Ames-Webster Mansion to Transform into Three Luxury Condos
The historic mansion, Ames-Webster, at Dartmouth Street in Back Bay will be transformed into three condominiums. The starting price will be $20 million per condo unit. The building will also include a triplex penthouse.
The mansion was up for sale since 2010, and it was only four years later when the seller reached an agreement with a Saudi sheik. Ames-Webster is a mansion located in Back Bay’s 306 Dartmouth Street. When it was first listed for sale, the original asking price was $23. However, there were no takers, so it was taken off the market for some time.
It went back on sale in 2013 where the closing price was $14.5 million. Back then, it was considered the most expensive home for sale in the entire history of the city of Boston. Yes, back then, $14.5 million was such a huge amount of money.
At that time, the mansion served for commercial purposes. Some updates on the sale emerged, and they talked about a Saudi sheik who was planning to buy the mansion. His plan was to convert the huge building into its original glory, which was a private home. There were also talks that the mansion would be split into two where the first part was for the sheik, and the other was for his relatives.
However, the for sale sign was still up, so it could be concluded that buying the mansion for the sheik was halted. Also during that time, the mansion went through a massive renovation. There were still no takers, so the mansion was still up for sale in 2014 in which it was priced at $18 million.
The Ames-Webster Mansion was Sold
After signing a contract with the foreigner, the owner who also works as a developer did not disclose the deal, along with details about the buyer and how much was paid for the mansion. The closing price was said to be $14.5 million though and it was confirmed that the buyer was still the Saudi sheik. This piece of information could also verify that there was an agreement that took place in November of 2012 and it closed on March 15 the next year.
Later, it was learned that the buyer is a corporation under FAL Holdings, which is an international conglomerate managed by the Saudi sheik. According to the corporate bio of the man, he has an MBA from a Jesuit college, the University of Santa Clara.
At that time, it was not obvious as to what the plans were for the mansion. As mentioned, there were already talks about it, but perhaps the biography gave away some hints of what the plans were. Until 2013, the mansion’s purpose was as an office building that contained about 20 companies.
In the bio, the sheik was described as an international investor who capitalizes on baking, industrial, and commercial companies. He has also invested in development and research projects, as well as startup businesses. Because of the description, many speculated that the Saudi sheik would use the space to turn it into offices for his present and future venture.
The representative of the sheik’s broker said in a statement that they were exploring different kinds of potentials and opportunities that the building can offer. Nevertheless, there were also rumors that the mansion was going to be turned into a single family or two family property for the sheik and his daughter.
The Special Features of the Ames-Webster Mansion
This particular mansion is a preserved single-family mansion and is considered one of the most luxurious buildings in the area. It spans a total of 26,000 square feet of space bearing a unique 19th-century design and architecture. The details of the mansion are quite distinct that historians can point out it has exact period style.
The mansion boasts a huge number of rooms, totaling to 50, along with a great hall that measures 18 by 63 feet. It also has a solarium, lavish entertainment rooms, several parking spaces, and almost 30 fireplaces.
During the time it was sold, the property served as a commercial home for various business ranging from money managers to law offices.
The Rebirth of the Mansion into Three Condominiums
After all the assumptions regarding the mansion and what it would turn out to be once it was sold, it is now confirmed that it will become a three-condo property. At first, it was thought to be a single-family residence, which was exactly what it was back in the first century of its life.
The mansion dates back to 1872 in which it was used as a home for a congressman at that time, Frederick L> Ames. He later left the mansion to his wife and was expanded after ten years. A stable located on Newbury Street was also owned by the congressman, and he also gave it to his wife.
Several years later, the mansion almost became the home of a Massachusetts governor. There are only five states in the country where the governor does not have his own formal residence, and Massachusetts is one of them. There have been offers here and there. Plans were also discussed, but for over 150 years, there has not been a place of residence for the government official.
Fiscal anxiety, as well as considerations of the location, has been among the problems. One of the suggested homes during that time was this special mansion. However, a group of business owners converted the space into their offices in 1971. These offices remained until the 21st century before it was renovated. It looked a little shabby in some places, so the mansion required effort in restoring it to its former glory. Before it got sold to the Saudi sheik, it was first refurbished so that it would become one of the luxurious homes in Boston again.
With the confirmation that the mansion at 306 Dartmouth Street will be converted into condominiums, these properties will become a part of the list of the most expensive homes to ever be sold in Boston. The team for the project, including the marketing manager and the architect for the conversion of the mansion, is already set.
In order to convert the mansion, the first step is to renovate it, according to the people who will handle the project. Some parts of the redevelopment of the building include preparing the mosaic tiles found in the entryway of the property. Chandeliers will be dusted off as well. The stained glass skylight in the mansion’s atrium will be taken care of as well. The conversion is expected to finish in 2019.
Back Bay has some of the priciest properties in Boston. Aside from this mansion, a condo was sold in 2015 for $15.4 million. The condominium was situated at The Heritage on the Garden and has more than 5,000 square feet of space. It also provided astonishing views of the Public Garden of the city. The price tag of the condo made it the most expensive unit to be ever sold in the city during that time. It beat Unit W12A, which was a Mandarin Oriental condo unit, which sold for $12.5 million.
The mentioned home was also considered the most expensive private home to be ever sold all over the city of Boston. It was definitely more expensive than Ames-Webster mansion. This condo had two bedrooms and five bathrooms. It is also old with its structure built in 1988. It has two parking spaces with a floor plan that was gracious to provide an immense living room.
When it was listed, the fireplace was described, along with the elegance of the dining room. As for the Ames-Webster mansion listing, the property was defined as recently converted space that comes with wealthy architectural features.
306 Dartmouth Street is home to many real estate properties for sale. Most of them are historic and lavish. When Ames-Webster mansion was listed, it was described as a multi-family home which was built in 1899 and spans 25,184 square feet and 0.25 acres for its total lot size. It was also dubbed as a once in a lifetime opportunity before it got sold.
According to the listing, the land where the property stands costs almost $3 million and the improvements for the building were estimated to have reached more than $3.4 million. Compared to the sold homes during that time, Ames-Webster really dominated the list.
Meanwhile, the upcoming condominiums will have a triplex penthouse. The conversion is estimated to cost $35 million, and the residences will start at over $20 million. The existing murals in the mansion as well as the mosaics, chandeliers, and the glass skylights will remain but will be restored as well. They will also be incorporated into the condominiums, including in the residential and common areas.
The condo will offer a garden and onsite parking among its amenities. The whole project for the conversion of the Ames-Webster mansion may be completed in December of 2019.