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Joey and Kami Scarborough

Former dance studio building restored

By Leigh Anne Butler

In many cities around the country, loft living is on the rise and has contributed to growth in many downtown urban areas. One local couple is breathing new life into a historic downtown building, the former Heart of Dance building located at 4 Sistrunk Street.

Joey and Kami Scarborough purchased the two-story brick building in January from Vicki Atkins Baker.  Miss Vicki, as she is called, taught dance in the building for close to 50 years until the studio was forced to relocate in 2009 when a fire destroyed the Hotel Talisi and caused damage to the neighboring dance studio building. The building had remained unoccupied since the fire in 2009.

“It has been exciting seeing the old Heart of Dance studio come to life again,” building owner, Kami Scarborough stated.

Scarborough had a vision of what she wanted to do with the historic building that is a piece of early Tallassee history. The upstairs portion of the building would become a loft style apartment that she could rent by the night, week or month.  The downstairs would be used for retail space. Renovations began shortly after the purchase of the building. 

The loft apartment was completed about a month ago. “The upstairs loft apartment is ideal for those coming in for the weekend, heading to a game, or needing short term, furnished rental,” Scarborough explained. 
Upstairs living space

The loft offers historic beauty, great open spaces, exposed brick and original tin ceilings along with convenience since it is situated in the heart of Tallassee on the banks of the beautiful Tallapoosa River. The apartment is fully furnished and offers all the conveniences of home.

The downstairs space is going to serve as retail space. “We do not have a specific date for the opening of the retail space, but hope to be open by fall,” Scarborough continued. The retail space will offer boutique clothing, jewelry, accessories and gifts along with handmade home décor items. 

If you are interested in renting the Sistrunk Street loft apartment you can check availability and pricing at

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