Neighborhood Profile: Kalorama

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Everyone knows that DC is where the action is. No matter what area of the city you live in, you are likely to find yourself rubbing elbows with anyone from politicos to international power brokers to professional athletes to big businessmen. But nowhere does politics make such strange bedfellows as the Kalorama neighborhood of Northwest DC.

Encompassing the neighborhoods Kalorama Triangle and Sheridan-Kalorama, this enclave close to Dupont Circle and Woodley Park is surrounded by Connecticut, Massachusetts, and Florida Avenues, Columbia Road, Calvert Street, and Rock Creek Park.

The neighborhood has a storied past, which is only getting more interesting with the passing of time. The original Kalorama was an opulent home owned by Joel and Ruth Barlow. They originally planned to buy Mt. Vernon, but took the recommendation of Barlow’s friend Thomas Jefferson to buy a home called Belair. The Barlows renamed the home Kalorama, and it became a social and cultural center of the area, due to the Barlows’ hospitality and many influential friends.

Kalorama is known for its embassies, a total of 28 within the neighborhood. It is also the home of the French Ambassador’s residence, as well as many other top officials and foreign dignitaries.

Now, of course, Kalorama is becoming known for some of its newest, and most notable, residents. The Obamas post-White House home is taking shape here. The 8,200 square foot home the Obamas will rent belongs to former White House Press Secretary and Senior Advisor to President Clinton Joe Lockhart and his wife Giovanna Gray. The location is perfect for proximity to Obama daughter Sasha’s school, Sidwell Friends, as she finishes out her time there.

In addition, Ivanka Trump and Jared Kushner have taken a home here, as well as Rex Tillerson, President Trump’s Secretary of State. While this may make for interesting neighborhood people-watching, the Secret Service details assigned to all of these Presidential and President-adjacent neighbors promise to make for some challenging navigation.

Kalorama has long been a welcoming neighborhood for former presidents. Woodrow Wilson, William Howard Taft, Franklin D. Roosevelt, Warren Harding, and Herbert Hoover all lived here at some point. Like Obama, Wilson moved to Kalorama directly after leaving the White House.

If you’d like to rub elbows with some of the distinguished residents of Kalorama, there are a variety of price points, though they tend to be on the high side. The median home value is $1.3 million, but properties range from a one-bedroom condo for $379,000 to a five-bedroom, historic home listed for $7.9 million.

Wondering what you’ll do in the neighborhood? Fortunately, Kalorama is either home to or adjacent to some of the best restaurants, shopping, natural beauty, and iconic DC landmarks in the city. Close proximity to Dupont Circle means you can walk to some of your favorite places, like McClellan’s Retreat, a cool bar with an incredible selection of whiskeys. For great sushi, check out Sushi Ogawa, an amazingly authentic sushi bar on Connecticut where you’re sure to find something you love.

For iconic views, you can’t beat The Spanish Steps, located in the neighborhood and built as a pedestrian connection between S Street and Decatur Place. The steps and their accompanying fountain are listed on the National Register of Historic Places.

And of course, for incredible outdoor living,  no place compares to Rock Creek Park, an urban oasis that borders Kalorama. With dozens of miles to hike and bike, wildlife to spy, historical artifacts, colonial homes, horseback riding, boats, and a planetarium, you’ll find the best of rural life right in the middle of the city.

Whether you are looking for a small condo or a large mansion, DC’s Kalorama neighborhood is definitely the place to see and be seen, as it has been for decades. For the combination of historical and cultural interest and the proximity to the best of DC living, you can’t beat this neighborhood. Let your Eng Garcia Grant Realtor help you find your little corner of Kalorama, or whatever neighborhood you love. Contact us today to get started.

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