GDoN “tea in your own private bell tower” edition (multiple readers request)

by Prince Of Petworth March 7, 2017 at 12:00 pm 47 Comments

819 D ST NE

This unit is located at 819 D Street, NE. OPs write: ” The 3D virtual walkthrough has to be seen to be believed.” and “This is nuts. And well executed. They worked on this building for a loooooong time.”

The MRIS listing say:

“Own the highest point on Capitol Hill & be the envy of the neighborhood with this extraordinary Bell Tower Penthouse. Stained glass windows flank this exquisitely appointed 2 Bed+Loft/2.5 Bath condo. *2 PARKING SPOTS* Elegant finishes include: HW throughout, Marble kitchen/baths, SS appl, gas cooking, closets systems, secured access. Imagine having tea in your own private bell tower each morning!”


You can see more photos here and a virtual tour here.

This 2 bed/2.5 bath is going for $1,599,900 ($700 monthly fee.)

  • Blithe

    Wow! Very, very Wow!

  • wdc

    Ok, but how often would you actually USE that top room??

    Kidding, it’s gorgeous and I would sell a kidney to make it mine.

    • GBinCH

      As someone who works from home 4 days a week, I’m fantasizing about that being my home office/bond villian lair.

  • LittleBluePenguin

    Wow. That is pretty spectacular. Nice mix of old and new, though I’m surprised they left some of the more obvious religious symbols in the glass. All thing considered, though…Yeah, this is pretty great.

  • Mike

    This would be amazing.

  • HaileUnlikely

    I am often baffled by the $1M+ prices on DC-area real estate and don’t understand why somebody would pay so much for it. Not this one. This is one of the rare instances in which I can see why somebody would actually be willing to pay so much. Holy freaking cow.

  • Terrified of heights

    Wow, that is really an amazing space! I would never be able to live in an old church though, and I would probably have a small heart attack every time I would have to walk over that catwalk on the 2nd floor. . .

  • Angry Parakeet

    Quite a change from my climb into the belfry in the 90’s – 4″ encrusted pigeon dung. There used to be Nextel antennas in there.

  • anon

    street parking with all that?

    • anon

      oh no, scratch that. 2 spots included. in the details section of the mris listing it says street parking.

  • Ward One Resident

    Looks around 540-square foot condo and quietly weeps.

  • KK

    I’m poor

  • MadMax

    This whole renovation turned out gorgeous, this is honestly cheaper than I expected. I was wondering what they would do with the bell tower, figured it would be a cool elevator for all the units. I doubt seriously that’s the highest point in Capitol Hill though.

  • PetworthGuy

    Gorgeous. and HUGE space for a 2bd! Envious of the future owner.

  • anon

    Stunning, but not for families with little kids….all that glass just waiting to be shattered.

  • dcred

    I almost hope this sells for an obscene amount of money in order to encourage builders in the District to preserve the beauty we already have and make new construction interesting.

    • textdoc


    • dcd

      I’m with you to a certain extent. This was a beautiful building, and it remains so. The problem, of course, is that to *some* people, simply being old = beautiful.

  • Not often I think there’s a property in DC that’s underpriced, but wow.

    • …Though the layout is a little odd, and it feels like either more living space, closet space, or even a 3rd bedroom could’ve been eeked out of the small nooks and numerous bathrooms. But I say this mostly to try and convince myself that I wouldn’t want it if I could afford it.

  • SF

    First priority upon closing would be a god-tier renovation of the clock tower into a master bath/spa area. Imagine sitting on a toilet with that view., not to mention the awe-inducing flush strength with that drop potential on the soil stack. Anything less is underutilization.

    • anon

      First Prize!

  • LedroitTigah

    This is so gorgeous!!! BUT (and I’m being sort of picky here, dontmindme) I wish they would have gone for a darker, more gothic look instead of the gray/white kitchen and blond flooring look. Like, if there had been some cool iron and wood elements in the kitchen, and darker toned flooring, I think that would have looked cool.

    That being said, I would still give a needful person my pinkie toes if it would allow me to purchase this place.

    • ExWalbridgeGuy

      I dunno, dark and gothic in this space could get really really cheesy, really fast. It wouldn’t take too much iron, wood and darkness for this to look like Count von Count’s house.

  • hiphop anonymous

    It should have been.. “coffee or mojito in your own private bell tower”

  • Idontgetit

    I hate my life.

  • Quotia Zelda

    I would sell one – possibly two! – of my children for this place.

    • Anonamom

      ooo! Do you think if I sold all three I could afford it??

      • prgkmr

        why can’t i have 3 belltowers and no kids

  • Neil

    There is no way either of those bedrooms meet normal egress requirements. I wonder if because the tower is occupied space this whole building is considered a high-rise, and therefore doesn’t need egress windows (but has other unique fire protection requirements).

    • textdoc

      I wondered about that too — it looks like the openable parts of the windows would be too small to squeeze through.

      • JoDa

        Also, there is a sprinkler system here. If you look really carefully at the kitchen and bathroom pics, you can see the sprinkler heads. I assume there are more sprinklers we’re just not seeing the the pictures. Most newer construction or renovation in DC requires full sprinkler systems. While in-wall electrical fires (triggering too late) or grease fires (ineffective suppression) might not be handled well by sprinklers, for the most part, they’re a fantastic solution to typical household fires, and can save lives and property. I’m glad we require them.

    • JoDa

      Actually, any floor at or higher than the 3rd from the ground (about 40 feet) is not considered a “survivable jump” by fire code, as far as I understand. I have no idea what DC fire code, specifically, requires, but I do know that the windows in one part of my condo, which open into the sunken courtyard 3 full floors below have built-in window stops (the little plastic pieces that flip out to stop the window from being opened more than a few inches), while the windows in other parts that open to the ground-level walkway don’t. I asked about the difference when I bought the place, and was informed that had to do with fire code regarding egress windows…2.5 floors was considered a survivable jump, while a full 3 floors wasn’t.
      And, trust me, I’m not about to “test” that theory! My most easily accessible windows, when talking about a fire situation, go down into the courtyard, so I have a 3-story fire escape ladder (for me) and basket (for my dog) in my bedroom closet. $225 worth of peace of mind (they both last basically forever if unused, and both come with a “replacement guarantee” such that if I use them in a documented emergency, the manufacturer will inspect the used equipment for damage from use, and if they are damaged from use, replace them for free).

      • Anon

        I love the basket for a dog.
        This sounds great in principle, but when I think about actually climbing out a third story window into a rope ladder – since I’m unable to climb down a ladder ladder off a once story roof, I don’t think I could do it! I literally become unable to move when encountering even minor heights. Huge bummer for me.

  • quincy

    Fabulous. Absolutely fabulous.

  • ExWalbridgeGuy

    Wow, even without the belltower, that living room window makes this the most jaw dropping condo I’ve ever seen in DC… despite the odd layout and such I think this could go for over $2 million… we’ve seen some $2+ million condos on this site and I’d opt for this over any of those in a heartbeat.

  • Ampersand

    I did a walkthrough of this place during an open house a couple of months ago and absolutely loved it. Some of the other units in the building were more my price range but not quite what I was looking for. I really enjoyed spending ten minutes up in that tower, though – and it wasn’t even done at that point!

  • andy2

    Meh, total standard Home Depot flip job.

  • lmi

    I want it.

  • JoDa

    HAHA…one of my friends sent me this listing over the weekend with the subject: “how many organs would you sell to live in this place?” FTR: At least one kidney…possibly also half a lung (my liver isn’t worth much, these days).

  • Wendy Testaburger

    I looked at multiple units in this building a couple of months ago, including this one. When you get past the stained glass windows and the fact that it used to be a church, the construction is actually just ok and there were a ton of little things that needed to be address. Maybe they have fixed a lot of the issues since then. For example, under the catwalk, there was an electrical casing that was not fully tucked into the wall, on the second floor, the dry wall around the circular stained glass windows were misshapen and not circular, and the ledge in the glass-enclosed shower was not angled properly. Minor things, but there were dozens upon dozens of these issues in each of the units (tons of blue tape during the pre-inspection; more than typical for these types of renovations). Also, the higher end units had really nice finishes in the bathrooms and kitchens, while the basement and first floor units had regular subway tile, which was kinda a bummer. I also thought there could be egress issues in multiple units, but they got their permanent c of o , so it must not be an issue, right?

  • Marc

    We looked at a few different pre/mid construction units in this building on the first floor that each had a stoop of their own with private bedroom entrance available via old, restored church doors. The reasons we opted out of following through were proximity to Metro/jobs, lack of parking for the first floor units, primarily northern exposures, and distance to grocery stores. Even with the combination of those reasons, it was still very hard to resist, and we did take the signing documents with us to consider, did the math per sq ft on each unit, pored over every detail about which unit had which architectural details, and ultimately had to move on in our search because a standalone house in SW came available, two blocks from the water, which we thought was a better option given the higher expense of the church property condos. Tough, though, because they looked gorgeous even if a bit small and somewhat pricey.

  • Bloomy

    Pretty jaw dropping, but I think there is one missed opportunity in the tower… no hanging fixture or coffers or anything above! Something for interest… ceiling looks pretty basic.


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