I attended the grand opening of this condominium hotel or condotel, the Jamieson, sometime last week. For now, Jamieson has no competition because it is the only condotel in Alexandria City. It's conveniently located near the US Patent office (USPTO), two metro stations (Eisenhower and King St.), Wholefoods, Starbucks and all the shops in Carlyle district.
This is what condotel is. It is condo living with hotel privileges. A simple concept for those who want the convenience of living in a condo and the luxury that a hotel offered. It's a perfect sanctuary for people working out of a patent office or even for lawyers working out odd hours to camp out here. I mean, the Alexandria courthouse is a throw's stone from here! No kidding. Sort of having a bachelor's pad close to your work.
Jamieson condominium and Westin hotel is located in the same building. The residential part is above the hotel from the 10th floor to the 15th. Only 79 condo homes slated for this building. Sample of privileges that comes with owning a condo here:
- Condo owners have access to services offered by the hotel, i.e. room service (nice), housekeeping, catering. These are separate services from your condo fees. That means, you do have to pay separately for using them.
- As a condo owner you have the access of using the rooftop terrace and swimming pool.
There are different condo layouts from studio, one bedroom, two bedrooms to three bedrooms. Each unit features hardwood floors in the kitchen, granite countertops, tile baths, stainless steel appliances and almost floor-to-ceiling windows.
Condominiums are priced from the $300k (think this is for studio), to $700's and up for the three bedroom homes. From watching how condo owners in the Old Town proximity area priced their condos, their prices are definitely 'very competitive' for the area. There is at least 2 to 3 new condominiums in and around the City of Alexandria competing for the same pool of buyers. Competing on location, this one is located right on the outskirt of Old Town before it changes to Alexandria, Fairfax county. I remembered way back then when they first just getting started with the development, these same condos were priced a little bit out-of-range for that market (2005) but not for this market.
Westin did the right thing by adjusting the price to reflect current market conditions. Their 'now' price and luxury - are their 'competitive advantages.' I won't be surprised if they 'outsell' their competitions.