Downcity Living, with Michael & Rich

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Last week I was lucky to be invited into the home of Michael DeGrandpre and Rich Pezzillo, for a peek into their Westminster Lofts home in the Peerless Building, and chat about what it’s like to live in the heart of Downcity Providence.


Michael and Rich met in Washington DC and moved to Providence last fall and have quickly fallen in love with this city. Rich grew up in Rhode Island and Michael grew up in Maine, and both were eager to get back to their New England roots. Being able to work from home, and keep their jobs from DC, they had the freedom to go anywhere, and decided on Providence. Maybe because many still consider Providence to be a somewhat underrated city, but it has a welcoming community with a friendly vibe. They both felt like it was fast to pick up a group of friends, and they love the eclectic community of residents living in the Peerless Building.


When asked what they love most about living in Downcity, they both immediately (and practically in unison) said, “The food!” While the food scene itself is unbelievable, in quality and variety, they both also noticed a big difference in the service. Unlike big cities, where the service can be very transactional and brusque, in Providence they appreciate that people take pride in their jobs and spend time geting to know you. They especially appreciate places with a smaller concept, but high attention to detail, like one of their neighborhood favorite spots, Figidini. They have also quickly became regulars at places like Ellie’s, Livi’s and Rosalina and appreciate the warm, community vibe of The Eddy.


Living in Downcity Providence also connects them easily with Southern New England and beyond. While they both admitted to missing a major metro system like the one they left in DC, they appreciate that a three hour car drive can get them to Maine, New York City or anywhere on The Cape. TF Green Airport is super close and a breeze to get through; and the train station and major bus lines are both within walking distance of home.


Both Rich and Michael gave a special shout out to the DID team who works hard to keep the neighborhood clean, and quick to respond city programs like the Graffiti Task Force.


Rich summed it up best, “We love it here, couldn’t be happier.”


In true Providence fashion, I’m sure I will now run into these two on the street about 3 times a week. Thanks, guys!

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