A look inside phase one of Carmel Partners’ 700-unit Eighth & Grand

Studios in luxury building rent well above Downtown average

Jan.January 22, 2016 04:08 PM

Residents of the first residential phase of Carmel Partners’ 700-unit Eighth & Grand project have moved in, and The Real Deal got a look inside the luxury development, anchored by Downtown’s first Whole Foods supermarket. 

To date, residents have occupied  300 units in the first phase of the project, which sits on 3 acres of land at 770 South Grand Avenue. There are 400 more under construction that are expected to be completed this summer.

It is unclear exactly how much the megaproject cost to construct. Beverly Hills developer Sonny Astani planned to spend $300 million to build a similar project on the site, and he secured its city approvals before selling it to Carmel Partners in 2012.

What is more clear is that rents are high. A 516-square-foot studio at Eighth & Grand rents for $2,230 a month. That amounts to about $52 a square foot a month, while the average rent Downtown is $33.61 a square foot a month, according to NeighborhoodX.

Eighth & Grand has all the luxury fixings that go along with high rent. It has two pools, a café in the lobby, a fitness center, a “Zen sculpture” garden, a pet-washing area, a clubhouse, a glass-walled “sky lounge” on the 7th floor, a rooftop deck and then, of course, the Whole Foods downstairs, which opened to the public in Nov. 2015.

Many said the 41,000-square-foot Whole Foods would be a major catalyst for change downtown. More of an emphasis was put on the high-end supermarket than on the residences it is attached to, because Whole Foods was a mark of high-end convenience that Downtown previously lacked.

But now, the first phase of the residences are open, with interiors designed by local firm Commune Design, known for its work at Downtown’s Ace Hotel. There are more than six super-large-scale residential projects under construction downtown.

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