Either-Or: A Swanky Boston Condo vs. a 1700s Newport Colonial

It’s amazing what a few miles will do to the market. This month, we compare an airy two-bedroom unit on Columbus Avenue with a historical property in Rhode Island.

Courtesy of Andrew D. Haddad, Northeast Real Estate Group (Boston); Michael Osean, courtesy of Michelle Kirby, Gustave White Sotheby’s International Realty (Newport) (Southborough)

221 Columbus Avenue, #702, BostonSale Price: $2,350,00067 Bridge Street,
Newport, Rhode Island
1,857 square feet
Asking Price
Days on Market
4,678 square feet

Two prime locations, one hefty price tag: Whether you’re looking for a place in the city or by the sea, you’ll no doubt pay a premium—but one offers the clear price-per-square-foot advantage. This corner unit on Columbus Avenue is only a five-minute walk to Back Bay Station and even closer to top-notch restaurants. That may explain why its new owners paid $150,000 over asking price—or $1,265 per square foot—to move in. Soaring ceilings, oversize windows, and top-of-the-line Viking and Miele appliances certainly helped seal the deal.

About 75 miles south of Boston, meanwhile, a Newport property was snapped up by owners who value a more laid-back coastal lifestyle. Located just one block from Newport Harbor, the 1700s Colonial and a second smaller house predate the American Revolution: The main residence was once home to the Newport Post Office, and the other structure was built by one of the first freed slaves in Rhode Island. The two-for-one deal clocked in at $502 per square foot—much less than the Boston condo, with the added amenity of misty salt air.