We stayed in the short term rental. The apartment was cheaply built and maintained. Mostly, the front office staff is pretty useless, they never really have an answer for anything real. We are now having billing disputes. 2 months after we moved out and we received a bill for $300. Great location, but I don't know if it's worth the hassle!
I've had two interactions with the leasing office while trying to find a new place to live, both of which were a disappointment. The first time I went to the complex to view an apartment, I spoke with a blonde guy who appeared to have no clue what he was saying. His lack of an ability to follow the conversation was truly remarkable. The unit I saw was ok, but was obviously overpriced (considering both quality, and location). The price sat at around $2.05/sq ft, with a Denver metro average hovering around $1.51/sq ft. At the time, apartment averages in the DTC were $1.63/sq ft. He asked me to come back when there was a 1-bedroom so I did. It was about 4:45 in the afternoon, in which I was dismissively told he was unable to show me the apartment because the sun was too low, despite a NOAA recorded sundown time of 5:34pm. The man was too lazy to show me an apartment and came up with just about the worst excuse he could come up with to not do his job. All in all, I am happy to report that I will NOT be giving this place my business. The office staff comes across as lazy and incompetent, and the units are far too expensive to justify. Their price/area exceeds the area average, but the complex fails to provide something (anything) to warrant the added cost. Their home page states to "indulge in the lifestyle you deserve", and the best way for that to happen is if you avoid Alara and take your money elsewhere.
I enjoy my experience at Alara, especially the helpfulness and friendliness of the staff. Unfortunately, the newly renovated units have a rather serious flaw – at least the 2 bedroom units over the 2-car garage. Those are the only ones I have experience with. Because the main floor is directly over the wonderfully large garage, and the new rennovation includes "hardwood" floors, the entire downstairs floor is extremely cold. Apparently there is little insulation behind the unheated garage and the main floor. I noticed this long before the severe cold of the November 12th, 2014 timeframe. This is likely not a problem for units that don't have the fake hardwood over a garage. Other than that, it's a great place to live.
We moved here in May and it has been a frustrating experience from the start. We have been playing phone tag with management to discuss our disappointments and have given up on having a conversation with the property manager. The day we moved in we received a notice about the pool being closed until late July for maintenance. Information that would have been helpful to have before signing the lease. They gave us 5 days notice, over a holiday weekend and while we were out of town, about not being able up access our garage for a week while they re-paved. The landscaping company recently left holes throughout the property for over four days while they replanted; with kids running around on a nice day, holes in common areas can be easy to miss. Aside from the muddy mess this caused from the consistent over watering of the grass, did no one in the office see the potential safety issue this has the potential to be? And, as I'm sitting here trying to enjoy the pool that is finally open on a Sunday, there is work happening in the pool area; all workers have ear protection and are not blinking an eye at the dust blowing our way. Seeing as how it has taken all summer anyway, could it not wait until a week day? Aside from the management, the homes are great and you can't beat the location. We have heard stories about the difficulties people have had with deposits and 'damages' at move-out and would like to stay here for a while, but it will definitely depend on whether or not the customer service is improved in coming months.
The management has not treated me fairly on several occasions. I had two incidences of water damage that were due to Alara's faulty maintenance. However, they did not compensate me for damages nor did they show any concern. Upon moving out, they unjustly withheld my deposit for carpeting that was noted as dirty upon moving in. The carpet was several years old, and they claim I need to pay full replacement cost. I asked them for the move in checklist noting the condition, however they claim they don't have it. Also, I mentioned that there was damage because of their poor maintenance, however they deny any responsibility. They then resort to threats to get full payment. I would avoid this place.