The Queer Eye reboot’s most iconic and asked-about location has to be the fabulous Fab 5 loft in downtown Atlanta. There’s plenty to read about the actual apartment’s design and style, but suspiciously little — as in, nothing — about where the Fab 5 loft actually is. But we managed to track it down, and in the process found out a whole lot about the building’s connection to the city — along with how you can get a closer look yourself.
The Fab 5 Loft really is in Atlanta — but do the Fab 5 really live there?
The new Queer Eye home base is a legit Atlanta apartment building, one that predates the city’s loft-and-condo craze of the early 2000s. The building now best-known as Fab 5 loft is the Fulton Cotton Mill Lofts, located at the very north end of Atlanta’s Cabbagetown neighborhood. (The Fab 5 themselves don’t actually live in the building; as Bobby Berk recently told Glamour, the cast members all “”live about 30 minutes away in an apartment building.”)
Because of the complex’s immense size and its perimeter fences, it’s impossible to catch a view to match the courtyard establishing shot used in every Queer Eye episode from Google Maps. Instead, enjoy this pair of shots of the Fab 5 loft taken via drone and originally shared by Instagram user @krimsonskyproductions. In addition to the water tower, note the iconic cross-courtyard bridge in the lower left-hand corner of the second photo:
And here’s one more image of the Fab 5 loft courtyard, mirroring the screengrab at the top of the article, originally shared on Instagram by @danielcwiggins:
The complex is among the oldest buildings in Atlanta
The loft complex was constructed in 1881 by the Fulton Cotton Spinning Company, which produced cloth and paper bags. By the early 20th century, the company operated three mills on the site, and had built a considerable number of houses on adjoining land for its 2,600 employees. Those houses were the beginning of what has since become Atlanta’s Cabbagetown neighborhood.
The Fulton Spinning Cotton Company continued to operate in various forms until 1978, when the mill was shuttered. The complex then sat empty for two decades, until construction on the Fulton Cotton Mill Lofts began in 1997. And the elaborate conversion had to be completely restarted following the 1999 Cabbagetown Loft Fire, best remembered today for the daring helicopter rescue of a lone crane operator trapped by the wall of flame:
As for its location within Atlanta itself, here’s a point of reference for non-residents. The Fab 5 loft is just over three miles south of the rainbow crosswalk at 10th Street and Piedmont Avenue, featured in the opening sequence of the Queer Eye reboot’s first episode, and which the city of Atlanta installed in 2017, on the first anniversary of the Pulse nightclub shooting.
You can rent an apartment in the building, but there’s a cheaper way to see it
According to the Fulton Cotton Mill Loft’s site, the building has three different floor plans available for rent — and none of them are quite as expensive as you might fear! A studio apartment starts at $975 per month; a 1 bedroom / 1 bathroom apartment starts at $1,275; and a swanky 2 bedroom / 2 bathroom layout will set you back at least $1,325 per month.
Unfortunately, though you used to be able to take a tour of the building, we’ve learned that they’re no longer available. So your next best option is probably going to be resorting to the #fultoncottonmilllofts hashtag on Instagram — which, to be fair, reveals some pretty great exterior and interior shots. (If design p0rn is your thing, take note.)
Alternately, you can sit back and enjoy the brand-new season of Queer Eye, now streaming on Netflix.
John Sharp is a Starcasm editor. E-mail tips to firstname.lastname@example.org or send on Twitter at @john_starcasm.