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Old 07-21-2011, 08:49 PM
 
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Hi,
My husband will be working in Crystal City, and we are looking for apartment buildings that would be close to the blue line so 1) he can commute easily via metro (or even walking distance), and 2) we can get to DC easily via metro as well as we want to take advantage of being close to the city.

Looking for 2 bedroom / 2 bathroom apartment, between $2,400 - 2,800. We did some research on Ballston, Clarendon, and Rosslyn, but I wonder if we should also look a little further south than that so he could maybe walk to crystal city. Our main concern/priorities are:

- Close to blue line station, or maybe walking distance to Crystal City.
- Safe area to live in, especially since I will be around all day since I won't be working.
- Good quality building (thick walls so it's not super noisy).
- Preferably to be close to shopping/restaurant areas.


Any recommendations on particular areas and apartment complexes we should look at?

FYI: We don't have children, so no big hang up on quality of schools, etc.

Thanks so much.
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Old 07-21-2011, 09:22 PM
 
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Welcome!

Why not live in the Crystal City area? There are lots of apartment buildings there and it seems to fit your other criteria.

Here's an example of one newer complex. It's on the higher end of your price range (but maybe you could negotiate rents), and there are many other options.

http://www.4walls.us/Metropolitan-At...ity-64659.html
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Old 07-21-2011, 10:28 PM
 
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There are a lot of apartments in Crystal City, Pentagon City, and Aurora Hills. In your price range, I'd look at Crystal Towers and Crystal House on Eads St. There are also a lot of condos in the area that are for rent.
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Old 07-21-2011, 10:42 PM
 
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Thanks for the replies! I read that living in Crystal City is kinda like living in a concrete city with no character. Maybe I am wrong. That's why we thought it'd be better to live somewhere close to the blue line but not necessarily IN Crystal City. Perhaps Pentagon City is better? The price tag for a 2 bedroom at Metropolitan at Pentagon City seems very steep when I look for availability (around 4k).

I guess that whole corridor from Rosslyn and Crystal City is ok (safety wise), so maybe if you had apartment building suggestions?
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Old 07-22-2011, 04:44 AM
 
Location: Orange, California
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I agree that Crystal City is a good choice for an apartment if you will be working in that area. There certainly are some ugly concrete buildings there, but many of those buildings contain offices, not apartments (and over the past 10 years a lot of nicer, modern office buildings have been cropping up). As for apartments, there are some nice buildings, old and new, that are located in the vicinity of some great retail areas. Overall, I would probably prefer north Arlington (Clarendon being probably my favorite location), but you should find Crystal City a bit cheaper and you will be thrilled with the easty commute. Good luck.
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Old 07-22-2011, 05:25 AM
 
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Quote:
Originally Posted by aptresearch View Post
Thanks for the replies! I read that living in Crystal City is kinda like living in a concrete city with no character. Maybe I am wrong. That's why we thought it'd be better to live somewhere close to the blue line but not necessarily IN Crystal City. Perhaps Pentagon City is better? The price tag for a 2 bedroom at Metropolitan at Pentagon City seems very steep when I look for availability (around 4k).

I guess that whole corridor from Rosslyn and Crystal City is ok (safety wise), so maybe if you had apartment building suggestions?
I've lived in Crystal City for more than 10 years. The area has changed a lot but the myth persists. The area is full of young professionals, there are lots of restaurants and bars, we have a theater, and many other activities. More info here:
Crystal City, VA Business Improvement District
There are very few "safety" (I assume you mean "crime") issues in Crystal City thanks to a very high presence of military/government professionals, tourists, and thriving businesses in the area.
Some more suggestions based on your price:
River House
Abingdon House
Crystal Towers
Crystal House
The Gramercy
You may want to start your search with Archstone Find Apartments for Rent | Archstone Apartments and Kettler www.kettler.com Management since they own many of the apartments in the area.

If you want more alternatives, you can go south from Crystal City. There are many apartments around the Braddock Road metro station in Alexandria, and there's a lot of new development in the Potomac Yard area, including an planned new metro stop.
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Old 07-22-2011, 06:04 AM
 
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^Agreed. Crystal City definitely still has a rep as a rather sterile place that is dead at night. I don't think that is so true anymore. The stretch of bars/restaurants on 23rd street are all nice non-chain, quirky type places. The location in the DC area is fantastic as you can be in DC/North Arlington/Old Town Alexandria in only minutes via the metro. There's also Shirlington and Columbia Pike close by, which have a good number of places to check out too.

I live in Pentagon City myself and I think it's a great choice. It's slightly cheaper than north Arlington and the good parts of DC, yet you still have a ton of shopping (Pentagon City Mall/Pentagon Row), a good selection of restaurants, some bars, bikeshare, and of course, the metro. Safety is largely a non-issue, it is very safe for a dense urban area.
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Old 07-22-2011, 06:19 AM
 
Location: among the clustered spires
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Since you'll be commuting 5x a week, and socializing maybe 2-4x a week (plus no boss who'll get ya if you're late for a night out or something) ... I'd do Crystal City. It doesn't have *quite* the variety that Orange Line Arlington has in terms of places to go/things to do, but it's cheaper, closer to work, and there are a few things to do.
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Old 07-22-2011, 07:48 AM
 
2,675 posts, read 4,533,545 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by aptresearch View Post
Thanks for the replies! I read that living in Crystal City is kinda like living in a concrete city with no character. Maybe I am wrong. That's why we thought it'd be better to live somewhere close to the blue line but not necessarily IN Crystal City. Perhaps Pentagon City is better? The price tag for a 2 bedroom at Metropolitan at Pentagon City seems very steep when I look for availability (around 4k).

I guess that whole corridor from Rosslyn and Crystal City is ok (safety wise), so maybe if you had apartment building suggestions?
When people say "concrete city" they are thinking of the area east of Rte 1, which is dominated by expensive condos, moderate hotels (because of the proximity to the airport and offices) and offices. There are some restaurants and some underground shopping but these primarily cater to the office workers and tourists. The area west of Rte 1 (which many people who don't live there don't know about) is much more residential/shopping/restaurant oriented. However, what Arl. Co. does best and loves to do is urban planning, and with the BRAC relocation of many of the offices east of Rte 1., they have been busy planning new uses for some of the buildings/areas, with one goal of trying to make it more like the orange line. I would bet that they will succeed, but the transformation will take years.
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Old 08-06-2011, 08:35 AM
 
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Thanks again everyone. This is super helpful.

Have any of you heard of or have lived at Concord in Crystal City? It apparently has great reviews, but I wondered if the price tag is really worth it in comparison with other possible buildings nearby?

Also, I read this review online (Very pricey, but you DO get ..., Recommended, Jul 15, 2011, apartment review of Concord Crystal City Apartments in Arlington, VA) and I was shocked/worried to read about the rule of not being allowed to have visitors for more than 14 days per year! Did I misunderstood? Is this rule common in apartment building in the area/town?

Thanks again for all your help.
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