November 28, 2006

Doomed Chateaux on Central condo project in Phoenix headed to foreclosure. What a shock!

I started HousingPanic after seeing laughably overpriced (and poorly designed) projects in Phoenix that I knew would go belly up - The Duke, Elevation Chandler, The Valley Ho, and the Chateaux on Central being among the worst.

I do say, I believe almost all of those projects are now bankrupt, foreclosed, mothballed or in serious trouble. The latest to fall was the disgusting eyesore modeled after some type of French castle that somehow got zoning approval in central Phoenix. A laughable project, with units priced from $2 Million to $4 Million. In four years, guess how many sold?


So sad. Just think of the expected realtor commissions that won't be earned now! I just wonder if they'll simply tear this eyesore down now.

The developer of the posh brownstones going up on Phoenix's Central Avenue has run into some financing problems. The project's lender, Desert Hills Bank, has filed to foreclose on the Chateaux on Central property on the northwestern corner of Central and Palm Lane, according to public records.

Developer Central Phoenix Partners owes its lender $12 million, according to the foreclosure filing. The project had been valued at $30 million. Property records show none of the upscale homes in the Chateaux on Central have sold yet, though deals for a few are pending. The houses were priced from $2 million to $4 million.

A huge copper turret was lowered onto one of the homes earlier this month, shortly after its lender filed to foreclose on the property. A trustee sale of the property is scheduled for February, but Chateaux's developers are said to be negotiating for other financing.


Anonymous said...

Is this Swann's neck of the woods ??

Anonymous said...

That picture is just a joke, right?

michael said...

it looks like the disney castle in the hood.

LauraVella said...

Hard to believe a developer would plant a brick castle smack dab in the center of the desert.

Maybe it could be a theme hotel for its new after life?

bub said...

21 FIVE-LEVEL townhomes,
with private elevators, ranging from 5,100 to over 8,200 livable square feet

FIVE-LEVEL townhomes?



Anonymous said...

Gaudy..obnoxious..bad taste..typical American boorish pretentious design.
Yes, if fits in Arizona, the state of transient wannabes in search of "roots" and "upscale" lifestyle.
Nouveau-rich middle aged white bread American scum.

Anonymous said...



Mammoth said...

In this case, a "wine loft" is where the FB's sit on the fifth level of their overpriced residence and whine about their bleak financial situation.

foxwoodlief said...

Chateaux on Central isn't as bad as it looks. It was a good idea and prices were not that out of line (though inflated). For those who don't know Phoenix the project is squeezed between two office building, one with a nice urban park and across from a church and the Phoenix Art museum. It is on Central where the light rail is under construction and just east of the WIllow Historic district and within blocks of three historic neighborhoods, thus the style. The units are large, each three levels, private elevators, some roof top pools etc. and if you've seen the prices people paid for small bungalows in the WIllow you'd see the price was within that range per sq ft.

The project is too far along to be ditched and BK means little. When we lived in Phoenix we considered buying a condo on Central at WIllow walk, now Tapestry. Prices were actually not bad, $225,000 for the largest penthouse units but we didn't want to buy a unit that would take two years to build (and it took four because of the BK) by the time they were completed only a handful of original buyers hung on (I think 8) and the units were resold for up to four times that amount! Some were like $800,000 for 1600 sq ft with rooftop patios so $2 mil for 5,000 sq ft didn't seem out of line.

But I've always told friends that condos are canaries in the coal mine. Last to go up, first to come down, and why would most people put themselves in a condo for more than they could own a freestanding house? I know many people don't want yards, but condos don't hold value, kind of like cars. Also condos are suppose to make housing more affordable, not less.

Will be interesting to see what they do with the project and how much they sell for if the developer doesn't get alternate financing.

foxwoodlief said...

PS, Keith, you live in Chelsea now so you know that compared to London you know that $2 mil for a 5,000 sq ft three story brownstone would be cheap. What would this size sell for in London?

Anonymous said...

It's the newest addition to the Magic Kingdom.


On your left, you can see our Wonderland friend, Alice! What did you say? Alice? OK, how much for a baggie of opium? And you'll throw in a rabbit skin too?

Oh my.

Watch in full Technicolor as Wicked Stepmother pimps out Cinderella to pay the option-ARM. Stepmother already took 105% equity out to buy gold wigs for Ugly Stepsisters.

Unfortunately for the Ugly Ones, Prince Charming ain't gonna be holding no balls this year, other than his own nutsack.

He's imprisoned in the King's Tower Dungeon. (right to your left, past the Realtor-haunted house)

He got caught forging the Official Moneylender's stamp and seal trying to make a fradulent real estate deal for North Belgium.

Since the entire nation must pay tribute to the Mongolian Empire after they lost the war, things don't look good for the Prince's neck. The Mongolians made the King and offer he couldn't refuse.

The Seven Dwarfs gotta go hi-hoing to work until they drop now, thanks to punitive taxation to pay off the debt. Why no smiles today, Happy?

It's open hunting season at the Royal Estates---for a fee.

Don't forget to try Bambi Kabobs---$9 each!

Anonymous said...

Looks like a great home for a bordello...

Anonymous said...

Exactly who is it that thinks these kind of buildings look nice? That's what I'd like to know.

Anonymous said...

It should be made into a homeless shelter.

keith said...

"Exactly who is it that thinks these kind of buildings look nice? That's what I'd like to know."

- Nobody. That was the problem!

marin_explorer said...

That's just begging for an asteroid like the one that hit near Winslow.

I'd love to see a video of the pitch developers made to the city on that thing.

Shakster said...

Repunzle could be heard screaming.......Helllllp me ,I'm stuck in a goddamn godaweful castle with no stairs!From the forest,uh,uhmm,the sage brush in the distance could be heard the prince,uh,hmmm well,a fatass aridzone male-........up yours wench,I'm outta here.

Anonymous said...

Homeowners need assistance with the complex foreclosure process; it is no different than the assistance 1st time home buyers may receive. The obvious reason would be most people do not know where to turn for help.

The numbers of foreclosures are at all time highs throughout the whole United States with no end in sight for the numbers to slow.

Fortunately, for the people that had a documented hardship and can document that they have over come that adversity - there is still an answer.

It seems that more and more community organizations are getting together to assist people going thru a foreclosure and there are other resources that homeowners need to be aware of.

This nationwide specialty program is run by an ex Department of HUD commissioner and has extensive knowledge on 'how to stop foreclosure'. Please see if this can make sense for you if you are faced with a pre foreclosure or foreclosure situation,

Credit scores, home values, the size of the mortgage compared to the value (LTV) - DO NOT MATTER.

Often times, banks foreclosure policies differ from that of the actual law and consumers need to be aware that there is help out there. The foreclosure process and how to get assistance is as complicated as obtaining a mortgage but loosing your home is 10 times more stressful.

Anonymous said...

Regardless the exterior and the pricetag.

Go to the site and check out the 5 floorplans connected with one spiralstair and one tiny elevator. Is this practical? Estimate the traveltime up and down those spiraldizzy stairs or waiting for/inside that elevator. Can one learn to live with this over time?

Repo4Sale said...

9-X-Business Pro Licenses Ca/Hawaii


Search Amazon for the words:
Real Estate Timing & read those books.

Chris said...

Are you people joking? Phoenix is one of my favorite cities. But I live a few thousand miles away and drool everytime I see the ad for this project. I came across this site because I wanted to take a look at them next time I'm in Phoenix. I think the architecture of these condos are magnificent especially in comparison to the vast amount of ho-hum 3-car-garaged-&-a-tiny-door homes that radiate all over the Phoenix metro area. If I can maybe add some insight: the project is surrounded by several historic districts so this style would certainly blend in. To answer the question why somebody would spend that much on a condo instead of a freestanding house: the idea of a condo is the urban living qualities. This is smack dab in a walkable historical district and next to several offices. Wouldn't it be nice if you didn't have a 45 minute comute everyday because you're office was a 3 minute drive? A person who can afford these prices is a busy person... their time is worth more the the average suburbanite. So saving themselves an hour and a half each day is probably a bargain for the premium they're paying to live in the thick of things. Traditional brownstones were often 5(or 6) stories and didn't have elevators. But these homes retain their value.
Brownstones of comparable size in DC, Chicago, New York or Toronto are far more expensive than these units. Plus, You've just housed several millionaires in an urban space roughly the size of one estate lot out in Paradise Valley. Real estate is much more valuable in the center of the city as opposed to the periphery. I understand the city of Phoenix never grew up with the word "density" in their vocabulary. But as the city approaches it's next million people, take a lesson from LA. In 15 years do you really want to be stuck in a six lane collector having flashbacks of being stuck in Orange County?
I think they're brilliant and I'd be willing to wager the people who ultimately buy them will come from Canada or the NorthEast and will make a fortune on them.

Anonymous said...

It was gratifying to see one reasonable response (Chris). I happen to live around the corner from this project and have been very supportive from the beginning. Those of us that live in the central historic neighborhoods understand the urban lifestyle and know that density is the key to retail, restaurants and the type of atmoshphere common in great cities. Houses in this area have quadrupled in value over the past 10 years and this neighborhood is highly sought after. I do believe that the developer will be able to resolve the current financial problems and that these units will move quickly!

Anonymous said...

I'm glad to see that there are a few intelligent people left in Phoenix. The architecture fits in well along Central Avenue with the Westward Ho Hotel and the previously mentioned Willow District. The lower floors are zoned commercial so that means there will be no commute, all one has to do is ride the elevator down stairs to your business. Where else can a person get this much living area in an up scale neighborhood including commercial square footage at such a bargain price. P.S. There is no financial problems and the original developers are still on the project. RDB

Anonymous said...

Anyone who thinks this is good architecture has horrible taste in architecture. This is 100% fake and rediculous.

Anonymous said...

RE: "Anyone who thinks this is good architecture has horrible taste in architecture. This is 100% fake and rediculous"

OH REALLY? And I suppose the cookie cutter bland utilitarian style that you architects force upon us in Phoenix is "good" architecture? Revival style buildings are appealing to many. Stick to your walmart shapped boxes and continue to add to the blight of this ugly city. I believe Phoenix must be and anchient Indian word for "city of boring buildings!"

I live in the Willo District and know first hand that many people prefer revival buildings to the crap that is being built all over the valley. thousands of people each year tour the historic district houses and property values are at least double that of most phoenix neighborhoods. I will take our revival style buildings to your uninspired designs any day. I agree with the post that said those who by those condos will make a fortune. I can easily see them going up in value at least one million dollars in the next few years after this slump.

I am not sure why people visit cities like San Francisco and say Wow! what a beautiful city, and come home to phx to say lets build beige boxes!! Who said living in the desert means we have to have ugly cookie cutter buildings? The truth is the builders build them because they are cheeper and it means more profits for them. What I don't get is why the architects are so uninspired to put out all this crap. Kudos to Chateau on Central for having a mind of their own!

Anonymous said...

At the risk of sounding like a flip-flopper, I agree with both views expressed here! There are WAAAAAYYY too many identical houses in the valley, super expensive ones and super cheap ones all in shades of beige with tile roofs and giant garage doors sitting in the middle of a yard of rocks. I applaud this developer for trying something different, and since there are "only" 21 of them, they will soon be snapped up when one considers the sheer number of inhabitants PHX has nowadays, and the fact that they are located in what is considered a historic district. Urban living has taken off in practically every American city, and of course it will happen there. On the other hand, selecting a style that is so obviously based on a Disney version of a townhouse from Manhattan's Upper West Side from the year 1888 is a little bizarre. These cycles and downturns in the economy are not the least concern for wealthy investors or wealthy home buyers... they merely see it as a chance to buy at "bargain" prices, only to cash in later. It will be very interesting to see what comes next.