In December of 2013, Cull Group said goodbye to our home in the Lowe Mansion on Heritage Hill, and struck out on our own, buying our very own headquarters. After residing for nineteen years on College Avenue, we moved into a mid-century modern building on Wealthy Street in Eastown.
Eastown is an eccentric and established neighborhood. Hip and histori-Cull, it is currently redefining itself as an up-and-coming business district featuring mixed-use buildings and stately houses nestled among some of Grand Rapids’ most iconic businesses. Our building reflects that diverse reputation with a wacky timeline of its own.
The property at 1432 Wealthy St SE was originally the site of a residence—a house like many still standing on adjacent streets. In 1913, you could rent a room here for the reasonable rate of $2 per week. In 1914, the house was listed for sale with the note that “some doctor would do well to consider” buying the house, as it was already equipped for a medical practice. We’re not sure if a doctor bought the house or not, but a few years later you could come to the house to buy half price eggs and prize-winning chickens. We’re partial to turkeys...and modern medical care, for what it’s worth.
It wasn’t until 1962 that the building as we mostly know it today was built—a cool mid-century modern brick building with big windows and a transparent facade. You can still stand at the top of our stairs and watch Wealthy Street traffic buzz by. But don’t do anything weird because people can see inside, too. It’s like a fishbowl. Blub.
Since going on the market in 1962, this building housed a real estate company, the Michigan Heart Association, a dentist’s office, a church, West Michigan Environmental Action Council, and more. We’ve buffed out some of the dents, knocked down a few walls, and brought in our Herman Miller furnishings to make this the best home for our creative agency. We get to be inspired by the hopeful feel of snappy mid-century architecture while being comfortable (and well-fed) among the blossoming businesses around us.
That’s the best thing about Eastown: it’s got something for everyone. We’re near Yesterdog, which started warming their buns in 1976, and the windmill building that is now Brown Butter Creperie and Cafe, your custom dessert manufactory (and our favorite place to spoil our dinner). We can see the unmistakable and weird building that houses Chez Olga. You know the one. It looks like a crazy wizard lives there, but it’s actually Haitian homecooking. With beer and hot toddies just down the street at Harmony Brewing—well, you just can’t beat what we’ve got going here.