Art Deco Homes in Washington DC Area

The term Art Deco evokes memories of a long-ago era of style and glamour, from film to other forms of popular culture. But this early 20th Century design movement has also had a more lasting architectural influence in Washington DC and the larger DC Metropolitan area.

When it comes to construction, the design principle is most commonly found in commercial or multiunit residential structures rather than detached single-family homes for sale. That certainly isn’t a hard-and-fast rule, as there are examples of Deco houses here and there. But the style with its geometric influences is more typically associated with old stores, hotels or apartment buildings that have more recently converted to condos for sale.

The Origins of Art Deco

Art Deco is commonly thought to have originated in France in the early 1920s, particularly through the International Exhibition of Modern Decorative and Industrial Arts in Paris, 1925. It wasn’t long before the clean, classic lines gained popularity. Hollywood set designers were especially keen on the look during the 1930s—Busby Berkeley musicals are a good example with their stark white ballrooms as well as incredible staircases arranged in striking symmetry as showcases for dancers

Movie theaters, storefronts and other buildings were prime recipients for a design movement that had certain common denominators, but that didn’t always adhere to the same rules. For instance, cubism and hard angles were present in many Deco designs while others favored sweeping curvilinear shapes. The sleeker Streamline Moderne offshoot is a good example of the latter.

 Where are Art Deco Buildings Found in DC?

Art Deco architecture can be found throughout the Washington Metropolitan area. However, there is a larger concentration within the District itself.

The Streamline Moderne offshoot mentioned above is nicely represented by the Cityline at Tenley. Originally an iconic Sears Roebuck store, the structure with its curved façade has now been redeveloped, perched on top of a Metro station, and featuring 204 luxury condos for sale plus ground-level retail.

Other interesting Deco condominium conversions include Capitol Vista, a classic 1921 building on Capitol Hill; the New Plaza in Logan Circle (built in 1937) and the fabulous Woodley Park Towers, built in 1929 and listed in James Goode’s Best Addresses.

These are but a few of many examples. To learn more, call District Partners at Compass, at 202-798-3600.

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