Fall will bring the groundbreaking of the hotly-anticipated condo/apartment hybrid building The Laurel. Situated at 1911 Walnut Street – the last vacant lot on Rittenhouse Square – the building will bring unprecedented luxury to an already well-heeled part of Philadelphia. The Laurel will stand 48 stories high, with retail on the first few floors, 20 floors of apartments, and condos meriting the highest stories, each one with a corner placement, a balcony, and an exquisite view of Center City below. As the tallest purely residential building in the city, residents will have viewpoints high above the rest of Philly’s skyscrapers.
Southern Land Company is the firm behind the luxury tower, and they are already selling spaces in the building like hotcakes. As quoted in Philadelphia Magazine, Brian Emmons, Southern Land’s development manager, explained why The Laurel would be split between apartments and condos – it was a matter of dollars and cents (and sense, also!): “It’s the last developable parcel on Rittenhouse Square, and the way to make it the most magnificent building is to split it,” he said. “If we were to make it all condos, there would be 250 of them, and that’s a lot to sell at the price point we would need to sell them. By splitting it, we also got a second lobby and more Class A retail space on the street floor. And it got us to where we could put all the condos on high floors with unobstructed views.”
Much ado has been heaped on Southern Land for the gorgeous renderings of the building, which consist of pristine glass floor-to-ceiling. Excitement amped up even further this week when interior renderings were released, showing the utter luxury of the materials that would be present in The Laurel and how beautifully they are used. Perhaps the most striking detail is the 26th floor, which is where many of the building’s much-coveted amenities will be housed. There will be a club room (complete with an industrial kitchen and terrace), a bar, a conference room, and a fitness center equipped with Peleton stationary bikes. The cherry on top will be the tranquil and stunning indoor pool, with walls made completely of glass, with views of the city skyline. There had been talk of putting the pool on an outside terrace, but it was moved indoors not just so that residents would be comfortable swimming year-round, but also so that the terrace space could be used for an extension of the social room.
Beyond the amenities expressly for the use of condo-dwellers, all residents of The Laurel will share several shared conveniences, including a summer kitchen and outdoor grills for get-togethers, an outdoor saltwater pool with private cabanas, a dog spa and secure attended package storage, including climate-controlled storage for grocery deliveries. It doesn’t get much sweeter than that!
Philly Mag breathlessly outlined the many charms that the condo owners could expect, which basically boils down to the best of the best of everything:
Emmons also touted the customization options available to buyers. One of the fanciest involves the cabinets in the Eurostyle kitchens, which can be faced with tribal makasar with a high-gloss finish. “This wood is being touted as the most expensive in the world,” Emmons says. Similarly, buyers can replace the standard Wolf and Sub-Zero appliances with Gaggenau appliances if they so desire.
The condo units range in size from 1,700 to 9,000 square feet. Sale prices start at $2.4 million. So far, buyers have put down deposits on 13 of the 74 condo units. There will be 174 rental apartments available on a short- or long-term basis; leasing for those has not yet begun. The garage will hold 175 cars, and there will be 24,000 square feet of retail space. Residents should start moving in sometime in 2021.