Waldvogel Commercial Properties and Developer Faisal Khan Show Off the Ponce de Leon

The corner of Campbell Avenue and Second Street is the site of downtown Roanoke’s latest adaptive reuse project. The former Crystal Tower is getting a major facelift as renovations transform it into the Ponce de Leon. Developer Faisal Khan and Waldvogel Commercial Properties showed off the project’s progress on October 3 to members of the news media and community leaders.

Demolition work is complete and restoration efforts continue as crews frame the residential and commercial spaces. Khan is working with the Virginia Department of Historic Resources and the National Park Service to preserve the building’s historic features. Detailed tile work, a grand ballroom, decorative flooring and a mosaic fountain are among the features being restored.

The iconic building has a history almost as old as Roanoke’s. After a fire destroyed the original 1890s structure, the Ponce de Leon Hotel was erected on the corner of Campbell Avenue and Second Street in 1931. The hotel operated for decades as a prime example of art deco architecture and lavish interior design. In the 1970s, the entire building was renamed the Crystal Tower and converted to office space, and the grandeur of its interior was lost for 40 years. Khan purchased the building from Total Action For Progress (TAP) in 2012 and is working to revive the old hotel’s unique charm.

When finished, the Ponce de Leon will offer 90 apartments, ground-floor commercial spaces and a restaurant. Amenities for residents will include an in-house fitness center, a rooftop terrace and convenient parking. “We’re well on track to meet the August 2014 deadline for completion,” said Khan. Leasing is currently available through Waldvogel Commercial Properties.

See how WSLS, WSET, WFIR and The Roanoke Times covered the story.