In Pasadena, condo complexes make a pitch for vertical living


Architecturally speaking, everything that matters in Pasadena is on the ground. Whether it’s the tree-lined streets of California Craftsmans or the historic estates on Millionaire’s Row, single-family homes have always driven the city’s luxury market.

A pair of high-end condo complexes, however, are trying to entice affluent buyers upward.

Both new to the market, the two developments sit only a few blocks away from each other, but they’re making different pitches for vertical living.

The first, found in downtown Pasadena, was once a 1980s bank building. After a dramatic remodel, the high-rise developed by Adept Urban, called 388 Cordova, now boasts a few floors of office space and 57 contemporary condos that take in views from the San Gabriel Mountains to downtown L.A.


Ranging from one to five bedrooms, the units are priced between $900,000 and $5.5 million and span anywhere from 1,000 square feet to more than 4,000. The floor plans vary, but nearly every one offers indoor-outdoor living spaces that open to covered decks or rooftop terraces.

Some are still being built, but the development will eventually offer such amenities as a gym, rooftop pool and concierge. Johanna Gunther of 2nd Avenue Sales & Marketing holds the listings.

According to the developers, 70% of units have been sold, with age demographics ranging from 20-somethings to 60-somethings. Most are local, but a few international buyers have scooped up spots as second homes.

Views and central location are two of the biggest draws, but a mile west near Old Pasadena, the Terraces at the Ambassador Gardens offer a greener setting.

Surrounded by fountains, lawns and lush landscaping, the batch of 60 condos developed by Etco Homes contain either three or four bedrooms and cost between $2 million and $4 million. Wide-plank floors line the indoor-outdoor living spaces, which include a great room, formal dining room, media room and open-concept kitchen with a center island and European-style cabinetry.


In addition to the natural amenities of the Ambassador Gardens, other highlights include a concierge and lifestyle services.

The developer declined to give sales numbers but noted a dramatic uptick in interest since the model homes were unveiled in August.

Bree Long of Etco Homes holds the listings.