As you may have heard yesterday the Downtown Boston Business Improvement District invited the public to "tour some of the homes in Boston's hottest neighborhood." And reminded would-be tour attendees that "Downtown Boston has been the hub of revitalization for the past 10 years. Public and private investment totaling more than $3.2 billion has renovated theaters, refurbished hotels, and attracted dozens of new restaurants. Thousands of new residential units have been added in the past decade, increasing downtown's residential population."
The event invitation went on to say, "Discover why 8,000 people now call downtown Boston home, and why thousands more can't wait to join them, during the annual ... home tour. On Saturday, May 10th ... residents will open their doors to showcase the best of downtown living."
Firstly, I like to commend the Downtown Boston Business Improvement District for putting on this well organized event and for the general level of excellence they bring to promoting Downtown Boston. Yesterday's offering literally had something for everyone beyond homes on tour: an art exhibit, cooking demonstrations, free admission to the Old State House and discounted parking.
As a real estate professional I have the opportunity to tour neighborhoods and residences in the course of my everyday work so seeing more properties wasn't what piqued my interest in yesterday's home tour. What motivated me to go was the ability to see Downtown Boston as the average homebuyer would and to get firsthand feedback from fellow tour goers. Mostly what I heard was very positive, but opinions did vary depending on what we were seeing. Here are some of the more memorable opinions I overheard along the tour route.
- The Kensington, 45 Province and Millennium Place are gorgeous!
- Downtown is for the moment not what most people would call a neighborhood. Yes it's an district, but still after many years of development no reference to its character can yet be made.
- Living downtown seems to be only for the very wealthy and the homeless.
- It's a beautiful unit, but people urinating next to my [building's] front door would be a problem (heavy smell of urine in the air).
- Look, we're right next door to the Glass Slipper and Centerfolds (gentlemen's clubs as seen from a building's pool deck).
- So this is "the best of downtown living?" Some of these properties aren't tour-ready (relating to condition and cleanliness issues).
- For $3,000,000 there are so many other units I'd buy first in other parts of the city.
- This building is like an ivory tower because the street culture and building have nothing in common.
- I'd kill myself if I had to ride this elevator everyday (staring at an elevator button panel consisting of 40+ buttons and ears-popping during the descent from the 36th floor).
- 'Wonder where you'd park the car near here?
If you have any thoughts about yesterday's tour, or if you'd like to share your opinion about Downtown Boston living please leave a comment.