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Photos: Inside the Modern (and Vintage) Belroy Apartments

By December 5, 2012

I left a hard hat tour of the new Belroy Apartments torn: go with the new or old, modern or vintage.

The apartment complex, still under construction at Bellevue and Roy on Capitol Hill, preserves 62 apartments in one of Seattle’s architectural gems, while adding 51 units that are sleek and contemporary. Here’s background on The Belroy, one of the first modernist buildings in the city dating back to 1931.  When we visited last time, we could only check out the facade. Yesterday, we toured the interior and saw some of the great views and exquisite, original Art Deco hardware, among other highlights.

View from west-facing unit on the 4th floor of The Belroy

Original Art Deco door knocker

I was hooked on the vintage apartments the minute I saw the door knocker above. The classic Art Deco hardware is one of the original pieces that Point32, the developer, salvaged as it renovated the units. Co-owner Chris Rogers, who coincidentally lived in the Belroy back in the 80’s, pointed out other genuine details such as the mahogany doors and the green and salmon tiles on the bathroom floor. (More photos below)

“Wherever we could, we kept the original hardware,” said Rogers.

Point32 is installing new plumbing, wiring, flooring and kitchen appliances. They are also replacing the single-pane windows with the dual-pane variety, while keeping the look and feel of the facade.

The leasing manager says they haven’t released pricing for the vintage apartments, but they will be lower than those for the modern units. Here are the price points for the latter and they’re near the top of the Capitol Hill rental market.

One bedroom:                                  505 to 808 sq ft  –  $1495 to $3195/mo

One bedroom with den:                           755 sq ft –  $1850 to $2150/mo

Two bedroom, 1.5 bath:             1071 to 1211 sq ft –  $2595 to $3795/mo

A parking space is $175 additional or $200 with storage

Now, when you step into the modern units, you get a completely different feel. Instead of historic and charming, you get contemporary and minimalist. The architect, Weinstein A|U,  seems to want the space and light be the stars.

Kitchen in the modern units

Living room in a 1-bedroom unit in the modern part of The Belroy

I really liked the beautiful bamboo hardwoods that line the floors and the floor-to-ceiling windows that let in plenty of light. However, it was surprising, given the rents, to see that the kitchen and bathrooms feature laminate countertops, while the range and other appliances are fairly generic and white, instead of stainless steel. Rogers said it’s all part of the design.

A few other things to note: Some of the units look right into a neighbor’s living room across the courtyard;  for those who want the awesome, unobstructed views looking out west, you are pretty close to I-5 and you will hear some freeway traffic.; there will be plenty of bike racks, a common area/lounge and a cafe near the entrance; finally, in the modern one-bedroom apartments, there is a big bank of closets in the bedroom but no other storage in the unit.

The Belroy is pre-leasing now for move-in in January for the modern units and February for the vintage units. Even if you’re not looking for a new place to live, it’s definitely worth checking out the Belroy to see the vintage architectural elements juxtaposed against the contemporary style and sensibility.

Check out The Belroy Apartments website for more information.