There are a number of extraordinary attributes that make the condo now available in The Bella, the 200-unit luxury residential tower at 526 Pacific Ave. in the dynamic section of Atlantic City adjacent to Absecon Inlet, a singularly desirable property for anyone currently looking to purchase a high-rise residence at the Shore.
If a good view is one of your prerequisites, for example, the ones of the Atlantic Ocean, the Inlet, the lighthouse and the Brigantine Bridge, along with the ever-changing meteorological and nautical moods that this 22nd-floor eagle’s nest of a home allows its occupants to observe are nothing short of spectacular. “When we first walked in, it took our breath away” is how Stephanie Miller, who currently co-owns the unit with her husband Joel, describes the panorama out of the living room and bedroom windows.
Another major selling point is the surprising amount of space and accommodations this condo offers, including a huge living/dining area, three bedrooms (including two master suites), four full baths, two balconies, one of which contains a built-in collapsible table for six, with sufficient room to practice yoga, and two separate kitchens (more on all that in a moment). Listed for a relatively modest $599,000. “It’s the size of a house without the hassles of taking care of one,” says Joel.
Then there are the distinctive benefits that The Bella provides its residents. Unlike most of the other luxury condo buildings at the Jersey Shore, it is pet-friendly and even has what Joel refers to as “its own little dog park” (especially important to potential buyers who would not live anywhere, no matter how enticing, where their furry friends are verboten) and welcomes families with children of all ages. The facility boasts a magnificent year-round pool with a retractable glass roof that opens to the sun and sea air in summertime, and a well-appointed massage room, gym and hot tub, as well as providing 24-hour security and concierge service.
Potential buyers will find the location, a short walk to the beach, boardwalk and several casinos, including the Hard Rock, and coming soon, a water park touted as being the “best in the country,” very convenient as well as exhilarating.
But perhaps what makes this particular property so unusual is that it’s actually two condos combined, the Millers having purchased the adjacent unit several years ago and connected them through French doors. Every room has an ocean view, and by eliminating the walls of a bedroom, they created a “big open living room with even more light,” as Stephanie describes it.
In addition to freeing up one of the living rooms for use as a studio by Stephanie, a watercolor artist and children’s book author and illustrator, these renovations also turned one of the master suites into a private home office with separate HVAC, extra storage and outlets, for Joel, a realtor and international businessman; it can easily be reconverted back to a bedroom if a buyer chooses. They have also inadvertently proven to be just the kind of pandemic-suited upgrades that, according to a recent New York Times article, some Big Apple residential buildings are currently undergoing.
The fact that the two connected units are still self-contained, with both having their own kitchens, bedrooms, baths, and entrances, would make either of them “ideal quarters for someone wanting a quarantine option,” as well as for accommodating guests, she points out, especially given their majestic views and separate balconies.
If you can’t venture outdoors for a while, or even if you’re just working from home, “there is no better place to look at the ocean,” she says. “It’s very peaceful and therapeutic here.” Joel adds, “I love watching the boats go by. It’s a really extraordinary place to have a home office.”
There are other improvements the Millers have made to their expanded condo to better enable a family to live there on a year-round basis or to use the home as a vacation property. For one thing, they’ve installed a lot of extra storage and shelving in order to “make it very friendly for people with stuff,” as Joel puts it. “There are lots of built-ins, all of them unique to our unit,” he says, as well as multiple walk-in closets and a pantry they created from one of the two laundry/utility rooms (another useful feature during a pandemic).
They’ve also put in whole-home surge protectors, overhead fans in each room, and wired the living room ceiling and walls for a surround-sound system. In addition, two of the four HVAC units are accessible via the Internet, which means “my wife can turn on the AC in those rooms remotely from her car or the couch,” says Joel. That high-tech capability also senses when people are or aren’t present in a particular room and automatically adjusts the temperature accordingly, he notes, which is a “great energy-efficient feature.”
The condo’s two kitchens (one of which could be used to observe kosher tradition during Passover, Stephanie points out) are also equipped with stainless steel, Frigidaire appliances, including a newly installed dishwasher, self-cleaning ovens, built-in microwaves and disposals, as well as granite countertops that are big enough for two people to have breakfast or coffee.
Each unit has a coveted indoor parking space, with a $70-a-month per space fee. For residents who might not own a car, the unit is within easy walking distance of restaurants and a jitney stop on the corner, and delivery service is offered by a nearby ShopRite. Also, because of its proximity to major casinos, bus service is always available to and from both New York City and Philadelphia; a shuttle to the train station is just around the corner.
Should the current furnishings appeal to a potential buyer, the Millers are open to negotiating a price for most of the items now there, including Joel’s office furniture and his vintage pinball machine, which he quips that “my wife would love me to sell.”
“We really paid attention to detail and created an exceptionally comfortable, livable home,” says Stephanie “It’s in turnkey condition; you can just move in.”
Pictures alone don’t do the property justice, so to take a virtual tour or to schedule an actual one, contact Joel (he’s the listing agent as well as the co-owner) at Weichert Realtors Asbury Group AC (267) 994-2994. You can email him at joel@WeichertAC.com or go to www.joel.weichertshorehomes.com.