Real Estate / High-Rises

Historic Dallas Apartment Building With Palm Trees to be Transformed Into an Italian Wonderland

Bella Villa's Second Life Restores its 1920s Glory

BY // 06.26.19

Bella Villa, known to many in Dallas as the old apartment building with the palm trees in Vickery Place, has finally been revamped into a beautiful new, Italian-esque apartment complex.

Designated as a historical landmark in 2017, the dilapidated building with broken and boarded up windows was in need of a major renovation. Indio Management recognized this when it bought the property at 5506 Miller Avenue in 2018.

“We liked the bones of the property and architectural style,” says Indio asset manager Tyler Anawaty. The Indio team had their eye on the building for awhile, as they first attempted to buy it in 2015, Anawaty tells PaperCity.

Then, after it became a historical landmark, they had to convince the Landmark Commission that they would preserve its historical essence.

The 1920s building started out as the Vickery Park Schoolhouse and then apartments geared towards young professionals. In collaboration with architecture firm, Architexas, and designer Wren Homsey, “The Wrenovator,” Indio set about modernized the building without changing anything about the structure of it.

Because of its historical landmark designation, all of the walls had to remain in their original spots, but could still be replaced with new ones. Though the exterior stayed the same, the interior was redone from top to bottom.

“The state of the foundation was severely dilapidated,” Anawaty says. “It took some engineering to put it back to code.” All of the single pane windows are original, but refurbished. The Spanish tile roof, that was produced in the same time period but never used, was miraculously found at a warehouse that still had a stash.

Indio Management has a track record of taking old buildings and modernizing them in a way that preserves their original character. Marquita Court Apartments, also in the M Streets area, was one of the first communities Indio founder Seth Bame purchased.

They are currently doing the same with The Argyle in Oak Lawn, which was the first high-rise apartments in Dallas in 1927. This property will reopen to new residents some time around October.

Bella Villa has 24 apartment units, including studios and one bedrooms. Original features remain in tact, but have been spiffed up a bit, such as telephone nooks, glass doorknobs, archways and more. Indigo was unable to put in an elevator in the three-story complex, because of historical regulations, but the stairwells remain original.

Kitchens have been modernized with new appliances and dark cabinets. Another cool things is the Latch key system, which allows you to lock and unlock your door from your smartphone. There’s also a camera to take pictures of anyone who approaches your door.

This is the new Bella Villa.

When others see a home,
We see a Work of Art
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