Graduate Hospital

The place is adorable

Back in the springtime, we told you about plans to convert the former Baja Room at 15th & South into a new neighborhood cafe. And the other day, Little Spoon Cafe opened their doors for the first time. We stopped by a day or two after they opened, and discovered a wonderful new addition to the South Street West corridor. Inside and out, this place is on point.

In the past
View of the storefront
A peek inside

The exterior has been totally redone, with a spoon theme dominating the storefront (makes sense). Inside, mismatched chairs are complemented by little terrariums (terraria?) on every table. The menu is a nice mix of breakfast and lunch foods and they're making a bunch of pastries in-house. From what we understand it was a gangbusters first weekend, and we imagine that as more people discover the place it will get even busier. We had lunch there late last week and highly recommend the banh mi. If that's not your thing, we suspect you'll find something on the menu that's to your liking.

Not just yet

The building on the northeast corner of 23rd & Christian has had a death sentence floating above it for over a year. The property, which was home to an auto supply shop back in the day, currently houses a small grocery store and offices for the Senior Resource Group, an insurance business. Early last year, the principals of the Senior Resource Group purchased the property with the intention of demolishing the building and replacing it with a five-story mixed-use structure. Plans were for first floor retail space, second floor office space, and seven apartments above. When those plans were presented to the community, a bunch of people were opposed to the height, the lack of parking, and the look of the building, designed by Harman Deutsch.

Drinking plus a good cause sounds fun to us

Bloktoberfest cannot be stopped, or even contained. And it certainly isn't going to be thrown off by a little drizzle.

For those unaware, Bloktoberfest is a massive block party on South Street West featuring live music, beer, food from both trucks and businesses, a kids area, and a bunch of hay bales, if memory serves. Unlike the typical block party, Bloktoberfest is a carefully orchestrated fundraising bonanza that injects tens of thousands of dollars into the local community. Thats's right folks, drinking with a greater purpose than simple intoxication. What a concept!

Map of Bloktoberfest
Expect crowds

Bloktoberfest runs on Saturday October 11th from noon til 8pm.

Again, we would preferred more density

A vacant lot at Broad & Fitzwater has had some ups and downs in the last couple of years. In early 2013, we told you that the folks who built the Artisan Homes on Bainbridge Street would be developing the parcel, building eight huge homes that would be listed at $1.6M. As the calendar flipped to 2014, we learned that the project wouldn't be happening after all, and that the 11K sqft parcel was on the market for $6M. When we passed by this intersection earlier this week, a sign on the site suggested that a new and exciting plan had emerged for the parcel- eight luxury homes. We're thinking it's a different developer this time.

Current view
Low-res project rendering

A sign led us to a website for the project, dubbed Mona Lisa's on the Avenue of the Arts. The eight homes will have 4 bedrooms over 4,500 sqft of living space, two-car garages, and ultra high-end finishes. Prices start at $1.35M, making them much more affordable than the previously planned $1.6M homes.

Duplex coming in its place

Though the Graduate Hospital neighborhood around it has changed dramatically over the years, Robert's Twi-Lite Lounge at 20th & Bainbridge has remained more or less the same. The bar doesn't look like much from the outside, but it's a pretty solid neighborhood dive bar. And as far as we know it's finally settled into a mostly peaceful relationship with near neighbors after some friction in the past.

Twi-light Lounge, blight next door

Next door, you can see there's a vacant and blighted building. It's been on the market for a few years and actually almost sold at some point but the sale fell through. About a year ago though, developers bought it for a whopping $270K. Recently, a reader tipped us off that the building will soon be demolished and replaced with a duplex. We have to think, considering the purchase price, these are gonna be condos. It will take a special kind of buyers that want to live right next door to a bar, but we still imagine that they'll turn up.