A macaroni and cheese bar and buffalo sliders were among the food catered by the Embassy Suites team. A dessert bar was provided by The Laurel staff with the help of a few residents.
Residents were entertained throughout the evening by DJ Moody and Goodeye Photoshare was on hand to capture the moments.
Here is a sampling of the pictures.
Residents gathered last night in the community room for the “Hot Chocolate and Desserts” party. The Laurel contracted with the Embassy Suites to provide a hot chocolate bar, complete with handmade whipped cream, Bailey’s Irish Cream liqueur and marshmallows.
Residents brought desserts ranging from spiced cake balls to s’more shots to pumpkin cheesecake dip.
Recipes will be posted when available. Until then, enjoy these pictures.
Over the weekend Laurel residents assembled in the building’s community room for camaraderie, drinks and chili. Seven residents entered their dishes in the competition to win money off their December rent. A wide range of tastes were represented from “Tex Mex” to “Hominy White Bean” to “Cheesy Meaty”. One resident baked a Pumpkin Gooey Butter Cake for the event and another made a pumpkin and whipped cream pie. Most of the residents also tasted “Pumpkin Chili” for the first time at the event. The Laurel Leasing Staff provided drinks for Chili Cook-Off and announced at the event that all entrants would receive money off their December rent.
A couple of the chili recipes are below.
Corbin’s Chili Recipe
1 pound ground beef (chuck)
1 chopped whole white onion
1 chopped green bell pepper
about 3 tablespoons chili powder
about 1 teaspoon cumin
1-2 bay leafs
about 1 and half cloves of minced garlic
3-4 jalapeño peppers chopped
1 can of stewed tomatoes
1 can of tomato sauce
1 can of rinsed pinto beans
1 can of rinsed black beans
1 can of rinsed red beans
dash of salt and pepper
Sauté and brown the ground beef with the chopped onion and bell pepper for 5 minutes.
Add the rest of ingredients (except the beans) and simmer 1-2 hours.
Add the beans at the end, 30 minutes prior to eating.
Hominy White Bean Chili
As of early next week, residents of The Laurel will be privy to a perk unique to the St. Louis apartment community. Enterprise Rent-A-Car and The Laurel have partnered together to place a Chevy Volt extended range electric vehicle (EV) at the building primarily for use by residents as part of the WeCar car-sharing program.
The Volt will have preferential parking at the ChargePoint dual-port charging station located at 7th and Lucas adjacent to the building. The station, installed by local firm Microgrid Energy, is also available for public use.
Nicole Strand, Property Manager at The Laurel, had this to say in the press release:
“We are working with WeCar to bring an affordable transportation option to our residents, many of whom have moved here from other urban areas and appreciate the environmental advantages, convenience and economies of car sharing. This program meets the needs of urban dwellers who prefer car sharing and public transportation options over owning a car. In fact, we hope the program will help reduce our reliance on everyone having their own car and contribute to local sustainability efforts. “
WeCar by Enterprise offers its members around-the-clock access to hourly, daily and overnight rentals. The convenience of only paying for the vehicle when you need it is easily attained by using the stress-free online reservation system.
St. Louis Mayor Francis G. Slay applauded the arrival of the Volt and had this to say in the press release:
“Car sharing is important for creating a lower impact urban mobility system and we are delighted that Laurel Apartments has chosen to work with Enterprise Rent-A-Car, which is committed to developing long-term transportation solutions and supporting a more sustainable future in their hometown of St, Louis and around the world.”
The Chevy Volt will be fully available for use beginning early next week. While this particular Chevy Volt is available to all registered WeCar members, residents of The Laurel Apartments will be given exclusive deals not available to all members. The hourly rent for the Volt will start at $8 per hour and that will include gas and insurance.
The Color Run recently exploded through St. Louis, leaving behind a trail of pinks, greens, blues, purples, oranges and yellows throughout the streets of downtown as well as thousands of rainbow color stained t-shirts, socks, tennis shoes, headbands and of course, tutus, because you can’t participate in a color run without a tutu!
The Laurel had the pleasure of participating in this color extravaganza complete with powder bombs, music, free giveaways from Chevy and of course, the color caboose after-party.
The memories will last a lifetime, or at least until the color washes out of our socks. We can’t wait for next year!
Check out Team Laurel at the event:
For immediate release: July 27, 2012
Amir Kurtovic’s coverage provides a positive update on The Laurel Apartments and the downtown apartment market and gives an update on MX retail tenants open and under construction.
St. Louis, MO – For a new apartment building, the first goal is always to fill it up. But that shouldn’t be a problem for the Laurel building, part of Amos Harris’ $250 million Mercantile Exchange development. Demand for apartments has been so good, in fact, that Harris has been able to raise prices less than a year after starting the leasing process.
“We are killing it with the apartments,” Harris said. “When we opened up our preleasing, we were leasing at $1.20 per square foot. We are now leasing at $1.34 per foot, which is huge. We’re talking about a more than 10 percent increase in the last six months.”
About 70 percent of the 205 one- and two-bedroom apartments are leased, said Harris, who is president of Brady Capital and a principal of Spinnaker St. Louis. The grand opening of the Laurel Apartments was in February and Harris said he could see rents rising to about $1.45 to $1.50 per square foot by next year.
The strong performance was a surprise to Harris. The Laurel Apartments were still under construction when Steve Smith’s 230-unit Park Pacific development opened.
“I was right there with everybody else in thinking that there were too many apartments coming on the market at the same time, but that didn’t turn out to be the case,” Harris said.
Deborah Done, president of locally owned rental agency Apartment Search, said there is a lot of demand for the Laurel Apartments because of their location and amenities.“Overall, the downtown market is strong and availability it tight,” she said. “Most of the properties are bringing their rents back up.” Done estimates that average rental price for downtown apartments have increased about 5 percent in the last six months.
Strong apartment leases are not the only good news coming out of the MX development. Harris said there is a lot of interest for the planned National Blues Museum at the MX and a number of supporters have shown interest in helping to raise the $6.5 million necessary to make the project a reality. About half of the $23 million price tag for the museum has been secured in New Markets Tax Credits.
The streetscape around the MX development could also soon get a facelift. The city of St. Louis has submitted an application to the East-West Gateway Council of Government for a $2 million grant that would fund improvements to sidewalks, lighting and decorations on Washington Avenue, from 7th Street to Memorial Drive. Harris said the $2 million grant required a $400,000 match, which the city was not able to provide. Instead, Spinnaker and Stifel Financial Corp. have agreed to split the match, Harris said. Stifel bought its headquarter building at 501 N. Broadway, adjacent to the MX development, last August for $20 million.
The 150,000 square feet of commercial space at the MX are about 60 percent leased so far, Harris said. On the restaurants and retail side of the MX, Pi Pizzeria at the corner of Sixth Street and Washington Avenue is already open and construction is under way for several other projects, including St. Louis Cinema’s three-screen MX Movies theater slated for October. Also under construction is the Collective at MX, a 3,700-square-foot fashion co-op that will house mini boutiques.
Eric Heckman, owner of Tani Sushi Bistro in Clayton, will also be one of the commercial tenants at the MX. Construction for his Takaya New Asian restaurant is under way and should be complete by late summer. The 3,300-square-foot restaurant will seat 120 and Heckman has projected sales of $1.5 million within three years. Harris said he is also in discussions with several companies about putting in an 8,600-square-foot fitness center. The fitness center would include steam rooms, saunas and cater to residents and workers in the surrounding office buildings.
Mack Bradley, StandPoint Public Affairs
314-324-8567 | email@example.com
After months of selling a dream and talking about all of the things that will eventually populate the Mercantile Exchange District, it is really feeling like things are rolling around here these days.
The first of several restaurants opened for business with Pi opening across the street in the MX Building last month. The space underwent a beautiful transformation led by the local architects at Space. In keeping with the “green” theme that is a central focus of the MX project, most of the seating and tables for Pi were crafted by local company Mwanzi using re-purposed shipping pallet wood. Space is also designing the Robust location that will be on our ground floor in the Laurel Building. Space recently tweeted an early conceptual rendering.
Traffic is picking up in the leasing office with the Summer months upon us. We recently moved in our ceremonial “100th Move-In”. You can check out the picture on our Facebook page. We had a large group of “horse-lovers” stay with us earlier in the year so, “technically” we are well past 100 move-ins, but we still decided to honor these guys with gift cards to four downtown restaurants; Pi, Bailey’s Range, Stefano’s and Mosaic.
Other developments are keeping the buzz going about the Mercantile Exchange.
More exciting things are in the works for the Mercantile Exchange. We’ll keep you posted.
Downtown St. Louis is charged up as an electric vehicle (EV) charging station is now open to the EV community at The Laurel Apartments in the Mercantile Exchange (MX) District. The station, at the corner of 7th and Lucas, adjacent to the Laurel Apartments and Embassy Suites Hotel Downtown St. Louis, is a Coulomb ChargePoint® Network EV charging station installed by Microgrid Energy.
With the charging station in place, the MX plans to host a fully electric Nissan LEAF vehicle, through St. Louis-based WeCar by Enterprise Holdings. Though downtown has Toyota Prius WeCars, the MX WeCar will be the first all-electric vehicle in WeCar’s automated, membership-based and environmentally friendly transportation solution.
“We know that ‘living green’ is important to our residents in The Laurel. This EV station is a huge step in that direction, by providing clean-running vehicles right outside their door,” said Amos Harris, President of Spinnaker St. Louis, developer of the MX.
“The MX is leading the charge in providing green amenities to City residents and visitors,” said Mayor Francis G. Slay. “I hope this is the first of many EV stations located in the City of St. Louis.”
The ChargePoint charging station is managed by the ChargePoint® Network, the largest online global charging network connecting electric vehicle drivers to charging stations. Drivers will enjoy the advanced features and benefits of the ChargePoint Network including 24/7 driver support, driver billing options and mobile phone applications that provide drivers with real-time station location and availability, turn-by-turn navigation, and charging status.
Rental of the WeCars is hourly, at a rate of $8 per hour. Use of the WeCar and charging station are not limited to Laurel Apartments residents, though these amenities will be a particular convenience for Laurel residents.
WeCar by St. Louis-based Enterprise Holdings has grown in popularity along with the downtown population. “We are excited to see this technology brought to St. Louis,” said Tony Moise, Vice President and General Manager of Enterprise Holdings. This, along with our partnership with Spinnaker St. Louis allows us to continue to expand our use of alternative fuel vehicles for our customers.”
“The Laurel is the clear leader among apartments going green in the St. Louis area, and this charging station is just the latest example of their leadership.” said Rick Hunter, CEO of Microgrid Energy.
“Every major auto manufacturer is preparing to offer an EV,” Harris said. “So building an infrastructure to support environmentally friendly vehicles is critical. We are proud that the MX is a leader in this area, and we will continue to build the MX as a center of efficiency and sustainability in St. Louis.”
For more information about the Laurel Apartments visit laurelstl.com, follow LaurelMX @LaurelMX or like The Laurel Apartments at facebook.com/LaurelApartments. For information on the MX, visit mxstl.com or follow us @TheMXstl.
Join The Laurel Apartments for one awesome event happening tonight! The Laurel and Alive Magazine will be at Molly’s in Soulard with the the Top 20 most successful…and single winners of the St. Louis Most Wanted competition, along with hundreds of other St. Louisians ready to celebrate Super Wednesday! Join us at Molly’s tonight to witness the crowning of the Top 4 winners and enjoy drinks, complimentary appetizers, and mingling with the best crowd in St. Louis!
Find The Laurel booth and enter to win a $100 gift card…right in time for Christmas!
The Most Wanted winner will also be rewarded with a photo shoot in The Laurel’s one-of-a-kind, indoor, open air garden in January.
The Most Wanted party is at Molly’s at 816 Geyer Ave from 9pm until 1am and the price is $10. Two complimentary drinks will be provided and complimentary appetizers will be served from 9-10pm.