There was a ceremony this morning for the grand opening of the second Hilltop apartment complex. Mayor Bob Manley (center) helped cut the red ribbon, along with former Verona Mayor Bob Detore (second from right), who was instrumental in shaping the project a decade ago.
The second Highlands at Hilltop building is, like the first, a luxury rental complex, with 130 one- and two-bedroom apartments, an on-site gym and golf simulator, and a patio complex complete with fire pit, barbecue grills, an outdoor television and a heated swimming pool.
Apartments in the two three-story buildings are priced from $2,400 for one-bedroom units to $2,900 for two-bedroom units. They range from 698 to 1,546 square feet and include stainless steel appliances, granite countertops and beechwood floors. Pets are permitted, although there is an extra monthly fee.
According to the developers, the property is already more than 50% rented. That’s good news for Verona since the fees that we get from the complexes’ payment-in-lieu-of-taxes (PILOT) agreement rise with occupancy. Verona keeps 95% of the PILOT monies and gives just 5% to Essex County; under normal property taxes, the county gets 20%.