Ambassador College 15 Year Transition to Luxury Homes - New York News

Ambassador College 15 Year Transition to Luxury Homes

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Pasadena, CA -

(FOX 11)-- Next month, luxury townhomes and flats will go on sale for a coveted neighborhood in Pasadena.  The sales prices haven't been set, but considering the ways the units can be customizable, expect to pay more than a million dollars for the smallest unit. Where is this housing nirvana?  

The campus of the old Ambassador College, just a few blocks from Old Pasadena.  The first developer bought the most of the campus and proposed two thousand housing units, 15 years ago.  That didn't go over too well with the community and it set off an 8 to 10 year process of neighborhood meetings, negotiations, agreements and conditions.  Fast forward to 2009, City Ventures takes those agreements and in July razed two modern honey comb college buildings while building the first phase of 160 planned luxury townhomes and flats.  Once all those are sold, City Ventures will restore and sell the three historic mansions that remain on the campus.

You can visit the Merritt mansion which is being transformed into the Ambassador Gardens sales office.  I got the nickel tour and the drywall and compound were just going up to protect the amazing burled wood paneling.   Arguably the most remarkable feature of the Merritt is the underground swimming pool and garden.  The mansion also has a big sign out front marking it as  Worldwide Church of God property, but once restoration begins, that sign will go away and the mansion will go back to the way it looked in the early 1900's.

Meantime, there's no doubt that the location alone will sell the new homes at Ambassador Gardens.  The original Ambassador College featured running streams, koi ponds, sweeping lawns, fountains and mature trees.  All of that is preserved and all of that is designated public space.  The Norton Simon is across the street, the Rose Bowl down Orange Grove and Old Pas is just a two block walk.

Home, sweet home; 15 years in the making. 

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