An Infinity Bathroom (Image Source: the-infinity.com)
Three months ago, two listings for condos in The Infinity were added to the San Francisco MLS (301 Main Street #6G and 318 Spear Street #4A). This evening, the prices were reduced: #6G was lowered $90,000 (7.4%) and #4A was lowered $70,000 (9.3%). We’re trying not to read too much into the reductions, at least until we’ve had a chance to chat with a number of insiders and tipsters. “Plug in” tomorrow for an update and the inside scoop.
In related news, new content has been added to The Infinity’s website since our last visit. The addition of live-action/rendered video clips once again raises the bar for other new developments about town. And yes, we’re biting our tongues with respect to the all too obvious real estate “porn” remarks (see “Residences: Bathrooms”).
UPDATE (11/07): According to a tipster, as of last month the sales office had contracts in hand for ~30% of the development. That’s in contrast to the ~90% figure for One Rincon, but in and of itself, isn’t necessarily a sign of weakness. With well over a year until occupancy of either new development, it’s possible that The Infinity is simply taking a long position that demand (and prices) will increase as the condos become more tangible.
UPDATE (11/07): An HTML glitch truncated a great comment from a recent buyer at The Infinity, “Appliances are now included (washer/dryer/frig) and the prices are a little soft. I got a 1 bdrm [for under] $800 sq/ft. 1 Rincon has a 1 bdrm on the 17th floor (700 sq/ft) for 625K, which is pretty cheap.”
UPDATE (11/07): And now we’re trying not to read too much into the fact that the list prices were returned to their pre-reduction levels the very next day…
The Infinity: A Study In Contrast [SocketSite]
The Infinity Hits The MLS [SocketSite]
The Infinity Website [the-infinity.com]

Comments from Plugged-In Readers

  1. Posted by Anonymous

    These 2 units were too expensive to begin with. #B-6G is only a 6th floor corner unit with barely a view. ~$850/sqft is more reasonable.
    #A-4A is a tiny 760sgft flat on the 4th floor. Again not much of a view and no balcony. At almost $900/sqft, it’s still a stretch.
    Infinity has sold most of their upper floor units in earlier releases. I reserved one a couple months ago on the 32nd floor. Corner unit with pano bay and city views at just under $1000/SqFt.
    Just like 1Rincon, Infinity’s sales has slowed as they raised prices a little too high for these lower floor units. Combine that with a declining market, you get units that just aren’t selling at it’s current prices…

  2. Posted by 1RinconBuyer

    It’s interesting that, with its premo location, which I am sincere in saying, the Infinity doesn’t seem to have the same level of interest that 1Rincon had. I actually went to both developments and weighed both options carefully before deciding on 1Rincon.
    The only thing I can think of is that, as I concluded after evaluating both places, the condos themselves (not including the location) are not as good as the 1Rincon condos. I also think that the Infinity did nowhere near the level of marketing that 1Rincon did. Probably has to do with the fact that the Infinity was developed by Tishman Speyer which, because it’s R/E powerhouse, sort of had a chip on its shoulder about how much effort it would take to move the units, whereas Kroziere probably said to himself, “I ain’t takin’ any chances with the development.”
    Bottom line……..no real surprise here.

  3. Posted by MIke

    I would doubt that 30% figure, I believe it’s probably higher. I bought a unit there this weekend and (at least from what the sales person told us) there wasn’t a lot of inventory of nice units. Appliances are now included (washer/dryer/frig) and the prices are a little soft.
    I got a 1 bdrm [for under] $800 sq/ft. 1 Rincon has a 1 bdrm on the 17th floor (700 sq/ft) for 625K, which is pretty cheap. The location of 1Rincon (and the valet parking) is terrible, which is why I wouldn’t consider it.

  4. Posted by susapix

    Has anyone actually put on a hard hat and gone into any of the unit spaces? The reason I ask is that the glass, which is very pretty from the outside, is very green and I wonder if it gives a greenish cast to the interiors.

  5. Posted by 1RinconBuyer

    I assume that you’re joking. If there were going to be a bumbling error as to design, I seriously doubt that it would be that one.
    The bigger question is, has anyone given any though to how they plan to arrange furniture in those places given that a large part of the open space in the living/dining room is completely wasted give the “arch” shape of the area of each unit near the windows? I think the idea was a great one, purely from an aesthetic standpoint, but it’s completely nonfunctional from a living standpoint.

  6. Posted by 49Giants

    I’m kinda wondering about that 30% figure; I have absolutely no inside information whatsoever in any size, shape, or form, but I would have thought the Infinity would have sold/contracted more units by now. It sort of makes me wonder why One Rincon has sold so well in the early days. Was it just a massive feeding frenzy?
    Another thing I found to be a bit curious was the SF Chronicle’s crush on One Rincon. They’ve been running articles about the project for months now in an on-going series, and they have podcasts and audio interviews on thier website. Which led me to wonder: do developers pay for this sort of publicity? or was it a genuine editorial decision on the part of the brass at the Chronicle? Does anyone know the answer?

  7. Posted by RinconFan

    That 30% is not accurate. I went there last week and the inventory was quite tight. Most of the upper units were spoken for. The ones that were not were priced too high and will probably sit for a while. There were some lower units available as well as a number of flats. I’d say the number is closer to 45-50%…

  8. Posted by 1RinconBuyer

    Of course they pay…..they (the developer) pay someone (a PR/marketing firm, etc.) to cozy up to the reporters covering real estate in SF so that the development gets great coverage. Like I said, it looks like Kroziere took it a little more serious than Tishman Speyer. Also, 1Rincon had the advantage of hyping itself with things like, top of the hill, tallest residential tower west of the Mississippi, and it was really one of the first of the these big highrise projects to get approved (Watermark doesn’t count).
    But, again, all that said, in my opinion, the product itself seems to be of a higher quality than Infinity in terms of the unit itself. That was my take after comparing the two. The layout, floor plan, finishings, upgrade options, etc., were all superior. The only two dings I gave 1Rincon against Infinity was the self-park (dedicated space) feature vs. the valet parking and parking license feature (which really is not that big a deal) and the location (which, in my opinion, was not enough considering these are highrises and not individual homes).

  9. Posted by Anonymous

    There’s definitely some ‘relationship’ between the Chronicle and 1Rincon. There’s way too much attention given to that development and none given to all the other major developments in SF including Infinity.
    A smart move by 1Rincon and certainly gave a boost to sales…

  10. Posted by SocketSite

    Mea culpa! Our first update should have read “According to a tipster, as of last month the sales office had contracts in hand for ~30% of the development.”
    Also, please keep in mind that while current available inventory might be tight, not all of the inventory has been made available for sale.

  11. Posted by Anonymous

    Mike, regarding the 30% number, which you doubt. Consider this — you said that “there wasn’t a lot of inventory of nice units.” (By “nice” I presume you’re referring to higher-level units with great vews… which is the minority of units in the building, not the majority.) RinconFan said “most of the upper units were spoken for.” IN other words, even among the BEST there’s still availability, whereas One Rincon has hardly anything left at all, whether it’s the best or not. If some of “the best” units at Infinity are still available, then what does that say about “the rest”?
    Remember, they don’t just have a high-rise to fill, there are two mid-rise non-view buildings, too.

  12. Posted by Anonymous

    I’ve heard 1Rincon haven’t sold a single one of their mid-rise townhomes yet. And those don’t have much of a view either.
    The reason why the limited amount of upper level units in Infinity aren’t selling is because they’re priced too high…
    Either way, Infinity’s sales are not bad, it’s just 1Rincon’s sales was terrific because of pricing.

  13. Posted by TypeA

    All appliances were included when I walked in the sales office in August.

  14. Posted by 1RinconBuyer

    “Either way, Infinity’s sales are not bad, it’s just 1Rincon’s sales was terrific because of pricing.”
    Bingo!…..Tell ’em what he/she’s won Bob…
    And I agree with the comment about the townhomes…I’m still scratching my head about why they were even built in the first place….would have been a better idea to use that space to either increase the size of the parking garage for the tower residents or increase the size of the commons areas or both.

  15. Posted by Anonymous

    1RinconBuyer, Infinity has 35+ different floorplans. Picking one model to criticize is a weak argument considering it’s a small percentage of the units.
    1Rincon has 2 floorplans (06 & 03), that has balconies that has walls blocking the view. 03 only has one wall of windows. Other 1 bedroom units had supporting walls that blocks the view.
    I think there are negative and positives to both developments. I think one positive to Infinity is there are so many floorplans to choose from…

  16. Posted by 1RinconBuyer

    I never said there were not a lot of floor plans to choose from at the Infinity…..in fact….I would go so far to say that the Infinity had many floor plans to choose from than 1Rincon.
    Unfortunately, however, of the few floor plans that I did have to choose from at 1Rincon….the one I ended liking the best was better than any of the options at the Infinity. I knew exactly what I was looking for and 1Rincon had it, and the Infinity didn’t, it was that complicated.
    It’s a highly subjective point, so I really don’t see how you’re coming to the conclusion that I was making an “argument.” I simply said that, in my opinion (key word), the 1Rincon floor plans were better than the Infinity’s and that’s one of the reasons I chose to go the other way. Price sure didn’t hurt either ($800/sq ft vs. $1000).

  17. Posted by Mike

    1 Rincon is defintely cheaper due to the inferior location and the parking. But also, the Infinity has a no-flipping clause for the first year, and the developer has right of first refusal on resales from year 1 to 2. I think those 2 items reduces the amount of specuvestors in the Infinity, thus possibly reducing the overall interest level.

  18. Posted by Anonymous

    1Rincon has a no-flipping clause for the 1st year as well so that issue is a push.
    Clearly there is something less appealing about the Infinity relative to 1Rincon because I don’t think anyone questions that the Infinity wins out on the locale point.
    The only possibility is price, but as everyone knows, the theory is always, location, location, location, so that should be enough to justify slightly higher price points.
    It’s probably a combination of where the market is right now and also the fact the Infinity has done a piss poor job in promoting itself and getting buzz going. 1Rincon gets the gold medal on that point.

  19. Posted by Anonymous

    Agreed, with it’s lower pricing, superior marketing, and multiple Chronicle articles and media publicity, 1Rincon wins out on the popularity contest.
    Time will tell which development is superior, but as 1Rinconbuyer says, it’s all subjective to each individual’s opinion.
    I personally think both will be a great investment and landmark properties…

  20. Posted by Anonymous

    “I personally think both will be a great investment and landmark properties…”
    That’s probably the closest that the parties in either camp would ever get as to an agreement about these 2 properties.
    It’s sort of like the Capulets and the Montagues of urban high-rise condo developments….
    “Infinity!…..Wherefore art though, Infinity!….”

  21. Posted by Anonymous

    Here we go again. An Infinity/Rincon battle. I love this stuff.
    I have to say though, it is my opinion that the floor plans at Rincon are better thought out. My reason for buying there was the fact that they had 1 bedrooms with balconies on the higher floors for somewhat affordable prices. I do not think the Infinity has any one bedrooms with balconies. At least not in the towers.

  22. Posted by Sexy & Sassy in SF

    According to an agent/broker I spoke with, who is a colleague/business associate of [the sales manager] at The Infinity, [the sales manager] has told him that he anticipates his stay here to be ~two years … meaning sales are SLOOOOOW (and slower than anticipated, obviously). This agent/broker has also told me that The Infinity staff has admitted to him that the units are overpriced; therefore, the sales are somewhat stagnating. If this weren’t true, I doubt that the appliances would now be “included,” as they were not even going to include the washer/dryer to begin with.
    ~30% of units sold … this is most likely an overestimation, as a certain percentage of contracts fall out by the time of closing.
    I see prices still to drop and more upgrades to be included in The Infinity’s future. Any wagers?

  23. Posted by 49Giants

    Sexy & Sassy, where have you been?! I’ve missed your sexy and sassy comments.
    I must be one of those suckers that Madison Ave salivates over, because One Rincon’s marketing is definitely what got me on One Rincon’s side. I was purusing through the Bay Area section of the Chronicle when I came across an article about the VIP party One Rincon would be having. Up until that point, I had only been casually interested in buying an apartment in the City, and had not even heard of One Rincon. But it was in that article that I read that units there would be starting in the $500’s. The next day, I dropped in the sales office, and man, was that place buzzing! So I admit, I got caught up in the hype and scheduled an appointment with a sales manager and immediately plopped down a deposit (at that point, everything was totally refundable, so hey, why not, I thought). It was only then that I realized that I should probably do a bit a research; backasswards, I know. Well, then I learned of the Infinity and paid them a visit. “Quiet” is the word that comes to mind when I think of that sales office. I thought the Infinity was pretty damn swanky, but I was totally priced out; for what I had reserved at One Rincon, I’d be paying 30-40% more at the Infinity. Besides, by then, I was so drunk off of One Gincon’s that nothing the Infinity could offer would have won me over.

  24. Posted by Sexy & Sassy in SF

    49Giants: I am pleasantly surprised and honored that you have noticed my absence! 😉
    Socket: Sorry for dropping names; I just figured everyone knows by now. :O
    I, too, have visited both sales offices. At first, I thoroughly “liked” One Rincon, but didn’t “love” it. Then I visited The Infinity and immediately decided I liked One Rincon better. If not for the better location of The Infinity, I would not consider it at all. I am looking forward (confidently) to the “price adjustments.” There are just way too many projects in the pipeline for them to be hell bent on the current figures.

  25. Posted by JohnK

    Let me sum it up for everyone: Location Location Location. Inifity is the superior location and deeded parking is an easy $50K. One Rincon offers lesser location, but compensates with great marketing and design. But still, no deeded parking. Those are major differences in my book.

  26. Posted by 1RinconBuyer

    Let me sum it up for JohnK: The market has spoken, and it has said, we don’t think the Infinity’s price points are definitely not justified, notwithstanding its better location. And the parking thing is a complete red herring……that issue only becomes relevant when a prospective buyer just cannot break his or her internal stalemate regarding which property they would prefer to buy.
    Infinity was too optimistic about its price points and once an equilibrium is established, they units will sell.

  27. Posted by curmudgeon

    Someone mentioned “why townhouses…that space could have been used for more parking”. SF is trying to make sure that the streetfronts are enlivened with actual occupied space (living or retail)rather than blank walls of parking garages. Makes things much more pleasant for pedestrians. Wrapping towers with townhouses is a hallmark of the “Vancouver model” which the city is trying to apply here.
    In Vancouver, the model works very well to give a nice texture to the streets, where townhouse entrances also typically have well maintained plantings, etc. Walking down some streets in Van, you hardly even notice that there are midblock towers, because you just notice the pleasant three story buildings in your immediate view.
    Applying the model to Rincon Hill, and the One Rincon site in particular may be a little difficult, given the already identified issues with street traffic that makes it a bit different than the pleasant streets of downtown Vancouver. Also, the marketability of these units is made even more difficult given the fact that views drive so much value in San Francisco. But at the right price, those townhouses will sell, and they will help make One Rincon a better addition to the neighborhood.

  28. Posted by Anonymous

    “Wrapping towers with townhouses is a hallmark of the “Vancouver model” which the city is trying to apply here.”
    Why didn’t Opera Plaza (601 Van Ness) set the trend with its towers/townhouses design? This design didn’t re-emerge until The Beacon.

  29. Posted by curmudgeon

    I don’t think of either Opera Plaza or the Beacon as having a townhouse element, though Opera Plaza is higher in back than in front. They do both have street level retail, which is a good thing. Opera Plaza is actually an interesting bit of urban design, with its large open area in the center, and retail not only on the main street, but all the way to the back (kind of mall-like). It’s been a very mixed success however…it’s always been hard to keep the back retail tenanted.

  30. Posted by akaboras

    I have been reading the posts and the discussion of why One Rincon has gotten so much press caught my attention.
    So briefly, prior to the 06 earthquake Rincon hill was the finest most desirable residential neighborhood in the city, afterwards for a variety of reasons it fell out of favor and turned into the wasteland that it was prior to Loma Prieta. The 76, then BofA, clock tower has also long been a landmark. So the site has a lot of significance to those interested in the history of SF and One Rincon seems to exemplify the resurgence of Rincon hill more than any other project in the area. I think that is one reason why the Chron has covered it so extensively.

  31. Posted by Infinity and 1Rincon fan

    “So briefly, prior to the 06 earthquake Rincon hill was the finest most desirable residential neighborhood in the city, afterwards for a variety of reasons it fell out of favor and turned into the wasteland that it was prior to Loma Prieta.”
    So how long does it take to transform a whole neighborhood from a wasteland to a upscale, desirable residential area? It took Mission Bay 15-20 years, South Beach 15+ years, parts of SOMA 10+ years (and still going). If say 2004 was the start of the transformation of Rincon Hill, then it’ll be 2015 at least before the area becomes the desirable upscale neighborhood we all imagined. That’s a long time to wait…
    At the very least Infinity’s location is prime compared to 1Rincon. With the bay and Embarcadero a block away and the new Gap building and Hills plaza across the street and the number of upscale restaurants in the area as well as those under construction, this area is already quite established as a nice neighborhood.
    The risk with Rincon Hill is if the economy tanks for some reason, all these new developments in the pipeline could be delayed or canceled leaving 1Rincon on a ‘island’ surounded by ‘wasteland’…

  32. Posted by realestatenewbee

    I have a contract at the Infinity. They are pretty secretive with ther pricing. How can I tell if they are selling similar units at a discount (now or in the future)? I went through a buyer’s agent. Can I expect him to keep posted on prices.

  33. Posted by joseph

    realestatenewbee, do you mind to tell me what you bought and the price? I also bought at Infinity and quite familiar with the pricing and their whole marketing process. You can email me or respond to this post…

  34. Posted by MIke

    I have a contract at the Infinity. They are pretty secretive with ther pricing. How can I tell if they are selling similar units at a discount (now or in the future)? I went through a buyer’s agent. Can I expect him to keep posted on prices.

    If you have a contract not sure what you can do if they drop the prices. The unit I just bought I was able to get at under asking. I’d like to know the same thing, but I doubt they’ll tell you.

  35. Posted by joseph

    realestatenewbee, MIke,
    I’d like to know what you guys got for your units. If you don’t mind, we can share and see if we got a good deal or not. My email – joseph19711@gmail.com
    Thanks!

  36. Posted by Anonymous

    This is probably stating the obvious, but one of the best things you can do to make sure that you are getting the best price possible is to try and stay on top of each and every development that comes online (i.e., as soon as it is approved by the city). Obviously, SocketSite is a great was to do that.
    Take me for example. I was able to score a nice sized 2-2 at 1Rincon on around the 20th floor with a view of the city and Twin Peaks for $800/sq ft and the ONLY reason I was able to do that was that I was invited to the “VIP” preview event in the first week and the only reason I was invited to that was that I signed up with their website as soon as it was up and running.
    Point being…….stayed informed by using sites like this one and you’ll land reasonable price. If you snooze, you lose.

  37. Posted by Dan

    I agree with Anonymous (Nov 9 4.08pm). Best way to feel good about your decisions is to stay on top of the market and do the research. Not for brownie points here but SocketSite is really the best website I’VE found to get information and I’m an analysis freak. Not only on facts and figures, but events as well. Case in point, the VIP party at 1Rincon – I got in because I found out on SocketSite before the event happened.
    I didn’t end up getting a place at 1Rincon bcs I think we’ll see more pressure on pricing…but I’m also in no rush so I just keep watching, reading…

  38. Posted by stella

    I’m considering a 1270 sq ft 2 bedroom on the 28th floor facing the financial district. It’s priced at about 1142/sq ft. Given there are only 9 of these units with the large curved patio and the fact that the 28th floor and up all come with upgrades, would you say this is still over priced? At $1142/ sq ft, I feel there’s room for the price to adjust when the second release comes out. Offer expires tomorrow noon, any input would be appreciated!!!!

  39. Posted by SocketSite

    stella – we’ve upgraded your comment to a post:
    https://socketsite.com/archives/2006/12/the_clock_is_ticking_for_a_reader.html

  40. Posted by felician

    Hello,
    Christmas Day falls on December 25. It is preceded by Christmas Eve on December 24, and in some countries is followed by Boxing Day on December 26. Some Eastern Orthodox Churches celebrate Christmas on January 7, which corresponds to December 25 on the Julian calendar. December 25 as a birthdate for Jesus is merely traditional, and is not thought to be his actual date of birth. Regards

Add a Comment

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

Recent Articles