Wulfe & Co. is set to break ground on a new residential tower in BLVD Place in early 2013, bringing the first housing option to the mixed-use, Galleria-area development already home to RDG + Bar Annie, Philippe Restaurant, Hermès and Herman Miller.
But there's much more to the development that hasn't been revealed — including the addition of some "important" new restaurants.
Ed Wulfe, chairman and CEO of Wulfe & Co, let that information out in an exclusive one-on-one phone interview with CultureMap.
"We're really creating a dynamic entity," Wulfe said, citing the Whole Foods store and the Frost Bank regional headquarters that will anchor Phase II of the development. Construction on that began in September.
Wulfe was tight-lipped about the rest of the future tenants slated for the remaining 109,000-plus-square-feet of the second phase, but acknowledged that the company is in negotiations with "a series of two or three important restaurants" not yet located in Houston.
Nor would he open up about the rest of the spaces, which recent plans intimate will host (among other things) an art gallery, a cooking school and a wine bar on the terrace level, with cafes and apparel stores on the plaza level.
Designed by Chicago-based architecture firm Solomon Cordwell Buenz, it will have all of the amenities of a luxury residence — an in-house movie theater and fitness center, with a Wi-Fi lounge, a room available for private functions, a pool deck and outdoor areas — plus the added convenience of being situated on a 21-acre mixed use development.
"We're really creating a dynamic entity," Ed Wulfe, chairman and CEO of Wulfe & Co., told CultureMap.
The Apache office occupation took a chunk out of the development's retail allotment, but there is still room for retail — a component crucial to the "shop, live and work" atmosphere that Wulfe & Co. is trying to create at BLVD Place.
Wulfe is confident that this "epicenter" will cater to the professionals flocking to Houston for a high quality of life at an affordable cost. That's a strong selling point for the local energy companies in particular, he said, who want to draw — and retain — quality employees.
"There could be another residential tower very soon," said Wulfe, who mused that once the second one has been constructed, they will look at absorption rates before planning the third planned tower and the possible on-site boutique hotel.
"The market for building multi-family residences is strong," he said.