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Awesome Penthouse in the Heart of South Lake Union

By June 27, 2014

Apartments, South Lake Union

Of the dozens of new Seattle residential buildings that I’ve toured in the last year and a half, the penthouse at 325 Westlake is easily one of my favorites in terms of design, style and quality.

The folks at Graham Baba Architects did a superb job divvying up 1,758 square feet among two bedrooms, two bathrooms, living room and an ample kitchen with dining area. It doesn’t hurt that the unit is ringed by a wrap-around deck on three sides, making South Lake Union part of every room, including the master bathroom (See photo below).

Before I continue gushing and explain two potential downsides, let’s get to some photos…

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As you can tell, the designers had an affinity for white oak as beautiful custom-built cabinetry graces every room, providing a wonderful compliment to the exposed steel beams and polished concrete floors. While the designers did a lot in each room, I never got the sense that they tried to do too much. Here’s the master bathroom…

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The photo above shows the tub with a generous view across Westlake Avenue. If you prefer a more traditional way of seeing the neighborhood, you can use the deck that wraps around the east, north and west sides of the building, offering downtown and Lake Union views. (By the way, the penthouse takes up the entire fourth floor)

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As you can see in the photo above, you would have a great, unobstructed view of the Space Needle. Unfortunately, you can also see one of the many cranes towering over South Lake Union, which explains the first reason why this ultimately would not be the best penthouse in the area. In a year or two, a lot of the light and the views on the west side will be eaten up by  taller office and residential buildings. This would worry me if I were considering buying the unit. Since you would only be renting, you could enjoy the views for at least another year or so.

As for the other downside to this penthouse, there is no parking. You would have to park on the street or rent a space in a garage in one of the nearby buildings.

Aside from the two downsides, I still love this penthouse and I think the rent ($6,875 a month) is actually low. Before you call me crazy, I know that nearly $7,000 is very high for a two bedroom unit. But considering that other apartment buildings in South Lake Union and Denny Triangle  have listed similar penthouse units in the $7,500 (Rollin Street Flats) to $8,000 range (The Martin), this home is actually a bargain when you consider the quality of the design and finishes.

But the market will decide if the rent is right. Of the 12 homes at 325 Westlake, this is the only one that is still available. The others rented out in about a week’s time. If you’re in this income bracket and looking for a sweet pad, I would definitely check this place out. Here’s their contact information.

Meanwhile, a few more photos from our tour…