens have been artfully outfitted with elegant cabinetry and granite countertops. The units typically feature Juliette balconies and offer access to a shared library in the building. A recent three bedroom, two bathroom unit with 1,464 square feet in the building sold for $1.59 million, for a price per square foot of $1,086.
37 Beacon Street
Located close to both public transit and numerous public recreation facilities, this building was built in 1920 and has an average price per square foot of $892. With 36 condo units guarded by an on-site doorman, many of the high-ceilinged units feature hardwood floors, stainless steel kitchens with granite countertops, and an ample common roof deck with sweeping views of the city.
Dating back to 1917, the building’s exterior, including a shared roof terrace and a courtyard with a fountain, offers an aesthetically pleasing sense of historical continuity while many of the interiors feature lush, artfully realized decor schemes. A recent Venetian-styled 1,712 square foot two bedroom duplex was listed on the market for $2,085,000, for a price per square foot of $1,218. The condo came with amenities such as walnut stained oak floors, a cherry-paneled library with a wood-burning fireplace, a chef’s pantry and kitchen, and a bridal staircase.
A recent 1,117 square foot two bedroom, two bath listing in this luxury condominium building had an asking price of $1,386,041, for a price per square foot of $1,252. The condo included a gourmet kitchen, a rooftop patio, a heated pool, a round-the-clock concierge service, and access to a built-in fitness center. The building, which was built in 2007, has a long list of amenities, including a spa treatment studio, a theater screening room, and a private library for the building’s denizens.
108 Mount Vernon
With a total square area of 2,111 feet, a recent three bedroom, three bathroom listing in this classic brick building from 1827 had an asking price of $3,555,605, for a price per square foot of $1,684. The unit was situated over two floors, with direct keyed-elevator access and an onsite concierge. In addition to being sited next to Louisburg Square, the unit featured brand new appliances and gorgeous views from every side of the living space. Amply proportioned windows flooded the interior with natural light, while a mixture of hardwood floors and tiled entryways, including a gorgeously mosaic-style front hall leading to a curving, white and black spiral staircase, created a sense of sumptuous sanctuary.