Life in downtown Dallas is vibrant with lots of residential real estate options, from industrial loft to chic and sleek in the sky. So much has changed over the past 10 years! 

In this week’s Splurge vs Steal, we’re looking at downtown Dallas living and two higher-end options. Which one is your favorite?  

 

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Texas is known for its barbecue, but you don’t have to hit up a restaurant to enjoy the state’s favorite cuisine. Pick the right apartment, and you’ll be able to do your own grilling when the weather is warm. These are our favorite Dallas apartments with upscale barbecue grills so you can impress guests and perfect your ribs recipe.

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The Purse Building, located at 601 Elm Street, will be the visual gateway to the historic West End district of downtown Dallas. The restoration of the 113-year-old building has begun, and will be complete in 15 to 18 months. (Images: Wildcat Management)

“I’ve spent almost the last 12 years downtown. I was there when no one wanted to be there,” says Tanya Ragan, President of Wildcat Management and one of the few female commercial developers in Dallas. “I know that when you talk about the Central Business District, you are really talking about 15 distinctly different districts.”

Tanya Ragan

One of those is the West End, an area Ragan describes as almost a “Boston within Dallas” now loading with offices, restaurants, retail, and some residential.

“The offices are central — so close to downtown and the core,” she says. “You can hop on DART. Or you can walk outside and still see cobbled streets.”

Now the Minnesota native is taking one of the oldest buildings in downtown’s West End at 601 Elm Street and restoring it into a hub for the very kind of end users that are finding their way to Dallas.

“For over a decade, the biggest story in Dallas real estate has been the redevelopment of the city center. With the rehabilitation of the Purse Building, we’re bringing that energy to the West End,” Ragan said.  “We want to encourage technical innovation and smart city solutions, while preserving the neighborhood’s amazing heritage.”

We know it’s Statler Hilton Week in Dallas, the official grand opening of the historic hotel that will revitalize downtown Dallas dramatically. 

This is also the official grand opening of the Statler Residences, though they are already occupied. In fact, 68.49% of the 150 separate units are occupied.

(Not sure whether that .49% is a coat closet or what.)

Whatever, wanna take a look inside these very cool homes? (more…)

We were all too busy yesterday, either with our Valentines (nice!) or, sadly, processing the news of yet another high school mass shooting in Florida. Truly, it’s hard to think of real estate right now.

But yesterday, it occurred to me that a North Texas developer has given the city a potentially HUGE gift, the best Valentine ever.

Mehrdad Moayedi, one of the largest developers in Texas, who successfully restored the landmark Statler Hotel and promises to do more of the same to the The Cabana Hotel, is trying to give Dallas a gift of sheer love: a home for our homeless.

Mehrdad has made an offer to buy the vacant Dawson State Jail that is sitting downtown on the banks of the Trinity River. Moayedi says he wants to turn the 10-story building into a housing and services center for Dallas’ homeless population. This is the best idea ever, and one I have actually had for years. In fact, I can say that this idea got me into City politics when I first started emailing my councilman, Lee Kleinman, about it.

“This is an opportunity to do something for these people, but not in the traditional way where you have a warehouse and you put a lot of beds in there,” Moayedi said. “There has to be a situation where people are treated with respect. 

If anyone can do that, it’s Mehrdad Moayedi. And I think the entire design community should help!

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homeless

Downtown Dallas stakeholders, along with Dallas ISD trustee Miguel Solis and Dallas Mayor Pro Tem Adam Medrano, presented Focus on Teens with a $2,250 donation to help provide the necessities for the thousands of Dallas ISD homeless students that utilize the district’s drop-in centers (photos courtesy Tanya Ragan/Wildcat Management)

As the holiday season approaches, it’s easy to get caught up in the hustle and bustle of providing Christmas cheer for family and friends — and it’s equally easy to forget that not everyone will have a home to go to for the holidays.

Such is the case for the thousands of Dallas ISD students — estimates are anywhere from 3,000 to 6,500 — who are homeless.

As we’ve talked about before, even the most prosperous high schools in Dallas ISD have students experiencing need. Without the district’s drop-in centers, which provide things like clean uniforms, food, and toiletries to students (as well as filling other emergency needs), these students would find it much more difficult to stay in school. (more…)

Mehrdad Moayedi is nearing the end of his three-year, $230 million renovation of the historic Statler Hilton in downtown Dallas. He bought the iconic hotel in 2014 with $46.5 million in TIF financing and has almost completed making it into a totally glam live-work-play-stay destination again. What does Mehrdad need now?

Another project! And the one where the Beatles stayed when they visited Dallas!

So his company, Centurion American, has their eyes and about $8.1 million on the old Cabana Motor Hotel, the 55-year-old midcentury relic on Stemmons Freeway.

Mehrdad plans to gut the 10-story hotel building and bring it back to its original glory. Place has been vacant for years. Well, it housed a county detention center before it was shuttered and put on the market by Dallas County as surplus property. A few sex offenders might still be there. The hotel, right across Stemmons from Victory Park, has seen better days, but the potential is huge.

This could be really great news for the county, since previous developers did not pan out, including a deal to turn the property into a data center (a hotel is a much better use).

And, according to Robert Wilonsky,  it’s a steal (hell yeah)!

The motel once owned by Doris Day, the landmark where Raquel Welch once worked as a cocktail waitress and where Jimi Hendrix used to stay when he came to Dallas, is now available at the low, low price of $7 million — which is just $1 million more than it cost to construct the “super-plush” joint back in 1961, according to our archives. That’s also a few million lower than the market value as set by the Dallas County Appraisal District, which says it’s worth $11,289,460. And, for what it’s worth, it’s also far less than the $9.2 million Dallas County paid for the property in 1985 — and not much more than the additional $5 million the county spent transforming it into a jail that wound up housing some 1,000 male and female inmates.

Hmmm. A $7 million price tag, Mehrdad’s paying $8.1? Who is bidding up that price? According to Steve Brown, who broke the story, Mehrdad says, thankfully, he really wants to preserve the century modern jewel:

“The hotel is going to stay a hotel,” Moayedi said. “We are going to give a big emphasis on a pool. It’s going to be like a Las Vegas pool.” (more…)

Adding more single-family housing in downtown Dallas has definitely increased the vibrancy of our urban core, as the once desolate city center now has more full-time families and businesses. The days of downtown turning into a ghost town at 5 p.m. could be over. 

If you want an urban lifestyle but don’t want to live in a high-rise, a townhome is the perfect compromise. Lucky for you, the Farmers Market area on the southeast side of downtown Dallas has a great inventory of relatively new builds, including this stunning unit listed by Sam Sawyer of The Collective Residential.

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