Greater Georgetown

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:

  1. 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.”

"Georgetown" Heights

Photo courtesy of MRIS

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

Mika Brzesinki - Not as tough as her father.

Courtesy of MSNBC

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.

       3.      Craigslist

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.


Filed under Greater Georgetown

7 responses to “Greater Georgetown

  1. lnr

    There is a Ritz in Georgetown — on South Street. Just saying. Like the blog!

  2. GM

    You’re right. I always think of those as condos, but I forgot it’s also a hotel. Nonetheless, according to the Post, the Ritz in question was the West End one. I suppose the existence of the Georgetown Ritz makes the mistake a lot less egregious. Oh well, it’s not a science…

  3. bdh

    While the appearance of variations of “North Georgetown” is much more common on CL, last summer when I was looking for a new place to live, I came across several postings with headlines for properties in a mysterious location called “South Georgetown”, which might be better known to most as Arlington, VA.

    That pretty much takes the cake, as far as I could tell.

  4. For those of us who don’t live in G-town, what are the borders?

  5. GM

    Georgetown is one of the few (only?) neighborhoods in DC to have its limits defined by Federal law, From the Old Georgetown Act (Pl. 808-81):

    “Be it enacted by the Senate and House of Representatives of the United States of America in Congress assembled, That there is hereby created in the District of Columbia a district known as “Old Georgetown” which is bounded on the east by Rock Creek and Potomac Parkway from the Potomac River to the north boundary of Dumbarton Oaks Park, on the north by the north boundary of Dumbarton Oaks Park, Whitehaven Street and Whitehaven Parkway to Thirty-fifth Street, south along the middle of Thirty-fifth Street to Reservoir Road, west along the middle of Reservoir Road to Archbold Parkway, on the west by Archbold Parkway from Reservoir Road to the Potomac River, on the south by the Potomac River to the Rock Creek Parkway.”

    In English that means that Georgetown is everything between G.U. and Rock Creek from the Potomac up to:

    a: Reservoir Road on the west of Wisconsin &
    b: Whitehaven on the east of Wisconsin

    Plus that triangle of land north of Reservoir, east of 35th and west of Wisconsin.

  6. thanks for sticking up for the other, little neighborhoods on the periphery of big, bad georgetown. burlieth needs the public recognition!

  7. Pingback: Greater Georgetown - Open Table Edition «

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