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Local News

College Students Can Live in Luxury at New Isla Vista Apartment Complexes

The Loop, the Icon and the Plaza Lofts will provide fully furnished housing units starting in the fall

Three new apartment complexes will be opening for the next UCSB school year with the intention of providing a more luxurious style of living than residents of Isla Vista might be used to, with units fully furnished and already outfitted with flat-screen televisions and kitchen appliances.

The Loop, which is operated by Mesa Lane Partners, is a new 48-unit apartment complex on Trigo Road that aims to offer luxurious student housing with the least possible environmental impact.

The building has been fully leased out for about two months, and its 140 residents will begin to move in to their apartments on Sunday. Construction crews are in the process of moving in furniture and outfitting the interiors, at a total cost of about $17 million.

The Loop offers fully furnished loft apartments that come with kitchen appliances, flat-screen televisions with free cable, and soundproof walls. Amenities in the building include a rooftop lounge with a fire pit and study spaces, outdoor and indoor gymnasiums, a car-share program and free use of stand-up paddleboards. Leases range from $800 to $1,600 a month, and apartments range from 350 to 1,200 square feet.

Neil Dipaola, CEO and managing partner of Mesa Lane Partners, said The Loop is designed to be much more luxurious than typical student housing in Isla Vista.

“We’re trying to create the un-dormitory, or the anti-dormitory,” Dipaola said. “We want it to feel like you are in a boutique hotel on vacation in Santa Barbara rather than a dorm. It is design-oriented luxury living.”

The Loop also places a huge emphasis on being environmentally friendly and making the building as energy efficient as possible. Dipaola, a UCSB environmental studies alum, said the team set out to find the best possible balance between luxury and sustainability when designing the building.

He said The Loop is the first building in the country to offer phase-change drywall — a type of drywall that melts or freezes according to the room temperature and eliminates the need for air conditioning. This state-of-the-art technology costs 16 times the price of standard drywall.

The LEED-certified building uses LED and compact fluorescent lights and specially designed eco-friendly concrete floors, and is built with local recycled materials whenever possible. Diapola also estimates that the two vehicles offered for residents to loan — a Mini Cooper and a small SUV — will result in 50 fewer cars on the road.

The ground floor of the building will feature an 8,000-square-foot retail area with a Crushcakes & Cafe, a Pizza My Heart and a mini-market.

Situated next to The Loop on Trigo Road, Icon is a 23-unit apartment complex that offers fully furnished units complete with washers and dryers, flat-screen LCD televisions and stainless-steel appliances.

Leases range from $599 to $2,250, depending on the number of residents and the size of the apartment, which can be 350 to 1,200 square feet. The building has been leased out for about two months and will be home to 77 residents by the time fall term at UCSB begins in September, according to property manager Rashad Cabrera.

The complex is expected to be completed by early September, and construction crews are putting on the finishing touches.

Cabrera said the housing development aims to set itself apart from other housing options in Isla Vista by offering students unique amenities.

“It’s definitely luxury living — you’re going to get stainless-steel appliances and hardwood floors, and the units are fully furnished,” Cabrera said. “You’re not going to get anything that nice at the rate we are offering anywhere else in IV.”

The Icon building will include a retail area on its ground floor, a rooftop fitness center and study lounge, and gated parking for cars and bicycles. The development will also offer a car-share program in which residents can use communal cars owned by Icon.

Plaza Lofts, a new apartment building located next to Keg’n’Bottle on Embarcadero del Mar, will also offer fully furnished loft apartments with kitchen appliances, flat-screen televisions, and laundry and delivery service for additional charges.

The building includes 18 units — each with sound-proof insulation, 17-foot ceilings and polished concrete floors. Leases will include a free parking permit for the lot across the street, and free cable and WiFi.

The building will be open for residents to move in starting next month.

Noozhawk intern Patrick Kulp can be reached at .(JavaScript must be enabled to view this email address). Follow Noozhawk on Twitter: @noozhawk, @NoozhawkNews and @NoozhawkBiz. Connect with Noozhawk on Facebook.

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