Not everyone who works in the suburbs wants to live in the suburbs. Take Al Kabia, for instance. He works in Crystal City but decided to move to Columbia Heights in Northwest Washington instead of somewhere in Northern Virginia.
“I own a condo in Northeast [Washington] right now, and I looked at places in Dupont Circle, Adams Morgan and Logan Circle before I found my new condo in Columbia Heights,” Kabia said. “My goal was to be closer to downtown to places where I can socialize with friends in the city.”
Kabia bought a one-bedroom unit in the Randolph 14 condominium at 1355 Randolph St. NW. He said that he plans to take Metro to work as often as possible and that the neighborhood offers several options for commuting to Crystal City by car.
Abiud Zerubabel, chairman of Acumen Cos., which is building Randolph 14, said the nine-unit project was designed for millennials who want to become homeowners and who enjoy the amenities of the city.
“There are restaurants and coffee shops and bars right downstairs and within a few blocks, so it feels like you’re downtown even though you’re not,” Zerubabel said of Randolph 14. “When you want to leave the neighborhood, it’s easy to get around by bus, Metro and bikes.
Affordable luxury: The narrow building has just two units on most floors so that each is a corner unit. Five of the nine units are already under contract.
“Some of the units have two stories, and others are flats,” Zerubabel said. “Because I buy in volume for several developments at a time, I was able to install wide-plank white oak flooring, stainless-steel appliances with gas cooking and quartz counters and still keep the prices at a point affordable to first-time buyers.”
Kabia, attracted first by the neighborhood, said he also likes the floor-to-ceiling windows in the units and the open floor plans for the kitchen and the living and dining areas.
The four available residences include unit 6, a two-bedroom, two-bathroom condo with 887 square feet. It is priced at $559,900, and the monthly condo fee is $219.
The unit has walls of windows overlooking the street, and the open floor plan has a bump-out section that provides definition for the dining and living areas.
The kitchen has a five-burner gas range, white Shaker-style cabinets and a white quartz counter with a glass tile backsplash. A closet near the kitchen can be used as a pantry or a coat closet. A closet with a stacked washer-and-dryer is in the living area.
The master bedroom suite has a private full bathroom and a double-door closet. The second bedroom has a double-door closet, and there is an adjacent full bathroom. The bedroom closets are built between walls that separate the two bedrooms for greater privacy.
Unit 2, which has the same floor plan as unit 6, on a lower floor, is priced at $499,900. It has the same monthly fee, $219.
Unit 7, a 612-square-foot residence with one bedroom and one bathroom, is priced at $479,900, and the monthly condo fee is $193. This penthouse-level, two-floor unit has the kitchen, living area and dining area on the lower floor, along with the bedroom and bathroom. A spiral staircase leads to the upper level.
The bathroom has a soaking tub with a shower.The bedroom has this level’s only closet and a window that looks out on the building’s eco-friendly “green” roof.
At the top of the spiral staircase is a closet with a stacked washer-and-dryer. A door leads to a roof deck with views of the city skyline, including the tip of the Washington Monument.
Unit 1, a two-story condo, is priced at $564,900, and the monthly fee is $241. This two-bedroom, three-bathroom unit has 974 square feet. The bedrooms are on the ground floor. The master bedroom suite has a walk-in closet and a private full bathroom. The second bedroom has a double-door closet and a private full bathroom. A closet nearby has a stacked washer-and-dryer.
A spiral staircase links the unit’s upper and lower levels. The upper level has an open kitchen with a pantry. The center island is between the kitchen and dining area. On the other side of the spiral staircase is the living area. This level also has a powder room.
What’s nearby: Randolph 14 is near a number of Columbia Heights restaurants. Mezcalero, Little Havana, the Red Derby and Taqueria Habanero line one side of 14th Street NW. Nearby are Little Coco’s and Pho Viet.
“One thing that attracted me to this neighborhood is that I can walk to get every type of food I want, including Cuban, Mexican and Ethiopian food,” Kabia said.
Schools: Powell Elementary, MacFarland Middle, Raymond Education Campus, Roosevelt High.
Transit: The Georgia Avenue-Petworth and Columbia Heights Metro stations are within walking distance. The neighborhood is also served by numerous bus routes.
1355 Randolph St. NW, Washington
The condos are priced from $479,900 to $564,900.
Builder: Acumen Cos.
Features: The condos have wide-plank white oak hardwood floors, floor-to-ceiling windows, high ceilings, stainless-steel appliances, quartz counters, white Shaker-style kitchen cabinets, glass tile backsplashes, porcelain tile bathroom floors, soaking tubs and a stacked washer-and-dryer. One of the building’s two parking spaces is still available for purchase.
Bedrooms/bathrooms: 1 or 2 / 1 to 3
Square-footage: Approximately 612 to 974.
Condominium association fees: $193 to $241 a month.
View models: Open Sunday 2 to 4 p.m.