Posh Colonnade condos will be sold at auction Prices for all but one condo cut drastically.


As many as 45 condominiums at Baltimore's posh Residences of the Colonnade will be among those available to prospective buyers at an auction this Saturday.

One condominium, pardonez moi, will not be included in the auction. It is the Colonnade's two-story penthouse, "Loggia in the Sky," a 6,000-square-foot duplex that has its own, private elevator and comes with a 1991 Rolls Royce Corniche convertible as part of an asking price of $1.3 million.

Selling for considerably less will be those units at the Colonnade that will go to auction.

With units previously priced from $138,000 to $494,500, managers of the auction are suggesting opening bids from $50,000 for an executive studio to $150,000 for a three-bedroom penthouse residence with den and library.

Response to the auction has been "less than anticipated," said Michael Fine, vice president for Sheldon Good & Co., conductor of the auction.

And while Fine would not discuss what prices the developer hopes to get for the units, he said, "buyers are going to have a chance to get real good buys because we have a seller who is very motivated."

Developed by the Colonnade Limited Partnership, with principals Richard and Howard Rymland, the complex has 119 condominiums.Twenty four have been sold to date and an additional 36 are under contract.

The 11-story Colonnade, located just north of the Johns Hopkins University Homewood campus at the corner of University Parkway and Canterbury Road, comprises two towers. One houses a 125-room inn and the four-star Polo Grill restaurant. The condominiums are in the other tower.

The auction will be held at noon Saturday at the Stouffer Harbor

place Hotel on East Pratt Street.

Fine said the auction was prompted by the sluggish real estate market's effect on sales, adding that the sellers want to reduce their carrying and marketing costs for unsold units.

"This is not a foreclosure sale or a lender-driven sale," Fine cautioned. "This is a situation where the seller has decided to use the auction as an accelerated marketing approach."

The partnership intends to auction only 45 of 58 units that buyers

will be allowed to select from during the course of the bidding. The first 15 units will be sold to the highest bidder regardless of price, after which another 30 units will be sold with the seller's option to reject the bid within 48 hours.

Fine said the developer wants to sell the rest of the units outside of the auction. "The reason he wants to keep 13 is that he believes that the 13 will be worth more the day after the auction than they were the day before," Fine said. "He wants to profit from that situation."

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