It is an old real estate trick to use a “desirable” neighborhood name beyond the boundaries of that neighborhood. For instance, every block west of 14th and south of U used to be called “Dupont” until Logan Circle developed its own cache. Now “Dupont” has shrunk as “Logan” advances. Perhaps no neighborhood is subject to more deceptivecreative expansion than Georgetown. Whether through laziness, misunderstanding, or outright subterfuge, the neighborhoods of Burleith, Glover Park, Foxhall Village, Foggy Bottom, and the West End frequently get the name “Georgetown” erroneously attached to them.
Generally this is a completely harmless event and Georgetowners shouldn’t get snobby about it. Nonetheless, the more egregious examples of this creativity need to be called out. And so GM introduces the feature “Greater Georgetown” wherein particularly lazy or deceptive uses of the name “Georgetown” are discussed.
After the jump, the inaugural class:
- DC Urban Turf’s Recent Report of a Luxury Condo in Georgetown for $400/sqf.
This professional real estate blog recently marveled at how cheap a condo was selling for in Georgetown. It even set it against a “comparable” apartment to show the disparity. And while it “is on the northern cusp of the neighborhood and has hefty monthly condo fees, it could prove to be a great investment in coming years.”
This condo is indeed on the northern cusp of a neighborhood, but that neighborhood is Glover Park. And moreover, anyone who follows the Glover Park real estate market would know that that condo development has had a very hard time selling its units since they’re so damn expensive.
In their defense, this condo is called “Georgetown Heights”. While this condo is technically “higher” than Georgetown, the term “Georgetown Heights” has traditionally been used to refer to that upper part of Georgetown near Montrose Park. That aside, this is supposed to be a professional real estate blog, and they should know better.
Laziness/Deception Ratio: 50/50. These guys are supposed to be pros and they got it really wrong. So 50% for laziness. As for deception, there might be a bit of it on their parts, but most of it comes from the condo itself. Calvert and Wisconsin should be called Glover Park Heights if it’s called anything.
2. Mika Brzezinski’s Mugging
On the morning of December 18th, MSNBC host Mika Brzezinski was mugged outside a DC hotel. There’s a bit of a debate whether she was mugged or whether she was just a victim of aggressive panhandling (if you care to make a distinction, that is), but the initial chatter was about at which hotel this happened. The Washington Times came to the rescue when they reported “MSNBC’s Mika Brzezinski was mugged outside the Ritz Carlton in Georgetown at about 5 a.m. while waiting for a car to pick her up[.]”
Of course the Ritz Carlton is definitely not in Georgetown. Local journalism is supposed to be the one thing that the Washington Times does really well and it’s not like the article was written by some DC-phobic suburbanite. According to her bio, author Christina Bellantoni lives on Capitol Hill (of course, Capitol Hill is also subject to geographic inflation, so who knows where she really lives…)
Laziness/Deception Ratio: 100/0. Nobody thinks the Times is trying to get you to think the Ritz is any ritzier. They’re just lazy.
Some addresses advertised as “Georgetown” on Craigslist just in the last three days:
- Greenwich Pkwy. and 44th (Georgetown) – read: Foxhall Village
- Wisconsin and 37th (Georgetown) – read: Glover Park
- Wisconsin and W (Georgetown) – read: Glover Park
- 2201, 2844, and 3140 Wisconsin (Georgetown) – read: Glover Park, Observatory Circle, and Cathedral Heights, respectively
- Cathedral Ave. and Mass. (Georgetown) – read: Cathedral Heights
Laziness/Deception Ratio: 0/100. These people know full well that these apartments aren’t in Georgetown. Anyone trying to pass off an apartment above National Cathedral as “Georgetown” is engaged in some pretty deceptive advertising.