If you’re a Queen or King of multi-tasking, you’ve met your match in Judi Knight. Judi is a woman who wears many hats. Knight’s hobby all her life had been designing and building, taking on projects over time with ever increasing complexity. In 1998, as CEO of a software company, Knight needed larger office space for her growing business. After searching for some time, Knight bought the abandoned warehouse located on the Inman Park railroad corridor. She had the building rezoned then she designed and renovated it into seven live-work condominiums. The software company office was on the front of the building and Knight made a home for her husband and children in the back with garden space on three sides on what is to be the Beltline. She later built out and sold five additional units from the space left in between.
The Urban Oasis was born when the last of the proprietors’ six children left for college and beyond. Judi Knight, Duane Solem and their three Basset hounds were rattling around their 5,400 sq foot loft built in an old 1950’s cotton sorting warehouse in Inman Park, at once Atlanta’s most historic and hip area which is conveniently located one mile from downtown Atlanta. Their loft at 130 A, Krog Street has always been a preferred local spot for entertaining. It has been used for such events as the Inman Park Neighborhood Association Christmas Party, campaign parties and dances. It has served as a perfect space for movie shoots, commercials, graduations, memorial services and weddings. Of course, this loft is also a favorite for out of town family and friends who love to stay when visiting Atlanta. It was not much of a stretch for Knight to realize other travelers might also want to have a really cool place to stay while they were visiting Atlanta.
Judi and Duane slid into the business quietly, not sure at first how they would like having “strangers” in the house. It didn’t take long for them to realize that they were offering a great service, having fun doing it and making money all at the same time. In fact, Knight says “They have never had any strangers. It has been like having friends over, house guests that your really enjoy”.
Always exploring and pushing her own envelope, Knight has turned her building and design talents towards building blog sites which ties into social media outlets such as Facebook and Twitter. She and business partner Dene Shepherd are really delighted to operate their business, New Tricks.me out of the Urban Oasis. In addition to being a fabulous place to stay, Knight’s use of this gorgeous loft as a bed and breakfast and home to her newly formed New Tricks social media business is a great example of people reinventing themselves. As Knight say’s, “It’s never too late to be the Best in Breed” .