Best of the Best 2007: Hotel Residences

The recent surge of residential development in downtown Seattle is part of mayor Greg Nickel’s plan to create a vibrant, walkable urban core. The Four Seasons Hotel and Private Residences Seattle (206.239.1814, www.seattleprivateresidences.com), set to open in spring 2008, will contribute to the mayor’s efforts with restaurants, retail space, 149 hotel rooms, and 36 residences. The residences, set on the top 11 floors of the sleek, 21-story, U-shaped building, will afford views of Puget Sound, the Olympic Mountains, and Seattle’s skyline. Priced from $2 million to more than $10 million, the units will offer access to housekeeping, valet-parking, chef, and concierge services. A private spa will present another excuse to stay home, but the Four Seasons’ convenient location, adjacent to Pike Place Market and across the street from the Seattle Art Museum, will give residents and hotel guests reason to take a walk.

When owners at the St. Regis Resort & Residences, Deer Crest (435.649.7170, www.stregisdeercrest.com) move in next winter, they may experience sensory overload. The Utah property’s precipitous location, tucked into the saddle of Roosevelt Gap, delivers views of the shimmering Jordanelle Reservoir to the east and the curvy slopes of the Deer Valley ski resort to the west. The property itself is split in two, with a Swiss-made funicular connecting the reception building to the upper Deer Crest building, which will house 24 private residences (priced from $2.5 million), 67 hotel-condo suites (from $1.5 million), and a spa, fitness center, pool, and restaurants. A waterfall cut into the hillside will tumble into the pool and flow in streamlike fashion into the spa. Adjacent to the slopes, a 40-foot-long firewall will warm après ski revelers as they place their orders with tuxedoed butlers.

The former home of the San Francisco Chronicle is being restored and expanded (by eight floors) to become the Ritz-Carlton Club and Residences, San Francisco (888.425.5585, www.ritzcarltonrealestate.com). Owners of the property’s 52 condos (priced from $1.1 million) and 49 fractional units (from about $200,000 per share) will enjoy hotel-like amenities, such as 24-hour concierge service and a fitness center. A 12th-floor lounge will serve as an aerie for residents to observe the bustle of Market Street below. The Chronicle structure, which dates to the 19th century and will open to residents this fall, also is close to the action at Union Square, the financial district, and the art galleries along Sutter, Post, and Geary streets.

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