The city of Bellevue held the global spotlight recently, as a Mansion Global feature heralded the area as a “haven for outdoor enthusiasts, [and] tech employees” with its “waterfront access, leafy neighborhoods and cosmopolitan restaurants and boutiques,” and ever-growing tech sector jobs. Bellevue has certainly seen its fair share of growth in recent years, as it is now home to approximately 150,000 people and 1,300 businesses with 45,000 employees who revel in Pacific Northwest recreational opportunities that complement its urban edge.
As Dean Jones, President & CEO of Realogics Sotheby’s International Realty (RSIR) tells Mansion Global, “the city of Bellevue is a rather diverse collection of neighborhoods.” He notes the popularity of locales west of I-405 such as the city center, West Bellevue, Ashwood, Beaux Arts Village and Enatai, among others. RSIR broker and Bellevue resident, Eddie Chang, adds that he helps a lot of clients find properties in Vuecrest, which has become popular for its close proximity to the downtown core and homes characterized by bright, open floor plans. He also says Bridle Trails is a coveted community, which he describes as “magical and enchanting” with its charming woods and extensive trail system. “It feels a world away from it all,” he muses.
The area’s top-rated school system is another draw for residents, a sentiment noted in the Mansion Globalpiece and echoed by both Chang and Jennifer Johnsen-Cameron, Vice President of Brand Development with RSIR. “Clients searching in Bellevue are taking advantage of the great schools, not to mention the expanding downtown core and lifestyle amenities,” Johnsen-Cameron says. Chang, who moved to Bellevue in 2016 for the schools, says people appreciate the opportunities afforded by the region, from the Jing Mei Chinese Immersion School and 2 Spanish Immersion Schools to the International School, which serves grades 6 through 12.
Johnsen-Cameron adds that Bellevue is also attracting investment opportunities, as she has seen many local and global investors take interest in the area and has helped Silicon Valley tech workers and out-of-town brokers fly in for day trips to make appointments and scout properties. She also says Wright Runstad plans for a transit-oriented urban village named the “Spring District” to be located in the Bel-Red industrial district are well under way. It will offer 36 acres of mixed-use development as the buildings are split between residential, commercial and retail uses. Upon completion of the light rail, it will quickly become one of the most sought-after areas in Bellevue.
Recreational opportunities abound in Bellevue, as residents and visitors alike enjoy the newly expanded Bellevue Collection and Lincoln Center with premier shopping and dining options, events and exhibitions at the Bellevue Art Museum and Gunnar Nordstrom gallery, annual events including the popular Snowflake Lane attraction, and more.
Jones provided Mansion Global with a snapshot of current market trends within the Bellevue community, and at the time of publication, there were just 10 available listings priced below $1 million, all of which were condominiums. “Selection remains slim for single-family homes, and ranges from a mid-century rambler on a redevelopment lot for $1.25 million to a gated 16,000-square-foot estate on 1.1 acres in the Bridle Trails neighborhood, an area with a rural feel, for $15 million,” he notes.
As of mid-November, year-to-date data reveals there were 113 sales priced between $1 million and $2 million, with 82 sales closing above the $2 million benchmark. Chang points to Bellevue’s market appreciation in three of his experiences from the past year, which include working with fellow broker Jason Gibbons to help an elderly widow who purchased a Vuecrest home for $22,500 sell it for $1.85 million, helping clients that purchased in 2012 garner a $500,000 profit on a recent Bellevue sale, and his current representation of a stunning penthouse at Bellevue Towers offered at $5,000,000.
Looking to Bellevue’s future, Jones categorizes the residential outlook as strong, and anticipates that demand and median home prices will continue to expand, particularly as the tech sector continues to cement its Eastside presence.
“Bellevue is on the cusp of becoming a mirror of Seattle,” Chang adds. “Amazon leased 354,000 square feet at the Centre 425 building, Baidu and Tencent will open Bellevue offices, Valve leased 225,000 square feet at Lincoln Two, Salesforce secured 70,000 square feet at the 929 Building, and Apple is currently looking for a new office space.”
RSIR broker Mary Nelson says the population of Bellevue has grown almost 10-percent in the last five years alone. At over 150,000 people, it’s one of Washington’s biggest cities and Seattle’s largest suburb. “The city’s diversity has grown, as it is now classified as a ‘majority-minority’ city by the U.S. Census Bureau,” she says. “The commercial growth will continue, with more condominiums being built in downtown Bellevue as developers try to keep up with demand.”
Recent notable sales represented by RSIR brokers include:
Cougar Mountain | $3,400,000 | Sean Nielsen – Buyer Representation
Vuecrest | $1,850,000 | Eddie Chang & Jason Gibbons – Seller Representation
West Bellevue | $4,450,000 | Angela Pepka & Barbara Brown – Buyer Representation
Lakemont Heights | $1,520,000 | Vlad Popach – Seller Representation
Medina | $2,698,000 | Mary Nelson – Seller Representation
Ready to heed the call of Bellevue? Step into a collection of luxury residences represented by Realogics Sotheby’s International Realty.
Medina | Offered at $28,000,000
The private driveway lined with magnificent hedges leads to The Iconic Medina Waterfront Estate, a majestic 2.5-acre property on Lake Washington in the heart of Medina graced by 150 feet of waterfront with a sweeping southern Mount Rainier view, a main residence, guest house and Smithsonian-registered gardens.
Downtown Bellevue | Offered at $5,000,000
Soar to the 41st floor of Bellevue Towers to a penthouse that elevates luxury living to new heights. No detail is spared in this 3,561 square foot home with 3 bedrooms and 3.5 bathrooms. An open concept offers walls of windows, custom built-ins, a fireplace and wraparound balcony.
Clyde Hill | Offered at $3,588,888
Winner of the 2016-2017 Houzz “Best in Service” Award, JayMarc Homes introduces a new definition of luxury: The Bordeaux! The home combines luxurious living and quality finishes for a smart design with amazing livability. An expansive covered patio fuses outdoor living and elegant style as contemporary finishes accommodate every detail.
Meydenbauer | Offered at $4,580,000
The ultimate view in Bellevue, this 6,220 square foot, 4 bedroom home situated across three levels of living space offers a masterful combination of new construction and award-winning views of Lake Washington and Seattle. The sensible floor plan lends itself to everyday life and entertaining, complete with exquisite finishes and copious amenities.
The Summit | Offered at $1,799,000
Enjoy spectacular mountaintop views of Seattle, the Olympics and Lake Washington from this singularly unique, European-inspired perch at on the edge of The Summit, a gated community in South Bellevue. Over a half acre of meticulous grounds surround the classic brick home complete with 4 bedrooms, 2 full and 2 half baths, and numerous bonus spaces.
Yarrow Point | Offered at $9,400,000
More than a residence, 4648 Yarrow Point is a gallery of life experiences, carefully created to reflect the owner’s worldwide travels in a profound experience that tempts the senses. A signature collection of hand selected wall finishes and art pieces capture the feel of each individual room. Lose yourself in the tranquility of 6,100 square feet of waterfront living situated perfectly on a 27,800 square foot expanse.