During the week, Sarah and Rolf Peters live in a traditional English Tudor-style house in Lakeville, where they drive to shopping and golf courses bordered by woods.
But on weekends, the couple retreat to their pied-a-terre on the roof of a former tractor factory in Minneapolis, where they walk to upscale restaurants, stylish boutiques and trails along the Mississippi River.
The Peterses experience the best of both suburban and city life, thanks to their purchase nearly five years ago of a luxury condo in the Harvester Lofts building in the North Loop neighborhood.
“We bought it as an urban cabin,” said Rolf, who can walk or bike to his job as CEO of AgMotion in downtown Minneapolis.
Staying at the loft “is so different from the suburbs,” said Sarah. “It’s more cosmopolitan; there’s so much to do, and we walk everywhere.”
The 1916 International Harvester Warehouse on Washington Avenue was converted into six stories of condos in 2007, preserving its industrial edge with concrete floors, exposed ductwork and brick walls.
The rooftop delivers prime real estate for gazing at the Minneapolis skyline. The Peterses bought one of the three metal-and-glass penthouse units that had been newly built on the roof of the building.
Their 2,000-square-foot corner condo is composed of two long walls of glass offering sweeping vistas of skyscrapers and Target Field, from which they can hear fans celebrating home runs.
The Peterses have seen the booming North Loop neighborhood change dramatically over the past few years. New retailers, restaurants and taprooms seem to open monthly, and condo complexes are filling in the urban landscape like tulips in a garden.
“When we first moved in, we never saw people walking on Washington,” said Sarah. “Now people are everywhere, walking their dogs and going to yoga classes.”
One of the draws of living in the North Loop is the contrast between the industrial warehouses and urban amenities with quiet, tree-lined streets nearby. “Second Avenue feels like a leafy street in Amsterdam,” said Rolf.
The biggest draw of their two-bedroom condo is the massive 1,600-square-foot L-shaped terrace. Sarah effortlessly slid aside the NanaWall, a folding-glass wall system, to open all the indoor living spaces to the terrace’s outdoor rooms and a fire pit.
With the accordion glass wall, guests can spill out onto the terrace under the stars. “I’ll miss entertaining friends on the terrace on a cool summer night with the NanaWall open, great wine and my chef friend on the grill,” said Rolf.
Dwelling Designs, located on the building’s main floor, chose the original surfaces, finishes and soapstone wall treatments for the condo. The Peterses are the second owners, and Sarah restyled the spaces, inspired by the retro Hollywood Regency decor of the Riviera Hotel in Palm Springs, Calif.
She mingled reflective glass and sleek metal surfaces with vibrant colors and dramatic lighting. Visitors are greeted by a 1950s mod Tiffany chandelier in the foyer. Dining room chairs are clad in shiny black patent leather studded with silver nailheads, while shimmery silver metallic paper covers the master bedroom walls. “I can be a little edgier here,” Sarah said. “Our English Tudor is more traditional.”
But now Sarah will focus on a new residence in Tucson. The Peterses are originally from Arizona, and they recently bought and remodeled a vacation home on a golf course there to be near family. They decided that three residences are too much to maintain, and put the Harvester loft on the market.
They’ll have to give up being party central after hitting the Smack Shack’s summer block party with friends. “When the city is all lit up at night,” said Sarah, “it’s spectacular.”
Joe Grunnet, Joe@DRGMpls.com, 612-244-6613 and Aleksa Montpetit, Aleksa@DRGMpls.com, 651-210-4213, of Downtown Resource Group, DRGMpls.com, have the listing.