The Lofting of America

The Lofting of America

By Mimi Zeiger
It seems that everyone is vying for a bit of exposed brickwork.

Pibs. You know who they are and you know who you are. People in Black, or Pibs, as Gail Andersen of Lofts Unlimited calls them. They wear funny glasses and cool shoes, drink double espressos and live in lofts. In the early '90s, when Andersen and her partner, Ray Kaliski, sold their first lofts in San Francisco, it was the Pibs who were their clientele. Who but the noble, artistic sort would find a safe haven in the bare bones chic of unfinished concrete and soaring ceilings? But as Starbucks brings the urban coffeehouse to Middle America, the loft, the domestic equivalent of the latte, is appealing to a range of people who may even wear floral print. The current real estate market finds the demand for lofts to be steadily increasing, booming, even. No longer confined to New York or San Francisco, loft sales are even brisk in Denver, Miami, and Atlanta.

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