Area Real Estate News & Market Trends

You’ll find our blog to be a wealth of information, covering everything from local market statistics and home values to community happenings. That’s because we care about the community and want to help you find your place in it. Please reach out if you have any questions at all. We’d love to talk with you!

Feb. 7, 2019

7 Places to Visit in Philadelphia if You’re a Movie Buff

What do a Philadelphia delicatessen, church, square, bank, sculpture, football field, museum and prison have in common? They share the spotlight of movie fame. We’ve rounded up just a few examples of the city’s film-worthy sites. If you’re into movies, you might want to take a tour of some of these famous silver-screen locales and find out what makes The City of Brotherly Love so attractive to film producers.

 

1. Rittenhouse Square

By Shelleykoon (own works)

Claim to movie fame: In the opening scenes of Trading Places, Billy Ray Valentine (Eddie Murphy), is down on his luck and begging in Rittenhouse Square. That’s before he “trades places,” taking on the ultra-rich lifestyle of stockbroker Louis Winthorpe III (Dan Aykroyd).

While you’re there: There’s no need to reenact the begging scene at 18th and Walnut. However, since you’re already in the center of the movie’s action, consider taking a Trading Places tour. You can stroll southwest a few blocks to see Winthorpe’s house at 2014 Delancey Street. Then if you go east to 135 South Broad, you’ll find the Wells Fargo building. In the movie, it was the Duke and Duke Bank, where Valentine assumed his stockbroker role.

 

2. Famous 4th Street Delicatessen

Claim to movie fame: The outside of this delicatessen featured in the movie Philadelphia about Andrew Beckett (Tom Hanks) a lawyer suffering from AIDS. When his firm unlawfully fires him due to his diagnosis, he decides to file suit but has a hard time recruiting a lawyer to represent him. A dramatic turn of events occurs after Joe Miller (Denzel Washington) leaves the Famous 4th Street Delicatessen, pastrami sandwich in hand. He finds Beckett and declares he will be his lawyer.

While you’re there: According to their menu, you can still try a pastrami sandwich. Reviews say the meat is tender and the portions are large.

 

3. St. Augustine Roman Catholic Church

By Beyond My Ken (Own Work) 

Claim to movie fame: In “The Sixth Sense,” (1999) St. Augustine’s is where (spoiler alert) the ghost of Malcolm Crowe (Bruce Willis), a child psychologist, and Cole Sear, meet for the first time. Cole is the young boy who ominously claims “I see dead people.”

While you’re there: Feast your eyes on the church’s stained-glass windows, beautiful sanctuary and especially its frescoes — people believe they are the oldest in a religious building in the United States.

 

4. Eastern State Penitentiary

Claim to movie fame: In the sci-fi thriller Twelve Monkeys (1995), also starring Bruce Willis, the Eastern State Penitentiary was used to depict a post-apocalyptic mental hospital.

While you’re there: Take a tour of the prison. Visitors recommend the audio tour, which enables you to go at your own pace and focus on your areas of interest. You might want to wait for moderate temperate weather, however, because it’s known to be cold in the winter and hot in the summer.

 

5. Society Hill

Claim to movie fame: In National Treasure, historian Ben Gates (Nicolas Cage) searches for a treasure that’s supposed to stem from the birth of the nation. One of the many chase scenes takes Cage through Society Hill and includes scenes at Old Pine Street Church and Headhouse Market.

While you’re there: Visit the churchyard at the Old Pine Street Church. You’ll find tombstones of 3,000 Philadelphians from the late 18th and early 19th century.

 

6. Franklin Field

By NASA World Wind, via Wikimedia Commons

Claim to movie fame: The star of Unbreakable, David Dun (Bruce Willis), who survives a gruesome train wreck, works as a security guard at Franklin Field.

While you’re there: This is the location of the University of Pennsylvania’s football stadium, site of the annual Penn Relays (track and field) and formerly the home of the 2018 Super Bowl champions — the Philadelphia Eagles. Depending on the time of the year, you can watch the Penn Relays, football, or lacrosse. Check ahead for upcoming events.*

 

7. The Philadelphia Museum of Art

Claim to movie fame: Rocky is, of course, the iconic Philadelphia movie. In that film and all but one of its sequels, Rocky (Sylvester Stallone) ran up the steps of the Philadelphia Museum of Art in his quest for fitness. The scene is so well known that the steps are sometimes even called the “Rocky Steps.” As an aside, here’s a fun Philly fact about Sylvester Stallone: he once lived in Holme Circle in Northeast Philadelphia.

While you’re there: If you’re ready to test your mettle, try conquering the 72 steps. When you reach the top, a view of the Benjamin Franklin Parkway and Philadelphia City Hall will be your reward. If you’re not up for such a strenuous workout, just take a selfie standing next to the Rocky statue, conveniently located at the bottom of the steps.

That’s just a small sampling of the varied Philadelphia backdrops that draw movie-makers to the city, but it’s enough to know there’s something worth exploring right at our doorsteps.

*Check before you go, to confirm the event calendar and other details.

 

About the Author 

 

Carolyn Frith, a content consultant who owns Carolyn Frith Marketing, aims to rid the world of snore-and-bore writing on the web. Topics she covers range from Philadelphia events and real estate options to a range of other content.

Website | Facebook | Twitter | Pinterest

 

Posted in Center City
Jan. 29, 2019

Valentine’s Day: Where to Celebrate!

February have you thinking of where you and your SO are headed to celebrate Valentine's Day? We've taken the guess work out by putting together a list that encompasses a bit of everything from upscale ideas to more casual and fun date night places. Enjoy and be sure to share your posts if you deicide on any of these this holiday using #PhillyLiving

 

  • Upscale

    • Vernick: Reservations are as hard to grab; like catching smoke! To nab a coveted table here would not only make for a special occasion but you’ll also be in a quaint and romantic environment overlooking Walnut street through frosted windows. With the dining room dimly lit, a great cocktail & wine list, this spot was sure to top our list this holiday!

    • Vetri: What’s not to love about this intimate Italian hideaway tucked perfectly off of the hurriedness of the Avenue of the Arts on Spruce Street! You’re almost always greeted with a cocktail and swiftly (without feeling rushed) brough to your table. Rarely do you ever see more than a 4-top table which adds to the ambiance of quiet, romantic & exclusive.

    • Laurel: Top chef enthusiasts love this spot just as much as a foodie who enjoys top quality and unique dishes. Nick Elmi is typically in the kitchen serving up these astonishing dishes that not only look like art, but taste amazing.

    • Royal Sushi: In similar fashion to Vernick...good luck getting a reservation, at least for the private omakase experience behind a decorative curtain to the rear of the establishment. Choose between a 10 or 17 piece tasting (always go for 17...you’ll be sad you didnt!) and prepare to be wow’d. Jesse - the head chef and owner - dresses each sushi piece to perfection so you most certainly do not need to add anything. And as a bonus, eating with your hands is encouraged!

  • BYOB

    • Pumpkin: This has always held a special place in our hearts - located in Graduate Hospital - it’s in our backyard but not one we take for granted. With no more than 15 tables a reservation is a must however not extremely difficult to nail down.

    • Bibou: Quiet, intimate, relaxing and welcoming. These are all the best ways to describe the feeling walking into Bibou on a chilly winter’s night. With only a handful of tables, you feel like you’re dining at a friend’s place. This is a chef’s tasting menu only so when you make the reservation let them know of any dietary restrictions but be ready to be wowed!

    • Audrey Claire: Always farm fresh to table, this is a great spot for those in the heart of Rittenhouse. It’s across the street from it’s sister restaurant, Twenty Manning Grill, so you could put your name in at Audrey Claire and then head over to Twenty Manning for a drink until your table is ready. Every table has a great view of the frosted windows overlooking people walking around the outskirts of Rittenhouse Park so if you and yours are into people watching, this is a great spot for you.

  • Casual and Fun

    • Bistro La Minette: French comfort food on a cold winter night, it’s a must! There’s a tiny bar that greets to as you enter - the bartenders are always welcoming and ready to mix you up whatever you desire. The warmth of the restaurant is perfect for a romantic night out, plus the warm, delicious dishes coming from the kitchen are enough to keep you wanting to come back all season long!

    • Gran Caffe L'Aquila: Great stop right off of Chestnut Street you walk in an immediately feel like family. There are two bars to choose from if your table isn’t ready - or if you didn’t make a reservation! They explore a different region on Italy each week so the menu, while it does have staples, is ever changing. Now the cold may keep you from wanting it however you HAVE to try the gelato. It’s world famous & you will be glad you got your own because sharing one is just not enough!

    • Dandelion: Walk off the streets of Philadelphia and immediately you feel as though you’ve walked into a warm British pub. English comfort food is the best way to warm up and cozy up with your SO or with friends. So while this is a romantic, yet fun restaurant, it’s a nice spot for a group of friends to celebrate Galentine’s Day too!

Posted in Center City
Jan. 27, 2019

Philly Trivia: Center City District Parks Events

When you think of Center City District mostly you think of Center City Sips or Center City Restaurant Week, right? Well there's a lot more to CCDP and our trivia this month is:

 

Which of the following does CCDP not host?

A. Ice Skating

B. Fitness Classes

C. Quizzo

D. Cocktail Nights

 

Answer? It's a bit of a trick, the answer is NONE: Center City Distict offers all of these and so much more throughout the year!

Currently they host the ice skating at Dilworth Plaza while the weather is still cold! And if you've ever been, you've probably noticed theres a cabin right beside the rink. This is where you can warm up after skating or if you aren't into ice skating but you like cocktails or quiz, the cabin is your place! They host both these events at the cabin during the cooler months. They also put on fitness classes - more typical in the spring and summer months but there's also ice skating fitness classes being held on the rink once a week.

To see what all of these are about and even what else they offer, check out their site here!

Posted in Center City
Jan. 24, 2019

Winter Decorating: After the Holidays

 

The house may feel empty and cold with the warmth of the holidays behind us however we've come up with a few great ways to decorate before the spring decorations hit the shelves! First, as with any change to the house, it’s always best to do a deep clean. We’ve have people in and out of the home of the holidays, decorations creating dust and food throughout the kitchen, dining room and probably living room (if you hosted!). Now is a great time to refresh all your cleaning products and use them before redecorating.

 

The warmth of the tree, the lights and maybe even a festive throw pillow or blanket has gone and you’re back to the old pillows and decor, but it doesn’t need to feel that way! Adding in a plant (real or faux) can really bring a room back to life. Large potted floor plants are a great way to bring in some extra oxygen and fill that gaping hole where the tree used to be.

 

Next, seasonal coloring seems to be a thing of the past. Pastels are typically left for spring and darker hues for the winter, but why? Why surround yourself with darker colors when it’s already dark more than 50% of the day?! Break out those lighter colors to allow for a brighter room even when the sun is setting at 5pm. Cooler light colors are a good way to transition from the winter months into spring.

 

Whether your winter decorations are still up or you’re already decorated for spring it’s always nice to do a refresh. We hope this has helped...if not, try Tidying Up on Netflix for inspiration!

Posted in Real Estate Tips
Jan. 13, 2019

Home of the Week: 240 Montrose Street

A gorgeous home in Queen Village that is sure to please! This charming home comes with features throughout, such as hardwood flooring, crown molding and so much more! Enter the open and inviting living and dining area- just the spot for hosting game nights with family and friends!

Continue through and admire the modern kitchen, complete with stunning floor tile, stainless steel appliances, mosaic tile backsplash, sleek granite countertops and elegant cabinetry. The kitchen also includes access to a backyard patio area- ready and waiting for some summer BBQs!

Upstairs, the second floor opens to a light filled bedroom with ceiling fan and ample closet space, and a main bathroom with a gorgeous custom tiled tub and shower, tile flooring, built-in shelving and a beautiful dual vanity. The second floor also includes a conveniently located laundry room. The third floor reveals a sun drenched, spacious bedroom with exposed brick, ceiling fan and its own ensuite bathroom with tile flooring and stall shower.

The bedroom also provides access to a deck- just the spot for a morning cup of coffee or your beverage of choice after a long day. For those who still need extra storage space, the full basement is ready and waiting to fulfill all of your storage needs.

Found in an absolutely ideal location in Queen Village and Nebringer catchment, this home has easy access to 95, making your morning commute a breeze. After hours, you can take a walk over to Philadelphia Java Company and have a latte, or enjoy a meal at Dmitri's or Royal Sushi & Izakaya before strolling through Mario Lanza Park, or one of the many other green spaces around the home. This is one you don't want to miss- contact Susanna Kunkel and see it today!

Jan. 6, 2019

Home of the Week: 5518 Warrington Avenue

Welcome to this beautifully rehabbed home with garage parking in Kingsessing! Found on a quiet residential street, this move-in ready home has features you'll simply adore, such as hardwood flooring and a keen attention to details throughout. The first floor offers an inviting open floor plan, which offers flexibility to accommodate any furniture layout you desire.

 

Next, imagine cooking your favorite meal in the fabulous kitchen, complete with stainless steel appliances, custom tile flooring, pristine countertops, mosaic tiled backsplash and gorgeous cabinetry.

 

Upstairs, find respite after a long day in the light-filled master bedroom, which includes an immense closet with French doors.

 

There are also two other delightful secondary bedrooms on this floor and a lovely hall bathroom, complete with tiled flooring, a custom tiled tub and shower and a sleek, modern vanity with mirror. Still need space? The generously sized walk out basement offers a solution to your storage needs, and includes laundry for your comfort and convenience.

The home is in a location that can't be beat, on a desirable block in an increasingly popular neighborhood, it is just a few blocks away from the Kingsessing Library and Rec Center, and within easy walking distance to public transportation so Center City is simply minutes away. Don't wait, contact Susanna Kunkel and take a look today!

Dec. 27, 2018

Ways to Keep Your New Year's Resolution

It’s that time of year again, with the new year comes new goals & new resolutions, but how long can you really keep them? If you set yourself up properly you can ensure you will uphold your New Year’s resolution all year long!

Start first with a simple idea; to go from not working out to your goal is to work out 6x a week can be out of reach. If you start small and work your way up, you’re less likely to stop along the way, or cave in completely.

Along those lines, it needs to be realistic. To have a goal of seeing every country this year is a bit far-fetched; however, if you make a goal of traveling to one new place this year, that can be more attainable.

Make a plan and map out a timeline. When you are able to meet smaller goals along the way, it is easier to reach your end goal without losing sight. If your goal is to travel; start with local places or put together a timeline of when you want to go and work backward taking into consideration cost, time away from work and other obligations, etc.

One of the most important ways to ensure you stick to your resolution is to have someone to hold you accountable. You’ve got a goal of working so many times per week but you’re tired after work or you’d rather hang out with friends (we get it!) but having someone check in on you to be sure you’ve worked out; or better, they work out with you, will result in reaching your goal. When you have someone who cares about you and your plan - it makes it much easier to accomplish!

Happy New Year, We Wish You a Happy & Prosperous 2019!

Posted in Real Estate Tips
Dec. 24, 2018

Philly Trivia: One in How Many Docs Across the US Were Trained in Philly?!

It’s flu season again & there’s no better place to be than in Philadelphia! Across the United States, what percent of doctors were trained in Philadelphia?

Philadelphia's tech industry is booming and combined with a large number of medical schools, it has become one of the country's largest hub for health care innovation. Numerous hospitals and research companies located in the region allow many students to secure post-education jobs though for those looking to branch out, many stay within the country.

Back to our trivia...1 in 6 doctors across the USA are trained locally!

 

So this flu season, rest assured you're covered with some of the nation's best!

 

Posted in University City
Dec. 23, 2018

Unique Fitness Classes in Philadelphia

January can only mean one thing in the fitness world: mayhem. People are coming off of overindulging and less of a strict eating and fitness schedule after the holidays; mix that with all of the resolutions and you’ve got the perfect storm of a packed gym or fitness center. Although it’s a madhouse, you can find some great deals during this time to encourage you to fight the crowds and get back into the swing of things. In addition, Philly has picked up some unique fitness studios and classes; here’s some out of the box ways to work out & have fun this year!

  • Buti Yoga: The name is intimidating, the class is not! If you’re into having a blast while you workout, this may just be the class for you. Offered at Tuck Barre & Yoga in Point Breeze this class skillfully blends tribal dance, deep core movement & engagement with traditional yoga practice. Not to mention, the instructor is motivational, encouraging and all about no judgement...you in?
  • SLT: Prepare to not be able to move after one class at SLT located about Free People on Walnut Street. It’s you versus the machine and just like any other fitness regimen, you get out what you put in! You will use the resistance from the machine to challenge your core, your glutes...muscles you had no idea you ever had!  

  • Rock Climbing: Nothing new about this workout however it’s becoming more and more popular in Philadelphia. There are gyms popping up all over the city. Strap in and get to work, or not sure where to start? There are coaches at each gym ready to help you to reach your full potential.

  • Pound Fitness: Sweat, sculpt & rock out. Pound is the first fitness center where your full focus is to have a full-on jam session. There are classes for the young at heart, and now also for the kiddos!

  • Floating Yoga: Watch the sunset from the 28th floor of AKA in University City while floating on the 'pool in the sky.' It's a 2-hour private class held on select dates at this state-of-the-art facility. Reserve your board for the new year.

  • Pig Yoga: Ok puppy yoga has been a thing, so cute...but have you seen pig yoga?! At Tuck Barre & Yoga, this is exactly as it sounds, rolling around on yoga mats (very little technique) with little...and not so little piggy friends!

Posted in Point Breeze
Dec. 21, 2018

What's Happening in Philly: Holiday Edition

Winter began today just in time for the holidays next week and the following. Philadelphia is buzzing with all sorts of activities, events & holiday celebrations. Here’s just a quick overview of ways to get in the holiday spirit this weekend...that is if you haven’t left your shopping to the last minute!

 

Holiday Attractions in Philly:

Franklin Square Light Show

Macy’s Light Show

Christmas Village

Skating at Dilworth Park

Blue Cross Riverrink

 

Sunday’s Game vs. the Redskins: It’s make or break for the Eagles this weekend (don’t you feel like we’ve been saying that all season?!). This time it holds true, now through the end of regulation, this mentality will be on repeat, but we’re confident! With the reigning Super Bowl MVP at the helm, we’re feeling like it could happen...hey - we beat the LA Rams last Sunday night in their house plus the Redskins have gotten the short end of the stick when it comes to injuries this season (we can relate!) so it really is anyone’s ballgame but...Go Birds!

 

You had us at sweet treats, but BYOB mixed with sweet treats sounds even better! At Bredenbeck’s all weekend long there are gingerbread workshops and other ‘sweet’ classes to choose from; some family friendly, others...it’s parents night out!

 

Although you may not want to touch him, even with a 91/2 foot pole, the Dr. Seuss Classic, How the Grinch Stole Christmas musical arrived this week and is here through the weekend. Get in the spirit and grab tickets before someone steals your Christmas plans!

 

You think Carol of the Bells and what comes to mind more than the Trans-Siberian Orchestra? There are 3 chances to catch them this weekend starting tonight and ending tomorrow. So if you aren’t inundated with shopping, family coming into town or wrapping those gifts, treat yourself to this holiday spectacular!

 

Nothing gets you into the spirit more than getting into some spirits, ie. a Center City bar hop! Join other spirit enthusiasts at stops like U-Bahm, Tradesmens, Tinsel & more. There are drink specials, and festive cocktails to warm you up at each stop!

 

Cocoa, crepes & holiday cheer; all this and more at the holiday pop up at a.kitchen this weekend. The cocoa is courtesy of Eclat & the crepes are a special feature from a.kitchen’s Executive Chef, Eli Collins. If you are looking for cozy & comfort, we will see you there!


Get ready to enjoy some amazing food and great ambiance, but also prepare to loosen your belt a few notches...its Amis Trattoria’s Feast of the Seven Fishes both in Philly & their location in Devon. For more information or to book your spot, check out their website.