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Foursquare Live + Work Home to Volunteer Park Cafe For Sale

By January 22, 2020

Capitol Hill, Capitol Hill

1501 17th Ave E has been a lot of things, including grocery store Groucho’s, Cafe Europa, and, for the last 13 years, Volunteer Park Cafe. The 1904 building is for sale, and it’s a whole package—not just the cafe space, but a a three-bedroom apartment above that retains the historic charm.

Tucked in a residential neighborhood by its namesake Volunteer Park, it’s surrounded by historic homes of a similar vintage. While it has the storefront below, the whole building is in a style reminiscent of the “Seattle Box,” a variant of the American Foursquare, including a dormer peeking out from the upper level.

Patrons are familiar with the airy cafe space below, but the residence above is more of a hidden treasure. It’s had some updates over the past 116 years, but it hangs on to some original-looking millwork, including cased openings. The stately vibe of the era stuck around, too—even the open kitchen doesn’t seem to upstage the dining room.

Local restauranteur Ericka Burke has been running the cafe out of the storefront since 2007, and bought the whole property in 2013. The next owner could continue operating the business as-is or dream something else up, assuming they keep the current structure in place—Capitol Hill Seattle notes that the commercial use is grandfathered in.

Listed by Van Wyck and Porter • Windermere | Priced at $1.7 million

Sarah was a contributing writer to Urban Living. She can’t sell you a house (but Matt and team can!), but she’ll talk about them for as long as anybody will listen.