SARATOGA SPRINGS -- The city's latest condominium project, a six-story, 44-unit complex, will be opening its doors to residents in December.
Located at 38 High Rock Ave. and housing apartments that range in price from $400,000 to $1.5 million, the joint venture between the 44-unit condominium and the adjacent 123-room Hampton Inn hotel will be the first of its kind in this region.
"It's a foreign concept here," said Scott Varley, whose Realty group is the exclusive real estate agent for the condo properties.
The two structures have redefined the local skyline between City Hall and the armory building. The armory building, which currently serves as the state Military Museum, boasts a rising tower where residents are believed to have been stationed to search the sky for potential enemy aircraft during World War II. The new complex dwarfs that tower today.
The joint, mixed-use concept between the hotel and the condo has been more readily applied in Florida and in the Western states, Varley said.
The project is part of a partnership between Bette & Cring builders, Albany-based Turf Hotels and local investor Frank Parillo and cost more than $30 million to build.
Of the 44 apartments, 17 have been sold, Varley said.
The first two floors will house about 15,000 square feet of retail space and parking for hotel guests. There is a 68-spot parking garage reserved for condominium owners on the third floor and a 3,000-square-foot terrace where residents can congregate that is located on the fourth floor. It includes a fireplace, bar and kitchenette.
Condominium residents will also have the ability of using the hotel fitness center, pool and housekeeping services, a competitive edge that puts 38 High Rock ahead of other city-based condominiums, Varley said.
"Those other seven condos (in the city) are just apartments in the sky."
The number of urban condos sold in the region fell 27 percent from 2007 to 2008, according to a study released earlier this year by the real estate brokerage firm TL Metzger & Associates. Slightly less than one-third of condos for sale in Saratoga Springs sold in 2008. In Glens Falls, that number was one-fourth.
Potential sales have picked up in recent weeks however, said Julie Bonacio, of Bonacio Construction Inc., which has six condominium projects in the city.
"Things did slow down, but clients we've been working with over the last year are finally starting to pull the trigger," Bonacio said.
Two clients have committed to contracts in the past two weeks at Park Place Condominiums, registering a total of 21 of 43 available units that have been sold, and the group recently closed on a penthouse apartment at The Lofts, where 29 of 30 units are now accounted for, Bonacio said.
At The Mill Condominiums in Glens Falls, where prices on many of the 52 available units were recently lowered, "some" of the units are in the contract stage, Cecil Provost said Wednesday.
Provost, an associate broker with Keller Williams Realty, is handling sales at The Mill Condominiums.
"We have deposits on a few of them, but the new challenge right now is finding a bank to fund them," he said.