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First Impressions: Residences of the Ritz Carlton

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Today I had opportunity to perform the PDI (pre-delivery inspection) on behalf of an overseas client who purchased at The Residences of The Ritz Carlton. The building is the first of what I call the “Big-4” to be undergoing occupancy in the downtown core. The Big-4 are the 4 condo/hotels backed by major international luxury brands: Ritz Carlton, Shangri-La, Trump, and the Four Seasons.

These projects are in a class all their own with all suites in the $1000+ per square foot range. When the Ritz Carlton first launched back in 2005, $1000 PSF was a sort of Manhattan-esque fantasy and most never thought we would get to this point so fast. The truth is, suites at the Ritz are now selling in the $1100+ PSF range, as nearby buildings without an internationally renowned luxury brand behind them are selling for as much as $900PSF.

Impressions on the building itself: from the exterior, the podium makes a striking statement on Wellington Street with its unique cantilevered design. Although still very much unfinished, the lobby areas of both the hotel and the residences area (separate entrances) make you instantly aware you are not in a ‘just another downtown condo’ or ‘just another downtown hotel’. The attention to detail and craftsmanship is evident on every surface. Not much else to say at this point as the work crews are still very much hard at work putting the finishing touches on the common areas of the building. The hotel is slated to open next month! The first 3 or 4 floors of the residences have started occupying, and the penthouse levels are scheduled to start occupying by April.

Impressions of the suite: best description I can come up with of the sprawling 1 bedroom suite is ‘grand Parisian apartment from the past, with all the modern conveniences of today’. Cheesy I know, but there is nothing really to compare it directly with in Toronto. The suite was in excellent condition overall and the list of deficiencies was rather short when we were finished the inspection. Some of the standout features that really make the suite a true ‘luxury’ property include:

  • 10′ smooth ceilings with crown moldings
  • Herringbone patterned walnut hardwood floors
  • Top quality granite and marble throughout the bathrooms and kitchen
  • Solid wood cabinetry (no MDF here!) in Kitchen and baths
  • Sub-zero, Wolf, and Miele Integrated appliances (ever priced out a Sub-Zero or Wolf appliance?)
  • Extra tall, solid-core doors with high-end hardware)
  • High end fixtures (faucets, toilets, sinks, shower heads) in the Bath and Kitchen
  • Large walk-in closet with built-in organizer system in master
  • Gas Fireplace with concrete-cast surround

I won’t post any photos at this time as the building and suite are still in a state of construction/finishing so to do so would sell this property short. (This suite will likely be available for sale in the near future so we wouldn’t want to do that!) If you have any questions about the Residences of the Ritz Carlton, please contact me.

If you have purchased a condo in Toronto that is coming up for occupancy in 2011 but you are not located in Toronto and are wondering what your options are for performing the PDI and taking occupancy, please contact me.