Eco-friendly apartments open at Annex at Touraine

Retro meets modern in The Annex at Touraine.  Photo: The Annex at Touraine
Retro meets modern in the new Annex at Touraine.
Photo: The Annex at Touraine

When it comes to design, there are some styles that are best left in the past. And there are several modern aesthetics we strongly believe can’t become outdated soon enough. Sometimes, though, when you get the right person seamlessly blending past with present, the results are inspired and sharp — and found at 1516 and 1518 Spruce Street. The Annex at Touraine has been transformed into a progressive, eco-friendly residence with sleek, classic design behind all that good-for-the-earth technology.

The Annex is next door to the Touraine, the former-hotel-turned-luxury apartments, turned official addition to the Philadelphia Register of Historic Places. While the Touraine has all the grandiose details of an elegant hotel’s lobby, the Annex is an old school walk-up. “But you can still use the front desk at the Touraine, since it’s the Annex at Touraine. It’s like living in the Touraine, but in a sweet apartment,” explains Liz Solms. She’s the owner of the building, and she’s responsible for the whole interior look.

Solms takes her design very seriously. “My husband calls me an incredibly uncompromising person — in a positive way,” she quickly adds. Solms has an unwavering commitment to Environmental Protection Agency guidelines for sustainability. The Annex include water-saving fixtures, bamboo flooring and low-energy refrigerators (that also happen to be mint green with rounded corners, for a retro appeal).

“My approach is all about environmental sustainability,” says Solms. “Then comes classic and interesting design that is the opposite of the granite countertops, Lowes-packaged rooms that are ubiquitous not just in Philly, but all over real estate. This is in direct opposition to that.” You’ll also find subway tiles used for kitchen and bathroom flooring and  backsplashes.

“We’re keeping things simple and classic – it’s not a flash in the pan,” Solms says.

The two buildings hold 21 units, all studios or one-bedrooms. 1518 Spruce already has occupants; 1516 just opened last week.

Annex amenities:

  • Green roof
  • Covered bike storage
  • Outdoor patio
  • Washer and dryer in each one-bedroom apartment
  • Energy Star-rated appliances


  • News
    Entertainment
    Sports
    Lifestyle
    National

    Bloomberg: Going green will grant you longer life…

    Former NYC mayor Michael Bloomberg tells Metro that cities are where fighting global warming can make a difference, and increase people’s lifespan.

    International

    Ban Ki Moon: "Climate change is an issue…

    My message to you is: make your voice heard and your actions count. Change is in the air. Solutions exist. The race is on. It’s time to lead.

    Local

    Earth Day New York food toolkits to help…

    Hundreds of classrooms across New York City already have indoor container gardens that allow students to grow food right where they learn. But Earth Day…

    Local

    NYPD announces street closures for United Nations General…

    The United Nations representatives are in town, and multiple city streets will be closed to traffic through Saturday, Sept. 26. The NYPD is urging those…

    The Word

    The Word: Kris and Bruce Jenner's predictably public…

    They said it wouldn't last — mostly because of that separation almost a year ago. And now, more than a year later, Kris and Bruce…

    Movies

    Antoine Fuqua knows how to kill a man…

    It's amazing what you can get done with the right tools. In designing the climactic battle in "the Equalizer," in which Denzel Washington's retired special…

    Television

    10 Facts you won’t learn about Frankie Grande…

    Frankie Grande is the worst and/or the best. Whether or not you're a fan, you'll want to know these facts about the polarizing player from "Big Brother 16."

    Movies

    Guess Ben Kingsley's worst filmmaking experience

    Here's a fun game: Sir Ben Kingsley has made a lot of films since "Gandhi" in 1982, but at least one of them was a…

    NFL

    3 things that went wrong in Jets loss…

    The Jets have very little room for error with a far-from-explosive offense.

    NFL

    Eli Manning finally feeling good in West Coast…

    The Giants have very little time before their next game, but they still took a moment to relish the team’s biggest offensive outburst since Week 1 of 2013.

    College

    College football top 25 poll: Oregon, Alabama close…

    College football top 25 poll: Oregon, Alabama close in on FSU

    NFL

    Jay Cutler takes Marc Trestman's coaching to heart

    While Jay Cutler turned to an autobiography on the man who would be his head coach, Trestman had personal experience with the player.

    Wellbeing

    Exercising leads to more drinking — and we…

      We’re rewarding ourselves with more than dessert on days we exercise, according to a new study. On days when people exercise more, typically Thursday…

    Wellbeing

    5 gadgets to protect you from sharks, concussions,…

    The medical industry is inundated with devices looking after all aspects of your wellbeing, from monitoring your sleep patterns to warding off shark attacks. We…

    Wellbeing

    Narcissism and the ugly side of vanity

    I have a friend who constantly talks about herself and rarely asks any questions about my life. She is constantly preening, obsessed with her body,…

    Wellbeing

    Lacking new ideas, Apple Watch disappoints health experts

    Technology pundits were quick to predict the demise of most fitness wristbands and smartwatches when the Apple Watch was announced. But health care professionals and…