We like to watch: ceramic on steroids at 1349 South Wabash

Kitchen at 1349 South Wabash

1349 South Wabash

Construction on 1349 South Wabash, a 15-story development with 78 condos, will begin in August or September, according to Judy Walton, of Wabash Properties. Studios start in the $180s, one-bedrooms in the $220s and two-bedrooms in the $280s.

Walton recently showed me around a model unit at the project, a standard two-bedroom, two-bathroom condo (1,171 square feet, including a 115-square-foot balcony). When I first walked in, she pointed to the kitchen’s 24-by-24-inch ceramic tiles, highlighting, as good salespeople will, a feature she thinks sets the project apart.

Though a lot of condos offer ceramic tile in kitchens and bathrooms, the large size of these tiles does stand out (ceramic on steroids is more common in warmer climes). So does the fact that the tile is carried through the living area in the model. Some will like this unusual, low-maintenance flooring. Others will no doubt find it cold, and for them, manufactured wood floors are an option.

The rest of the kitchen juxtaposes dark wooden Italian cabinets with contemporary features – granite countertops, track lighting and stainless steel appliances. The kitchen is small at 8 by 11 feet, but the living – dining area is a fairly spacious 16 by 11 feet, with a sliding glass door leading to the balcony.

At 12 feet by 15 feet, the master bedroom seems typical for a project of this size. Large ceramic tiles add flair to the master bathroom, same as in the kitchen, but it was the designer vanity base with a distinct basin sink that really caught my eye here. That basin has a down-home traditional feel, while the sleek lines of the almost industrial-looking open vanity base look like Mies van der Rohe might have had a hand in drawing them.

Some might find this combo – the modern and traditional touches – a little incongruous, but it works for me.

Developer See Y. Wong is behind the project. Wong is known for his work in Chinatown but with 1349 South Wabash he’s beginning to focus more on the South Loop.

About 46 percent of the units are under contract, according to Walton, and first occupancy is scheduled for early 2009.

Master bathroom at 1349 South Wabash Living room at 1349 South Wabash

Bedroom at 1349 South Wabash Granite countertops at 1349 South Wabash

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