myq wrote:I asked earlier about a building called The Carleton...now I'm between that and President and Park Royal. Anybody been there? I'm abroad and can't go to St. Louis to look myself. I'm between those two.
Sorry... can't help ya there. I'm more familiar with neighborhoods than I am with specific buildings. But did you look at the housing info on the admitted student's board? There were some testimonials from kids who lived in various neighborhoods and buildings.
The Carletonhttp://www.frontdoorstl.com/?pg=propert ... 616lindell
I just snagged a one bedroom unit in there this weekend. It's pretty pimp and the rent includes all everything except paring and cable TV which is nice.
I'm set w/ a place to live! I guess this is really happening. I also got to hang out w/ a couple friends while in St. Louis this weekend. Had dinner at Bar Italia and drinks at some bar (Bar Maryland or something?) that was just off the same street in the CWE there.
While I was in StL I stayed at the Indigo hotel (formerly Best Western). It's a nice hotel for about 137/night including taxes.
I looked at places in Debalivier (sp?) area, The Grove, Central West End, and Clayton. Impressions:
Nice area. Plenty of street parking so you wouldn't have to pay for a parking spot. A little isolated from things like places to eat and places to go grab a drink, so you'd definitely have to drive anywhere you wanted to go. The place I looked at was nice. Was 5330 Pershing if I remember correctly. This was my second choice. I would have taken it if the rent were a little cheaper because once I added in all the utilities it was the same as the unit in the Carleton.
Place I saw was managed by Frontdoorstl.com It was a nice place. Not huge, but newly renovated with modern appliances, hardwood floors, central air etc. The thing that completely turned me off was the neighborhood. I felt like I was in a slum. The Grove is apparently "up and coming" but it clearly has not "come up" quite yet. It is also a little farther from campus that I wanted to be. The rent could not be beat though. A unit that nice for about $650 is a great deal if you don't mind the other things that I mentioned.
Obviously clayton is a nice neighborhood. The unit I looked at was being renovated and is about 2 weeks from being completed. I looked at the unit next door to it because it is finished and looks the same as the one in-progress will look like when completed. Most everything about this unit was great. It is going to be a 2 bedroom. Basic layout was a little more closed than I would like. You had your livingroom and then a long hallway attached to it. Off of that hallway was the kitchen on the left, then a bedroom on the right, then the other bedroom at the end. Bathroom on the left just before the bedroom. I just don't like apartments that have long hallways leading to things. Seems like a waste of open space to me. Again though, all the appliances were new, central air, etc. The only thing that did not look new was the back door. A lot of apartments in St. Louis have this, and I don't know why, but the back door goes directly to a fire escape. And the back door never looks very secure. I remember whenever someone got robbed in undergrad it was because someone just walked up the fire escape and broke into the back door. I wanted to stay away from units w/ backdoors like that.
Central West End (saw 2 units):
Unit 1 (The Leonardo)
The management company is owned by a guy that went to wustl undergrad. He's like 25 or something. Very nice guy and actually seemed to know everyone in the building that we saw on our way up to the place. I did not like this place though. The carpeting looked gross. The appliances were not updated. I could not understand why rent was $800 for this place. Some of you may see it and love it, but I just wasn't buying it. He claimed the unit had been renovated. I would hate to have seen it pre-renovation. The building is right next to a walgreens and across the street from a Schnuk's. When we walked up (20 min walk from Indigo Hotel) up I recognized the area from undergrad. This is what everyone used to call "ghetto schnuks". It's technically part of CWE but it's the east edge of it and it's not the same CWE that you are probably thinking of.
Unit 2 (The Carleton)
Obviously I'll have the most positive to say about this place because it's the one I went with. I'll start with the negative. The rent is about 1k. But it includes everything except cable TV and a parking spot. That means electric, internet and all the other utilities. With that being said, it actually ends up being the same cost as a place that's listed at $800 and doesn't include those things. Basic cable and internet can run you around $120 in St. Louis and if all appliances are electric and you have central air, your electric bill can hover around $60 at peak and $40 at non-peak. Anyway, I walk in and the place is renovated. Large living area that opens into the kitchen (I love open spaces). Kitchen has all new stainless steel appliances (very important to me). Hardwood floors, lots of light through the windows. Only negative about the floorplan is that the bedroom is like a master suite. This is really cool except if you have company they will see your bedroom when using your bathroom. I guess it's just incentive for me to keep my room clean
There is a workout facility in the basement, and parking available for around $50/mo. You pretty much have to get a parking space with this one because of the location. There is virtually no street parking in that area that I am currently aware of.
So that's the run down of everything I looked at. Personally I don't want to live in a dingy apartment. After owning a lake view condo in chicago for the past 2 years I've become accustomed to living in a nice place and wanted to emulate that as much as possible in St. Louis. I'm 27 and I just can't take things like shaggy carpet, non-modern kitchens, non-updated appliances, etc. My requirements won't be like those of everyone else. You can certainly find a cheaper place than mine in St. Louis. Instead of just grabbing the cheapest place, I decided to pay for what was important for me in a home because it will be just that for 3 years. I don't want to change apartments while in school.
That's my report. I wont be able to make it to housing days or anything like that, so I just made a quick overnight trip there. Drove from Chicago. I chose to live alone just because I'm past the point in my life where I want to deal with the drama that comes with roommates