Seven months ago, Cathy and Kevin Marrinan moved from their home in the Catskill Mountains to a condominium in downtown Arlington Heights to be closer to their daughter and grandchildren.
"I'm so happy here I can't believe it," Kevin Marrinan said of their home in the Evergreen building. "We're getting up in age, and back in New York, there was a lot to do to care for our home.
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Listing sheetPrice range: $225,000 to $315,000 for two-bedroom unit
Age of homes: Most built in 2000
Schools: Westgate Elementary and South Middle schools in Arlington Heights Elementary District 25 and Rolling Meadows High School in Northwest Suburban High School District 214
Parks: Arlington Heights Park District
"This is fantastic. We like the condo's open layout, and we have a great view of the sunset from our window that we enjoy. The place is so clean and well taken care of. And the doorman is great," he said.
Evergreen, at 77 S. Evergreen Ave., is one of several downtown Arlington Heights condo buildings. Marrinan said its location is ideal because the downtown has so much to offer in the way of restaurants and entertainment.
"We have Panera (Bread), California Pizza Kitchen and the bank across the street. We especially like listening to the concert music in the summertime. There's nothing else we could ask for."
The best part, of course, is that the couple spends a lot of time with their daughter and family, and their other daughter who lives in California frequently travels to Chicago.
Although a two-bedroom, two-bath residence ranges from $225,000 to $315,000, it's less for a one-bedroom, one-bath unit. A larger two-story condo with five bedrooms could go as high as $750,000. Sizes run from about 1,800 to 3,000 square feet.
"Arlington Heights offers a nice selection of condominiums in its downtown area, and I want to make sure people are aware of this," said Carol Wilcox, real estate broker with Baird & Warner.
Typically condo interiors feature an open great room layout and kitchen with stainless steel or black appliances and solid surface or granite countertops. Most also include luxury master baths with whirlpool tub and separate walk-in shower, in-unit washer and dryer, a balcony and parking.
Building amenities vary, but all feature luxurious lobbies and storage lockers. Some offer exercise facilities, party room or a bike room. The Evergreen building offers a full-time doorman while the Vail and Wing buildings have a concierge service. Pets are allowed.
"In the Evergreen condos, residents with a southern exposure can see downtown Chicago from the 1,200-square-foot balcony on the eighth floor, and they can even see the Hancock Building and Willis Tower," Wilcox said.
Arlington Heights has much to offer residents who live downtown -- an eclectic mix of restaurants and pubs, live theater performances, outdoor concerts and shopping at boutiques, specialty shops and galleries, Wilcox said.
"Peggy Kinnane's, named after the owner's mother, is an authentic Irish pub with everything inside brought over from Ireland," she said.
Who buys condos in town? Everyone -- people of all ages with or without children.
"Often young professionals and transferees move into a condo and love it so much that they later move into a house in Arlington Heights," Wilcox said.
"Some people might sell their house in Arlington Heights, buy a retirement home in Florida and buy a condo in Arlington Heights to stay connected with their families and friends."
A walk-to-Metra location is a big plus for everyone -- commuters as well as people who want to take in the sights and sounds of the city.
There are downtown condominium buildings on Dunton, Evergreen, Highland and Vail avenues and Campbell and Wing streets.