Alara Uptown Apartments – Insider Review


The most north point of Uptown Dallas is the area called the West Village.  The first highway entrance to get to the West Village Dallas in Uptown Dallas is found on Blackburn.  As you exit on Blackburn, you will see the Alara Uptown directly on the right. It is right by the highway and takes up the first partial block of this area.  It is on the North west corner of Blackburn and 75.

Completed in 2012, the Alara Uptown is a 5 story mid-rise that blends in perfectly with the area.  It is attractive and tastefully constructed, with muted exterior brick colors of brown and white stone.  It sits directly next to the MONDRIAN CITYPLACE, which is also reviewed in another article.

The location is first of all convenient.  Since it is right next to the highway, you have a very quick access using 75/Central to downtown work or entertainment/shopping to the north.  Additionally, the location is easily walkable to the West Village Dallas, within a couple of minutes (essentially almost across the street).  Further, the location is also quickly walkable to the CityPlace West stop on the Dart Rail.  You can use this to either ride the Dart Rail to downtown Dallas OR catch the Uptown Dallas (Free) trolley.   The Uptown Trolley is a delight for this area, and provides service all up and down McKinney Avenue up until 12 midnight on the weekends (sometimes later).  Think of this as a free taxi service!

Noticing that the location is near the highway, I wanted to be conscious of if there were any noise issues for residents.  I will address that a bit more in the Apartment section, have no fear.

The four key attractions of Uptown Dallas: Uptown Dallas is about walking to as much as possible!  So, how quickly can you walk to these attractions from the Alara Uptown apartments? Here are your answers:

  • West Village – This location is essentially right across the street from the West Village.  Think in terms of a couple of minutes to reach it. Nice!
  • Night Life in Mid-Section – The mid section of Uptown, with the bars and restaurants, is not in walking distance.  Better to take the free trolley or take a quick drive.
  • Uptown Trolley – The Alara is across the street from CityPlace Uptown station, which can get you the Dart Rail access to downtown and access to the free Uptown Trolley
  • Katy Trail – The Alara Uptown apartments is about 7 minutes walking distance to the West Village entrance of the Katy Trail. It’s just down the street on Blackburn, just past the West Village.



The feel of the Alara Uptown is open and understated.  The Alara Uptown just has that “you want to be here” feel.  There does not seem to be a rush of activity at all times, but there is a steady stream of well dressed, attractive young professionals that I noticed checking mail, walking dogs, etc.

Besides driving through the garage to get in, you can also quickly enter right off of Blackburn, through the leasing office. The outer lobby gives a welcoming feel to any guests you might want to have come in. You can go and grab some free coffee at any time using their machines and then head through the secured doors (key fob needed) to enter your apartment.

The Alara Uptown apartments is kept VERY clean.  I noticed that even the garages are well lighted, with few if any oil spots, etc. And, with plenty of spaces.

The Alara Uptown residents have the look of people you would want to get to know.  Very cool looking residents here.  But, the Alara Uptown currently doesn’t have any regular social functions to get to know their neighbors.  Although there are ways to meet a neighbor there (single mailbox room, free coffee, etc.), some planned activities should be added.



Wow, these are nice apartments!  Beautiful, clean and intriguing, with a few unexpected design flair touches. And, with PLENTY of light through the huge windows in the living room.  There are hanging and mounted lights throughout as well, including the ceiling fan/light combo in the living room and tract lighting.

The flooring is hardwood, with the “hand scraped”, design.  The flooring is a step above…and is so much easier to keep clean, because the dark grooves hide dirt!   And, the hardwood is generous…it covers not only the living room, but extends through the kitchen, so your entire outer living areas are all hardwoods!  This gives a super warm feeling.

The kitchen included a huge lighter granite island with plenty of overhang/lip…you could easily put 4 to 6 bar stools on the island in the 2 bedroom. The subway backsplash were a light stone color….I love it when that subway look is used! The oven is way above “standard apartment” fare, with a Whirlpool Accubake electric range top.  There was also very ample space for storage, and a very handy built in desk right next to the kitchen.

The living room on the 2 bedroom floorplan is very open and blends perfectly into the kitchen and other rooms.  There is space enough for 2 couches (one regular and one love seat).   The model had a small almost buffet style table with about 4 chairs.  The balcony from the living room also had enough space for a 3 or 4 chairs.  Did I say how much I LOVE the amount of light here?  J

The bedrooms are VERY well lighted as well, with huge windows. They are large enough for a queen and probably a king bed.  The bedrooms connect into light and bright bathrooms (with granite countertops).  The connected walk in closets were GINORMOUS, with an amazing amount of shelving.  Need a lot of closet space? CHECK!

One touch I noticed that was BRILLIANT and I have never seen this before.  Inside the closet was a small cabinet that sat on the floor. It appeared at first to be more storage.  However, what this turned out to be was a chute into the laundry room that was on the other side, right by the kitchen.  When you have dirty clothes, you simply push them through the closet into the laundry room. Nice!

My only disappointment in the apartment itself was the lack of a stand up shower that makes life easier.  The Alara still has the “tub/shower” combination that is so typical in apartments.

I had mentioned earlier about checking to see if noise was an issue, being close to the highway.  The apartment I was in faced Blackburn, not the highway.  But, I did listen carefully as I approached the balcony.  I didn’t detect any additional street noise while the door was closed.  It seemed very well insulated (at least double paned, if not tripled paned).  The construction took the location into account and incorporated a good noise reduction design.



The amenities of the Alara Uptown seemed to fit the building perfectly.  Well defined, more than enough to take care of your needs, understated and extremely clean.

I had already mentioned the parking above, but let me talk about it further.  It is not unusual for a newer design in Uptown Dallas to have an interior parking garage for its residents.  But, what IS unusual is for it to have SUCH a well-lighted garage and with generous space for guests.  I feel that the Alara Uptown apartments has the cleanest and best lit garage in Uptown Dallas.  Your guests will feel safe here, not just you.

The first floor business lounge is huge!  It’s well lighted and has plenty of space, couches and tables to sprawl out as a group or just work alone, with free wi fi.  Free Coffee is also available. There is also an included Mac and PC if you don’t have a computer. Can we say “mobile office”?  J

The pool is just the right size. It has the standard pool, but also has an additional lounging pool with about 6 IN WATER lounging chairs that fully extend.  This is definitely meant to be more of a social/sunning pool vs. a “get your workout in” pool.  It also includes fountains, many other chairs, and the shared grill to use for bbq pleasures.   Great way to meet a friend…fix some extra bbq on the grill and let the smell take care of bringing you new friends.

The gym is clean and average size. It includes about 6 treadmills, a limited amount of barbells and kettle bells.  There were a few machines as well.  There is not much to speak of in terms of free weights.  You would definitely have to go to an outside gym to bench press, etc.

There is also a beautiful party room, with flat screen tvs.   It was very large and VERY clean.  It didn’t look like it had ever been used.  It is available for renting as well.

Pets are welcomed at the Alara Uptown apartments. But, I didn’t notice much accomadations for them.  There was no interior dog park or dog areas.  Residents with pets can, however, go right outside the leasing office for some greenery on the side that borders the Mondrian.  (see photos for more information)

Since the location is right next to the Mondrian, it shares the same almost directly connected retail areas as the Mondrian.  These include the following:

  • Dry cleaners
  • Yoga studio
  • Chinese Food (CrimSon)
  • Italian Food
  • frozen yogurt  (Yumilicious)
  • Great local coffee shop
  • Several other places as well



The Alara Uptown apartments is a recently built and very clean residence to consider in Uptown Dallas.  The interiors are beautiful and understated. They don’t scream for attention, they simply earn it.     The amenities are ample and provide most of what you expect in a great Uptown Dallas residence.  In the case of parking, more than you would expect. In the case of gym, maybe a little less.

The location in North Uptown is easily in QUICK walking distance to 3 of the 4 key features of Uptown Dallas, including the West Village Dallas shopping center, the Katy Trail (West Village entrance), and the Uptown Trolley, which can get you to most of the rest of Uptown Dallas.  The only thing you are not within quick walking distance are the bars, which are easily solved by taking the free trolley or a 5 minute quick car/taxi ride.

The Alara Uptown is on the higher medium price point for Uptown Dallas.  The typical one bedroom starts in the $1400s.


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