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Seven-unit D.C. condo building’s prices start at $675,000

The Session was designed to fit in with the surrounding Capitol Hill townhouses

A townhouse on Capitol Hill was replaced with a seven-unit condo building called The Session. Four units are under contract. Prices range from $675,000 to $1,350,000. (Benjamin C Tankersley for The Washington Post)

Tucked into a block of old brick townhouses on Capitol Hill, the Session condominium building does not stand out as a modern departure. And that spells success for developer Monarch Urban.

Chris Masters, executive vice president of listing firm McWilliams Ballard, said Monarch Urban “designs its projects to fit within the neighborhood.”

The developer bought a townhouse on the site in 2020 and replaced it with the seven-unit boutique condo building, which has a brick facade in a classic style common to Capitol Hill. It features a pair of two-story window bays that align with the details of the neighboring facades. The Session’s facade was raised to accommodate a third story, and a four-story addition was positioned in the rear, where it does not alter the streetscape.

The Session contains four one-level condos and three two-level units. More than half the units are under contract, and prices in the building range from $675,000 to $1,350,000.

One of the two-level units — the building’s largest unit, with 1,837 square feet and the only three-bedroom floor plan — has a rooftop terrace over the front of the structure. All the units have private outdoor space, which can be terrace or balcony.

The Session’s location — in the Barney Circle/Hill East neighborhood — provides easy access to schools, shopping, transportation and recreation.

On the inside, the building combines modern comforts and conveniences with traditional styling and features, including nine- to 10-foot-high ceilings, sand-in-place hardwood floors, crown and base molding, and solid-core doors.

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The kitchens have custom cabinetry, quartz counters, an island or a peninsula, and high-end appliances, fixtures and fittings. All units have energy-efficient heating and air-conditioning equipment, a tankless hot water heater, insulated windows and exterior doors, LED lighting and a smart thermostat.

After two years in development, the Session was completed early this year. The first open house, in mid-March, drew nearly 50 people, Masters said, and by the end of the weekend four units had buyers. Masters said there is pent-up demand from people who “want to live on Capitol Hill and are looking for convenience, quality and a place that feels like a home, not an apartment.”

Michael James, an IT consultant based in California, snapped up his two-story unit after spotting the Session on Redfin on March 15. He contacted Monarch Urban on Instagram that day for more information and made an offer of $849,900, the list price, on March 16. He had a sales contract two days later.

James, 38, almost bought another Capitol Hill condo in 2020 but reversed course because of the pandemic. He was drawn to the Session by the building’s design, the finishes and the location, just three blocks from his parents’ house. He said a video sold him on the two-story, 1,044-square-foot condo. “It has a wonderful floating staircase,” he said, “a clean color palette, high-quality chrome finishes and a gorgeous range hood over the six-burner stove.”

He added that the condo has big, light-filled windows and a roomy private terrace with water, electrical and gas hookups for outdoor entertaining.

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James said that he will live at the Session during his frequent visits with family and that he “wanted a place that was big enough for me to move in full time if I decide to do so.”

Schools: Payne Elementary, Eliot-Hine Middle, Eastern Senior High

Transit: The building is three blocks from the Potomac Avenue Metro station (Blue, Orange and Silver lines) and about 1½ miles from Union Station (and Metro’s Red Line). It is a block from Independence Avenue and Massachusetts Avenue SE. It’s not far from Pennsylvania Avenue or from access to the Southeast Freeway (I-695).

Nearby: The Session is in the Barney Circle/Hill East neighborhood, about a mile from the U.S. Capitol, a block from Payne Recreation Center and a few blocks from Lincoln Park. Congressional Cemetery is several blocks away. The Session is a convenient distance from Safeway, Trader Joe’s, Frager’s Hardware, Eastern Market, and Capitol Hill shops and restaurants.

The Session

270 15th St. SE, Washington.

The building has seven condos, including three two-story units and four one-story units. Four units are under contract. Prices range from $675,000 to $1,350,000.

Builder: Monarch Urban

Features: The condos have custom cabinetry, Hansgrohe fixtures and fittings, and Baldwin door and cabinet hardware. The suite of Bosch kitchen appliances includes a five- or six-burner gas range, panelized (with fronts that match the cabinets) refrigerator and dishwasher, and a built-in under-counter microwave. Units have full-size high-efficiency stacked washers and dryers, walk-in or large reach-in closets, and side-by-side sinks in the main bathrooms.

Bedrooms/bathrooms: 2 or 3/2 to 4

Square-footage: 865 to 1,837

Homeowners association fee: $335 to $700 per month, depending on the unit

View model: By appointment

Sales: Chris Masters, 202-360-2426,