One of Washington, DC’s most unique condominium communities can be maddeningly elusive when it comes to available listings. The Columbia Residences is home to 225 residences and was born from the former Columbia Hospital for Women in the West End neighborhood. The facility originated in Thomas Circle in 1866 as a hopeful remedy to the lack of women’s healthcare during the Civil War era. This was a period of time in which wives, widows, and other women were arriving in the nation’s capital in large numbers, searching for missing or wounded soldiers. Many of the women were pregnant at the time.
The fledgling hospital at the Hill Mansion soon outgrew its location and moved to the Tench Ringgold House in the West End around 1870. A much larger expansion occurred in 1916, with a brand new hospital designed in the Italianate style by well-known architect Nathan C. Wyeth. The Columbia Hospital for Women would become one of the country’s leading maternity and pediatric facilities over the years. But like many other health care facilities, it ultimately fell victim to financial shortfalls. It closed its doors in 2002 and was subsequently redeveloped. The lengthy process included restoring, renovating, and converting the original structure to condominium use, and building additional wings as well. The Columbia Residences opened its doors in 2010, offering condos, full service amenities, and even an on-site Trader Joe’s.
New listings slowed noticeably throughout 2023. December stalled completely, with no active listings or sales transactions. The most recent activity was in November, with Unit #337 receiving an accepted offer just six days after it hit the market. The remodeled 1,196 square foot residence with two bedrooms and two baths closed at its full asking price of $1,150,000. The condo has an open space living, dining, and cooking area, with porcelain floors and a stone accent wall featuring a modern, wide fire feature. The primary bedroom suite is quite large, with a huge walk-in closet and a luxurious marble ensuite bath. The kitchen sits neatly in one corner, with stone counters, stainless steel appliances, and a breakfast bar. There is also a private terrace and assigned garage parking.
There was one sale in October, with Unit #808 going under contract in just three days. The two-bedroom penthouse with two baths sold for $10,000 over its asking price. The final closing figure was $1,285,000. This unique residence has an elongated layout that is quite different from most condos on the property. The extended, linear living and dining area has a gourmet kitchen tucked into the far end, with giant windows lining the perimeter and glass doors leading out to a remarkable 700 square foot private roof deck. This stunning residence with its 1,175 square foot layout was completely renovated and remodeled prior to listing.
The closest previous sale was way back in June of 2023, with Unit #735 closing as a private transaction at just $650,000. The one-bedroom, one-bath condo with 800 square feet of living space had been remodeled by its original owner, with new wood floors and lovely gourmet kitchen with stone counters, pale wood cabinetry, Viking and SubZero appliances, and hanging pendant lights over the breakfast island. An open floorplan, custom closets, built-in pantry, and private balcony further add to the picture.
There was also one closing in May. Unit #628 at the penthouse level sold for 100 percent of the list price at $929,000. The chic one-bedroom, one-bath residence has 1,000 square feet of interior space, along with dramatic arched windows, and high ceilings. Hardwood floors gleam under the natural lights, and the gourmet kitchen boasts top of the line appliances. Other features include a den that can serve nicely as either a work-from-home space or additional sleeping quarters, an upgraded bathroom with a new Grohe SPA frameless shower, and an extended twin sink vanity with Grohe fixtures.
Residents at the Columbia enjoy plenty of perks, starting with the aforementioned Trader Joe’s. Other amenities include a friendly front lobby with staffed desk and concierge service, a swimming pool and lounge, 24/7 security, a club room with billiards, a state of the art fitness center, secure garage parking, and three fully furnished guest suites for visitors. The historic property is nicely located in the heart of the West End neighborhood, and just a few blocks from the Foggy Bottom-GWU Metro Station. Nearby restaurants and bakeries include Baked & Wired, Ris, Juniper, Jardenea, Imperfecto, and Marcel’s by Robert Wiedmaier, to name a few.
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