LukePhillips

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  • Reviews 13
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Reviews

4/5 rating details
  • Neighborly Spirit 5/5
  • Safe & Sound 4/5
  • Clean & Green 3/5
  • Pest Free 3/5
  • Peace & Quiet 2/5
  • Eating Out 4/5
  • Nightlife 3/5
  • Parks & Recreation 5/5
  • Shopping Options 4/5
  • Gym & Fitness 3/5
  • Internet Access 4/5
  • Lack of Traffic 2/5
  • Cost of Living 3/5
  • Resale or Rental Value 3/5
  • Public Transport 5/5
  • Medical Facilities 3/5
  • Schools 3/5
  • Childcare 4/5
Just now

"Active Coastline Community"

Immediately to the south of Alki beach, and bisected by a number of West Seattle's most popular parks and natural areas, lies the historic Fauntleroy neighborhood. Nestled comfortably within Fauntleroy Cove, this quaint area frequently bustles with ferry traffic from neighboring Vashon Island and Southworth, and boasts spectacular views of the Olympics on a clear day. Nearby, the eponymous Fauntleroy Park offers acres of wooded trails for hiking, for those wishing to (briefly) escape the allure of the Pacific Northwest coastline. Immediately to the north, Lincoln Park offers a wide variety of family-friendly activities, though perhaps it is best known for being home to the infamous Colman Pool, which pipes in saltwater directly from the Puget Sound before it is heated to eighty-five degrees by a vintage gas-fired boiler. Directly outside the pool grounds, a path snakes along the beach north toward Alki, as well as south and into Fauntleroy proper, and is frequently occupied by cyclists, families and enthusiasts of all types on a sunny day.

Housing in and around the Fauntleroy area tend to reflect higher property and home values, largely due to the extended coastline and proximity to Alki and surrounding beaches, and convenient access to Vashon and Blake Islands. Median household incomes in Fauntleroy exceed the city average considerably. Potential renters and homeowners may be prepared to fork over a little bit more for their slice of beach-side security, but for ferry commuters and Boeing workers alike, the area provides a nice break from the fast-paced Seattle hubbub. Condos and apartments are by far the neighborhood standard, though the prospective homeowner is likely to find a number of nicer, older homes typically with three bedrooms or less. Buyers beware, though; if the sound of a plane or two (or three) flying overhead causes the hair on your neck to stand on end, you may wish to look elsewhere.

The coastline around Fauntleroy boasts a wide variety of fun activities and eateries for those seeking entertainment. Head to Endolyne Joe's for breakfast or lunch on 45th for a traditional diner-like experience at a unique little spot commemorating the place where the old streetcar station used to be. Afterward, head inland a few blocks to the Westwood Village mall for all of your shopping wants and needs, or peruse along the coastline boutiques if that's your fancy.
Recommended for
  • Professionals
  • Families with kids
  • Retirees
4/5 rating details
  • Neighborly Spirit 4/5
  • Safe & Sound 4/5
  • Clean & Green 5/5
  • Pest Free 3/5
  • Peace & Quiet 3/5
  • Eating Out 5/5
  • Nightlife 4/5
  • Parks & Recreation 3/5
  • Shopping Options 4/5
  • Gym & Fitness 3/5
  • Internet Access 4/5
  • Lack of Traffic 2/5
  • Cost of Living 2/5
  • Resale or Rental Value 4/5
  • Public Transport 4/5
  • Medical Facilities 3/5
  • Schools 3/5
  • Childcare 3/5
Just now

"Shoreside Community to its Fullest"

Named for its position on the shores of Lake Union, Westlake is defined by its crowding condos and some of the most fashionable boutiques in Seattle. It truly is a shoreline community, where houseboats and seaplanes are common enough and the Lake’s central focus also makes it a marketable point for Seafood restaurants. The seaplanes make their takeoff from Kenmore Air Seaplane Terminal, so if you’re seeking out this uncommon site, you’ll know where to find it. There’s some utility here, too, because getting to the San Juan Islands or the Olympic Peninsula is easy if you’re going by air.

The main roads in Westlake fill up during drive time because they lead to the popular areas for work and play. No matter if you’re trying to get to Seattle Center, downtown, or Pike Place Market, Dexter Avenue and Westlake Avenue are starting points. Of course, the accessibility also means that this neighborhood is on several major public transportation routes, though the pricey offerings tend to attract people who prefer their own transportation (which is somewhat ill-advised because parking can be pretty terrible in this area).

I sort of hate to mention it because there’s so much more to the neighborhood than movie appearances, but this is the neighborhood in which Tom Hanks’ character was said to reside in Sleepless In Seattle. There, I said it, it’s done, now let’s just move on.
Recommended for
  • Professionals
  • Singles
5/5 rating details
  • Neighborly Spirit 4/5
  • Safe & Sound 4/5
  • Clean & Green 5/5
  • Pest Free 2/5
  • Peace & Quiet 5/5
  • Eating Out 3/5
  • Nightlife 2/5
  • Parks & Recreation 5/5
  • Shopping Options 2/5
  • Gym & Fitness 3/5
  • Internet Access 4/5
  • Lack of Traffic 2/5
  • Cost of Living 2/5
  • Resale or Rental Value 4/5
  • Public Transport 2/5
  • Medical Facilities 3/5
  • Schools 4/5
  • Childcare 3/5
Just now

"Shiny, Happy People"

Sunset Hill is pretty uppity. It’s an area that’s close enough to be sucked into the mini-city that is Ballard, but the residents simply won’t have it and have done all they can to formalize a separation, even if the common knowledge is that they’re one in the same. The community derives its name from the Sunset Hill Viewpoint Park, which is aptly named for its awesome views of the Olympic Mountains, Elliott Bay and Shilshole Bay. For comparison, the Golden Gates Park offers more relative seclusion, but it’s still a well-kept park that’s busy with kids when the weather is nice.

Houses in Sunset Hill are gorgeous and very well maintained. Residents get the best of all Seattle has to offer: fresh air and greenery and views of the mountains and oceans to kill for. Living in such a great area definitely comes at a price; housing costs are some of the highest in the city of Seattle.

Commerce is low-key in Sunset Hills, offering only the necessities. You’re not going to find a lot of boutiques and nightlife here—that’s what downtown is for, as far as the residents are concerned. And why wouldn’t they think that? They’re close enough to downtown to get the best of it all.
Recommended for
  • Professionals
  • Families with kids
  • Retirees
1/5 rating details
  • Neighborly Spirit 3/5
  • Safe & Sound 2/5
  • Clean & Green 1/5
  • Pest Free 3/5
  • Peace & Quiet 3/5
  • Eating Out 1/5
  • Nightlife 2/5
  • Parks & Recreation 1/5
  • Shopping Options 1/5
  • Gym & Fitness 2/5
  • Internet Access 3/5
  • Lack of Traffic 4/5
  • Cost of Living 5/5
  • Resale or Rental Value 1/5
  • Public Transport 2/5
  • Medical Facilities 2/5
  • Schools 2/5
  • Childcare 2/5
Just now

"Not Without Its Charm"

South Park is affordable—for a reason. The land and waters are known to be contaminated by industrial runoff from the surrounding areas (which contributes to the contrasting feeling of dryness and a comparative absence of foliage) and the neighborhood has high crime rates. Business is in jeopardy in South Park, with a residential community that’s generally below the poverty line and the main bridge that connects this neighborhood to the rest of the city having been shut down in the last few months. Consequentially, the people living here don’t have money to pass around to businesses and there’s no new traffic coming in from across the bridge to bring money into the equation.

Industry is the focal point in South Park, and as such the residences—most of which are simple, run-down, and appealing for their close proximity to a place of work—are populated with minorities, especially Hispanics who have made their mark on local retail. Housing styles range from condos to brick and mid-century architecture. Yards tend to be small, but those at the newer developments seem to magically avoid the industrial toxicity and achieve a modest, oasis-like beauty. While the realities of South Park’s hardships linger, it’s not entirely without its charm and appeal.
Recommended for
  • Professionals
  • Families with kids
4/5 rating details
  • Neighborly Spirit 5/5
  • Safe & Sound 4/5
  • Clean & Green 3/5
  • Pest Free 3/5
  • Peace & Quiet 3/5
  • Eating Out 4/5
  • Nightlife 3/5
  • Parks & Recreation 5/5
  • Shopping Options 4/5
  • Gym & Fitness 3/5
  • Internet Access 4/5
  • Lack of Traffic 3/5
  • Cost of Living 3/5
  • Resale or Rental Value 3/5
  • Public Transport 3/5
  • Medical Facilities 3/5
  • Schools 3/5
  • Childcare 3/5
Just now

"Great park, great community"

Seward Park gets its name from the park that the neighborhood centers on—and for good reason too, it’s one of the biggest parks in the city! The park itself has a network of trails used by hikers, bikers, and walkers. The woodsy areas are full of trees, but open areas for picnics and an amphitheater are also present. Geographically located on a peninsula that juts into Lake Washington, the shorelines and beaches are pristine and active with beach goers.

Most of the neighborhood is a quiet residential area with historic homes and a tightly knit community of neighbors who have lived here for years—in no small part a product of the presence of some of the oldest and most active synagogues in Seattle. There are some smaller businesses that reflect the diversity of backgrounds and elasticities that have settled in here and most notable are an Asian and Jewish influence, but prevalence doesn’t mean limitation—you’ll find anything from Mexican to Greek to Indian to Thai to Somali influences in the businesses and citizenry.

Seward Park is a regular stop for public transportation, and the light rail that runs into SeaTac Airport and downtown makes this area very accessible for both residents and visitors.
Recommended for
  • Professionals
  • Singles
  • Families with kids
  • Retirees
3/5 rating details
  • Neighborly Spirit 5/5
  • Safe & Sound 4/5
  • Clean & Green 5/5
  • Pest Free 3/5
  • Peace & Quiet 5/5
  • Eating Out 4/5
  • Nightlife 3/5
  • Parks & Recreation 4/5
  • Shopping Options 3/5
  • Gym & Fitness 3/5
  • Internet Access 3/5
  • Lack of Traffic 1/5
  • Cost of Living 3/5
  • Resale or Rental Value 3/5
  • Public Transport 4/5
  • Medical Facilities 3/5
  • Schools 3/5
  • Childcare 3/5
Just now

"Green Streets, Active Comunity"

The environment in Seaview is tranquil with ample greenery. It’s a quiet neighborhood, where most of the outgoing or through traffic is the bus line. This is a close-knit community with an effective and active neighborhood watch program, made up of young families and their pets. There is a lot of growth in the Seaview, with lots of condos coming up and other development, which is met by marginal degrees of concern and excitement. While more people living in Seaview is sure to attract more businesses (notably a pizza restaurant and a tavern on the way) and more city attention (like a park in development), these attractions are sure to also bring more people into the neighborhood.

I’m definitely a fan of Guadalajara, a family-friendly Mexican joint off of California Avenue, and I usually suggest it if I’m visiting over here. I’m a big fan of their carne asada and camorones saute, but if you’re just dropping in for a drink the appetizers and margaritas are pretty good. Like other Mexican restaurants, they serve chips and salsa, but it’s all very much more authentic (and delicious) than one of the Mexican chain restaurants like Azteca. They’ve got a great selection of vegetarian selections, too!
Recommended for
  • Professionals
  • Families with kids
3/5 rating details
  • Neighborly Spirit 3/5
  • Safe & Sound 3/5
  • Clean & Green 3/5
  • Pest Free 3/5
  • Peace & Quiet 3/5
  • Eating Out 4/5
  • Nightlife 3/5
  • Parks & Recreation 1/5
  • Shopping Options 5/5
  • Gym & Fitness 3/5
  • Internet Access 4/5
  • Lack of Traffic 3/5
  • Cost of Living 2/5
  • Resale or Rental Value 3/5
  • Public Transport 3/5
  • Medical Facilities 3/5
  • Schools 4/5
  • Childcare 3/5
Just now

"Retail and Residences"

Roxhill is mostly residential areas, with a focal point of retail commerce. Westwood Village in Roxhill is a strip-mall resurgence in stark contrast to the closed shops and mischievous elements in play a decade before. Westwood Village has attracted many retail standbys like Marshalls and Target, as well as strip mall necessities like Barnes & Noble. The real leverage and value that Westwood Village brings to Roxhill is a place to shop that’s not far from home, even though it services much of West Seattle by being a stop on the bus routes.

Roxhill isn’t all about retail, there are a lot of great areas suitable for field sports, picnics, and just getting some outdoor time. These green areas are interconnected between themselves and with others throughout the city, which add to a certain community spirit. Compounding the neighborly appeal are a few good schools and frequent events put on by, in, and for the neighborhood. It’s definitely a great place to have a family, if your financial situation meets the requisite amount to meet the cost of living.

There are a couple of restaurants that I usually try to stop into when I’m in Roxhill. On my short list is Giannoni’s Pizzeria in Westwood Villiage, where I get a huge slice of pizza with all kinds of specialty toppings for a couple of bucks. For dinner, head to Vatsana Thai Restaurant for ginger slamn and some exceptional pad see iew. It’s got great décor and food, even if the location feels like a strip mall.
Recommended for
  • Professionals
  • Families with kids
3/5 rating details
  • Neighborly Spirit 3/5
  • Safe & Sound 3/5
  • Clean & Green 4/5
  • Pest Free 3/5
  • Peace & Quiet 3/5
  • Eating Out 2/5
  • Nightlife 2/5
  • Parks & Recreation 5/5
  • Shopping Options 2/5
  • Gym & Fitness 4/5
  • Internet Access 3/5
  • Lack of Traffic 3/5
  • Cost of Living 3/5
  • Resale or Rental Value 4/5
  • Public Transport 3/5
  • Medical Facilities 3/5
  • Schools 3/5
  • Childcare 3/5
Just now

"Renovated Area with Ample Parks"

Rainier Beach’s tough reputation used to be valid—no longer. Massive renovations had led to a thousand working-class residents having homes in the area , deteriorated properties began to go for affordable rates and businesses began to populate vacant properties, attracted by low rates. Rainier Beach has access to a few parks and, as the name might imply, a shoreline against Lake Washington. The parks are very inviting, especially when the weather is nice and bikers have their pick of trails that run all along the main roads. At the Hutchinson Park, you’ll find the right type of court for most popular sports, and with a Japanese-style garden with streams, ponds, and walkways called the Kubota Gardens. Lakeridge Park is slightly more on the wilderness side than other parks in the area, offering a forested trail that runs a mile around a so-called canyon. At Beer Sheva Park, there are tennis courts and an area to launch your boat into the lake, but also a children’s big toy and area to picnic in. A testament to the area’s affluence, the Rainier Yacht Club offers very pleasant facilities suitable for parties and receptions, and comes complete with a waterfront view into Lake Washington.
Recommended for
  • Professionals
  • Families with kids
4/5 rating details
  • Neighborly Spirit 4/5
  • Safe & Sound 3/5
  • Clean & Green 4/5
  • Pest Free 3/5
  • Peace & Quiet 3/5
  • Eating Out 4/5
  • Nightlife 4/5
  • Parks & Recreation 5/5
  • Shopping Options 3/5
  • Gym & Fitness 3/5
  • Internet Access 4/5
  • Lack of Traffic 3/5
  • Cost of Living 2/5
  • Resale or Rental Value 4/5
  • Public Transport 3/5
  • Medical Facilities 3/5
  • Schools 3/5
  • Childcare 3/5
Just now

"The Oldest Neighborhood Has Aged Well"

The oldest neighborhood in West Seattle, North Admiral is so named for its orientation to the main road, Admiral Way S.W. The real estate market is up to date, offering both homes and condos to potential buyers, but for a premium. It’s a friendly neighborhood, with close proximity to the action of West Seattle and the splendor and summer activity at Alki Beach. The residential neighborhoods demonstrate a certain type of camaraderie evident in the local bars and restaurants where the neighbors hang out. Other distractions include the multi-use theater that hosts comedy, movies, musical performances, and a monthly showing of the cult classic Rocky Horror Picture Show—an utter necessity for the uninitiated.

The stores in the area run more toward the stylish and the quirky, but with local flair (including the prerequisite Seattle coffee shops). Grocery shoppers have the regular fare to choose from, with the addition of the Metropolitan Market, which makes it a veritable mission to bring interesting ingredients to the area. The North Admiral nightlife offers variety and diversity in pricing and theme. Essentially, the neighborhood is self-sufficient (if not self contained), which is meant to be a good thing in this context, because by contrast, the traffic for to- and from-work commutes can be pretty brutal on Admiral Way.
Recommended for
  • Professionals
  • Families with kids
  • Retirees
3/5 rating details
  • Neighborly Spirit 3/5
  • Safe & Sound 2/5
  • Clean & Green 2/5
  • Pest Free 3/5
  • Peace & Quiet 2/5
  • Eating Out 3/5
  • Nightlife 3/5
  • Parks & Recreation 1/5
  • Shopping Options 1/5
  • Gym & Fitness 1/5
  • Internet Access 4/5
  • Lack of Traffic 2/5
  • Cost of Living 3/5
  • Resale or Rental Value 4/5
  • Public Transport 4/5
  • Medical Facilities 3/5
  • Schools 3/5
  • Childcare 3/5
Just now

"SoDo Development Target"

Maybe the most important part of the Industrial District is SoDo, the common name for the area south of downtown Seattle. SoDo actually comprises just the northwest corner of this neighborhood, but it has some of the most important attractions in the whole area like Safeco Field, where the Seattle Mariners play their home games and Qwest Field, which the Seattle Seahawks and the Seattle Sounders Football Club call home field.

The area has an unglamorous history in Seattle, having been developed in the early 1900s, most of the buildings were built on the dredged mudflats and lowlands that were once part of Elliott Bay. As a consequence of the development, the land that it’s built on is prone to liquefaction, which makes this area more vulnerable than most to earthquake damage. Presumably, stabilization efforts are in consideration to compliment the somewhat controversial ideas to develop housing and residencies as well as non-industrial businesses in the Industrial District. This idea is met with concern from owners of industrial businesses in the area who may have to accommodate changes in zoning laws or any number of regulations that would make the area more inviting for residents and businesses. Still, the area has undeniable appeal for development south of downtown.
Recommended for
  • Professionals
  • Singles
1/5 rating details
  • Neighborly Spirit 3/5
  • Safe & Sound 2/5
  • Clean & Green 1/5
  • Pest Free 4/5
  • Peace & Quiet 1/5
  • Eating Out 1/5
  • Nightlife 1/5
  • Parks & Recreation 1/5
  • Shopping Options 1/5
  • Gym & Fitness 1/5
  • Internet Access 1/5
  • Lack of Traffic 3/5
  • Cost of Living 5/5
  • Resale or Rental Value 1/5
  • Public Transport 2/5
  • Medical Facilities 3/5
  • Schools 1/5
  • Childcare 1/5
Just now

"An Engineering Feat"

Harbor Island isn’t much of a neighborhood, really. It’s more like an awesome feat of science and engineering, being an artificial island made (initially) from about twenty-five million cubic yards of earth displaced from Dearborn Street for industrial uses. (Parenthetically, that made it the world’s largest artificial island at the time of its construction in the early 1900s, then just an artificial island when the title was snatched away by a California construction, and then it was back on top again after an expansion. That’s a lot of history for such a little space.) Originally built by the Puget Sound Bridge and Drudging Company (inviting name, amirite?), the uses for this floating facility have included things like shipbuilding, petroleum storage, lead smelting, metal fabrication, and cargo shipping. Warehouses, labs, and other administrative or operational necessities were eventually constructed.

The island continues to be an operationally preferable spot for a number of businesses and organizations, such as Todd Pacific Shipyards and some of the Port of Seattle’s terminals and the waters surrounding Harbor Island have enough shellfish and crabs to support a notable fishing industry presence. There’s not a notable residence on the island, but the surrounding area’s residential areas offer sufficient housing, and the island’s close proximity makes for a really easy commute for those that work here.
3/5 rating details
  • Neighborly Spirit 4/5
  • Safe & Sound 4/5
  • Clean & Green 5/5
  • Pest Free 3/5
  • Peace & Quiet 5/5
  • Eating Out 2/5
  • Nightlife 2/5
  • Parks & Recreation 5/5
  • Shopping Options 3/5
  • Gym & Fitness 3/5
  • Internet Access 3/5
  • Lack of Traffic 4/5
  • Cost of Living 3/5
  • Resale or Rental Value 3/5
  • Public Transport 1/5
  • Medical Facilities 3/5
  • Schools 3/5
  • Childcare 3/5
Just now

"Deceptively Quiet"

The Meadowbrook area is characterized by the open fields at its center, but also features a collection of recreational and community areas: the Meadowbrook Community Center, Homeward Park, a six-lane swimming pool, and the Nathan Hale High School, a long bike trail that follows the lake’s shore, Cedar Park, Matthews Beach Park, Meadowbrook Park (a full sized park with play fields and tennis courts) and of course a long and inviting shoreline on Lake Washington. Obviously, there’s stuff to do in Meadowbrook.

While almost completely residential (and diverse at that—from old vacation and farm homes to modern updates), there are some small restaurants and other businesses to compliment the residential buildings. A recent commercial development has brought grocery stores to the residents, instead of the other way around.

The neighborhood has a semi-false identity brought on by Lake City Way and its abundance of overwhelming commercialism—and not even everyday commercialism like boutiques and restaurants, but gross, sprawling, businesses that you don’t need everyday like auto dealers. A willingness to penetrate into the areas away from Lake City Way reveals a serene place to just live, complete with shrubbery, yards, and fruit trees that offer a throwback to when the neighborhood wasn’t nearly as developed.
Recommended for
  • Families with kids
  • Retirees
5/5 rating details
  • Neighborly Spirit 4/5
  • Safe & Sound 3/5
  • Clean & Green 4/5
  • Pest Free 3/5
  • Peace & Quiet 2/5
  • Eating Out 5/5
  • Nightlife 5/5
  • Parks & Recreation 5/5
  • Shopping Options 5/5
  • Gym & Fitness 3/5
  • Internet Access 4/5
  • Lack of Traffic 2/5
  • Cost of Living 4/5
  • Resale or Rental Value 3/5
  • Public Transport 4/5
  • Medical Facilities 3/5
  • Schools 3/5
  • Childcare 3/5
Just now

"Artsy, inspired and active"

The recent center of Seattle’s LGBT community, Broadway continues to serve as a cultural and social center, offering a variety of bars, restaurants, eateries, and boutiques. Broadway is continually expressive and inspiring, with marked patterns and features that lend character to the city. Some of those interesting marks include contributions from Seattle’s arts commission, like the Broadway Tilework, which serves to brighten the street with informative and colorful tiles to indicate buildings’ addresses and the Broadway Dance Steps (contributed by Jack Mackie), which illustrate to passers by the correct way to do the rumba, tango, or foxtrot via bronze footsteps in the sidewalks.

Broadway is definitely about interesting places to enjoy, but there are definitely those that stand out. Broadway is privileged enough to have the local incarnation of The Crypt, which is a shop for adults that carries media, toys, and sexy costumes and clothing, and definitely acts as a living, breathing homage to the LGBT presence. Dilettante Chocolates serves fine truffles, mochas, biscotti, and other sweets from their local storefront in Broadway. The Honey Hole is a great deli-by-day, tavern-by-night sort of a spot. You won’t be disappointed to get something with Turkey, but the fun sandwich names are almost as amusing as your friend is after a couple of dirnks.
Recommended for
  • Professionals
  • Singles
  • Families with kids
5/5 rating details
  • Neighborly Spirit 4/5
  • Safe & Sound 3/5
  • Clean & Green 3/5
  • Pest Free 3/5
  • Peace & Quiet 3/5
  • Eating Out 5/5
  • Nightlife 4/5
  • Parks & Recreation 5/5
  • Shopping Options 5/5
  • Gym & Fitness 3/5
  • Internet Access 5/5
  • Lack of Traffic 2/5
  • Cost of Living 3/5
  • Resale or Rental Value 3/5
  • Public Transport 5/5
  • Medical Facilities 3/5
  • Schools 5/5
  • Childcare 3/5
Just now

"Youthful spirit, youthful residents"

University District is a diverse and vibrant neighborhood in all respects, but as the neighborhood’s name may suggest, it leans heavily toward accommodating the college-age residents. Centered on 45th Ave NE (colloquially referred to as nicknamed “the Ave”) and University Way NE, there is no shortage of restaurants, bars, theaters, coffee shops, book stores, and shopping. University District is not surprisingly home to the University of Washington, and the district is largely an extension of the campus. Constantly sporting events to celebrate, the neighborhood is focused on socializing. Husky Stadium is located on the south side of the neighborhood, right on Lake Washington. The Ave is rife with things to do- Finn MacCools, an Irish pub, is a popular hangout with Happy Hour, karaoke events, and a trivia night. Portage Bay Café is always full for brunch on the weekends, and Dick’s Drive In is a Seattle staple. There are also many ethnic restaurants, including Shultzy’s Sausage, the very highly regarded Thai Tom, and Mamma Melina Ristorante. The neighborhood is a very convenient residential area, as public transportation is readily available all over the district. There is also a wide variety of shopping, including a year-round farmers’ market, multiple record stores, and several boutiques.
Recommended for
  • Professionals
  • Singles
  • Families with kids
5/5 rating details
  • Neighborly Spirit 5/5
  • Safe & Sound 4/5
  • Clean & Green 4/5
  • Pest Free 3/5
  • Peace & Quiet 3/5
  • Eating Out 5/5
  • Nightlife 4/5
  • Parks & Recreation 5/5
  • Shopping Options 5/5
  • Gym & Fitness 3/5
  • Internet Access 5/5
  • Lack of Traffic 3/5
  • Cost of Living 3/5
  • Resale or Rental Value 3/5
  • Public Transport 4/5
  • Medical Facilities 3/5
  • Schools 3/5
  • Childcare 3/5
Just now

"Comfy, Active, Lively"

The Ravenna area is comfortable and popular because of its proximity to downtown Seattle and central location to other points of interest in the city. Still, Ravenna maintains a small neighborhood feel with all of the amenities to maintain a self-sufficient character. Residents have access to a wide variety of grocery stores that cater to all sorts of tastes and economic positions, such as Whole Foods and Safeway, as well as enjoying a close proximity to a couple of year-round Farmers’ markets.

There are lots of recreational options like Green Lake Park, Cowan Park and Ravenna Park all being within walking or biking distance. Ravenna is home to several neighborhood restaurants that are worth your time, like the Ravenna Alehouse, Pub at Third Place and Third Place Books, The Varsity Restaurant and Diner, and Zeek’s Pizza. Third Place Books also serves as a community center to a certain extent because people tend to populate the store and feel at home reading, working on their computers, drinking coffee drinks, and enjoy the frequent events like book signings, poetry readings, and open mic nights. It’s a family friendly neighborhood where you’ll often see people walking their dogs and kids in strollers. A very friendly area for bikers and pedestrians.
Recommended for
  • Professionals
  • Singles
  • Families with kids
5/5 rating details
  • Neighborly Spirit 3/5
  • Safe & Sound 2/5
  • Clean & Green 2/5
  • Pest Free 3/5
  • Peace & Quiet 2/5
  • Eating Out 5/5
  • Nightlife 5/5
  • Parks & Recreation 2/5
  • Shopping Options 5/5
  • Gym & Fitness 3/5
  • Internet Access 4/5
  • Lack of Traffic 2/5
  • Cost of Living 2/5
  • Resale or Rental Value 3/5
  • Public Transport 5/5
  • Medical Facilities 3/5
  • Schools 3/5
  • Childcare 3/5
Just now

"Action Hub"

Pioneer Square is where commerce, culture, and high-tech companies live. Cafes, bars and galleries all occupy this little area offers something for everyone to see, if not purchase. This is where the Underground Seattle tour begins, which will pair your group up with a guide to see the original main streets of Seattle—hidden beneath the ground level of the modern city. Pioneer Place Park is the main respite offered to people who need fresh air and a change from the stacks of brick, mortar, glass, and concrete. The Park also houses some pieces pertinent to Native culture, including a Tlingit totem pole.

Safety is a semi-concern in Pioneer Square. During daylight hours, you’re pretty safe regardless. During nighttime hours, the homeless population is attracted to the area for social services offices that are located here. If you plan to visit the trendy nightclubs and bars, you might feel safest to travel in a group.

Pioneer Square is a hub of activity and a central point in the Seattle area, and as such has a transportation system in place which is better than other areas. That said, there are condos in the area to be had, but they’re definitely on the expensive side. You should really, really want to live in pioneer square before you consider looking.
Recommended for
  • Professionals
  • Singles
4/5 rating details
  • Neighborly Spirit 3/5
  • Safe & Sound 4/5
  • Clean & Green 4/5
  • Pest Free 4/5
  • Peace & Quiet 3/5
  • Eating Out 2/5
  • Nightlife 2/5
  • Parks & Recreation 3/5
  • Shopping Options 1/5
  • Gym & Fitness 3/5
  • Internet Access 4/5
  • Lack of Traffic 3/5
  • Cost of Living 4/5
  • Resale or Rental Value 3/5
  • Public Transport 3/5
  • Medical Facilities 3/5
  • Schools 5/5
  • Childcare 3/5
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"College Town, Ready to Pounce"

North Queen Anne is a residential area that’s either a respite from the rapid pace of its southern activity center in Lower Queen Anne, or else full of people ready to pounce on it, depending on one’s perception. Quite a few condos and apartments are set up here, in part to hold as a stalwart fortress for the families who have settled, in part to accommodate the multitudes of students and faculty that migrate to and fro to the Seattle Pacific University.

A private Christian school, Seattle Pacific University maintains a lively campus culture including a portion of the aforementioned housing, in the form of furnished apartments accompanying residencies for its students. Though numerous and well-utilize, the greater historical influence lies not with the apartments, but with the Queen Anne architectural style which was used in many of the mansions built in the area by Seattle’s culture elite.

Students seem to be everywhere in North Queen Anne, and if not on the lawns at Seattle Pacific, then certainly frolicking at David Rodgers Park along with local families when the weather brightens up. It’s a very inviting space for everyone and a respite between the crowding of houses and apartment stacks which offers a big toy and tennis courts.
Recommended for
  • Professionals
  • Singles
3/5 rating details
  • Neighborly Spirit 3/5
  • Safe & Sound 3/5
  • Clean & Green 3/5
  • Pest Free 3/5
  • Peace & Quiet 3/5
  • Eating Out 4/5
  • Nightlife 3/5
  • Parks & Recreation 3/5
  • Shopping Options 2/5
  • Gym & Fitness 3/5
  • Internet Access 3/5
  • Lack of Traffic 3/5
  • Cost of Living 4/5
  • Resale or Rental Value 2/5
  • Public Transport 3/5
  • Medical Facilities 3/5
  • Schools 3/5
  • Childcare 3/5
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"Middle class, on its way to the top!"

Madrona is a gentrifying residential neighborhood with a history of ethnic diversity. In the past, industries like coal mining and ship building attracted specific ethnic groups, whose presence can be felt here. Eastern Madrona is seen as high-end side, while the west side is made up of mostly middle class families who are steadily cashing in on increasing property values.

Definitely an area with some great variety in their food selections, there are a couple of places that you’ll want to be sure to hit. I like Lalibela, an Ethiopian restaurant where the proportions are generous and the food is authentic. The atmosphere harkens a hunters’ lodge, with chairs covered in animal skins, bamboo surfaces, music, and an Ethiopian wait staff. I’m a big fan of their Zilzil Tibs and the Shero Wot is delicious. For dessert, go to Cupcake Royale, where the flavors are great and the choices are impossible. Everything looks and smells too good to choose between, so be prepared to grab a box. Finally, for a distinct Latin flair, I like to sit down at Dulces Latin Bistro. It’s a great space with an intimate and chill ambiance, complimented to expertly seasoned and extra fresh food. It’s definitely a high-end type of establishment, with a top-notch presentation and flavors that won’t let you down.
Recommended for
  • Professionals
  • Families with kids
5/5 rating details
  • Neighborly Spirit 4/5
  • Safe & Sound 3/5
  • Clean & Green 3/5
  • Pest Free 4/5
  • Peace & Quiet 1/5
  • Eating Out 5/5
  • Nightlife 5/5
  • Parks & Recreation 3/5
  • Shopping Options 5/5
  • Gym & Fitness 3/5
  • Internet Access 5/5
  • Lack of Traffic 2/5
  • Cost of Living 1/5
  • Resale or Rental Value 3/5
  • Public Transport 5/5
  • Medical Facilities 4/5
  • Schools 3/5
  • Childcare 3/5
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"Iconic Seattle."

Queen Anne is iconic. That’s all, review over.

What, you wanted details? What more is there to say? Queen Anne is what you see in every picture of Seattle that’s got the Space Needle in it. The Century 21 Exposition (one of the World’s Fairs) cemented this area as the face of Seattle to the outside world with assured perpetuity. The fairgrounds are not the campus of Seattle Center, where the Space Needle, the Pacific Science Center (a sprawling science activity center and IMAX theater with science-themed exhibits for elementary school students—a staple field trip location for local kids), the Experience Music Project and Science Fiction Museum and Hall of Fame (Paul Allen’s pet exhibition project and the site of the Science Fiction Fantasy Short Film Festival).

Once you’re done with whatever it is that suits your tastes, you’re not allowed to leave Queen Anne before you stop in for a bite; it’s a rule. I suggest Dick’s, a local, ultra-minimalist burger chain. Their genius stems from making the same few menu items quickly and well, and their restaurants are usually more like a window with a fast-food factory floor behind it. This is a no-frills joint, and the orders of the day are to come in, stock up, and get out with enough to last you well into the midnight snack period.
Recommended for
  • Professionals
  • Singles
4/5 rating details
  • Neighborly Spirit 5/5
  • Safe & Sound 5/5
  • Clean & Green 5/5
  • Pest Free 5/5
  • Peace & Quiet 4/5
  • Eating Out 3/5
  • Nightlife 1/5
  • Parks & Recreation 5/5
  • Shopping Options 3/5
  • Gym & Fitness 3/5
  • Internet Access 5/5
  • Lack of Traffic 4/5
  • Cost of Living 2/5
  • Resale or Rental Value 3/5
  • Public Transport 2/5
  • Medical Facilities 3/5
  • Schools 4/5
  • Childcare 3/5
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"Park and Shore-- Who could ask for more?"

Harrison is named for the Park situated to the Northwest. There are many older homes in this area with historic significance, including the residence of the President of the University of Washington, which is situated on a five-acre plot that overlooks Lake Washington—a nearly incomparable residential property in the state. Another notable feature in the neighborhood is Denny-Blaine Park, a quiet and clean clearing with stone walls that surrounds a beach overlooking the Lake Washington Ship Canal. The park can be reserved for weddings and other events, and it’s a haven for sunbathers, picnickers, and volleyball players when weather permits. I mention in passing, as not to take away from the full utility of the park, that it’s also the last place Kurt Cobain (the lead singer of Nirvana) was seen before he died in 1994. Also residing in this neighborhood is the Seattle Tennis Club, which is a private club that allows members (or their guests) only. The facilities include a parking lot with attendant, with indoor courts laid out for fast and easy access to the players. Also included is a pro shop, where you can be sure to get all of the gear you’ll need for the big match!
Recommended for
  • Families with kids
  • Retirees
5/5 rating details
  • Neighborly Spirit 5/5
  • Safe & Sound 3/5
  • Clean & Green 2/5
  • Pest Free 3/5
  • Peace & Quiet 2/5
  • Eating Out 5/5
  • Nightlife 5/5
  • Parks & Recreation 2/5
  • Shopping Options 5/5
  • Gym & Fitness 3/5
  • Internet Access 3/5
  • Lack of Traffic 2/5
  • Cost of Living 4/5
  • Resale or Rental Value 3/5
  • Public Transport 5/5
  • Medical Facilities 3/5
  • Schools 3/5
  • Childcare 3/5
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"Historic, Iconic"

The Pike Place Market is a historic area that runs like a veritable, upscale fair every day. The market looks out Southwest toward Elliott Bay and sets the scene for the seaside soiree. It’s not easy to pick out and explain every building, vendor, or exhibit because there’s a lot going on, but also because it’s hard for one to make a distinction about where the market actually ends when they’re on scene. To that extent, I urge the interested reader to visit the Pike Place Market website at http://pikeplacemarket.org. Among the attractions that you’ve got to see are City Fish (the iconic fish market that has had any number of articles and media appearances, including their own morale business video—but don’t expect fish to just be flying unless you buy something), fresh produce and craft stalls in the main arcade and a comic book store and magic shop in the underground levels. Maybe the best thing about the market is also the cheapest—to simply go people watching.

The residencies in the area are in the urban setting, and as such as limited to apartments and condos. Some are dedicated to low-income families, like those adjacent to Cliff House. Other big-deal attraction in the area are the Moore Theatre (Seattle’s oldest) and The Seattle Aquarium.
Recommended for
  • Professionals
  • Singles
  • Families with kids
  • Retirees
5/5 rating details
  • Neighborly Spirit 4/5
  • Safe & Sound 4/5
  • Clean & Green 5/5
  • Pest Free 3/5
  • Peace & Quiet 5/5
  • Eating Out 5/5
  • Nightlife 4/5
  • Parks & Recreation 5/5
  • Shopping Options 4/5
  • Gym & Fitness 4/5
  • Internet Access 5/5
  • Lack of Traffic 3/5
  • Cost of Living 3/5
  • Resale or Rental Value 3/5
  • Public Transport 5/5
  • Medical Facilities 3/5
  • Schools 4/5
  • Childcare 3/5
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"Seattle Favorites All in One Place"

The Phinney Ridge and Greenwood area is a green neighborhood, with lots of foliage in the form of big trees. The residencies are mostly single family homes on the expensive side because of the demand of the environment and the streets are dotted by small businesses, boutiques and shops that concentrate on some of the more trafficked roads. A seasonal farmer’s market is offered, but it’s not the biggest or best compared to other markets in the Seattle area. There are a lot of restaurants, bars, and coffee shops that contribute to a pretty good night life, especially along Greenwood Avenue. Among the restaurants is Red Mill Burger, a passport of sorts for Seattelites to prove their citizenship, and a featured spot for variety and nicely sized burgers. Lots of major arterial roads, bike routes, and bus routes will easily get patrons around town.

Woodland Park is one of the biggest draws and houses a lot of wildlife. A full predator-prey relation was built between the descendants of released domestic rabbits feed in the park, and a pack of coyotes feed on the rabbits. While not a draw within the neighborhood, Green Lake is just next to the area and the proximity perpetuates an outdoorsy feel that penetrates not only the neighborhood, but also the residents. In keeping with the celebrations of nature, the number one reason to come to Phinney Ridge is to visit the Woodland Park Zoo.
Recommended for
  • Professionals
  • Singles
  • Families with kids
  • Retirees
3/5 rating details
  • Neighborly Spirit 4/5
  • Safe & Sound 4/5
  • Clean & Green 4/5
  • Pest Free 3/5
  • Peace & Quiet 5/5
  • Eating Out 2/5
  • Nightlife 2/5
  • Parks & Recreation 3/5
  • Shopping Options 3/5
  • Gym & Fitness 3/5
  • Internet Access 3/5
  • Lack of Traffic 4/5
  • Cost of Living 3/5
  • Resale or Rental Value 3/5
  • Public Transport 3/5
  • Medical Facilities 3/5
  • Schools 3/5
  • Childcare 3/5
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"More than meets the eye"

In the Olympia Hills area, the architecture is pretty diverse and demonstrates a spread from displaced U-District homes and apartments to new development and constructions. A lot of the residencies are shielded from traffic noise by hedges, fences, and trees lining the roadways, and the front lawns on most of the single-level house lots offer a respite from city crowding. Expect your neighbors to be other residences and large warehouses and light industry, all connected with streets riddles with potholes. The actual communities are safe, though perceived as being a little rougher than they are. That helps contribute to lower prices in housing, and it’s said that you can walk the streets without any major threats. The worst things that happen are thoughtlessness like leaving a candy bar wrapper out—no huge indicators about violence, drugs, or anything organized.

The area is heavy on retail and business in general ebbs and flows with highway expansion, though it does offer affordable alternatives to the stylish and high-priced retail in the area. It’s semi-unknown simply because the area is assumed to be filled with car dealerships because that’s what lines the major roads, and yet there is a diverse ecosystem of all kinds of different businesses and art displays.
Recommended for
  • Professionals
  • Singles
  • Families with kids
4/5 rating details
  • Neighborly Spirit 3/5
  • Safe & Sound 3/5
  • Clean & Green 3/5
  • Pest Free 2/5
  • Peace & Quiet 3/5
  • Eating Out 5/5
  • Nightlife 5/5
  • Parks & Recreation 2/5
  • Shopping Options 5/5
  • Gym & Fitness 2/5
  • Internet Access 4/5
  • Lack of Traffic 2/5
  • Cost of Living 3/5
  • Resale or Rental Value 3/5
  • Public Transport 5/5
  • Medical Facilities 3/5
  • Schools 3/5
  • Childcare 3/5
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"Mall Culture"

Northgate does commerce well. Known for the Northgate mall, other draws like a new park, library, and community center bring people in or keep them in the neighborhood. Northgate is nominally developing both residential areas and commercial areas, though people have noticed that the hotel industry has gone unmolested, for better or for worse. But because the most important thing about the area is shopping, it’s equally important to think about some places to visit. I find that restaurants and eateries are the best to engage in, because food quality and presentation is sort of a universally sought good—unlike biking equipment, yarn, or video games, for example.

I’m definitely going to suggest the Jewel Box Café, which is a clandestine member of a small chain of restaurants that don’t chare the same name, but have locations in Alki, Marine View, and Richmond. The Jewel Box Café is distinct among its siblings for a Victorian ambiance that’s a far cry from other coffee places in the area. They have some interesting offerings, including a bubble tea with flavored jellies cut into cute little shapes instead of tapioca. And during warm days, they open the roll up doors for an open-air ambiance and outdoor seating.

When you’re looking for something more substantial, I always make a point to stop in an Masala of India. They’ve got a great lunch buffet, but you should be prepared to find parking elsewhere. The selection is somewhat limited in terms of vegetarian and lamb dishes, but they do Tandoori Chicken, Butter Chicken, and Pakora very well. It’s niche Indian, done well and for the right price.
For American fair, try Five Guys Burgers and Fries. It’s a quirky place where little means regular and cheese isn’t included unless it says so, but don’t fill up on the peanuts, you still have a burger to look forward to.
Recommended for
  • Professionals
  • Singles
4/5 rating details
  • Neighborly Spirit 4/5
  • Safe & Sound 5/5
  • Clean & Green 5/5
  • Pest Free 3/5
  • Peace & Quiet 5/5
  • Eating Out 3/5
  • Nightlife 2/5
  • Parks & Recreation 5/5
  • Shopping Options 2/5
  • Gym & Fitness 4/5
  • Internet Access 3/5
  • Lack of Traffic 3/5
  • Cost of Living 3/5
  • Resale or Rental Value 3/5
  • Public Transport 3/5
  • Medical Facilities 4/5
  • Schools 3/5
  • Childcare 3/5
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"Woodsy Retreat"

Most of Delridge is residential and open space. There are many housing options: single family, apartments, condos. While the Youngstown Cultural Arts Center services the area for social and recreational needs, the open spaces are the main focus for recreation. Options like the West Seattle Golf Course, which is one of the bigger courses in the Seattle area comes to mind, as does one of the main attractions, Camp Long.

Camp Long is only a block away from the main thoroughfare through North Delridge, but the ambiance and serenity transports hikers and campers to a place that could be 20 miles or 200 miles from city life. The hiking trails are well-kept and the toilet amenities are clean and available. There is a play field, a pond, and cabins available for rental (and accompanying security features such as a locking gate at night time, power in the cabins, and a locking cabin doors). The main attraction is Schurman Rock, an artificial climbing area built during the 1930s. The rock is very involved and diverse in its offerings; a different type of rock face on each of the many sides, a clear path to the top for climbers who would prefer to walk up and set a top rope, hold bolts on the fact, and belay anchors at the bottom.
Recommended for
  • Families with kids
  • Retirees
5/5 rating details
  • Neighborly Spirit 5/5
  • Safe & Sound 4/5
  • Clean & Green 5/5
  • Pest Free 3/5
  • Peace & Quiet 5/5
  • Eating Out 5/5
  • Nightlife 3/5
  • Parks & Recreation 5/5
  • Shopping Options 3/5
  • Gym & Fitness 4/5
  • Internet Access 4/5
  • Lack of Traffic 3/5
  • Cost of Living 3/5
  • Resale or Rental Value 3/5
  • Public Transport 4/5
  • Medical Facilities 3/5
  • Schools 3/5
  • Childcare 3/5
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"Shoreline Centered with a Diverse Mix"

It’s hard to talk about Mt. Baker without talking about summer, but I’ll try. It’s usually a tranquil residential area with gentle hills, parklands, shading woods, and lakeside shorelines. The neighborhoods are architecturally diverse and the residents are as diverse in their economical standings and ethnic backgrounds. The neighborhood is serviced by Franklin High School

But for a couple of days a year, all of that is set aside and all of Seattle crowds in for the long awaited Seafair. Seafair is a series of events, including hydroplane races, fireworks shows, and aerial stunts and shows which climax with a performance by the US Navy Blue Angels.

When you’re done at Seafair, or even on your way to Seafair, you probably ought to stop by Tacos Al Asadero, a taco truck with some really interesting offerings. Tacos Al Asadero lives in a school bus, where the back half has seating and the play telenovelas. Some of the stuff on the menu that you may not have seen recently includes a birria (lamb) taco, a lengua (beef tongue) taco (and believe me, it’s better than it sounds—think really tender roast beef), and great toppings like radish, lime, and Mexican pickle.
Recommended for
  • Professionals
  • Singles
  • Families with kids
  • Retirees
5/5 rating details
  • Neighborly Spirit 5/5
  • Safe & Sound 3/5
  • Clean & Green 5/5
  • Pest Free 3/5
  • Peace & Quiet 4/5
  • Eating Out 4/5
  • Nightlife 3/5
  • Parks & Recreation 4/5
  • Shopping Options 3/5
  • Gym & Fitness 4/5
  • Internet Access 4/5
  • Lack of Traffic 2/5
  • Cost of Living 2/5
  • Resale or Rental Value 3/5
  • Public Transport 4/5
  • Medical Facilities 3/5
  • Schools 4/5
  • Childcare 4/5
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"Neighborly Area, Active Junction"

The affluent residential area of Montlake is the final point of contact in Seattle before you are whisked away to the Eastside area on State Route 520 toward Bellevue, which is sort of a point of contention for the Montlake residents, because State Route 520 basically splits the Montlake neighborhood. For newer residents who bought up properties within the last twenty or thirty years, the road is actually a draw as part of the central location appeal, which groups nicely with the neighborhood charm and great schools. Primarily single-family homes, the types of houses sitting in the area range from Tudor to bungalow to brick and wood frame houses, with some renovations that bring them up to contemporary.

Montlake is a gorgeous area that's teeming with opportunities to enjoy nature. The Washington Park Arboretum is as accessible as it is beautiful and Interlaken Park provides an unrefined, raw feel unlike many other manicured areas. The Seattle Yacht Club is a place for Yacht Owners to gather near Lake Washington to enjoy some recreation.

There are definitely some great places to socialize in the area as well. The Montlake Community Club is an organization of residents that has a history of progressive grassroots activism. There is a branch of the Seattle. And of course, any good community has a reasonable place to hang around for a few drinks. Make sure you stop in for a pint at the Montlake Alehouse, where the selection is as good as the atmosphere.
Recommended for
  • Professionals
  • Families with kids
  • Retirees
5/5 rating details
  • Neighborly Spirit 5/5
  • Safe & Sound 4/5
  • Clean & Green 5/5
  • Pest Free 3/5
  • Peace & Quiet 3/5
  • Eating Out 4/5
  • Nightlife 4/5
  • Parks & Recreation 5/5
  • Shopping Options 5/5
  • Gym & Fitness 4/5
  • Internet Access 4/5
  • Lack of Traffic 3/5
  • Cost of Living 3/5
  • Resale or Rental Value 3/5
  • Public Transport 4/5
  • Medical Facilities 3/5
  • Schools 4/5
  • Childcare 3/5
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"Old School and In The Mix"

One of the largest neighborhoods in Seattle, Magnolia’s location near downtown makes it an accessible spot for people who like the action without being fully immersed in the traffic and crowding. The residents generally reflect a suburban, out of the way appeal: around half of all residents are married couples living together, and around another half are single occupants or living with roommates. Easily half the residents are in their thirties or below. The area also leans toward affluence, as supported by the cost of living with factors like housing prices and consumer goods.

The area around Magnolia has some of the best views of Puget Sound and the Olympic Mountains. Compounding the outdoor experience is Discovery Park, which is easily Seattle’s largest park. Trails run through the park to accommodate bikers, walkers, and runners. The park’s amenities don’t stop with trails, also present is a shoreline where seals and sea lions conglomerate, and around 300 different species of birds have been identified as residing in the park and on the waters near the park. Also within the bounds of the park are the now decommissioned buildings that were once Fort Lawton, including officer’s homes and other buildings with historic meaning.
Recommended for
  • Professionals
  • Families with kids
  • Retirees
5/5 rating details
  • Neighborly Spirit 5/5
  • Safe & Sound 4/5
  • Clean & Green 5/5
  • Pest Free 2/5
  • Peace & Quiet 4/5
  • Eating Out 4/5
  • Nightlife 3/5
  • Parks & Recreation 5/5
  • Shopping Options 3/5
  • Gym & Fitness 3/5
  • Internet Access 4/5
  • Lack of Traffic 3/5
  • Cost of Living 2/5
  • Resale or Rental Value 4/5
  • Public Transport 3/5
  • Medical Facilities 3/5
  • Schools 3/5
  • Childcare 3/5
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"A serene getaway of shorelines and parks"

A high-end residential community, Madison Park offers much to the affluent. A local city park leads right to the shoreline at Lake Washington, and there is a variety of staple shops and restaurants with tantalizing offerings.

The neighborhood boasts a laid-back lifestyle, a rare find so close to Downtown Seattle. The tree-lined streets and the proximity to Lake Washington make this area a prime location, not only for living or working but also for an afternoon walk through the park.

While the upscale homes and apartment buildings may leave your wallet a little light, they leave little to be desired. Apartment homes come with full amenities, not to mention that most houses and buildings are only blocks from the lake. The community offers security and a small-town feel, yet is only a 10 minute drive from Westlake Center, Seattle's premiere shopping district.

There are many wonderful restaurants to choose from: just let your appetite be your guide! Choose from Sostanza (Italian), The Attic Alehouse, Mad Pizza, Cactus (Mexican and Southwestern food), and many others that are independent and local to Seattle and Madison Park specifically. Many restaurants are close to the Lake, so you can enjoy a bite to eat followed by a stroll along the waterfront. The gorgeous water and mountain views make this neighborhood one of a kind.
Recommended for
  • Professionals
  • Families with kids
  • Retirees
2/5 rating details
  • Neighborly Spirit 2/5
  • Safe & Sound 3/5
  • Clean & Green 3/5
  • Pest Free 3/5
  • Peace & Quiet 4/5
  • Eating Out 2/5
  • Nightlife 2/5
  • Parks & Recreation 2/5
  • Shopping Options 2/5
  • Gym & Fitness 2/5
  • Internet Access 3/5
  • Lack of Traffic 3/5
  • Cost of Living 4/5
  • Resale or Rental Value 2/5
  • Public Transport 3/5
  • Medical Facilities 3/5
  • Schools 4/5
  • Childcare 3/5
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"Full of Boxed In College Students"

Licton Springs houses North Seattle Community College and as such is a magnet for the youthful residents—but it really takes a dive in catering to a spendthrift college student. While the community college certainly does attract or keep twenty-somethings, the way that Aurora borders the community on the opposite side certainly doesn’t help to diffuse them. Aurora always has seedy bars, and dirty restaurants dotting along its edges, but other than that, there is a distinct lack of commercial things to do and places to blow money in the area. Logically the population probably rides Aurora right out of town—or into town—to blow off steam on weekends and evenings. Effectively, Northgate mall is the beneficiary of Licton Springs’ retail opportunities.

Aside from an opportunity for high learning, the saving grace of Licton Springs is the park for which it is named. Historically, this park was a communal point for the natives to the area, and it continues to be today for residents who like to play in the sun and enjoy the springs, which were thought to have the power to heal. Licton Springs Park is a lazy little oasis in an area of otherwise constant activity.
Recommended for
  • Professionals
  • Singles
4/5 rating details
  • Neighborly Spirit 3/5
  • Safe & Sound 4/5
  • Clean & Green 5/5
  • Pest Free 3/5
  • Peace & Quiet 5/5
  • Eating Out 3/5
  • Nightlife 2/5
  • Parks & Recreation 5/5
  • Shopping Options 2/5
  • Gym & Fitness 3/5
  • Internet Access 3/5
  • Lack of Traffic 5/5
  • Cost of Living 3/5
  • Resale or Rental Value 4/5
  • Public Transport 3/5
  • Medical Facilities 3/5
  • Schools 3/5
  • Childcare 3/5
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"Comfortable, inviting shoreline"

Leschi has a variety of comfortable dwellings which will doubtlessly accommodate anyone who is ultimately interested in moving to the area: lakeside condos to charming bungalows, contemporary to Tudor, bricks, and ramblers. Regardless of where you are or live, the gently winding roads that run around the lake ensure at least a partial glimmer form the reflection of the lake. Parks intermittently dot the area and settle between residencies to lend a respite from what could otherwise be a crowded sort of feeling.

Leschi is certainly known for its calm and idyllic scenery, but there are some very prominent businesses and restaurants in the area. I remember fondly visiting Daniel’s Broiler on the water which can be used not only as a point of interest but also as an allegory for the neighborhood at large. One of the premier steak house brands of the Seattle area, the menu is consistently about quality (and the prices certainly reflect as such), and the experience is one of luxury, style, and class. The lot was formerly a Ferrari dealership, so it’s appropriate that your meal should start with valet service. The wait staff is helpful, charming, and attentive. Appropriately, the view from the wall-sized windows is tranquil yet involved, a near-perfect interlude between conversation or waiting for your dish. Staring out these windows is indeed as if staring straight into the very soul and character of Leschi: beautifully calm, inviting yet not freely accessible.
Recommended for
  • Professionals
  • Singles
  • Families with kids
  • Retirees
4/5 rating details
  • Neighborly Spirit 4/5
  • Safe & Sound 5/5
  • Clean & Green 4/5
  • Pest Free 3/5
  • Peace & Quiet 4/5
  • Eating Out 5/5
  • Nightlife 3/5
  • Parks & Recreation 5/5
  • Shopping Options 3/5
  • Gym & Fitness 3/5
  • Internet Access 4/5
  • Lack of Traffic 4/5
  • Cost of Living 1/5
  • Resale or Rental Value 5/5
  • Public Transport 3/5
  • Medical Facilities 3/5
  • Schools 4/5
  • Childcare 3/5
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"Upscale Lakeside Community"

Based mostly adjacent to Lake Washington, Laurelhurst even has some properties that are waterfront adjacent with charming docks and manicured shorelines. The community center, beach club, and park all serve as gathering places for the community. The residents of the community are significantly more affluent than the rest of the area, as supported by the fact that the median home price in the area totals more than twice the regional median price.

The local commerce is somewhat pricey to go with the affluent residents, but usually come with quality for the money and not just high prices. Jak’s Grill, one of the local Laurelhurst restaurants, doesn’t have a specialty; they do everything. Known for a great brunch selection that’s steak heavy but not without its diversity, a morning at Jak’s is sure to get you ready to start your day with a nap. Jak’s definitely puts the ‘power’ in power lunch, and it’s a great place to take business guests (though probably a little pricey to do every week). Jak’s was definitely made for an evening meal, though, and they have made a name for themselves with dry-aged beef, a beautiful steak butter, and potato pancakes to kill for. After all that beef, you might be in the mood for a workout sometime in the next week, and Hot Yoga of Laurelhurst is the place to do that. Alternating Bikram with Power Vinyasa, the yoga instructors are pretty good on average—but be prepared that they go along with the Bikram custom of practicing on carpet, not a hard floor.
Recommended for
  • Families with kids
  • Retirees
5/5 rating details
  • Neighborly Spirit 5/5
  • Safe & Sound 3/5
  • Clean & Green 3/5
  • Pest Free 3/5
  • Peace & Quiet 3/5
  • Eating Out 5/5
  • Nightlife 4/5
  • Parks & Recreation 2/5
  • Shopping Options 5/5
  • Gym & Fitness 4/5
  • Internet Access 4/5
  • Lack of Traffic 2/5
  • Cost of Living 3/5
  • Resale or Rental Value 4/5
  • Public Transport 4/5
  • Medical Facilities 3/5
  • Schools 3/5
  • Childcare 3/5
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"Historic, Affordable, Delicious"

The International District (commonly known as Chinatown), is a historical and spectacular region of Seattle. More than half the residents are Asian, which ought not to be a surprise considering the name. As such, most of the surrounding restaurants, shops, and stores cater to Asian tastes or take on Asian themes of some kind and have done so since Asian immigrants began collecting in this area. In turn, many spots and buildings in the International District have been designated for or under consideration for historic preservation, which spurs a debate between opposing factions who are either in favor of maintaining the Historic spots and those who would opt toward development and redevelopment in the future, a view that often elicits responses about possibly gentrification.

There are certainly important places to preserve in the area, all of which are worth a visit. Hing Hay Park is a popular and central point in the International District, as is the Wing Luke Asian Museum. The Danny Woo International District Community Garden is a project to provide an urban gardening option that is established on Kobe Terrace, and the Iconic China Gate restaurant has stood in place since the 1920s.

If you're looking for authentic Vietnamese, Chinese or Japanese cuisine, search no further. Around every corner of the International District is a restaurant offering Dim Sum or Banh mi (Vietnamese sandwiches). A wonderful option for lunch or dinner is Green Leaf Vietnamese Restaurant where enjoy a big bowl of Pho or Vermicelli noodles in the small and cozy atmosphere.

For those wanting a more historical place to eat, none is better than the Panama Hotel Tea and Coffee House. This historic building is still a working bed and breakfast and is the focal point of the novel “Hotel on the Corner of Bitter and Sweet.” Have a cup of tea followed by a tour of this amazing building which still contains remnants of World War II.
Recommended for
  • Professionals
  • Singles
  • Families with kids
3/5 rating details
  • Neighborly Spirit 3/5
  • Safe & Sound 3/5
  • Clean & Green 3/5
  • Pest Free 3/5
  • Peace & Quiet 3/5
  • Eating Out 3/5
  • Nightlife 3/5
  • Parks & Recreation 4/5
  • Shopping Options 3/5
  • Gym & Fitness 3/5
  • Internet Access 3/5
  • Lack of Traffic 3/5
  • Cost of Living 3/5
  • Resale or Rental Value 3/5
  • Public Transport 4/5
  • Medical Facilities 3/5
  • Schools 3/5
  • Childcare 3/5
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"Diverse Community with Eclectic Draw"

The fairly diversified community of Interbay has a little something for everyone. It’s maybe not a place to visit, maybe not necessarily a place to live, but working in the area isn’t all that bad. OK, I concede, the Interbay P-Patch is a nice little community garden, which is a feature that many other neighborhoods in the city can’t offer, so if being close to your food source is high on your list of priorities for city life, then Interbay isn’t a bad place to be. P-Patch aside, most everything else about Interbay is just a mix of industrial, warehouse, wholesale, retail, professional offices and housing, with a couple of highlighted features. Interbay is home to an Army National Guard armory, and has a golf course in its limits. Interbay’s got a group of 19th century homes that have been declared official city landmarks.

Delectably, the most interesting (or notorious) feature of Interbay is the Center for Sex Positive Culture, colloquially termed the Wet Spot. It’s a membership-only establishment and the participants are generally good neighbors, so there’s no reason to think that Interbay is anything but family friendly in that respect. Speaking of family-friendly areas, you would be advised to stop by Niko’s Gyros, where they offer a substantial children's plate and a gyro delicious enough to satisfy even the more discerning taste buds.
Recommended for
  • Professionals
  • Singles
  • Families with kids
3/5 rating details
  • Neighborly Spirit 5/5
  • Safe & Sound 3/5
  • Clean & Green 4/5
  • Pest Free 3/5
  • Peace & Quiet 3/5
  • Eating Out 3/5
  • Nightlife 2/5
  • Parks & Recreation 5/5
  • Shopping Options 3/5
  • Gym & Fitness 3/5
  • Internet Access 3/5
  • Lack of Traffic 3/5
  • Cost of Living 3/5
  • Resale or Rental Value 3/5
  • Public Transport 3/5
  • Medical Facilities 3/5
  • Schools 3/5
  • Childcare 3/5
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"Blue Collar Ethic with Suburban Appeal"

The people of Highland Park make up the character of this neighborhood. Wide demographics of ethnic diversity represent themselves here in a mostly working-class neighborhood which is easily accessible to their jobs in the Industrial District and at Boeing Field. Westcrest Park is the local recreation spot, and it’s an expansive and open area for all sorts of play. There are a few really nice playgrounds for the kids with a bunch of picnic tables to observe them playing or to have a snack. There are walking paths and a platform that offers a panoramic view of the city, some great open fields for field sports, and an off-leash dog run. And if that’s not a great place to go, especially when it’s warmer or at least not pouring, then I don’t know who you are or what you’re doing here.

The most important places to shop here might be Barnes and Noble (possibly for the café), QFC, and a Tully’s. To their credit, Highland Park definitely has awesome some little shops that usually take the form of mutations of chain stores, like a convenience store that has a great wine selection. Or instead of Starbucks, you can try Jojo’s Fine Espresso, where they serve some really awesome rice chai lattes and cupcakes you won’t be able to turn down. They’re locally owned and accessible!
Recommended for
  • Professionals
  • Families with kids
4/5 rating details
  • Neighborly Spirit 3/5
  • Safe & Sound 3/5
  • Clean & Green 3/5
  • Pest Free 3/5
  • Peace & Quiet 3/5
  • Eating Out 4/5
  • Nightlife 2/5
  • Parks & Recreation 2/5
  • Shopping Options 4/5
  • Gym & Fitness 3/5
  • Internet Access 3/5
  • Lack of Traffic 5/5
  • Cost of Living 3/5
  • Resale or Rental Value 4/5
  • Public Transport 5/5
  • Medical Facilities 3/5
  • Schools 3/5
  • Childcare 3/5
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"Green, Central Point"

High Point has recently been the subject of major redevelopment initiatives. The Seattle Housing Authority removed all of the existing housing, roads, and utilities and replaced them with new roads, an underground infrastructure, residencies, and community facilities meant for a mixed-income community. All told, it is expected that there will be around 1500 housing units with a variety of family types. While half are slotted for low-income rentals, the rest will be comprised of single family homes, assisted living options, condos, and town homes to be sold to private owners.

The redevelopment at high point has included a variety of green and sustainable initiatives, such as Energy Star ratings, high levels in BuiltGreen certification, and porous sidewalks and parking areas that are meant to more efficiently reintegrate rainwater into the water treatment systems. Also notable are the number of “breathe-easy” homes being integrated into the building plans which are meant to accommodate residents who suffer from asthma-related symptoms.

Supporting the area is a small-scale mixed-use commercial center that’s meant to attend to the residents’ immediate needs. I should also point out the Nouveau Bakery, as long as we’re still talking commerce. You’ll need to pick up a twice-baked almond croissant to get that real deal, smooth, but not too sweet morsel. Also on the list is Phoenicia, where you’ve got to go and grab a sweet potato pizza—a starchy concoction that leaves you wanting more.
Recommended for
  • Professionals
  • Singles
  • Families with kids
  • Retirees
3/5 rating details
  • Neighborly Spirit 4/5
  • Safe & Sound 4/5
  • Clean & Green 4/5
  • Pest Free 3/5
  • Peace & Quiet 5/5
  • Eating Out 4/5
  • Nightlife 2/5
  • Parks & Recreation 4/5
  • Shopping Options 2/5
  • Gym & Fitness 3/5
  • Internet Access 3/5
  • Lack of Traffic 4/5
  • Cost of Living 2/5
  • Resale or Rental Value 3/5
  • Public Transport 3/5
  • Medical Facilities 3/5
  • Schools 5/5
  • Childcare 3/5
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"Pedigree Rep, Authentic Tastes"

The neighborhood at Haller Lake is—surprise, surprise—mostly based around the lake. The shoreline is private (residencies, mostly), except for a couple of public access points. Next to the lake is Northacres Park, which is a big public park that’s pretty heavily forested.

To service the residencies is a smattering of hoity-toity community organizations. Ingraham High School and Lakeside School both service the area, and you may know of them only because of the famous alumni: Bill Gates and Paul Allen of Microsoft fame and Adam West of Batman, Family Guy, and anything else that’s as campy as it is awesome.

If you’re in Haller Lake, it’s very important that you try the Saffron Bar and Grill. You don’t understand the meaning of the word tandoori unless you’re either been to India or you’re been to this delightful restaurant. The menu has a a variety of prepared meats, the staple naan, curries of all kinds bottomless chai (seriously), and a hamburger. Apparently, they’re sensitive to people with unadventurous pallets.

Equally important is hitting up the La Pasadita Taco Truck. Is there anything better than eating super fresh Mexican food outside? I wager not. Get here early in the day because they run out of the tamales frequently. That said, if you can’t get a tamale, grab a burrito. It’s almost a DSM IV worthy condition to be willing to go to Chipotle or Taco Del Mar or worse instead of hitting La Pasadita.
Recommended for
  • Professionals
  • Families with kids
5/5 rating details
  • Neighborly Spirit 5/5
  • Safe & Sound 3/5
  • Clean & Green 2/5
  • Pest Free 3/5
  • Peace & Quiet 3/5
  • Eating Out 5/5
  • Nightlife 5/5
  • Parks & Recreation 2/5
  • Shopping Options 4/5
  • Gym & Fitness 3/5
  • Internet Access 3/5
  • Lack of Traffic 3/5
  • Cost of Living 4/5
  • Resale or Rental Value 3/5
  • Public Transport 4/5
  • Medical Facilities 3/5
  • Schools 3/5
  • Childcare 3/5
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"Hipster's Paradise"

The overall feel in Georgetown is very “scene,” for want of a more descriptive word. The area is defined by a creative, chic feel and retail locations. Stores and shops in the area run a gamut from record stores, to barber shops, to bakeries, to scooter shops, to waxing salons, to web design, to art galleries and recording studios. The retail locations mostly take advantage of an open planned, brick wall spaces that used to be used for manufacturing and industrial spaces. The otherwise hardened interiors are consistently transformed into warm, inviting interiors that you want to visit and spend days in.

It’s a great idea, as long as you’re in Georgetown, to stop by the Georgetown Brewing Company. The selection is limited, but that keeps things concise. The choices are as follows: 9 lb Porter, Chopper Red Ale, Roger’s Pilsner, and Manny’s Pale Ale. The beers are delicious (I lean toward darker varieties), at about $6 per growler fill (tax included), this rates at around the cheapest in town too. Don’t go Saturdays, that makes you trendy and a follower. Embrace your inner alcoholic by going on a weekday (extra points for drinking during the daytime) and enjoy the free samples.

Moving from downers to uppers, Espresso by Design is one of the authentic café alternatives to chains like Starbucks and Tully’s. The people are very personable, the beverages are well crafted, their pastries are delicious, and the sandwiches a filling and savory.
Recommended for
  • Professionals
  • Singles
5/5 rating details
  • Neighborly Spirit 5/5
  • Safe & Sound 3/5
  • Clean & Green 5/5
  • Pest Free 3/5
  • Eating Out 5/5
  • Nightlife 4/5
  • Parks & Recreation 5/5
  • Shopping Options 4/5
  • Internet Access 4/5
  • Lack of Traffic 2/5
  • Cost of Living 3/5
  • Resale or Rental Value 3/5
  • Public Transport 5/5
  • Medical Facilities 3/5
  • Schools 4/5
  • Childcare 3/5
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"A place to play, no matter your game"

Green Lake is an idyllic, chic area that has a great mix of residencies and places to hang out. And for that reason, it’s also one of the most chronically crowded areas in Seattle, especially in the summer.

The variety of housing in Green Lake is appealing to all types of people. A lot of the houses have been remodeled since they were first built and there’s an abundance of apartments and condos to get the most out of the small space. In the interest of full disclosure, the Democratic Party is very well organized and influential, especially in this area. Registered republicans are encouraged to maintain a low profile, mostly for their own sanity.

Complementary to the residential area are the other institutions like the 5,000 square foot Green Lake Library, an elementary school, a high school, and a Green Lake Small Craft Center which is the center for a public rowing program and the Seattle Canoe and Kayak Club.

The actual lake is a recreational spot unto itself. A three-mile path runs around the lake and is popular for runners, walkers, skaters, bikers, and a great place to walk a dog. The open fields and sports fields are often used by the residents and University students for sports like Basketball, Frisbee, Football, and also great stopping places to people watch and have a picnic.
Recommended for
  • Professionals
  • Singles
  • Families with kids
  • Retirees
4/5 rating details
  • Neighborly Spirit 4/5
  • Safe & Sound 4/5
  • Clean & Green 4/5
  • Pest Free 3/5
  • Peace & Quiet 4/5
  • Eating Out 3/5
  • Nightlife 2/5
  • Parks & Recreation 4/5
  • Shopping Options 2/5
  • Gym & Fitness 4/5
  • Internet Access 4/5
  • Lack of Traffic 3/5
  • Cost of Living 4/5
  • Resale or Rental Value 3/5
  • Public Transport 5/5
  • Medical Facilities 3/5
  • Schools 3/5
  • Childcare 3/5
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"Much more than an intersection"

Eastlake is sort of quaint at first glance, but that first glance is tunnel-vision seen through a school bus window that’s confined to the streets that parallel I-405, because it’s easier to get off the bridge from the Eastside exit that goes straight into Eastlake than it is to maneuver the four lanes between the direct connecting onramp and your exit into Seattle Center. Of course, that juvenile perception isn’t the whole story.

The big picture with the Eastlake area is one of residencies; houses and apartments being the majority, but also a number of house boats. Small businesses, stores, restaurants, bakeries dot this area and are all frequented to some degree by the families and University of Washington students who live here for the bus routes that run straight up to the school. If I had to suggest any one place to eat or drink, I would recommend going to see that very first Red Robin gourmet burger restaurant, which started in this neighborhood and became a chain that’s recognized all around the country and even through Canada.

Recently, a group of Eastlakers went forward with creating a park that centers around the European games of pétanque—a European target hitting game played with balls that’s reminiscent of bocce. The Park, called the Eastlake Boulledrome, is a one-of-a-kind establishment in the Seattle area.
Recommended for
  • Professionals
  • Singles
  • Retirees
5/5 rating details
  • Neighborly Spirit 5/5
  • Safe & Sound 4/5
  • Clean & Green 4/5
  • Pest Free 3/5
  • Peace & Quiet 3/5
  • Eating Out 5/5
  • Nightlife 4/5
  • Parks & Recreation 5/5
  • Shopping Options 4/5
  • Gym & Fitness 3/5
  • Internet Access 4/5
  • Lack of Traffic 3/5
  • Cost of Living 3/5
  • Resale or Rental Value 4/5
  • Public Transport 4/5
  • Medical Facilities 3/5
  • Schools 4/5
  • Childcare 4/5
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"A City Within Itself"

Ballard is a city unto itself. And I’m not exaggerating and I’m not saying this in that “nod to annexation” kind of way, I’m saying that there is a humorously subversive element that really demonstrates Ballard’s sense of community. Until recently, the novelties store Archie McPhee’s was ground zero for the “Free Ballard” movement… until they moved—which was sort of disappointing.

Ok, ok, free Ballard, yeah. But seriously, Ballard is an established community that has its own library branches, five elementary schools, a high school, live music, and strip club. Despite the strip club Ballard is a mild-mannered, family friendly type of place. The living arrangements are diverse and range from ramblers to condos. Recently, around a dozen condo/retail locations were in development that, all told, contributed about two thousand or more new households to the area.

There’s definitely a lot for visitors and residents can do. Ballard’s Majestic Bay Theater has been renovated and serves as a big-deal triplex. The boutique, artsy feel of local shops is really attractive, and the waterfront offers much in the way of seaside play and sports. Visit the locks or Golden Gardens Beach, or go take sailing lessons. And if you love all of the waterfront play, you’ll definitely want to check back in the summer for Seafood Fest. Your belly will thank you.
Recommended for
  • Professionals
  • Singles
  • Families with kids
  • Retirees
5/5 rating details
  • Neighborly Spirit 4/5
  • Safe & Sound 4/5
  • Clean & Green 4/5
  • Pest Free 3/5
  • Peace & Quiet 5/5
  • Eating Out 5/5
  • Nightlife 5/5
  • Parks & Recreation 5/5
  • Shopping Options 3/5
  • Gym & Fitness 3/5
  • Internet Access 4/5
  • Lack of Traffic 2/5
  • Cost of Living 3/5
  • Resale or Rental Value 4/5
  • Public Transport 4/5
  • Medical Facilities 3/5
  • Schools 4/5
  • Childcare 4/5
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"The Center of the Universe"

Fremont is the ordained and official Center of the Universe, the place where all things and people gravitate toward. A visitor with remember the area fondly, a resident will be drawn back by and by. This is a neighborhood that is haughty with charm and enthusiasm for—everything. There’s a solid foundation in the neighborhood: a library, three parks, bike trails, and lots of employment for people in IT industries. Getty Images, Adobe Systems, and Google all have offices in Fremont, which comes with its share of controversy in opinion about possibly gentrification. Not surprisingly for people who have stepped foot in the Fremont area, several progressive nonprofits are headquartered in the area, including Literacy Source and Provail.

There’s definitely plenty to do as well. Seasonally, there are events like a farmer’s market, the Solstice Festival (which is notorious for its over-enthusiastic sun worshippers), and Oktoberfest (which is just one of the many anchors that beer has in Fremont). All year, visitors can see idiosyncratic artistic pieces around town like the troll under the bridge holding a Volkswagen Beetle, the statue of Lenin, and the Interurban sculpture, which is intermittently decorated by locals for all sorts of occasions.

If you get a moment to sit for a bite to eat, drink at Brouwers (and don’t mind the pretentious service… they’ve got a great selection and a charming venue) and fill up at Royal Grinders.
Recommended for
  • Professionals
  • Singles
  • Families with kids
3/5 rating details
  • Neighborly Spirit 4/5
  • Safe & Sound 4/5
  • Clean & Green 4/5
  • Pest Free 3/5
  • Peace & Quiet 5/5
  • Eating Out 2/5
  • Nightlife 2/5
  • Parks & Recreation 5/5
  • Shopping Options 2/5
  • Gym & Fitness 4/5
  • Internet Access 4/5
  • Lack of Traffic 5/5
  • Cost of Living 3/5
  • Resale or Rental Value 3/5
  • Public Transport 3/5
  • Medical Facilities 3/5
  • Schools 3/5
  • Childcare 3/5
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"Cute, Outdoorsy, Secluded"

A nice little area with a good portion of character without a lot of commerce, the Bitterlake area is generally quiet, clean, and a nice place for families. The residents contribute a lot to community spirit, which is good because it’s an area that can otherwise be overlooked in the spectrum of Seattle neighborhoods. Housing options have space and character, mostly single-family homes with open floor plans, mostly midcentury homes, some with additions like a working garden or a shed to do greasy, dirty jobs in.

The area is out of the way of the nightlife and workplace alike for a lot of younger people, and though it’s situated close to Aurora and accessible to Seattle as such, that highway is really the only lifeline. On average, there are mostly older families here who don’t want to give up their quiet little paradise, which contributes to a low turnover for dwellings. And though it’s a low key, relaxed community that fancies itself out of the way, it’s not small by any means.

The activity is maybe a little sparse, if you’re not outdoorsy. There are definitely a couple of retail shops and outlets, but the main attraction is probably Llandover Woods, a 9-acre open space that’s an attraction for people who like to hike, bird watch, or make a little money by foraging for mushrooms.
Recommended for
  • Professionals
  • Retirees
4/5 rating details
  • Neighborly Spirit 3/5
  • Safe & Sound 4/5
  • Clean & Green 2/5
  • Pest Free 3/5
  • Peace & Quiet 2/5
  • Eating Out 5/5
  • Nightlife 5/5
  • Parks & Recreation 2/5
  • Shopping Options 5/5
  • Gym & Fitness 3/5
  • Internet Access 4/5
  • Lack of Traffic 2/5
  • Cost of Living 1/5
  • Resale or Rental Value 3/5
  • Public Transport 5/5
  • Medical Facilities 3/5
  • Schools 2/5
  • Childcare 3/5
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"Little Manhattan"

With the population downtown growing, Seattle’s getting its share of high-rise condo towers in development, with most of the properties priced at the high end of the housing market. It’s not a bad thing if you’re alright with sharing your space with a lot of people, but downtown might not be a place to live or play if a developing New York City attitude is bothersome.

All that said, downtown is, as the name suggests, the hub for everything. The only thing complicated about transportation is making a decision. Water taxi, regular taxi, ferries, and bus systems will take you in, out, and all around the area. While you’re at the waterfront, you and your group can take any number of sightseeing and nature tours. Awe at the creatures in the aquarium and check out the waterfront arcade. And then shop—shop at a mind-bendingly diverse array of shops and stores, from African Treasures to Zebra Club, everything is available from the fashionable to the luxurious. Once you’ve satiated one appetite, indulge another at one of the many trendy and classy restaurants in and around downtown. Seattle is definitely known for its seafood, and you would regret not getting a quality dish at one of the specialty restaurants like the Oceanaire Seafood Room. But for those who like their main course to be a little more terrestrial, Ipanema Brazilian Grill is sure to leave a colorful, filling, and delicious impression.

It doesn’t do Seattle’s downtown justice to simply read a description. While it’s definitely not a terribly affordable area, the most fulfilling thing about the downtown area is exploring for yourself.
Recommended for
  • Professionals
  • Singles
5/5 rating details
  • Neighborly Spirit 3/5
  • Safe & Sound 3/5
  • Clean & Green 3/5
  • Pest Free 3/5
  • Peace & Quiet 2/5
  • Eating Out 5/5
  • Nightlife 5/5
  • Parks & Recreation 3/5
  • Shopping Options 5/5
  • Gym & Fitness 3/5
  • Internet Access 4/5
  • Lack of Traffic 2/5
  • Cost of Living 3/5
  • Resale or Rental Value 3/5
  • Public Transport 4/5
  • Medical Facilities 3/5
  • Schools 3/5
  • Childcare 3/5
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"Where all the cool kids play"

Belltown is for the kids. And I don’t mean the kids as in nuclear family, mother-father-baby, looking for a preschool sort of kids. I mean the kids who like to drink, smoke, stay out all night, and generally heed the advice of their parents so they can do the opposite type of kids. Belltown is a haven for twenty-somethings that has all raucous, late-night partying of a college town without a school to get in the way. The neighborhood is generally set up to abide the youths: it’s easy to walk everywhere and living expenses are brought down by being on the Seattle city power grid (which cheapens up the energy bill nicely). Of course, since everyone wants to live here, the money you save from gas and power may just be going to your landlord. You’ll have to make an effort to reconcile price against value for housing in this area.

You’re not allowed to go to Belltown unless you like the nightlife; there, I said it. Some of the most significant clubs in Seattle are in the area, like the Crocodile Café and El Corazon. But definitely don’t miss out on spectacular lounges and cocktail bars like Amber, Trinity, Karma Lounge, or just head over to Blarney Stone for a pint and call it good.
Recommended for
  • Professionals
  • Singles
4/5 rating details
  • Neighborly Spirit 4/5
  • Safe & Sound 3/5
  • Clean & Green 3/5
  • Pest Free 3/5
  • Peace & Quiet 3/5
  • Eating Out 5/5
  • Nightlife 3/5
  • Parks & Recreation 5/5
  • Shopping Options 4/5
  • Gym & Fitness 3/5
  • Internet Access 4/5
  • Lack of Traffic 3/5
  • Cost of Living 3/5
  • Resale or Rental Value 4/5
  • Public Transport 3/5
  • Medical Facilities 3/5
  • Schools 3/5
  • Childcare 3/5
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"Affordable and Engaging"

Columbia City is an area known for diversity (for both income and ethnicity) and history, but with subtle undertones of upward mobility or the inklings of gentrification to come. The availability and quality of housing are demonstrative of the people who live in this area, and a little research reveals a market that runs the gamut from public housing works to multimillion dollar homes. To a degree, Columbia City can be taken as a representation of Seattle at large in as far as culture is concerned. Suffice it to say, it’s harder to find barista here than a line cook, and you can save the money you might spend on a designer coffee drink and instead grab some authentic Mexican food (for slightly fewer calories, too).

There’re definitely some improvements coming to the area which may bring property values up—a welcome change for residents, but a definite barrier to entry for people who are interested in moving in. A Link Light Rail station was added and began service last year, which connected the neighborhood to both SeaTac airport and Downtown Seattle. A noted part of that development included the redevelopment and organization of Rainier Vista, a housing project turned mixed-use (subsidized, rental, owner occupied) community built around the light rail station.

Columbia City definitely a place to consider settling no matter your income, but get in early or you might not have another chance.
Recommended for
  • Professionals
  • Singles
  • Families with kids
3/5 rating details
  • Neighborly Spirit 4/5
  • Safe & Sound 3/5
  • Clean & Green 3/5
  • Pest Free 3/5
  • Peace & Quiet 3/5
  • Eating Out 5/5
  • Nightlife 3/5
  • Parks & Recreation 5/5
  • Shopping Options 3/5
  • Gym & Fitness 3/5
  • Internet Access 3/5
  • Lack of Traffic 3/5
  • Cost of Living 3/5
  • Resale or Rental Value 3/5
  • Public Transport 3/5
  • Medical Facilities 3/5
  • Schools 3/5
  • Childcare 3/5
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"Neighborly and Accessble"

Beacon Hill is a hub of activity built on the residential areas that were formerly popular with Boeing employees, before the exodus to the eastside. Today, the majority of residents are Chinese,
Vietnamese, and Filipino, represented by a similar diversity in local businesses. Beacon Hill is a microcosmic community, offering residents and visitors a variety of recreational options and cultural opportunities.

Among the major cultural centers are the First Baptist Church and El Centro de la Raza in the neighborhood and the local branch of the Seattle Public Library, which was just recently moved to a new building. Dr. Jose Rizal Park has beautiful views of Elliott Bay and the Olympics and tends to attract crowds of people for summer fun and golf.

I always try to stop over at El Quetzal if I’m in the area. It’s one of the local Mexican restaurants, and I’m all about the huarches, which are over sized mission-style burritos filled with obscenely delicious and fresh ingredients (‘huarches’ translates literally to sandals, likely because they’re as carefully constructed and as big as the Mexican footwear for which they’re named).

If you’re seeking all the amenities and diversity of a big city with residential appeal and a big dose of character, peek in on what Beacon Hill has to offer.
Recommended for
  • Professionals
  • Singles
  • Families with kids
4/5 rating details
  • Neighborly Spirit 4/5
  • Safe & Sound 3/5
  • Clean & Green 3/5
  • Pest Free 3/5
  • Peace & Quiet 3/5
  • Eating Out 5/5
  • Nightlife 3/5
  • Parks & Recreation 4/5
  • Shopping Options 3/5
  • Gym & Fitness 3/5
  • Internet Access 4/5
  • Lack of Traffic 3/5
  • Cost of Living 4/5
  • Resale or Rental Value 3/5
  • Public Transport 3/5
  • Medical Facilities 3/5
  • Schools 3/5
  • Childcare 3/5
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"Working Class Neighborhood with Diversity to Spare"

Atlantic has a lot of character, even for a Seattle city. Along with the other neighborhoods in the Central District, Atlantic has some of Seattle’s oldest residential areas, but also some spots that are relatively new—a product of the I-90 expansions that disrupted growth and brought down quite a few homes in the area. Atlantic as a neighborhood, but especially around Judkins Park, is dominated demographically by African Americans, who make up more than half the population. And though the area has a predominantly African-American population, there is definitely an Asian presence in the business in the area.

And that brings us to the most important part of Atlantic: food. It would be a shame to focus on just one spot, so you might want to take a tour some weekend. Start over at Pho Bac, a minimalist pho joint that saves you money by cutting down on frilly options. You could call this the Dick’s of Pho, and the menu can be summed up in four words: beef or no beef. That is the question. Head over to Island soul and grab some jerk chicken, but come in for lunch to get the best value. You can finish off with the Malay Satay Hut, which is more expensive than other places but makes sure to put down some very good dishes—I’m all about their Singapore Noodle.
Recommended for
  • Professionals
  • Singles
5/5 rating details
  • Neighborly Spirit 4/5
  • Safe & Sound 3/5
  • Clean & Green 4/5
  • Pest Free 3/5
  • Peace & Quiet 3/5
  • Eating Out 4/5
  • Nightlife 3/5
  • Parks & Recreation 5/5
  • Shopping Options 4/5
  • Gym & Fitness 4/5
  • Internet Access 3/5
  • Lack of Traffic 4/5
  • Cost of Living 3/5
  • Resale or Rental Value 3/5
  • Public Transport 3/5
  • Medical Facilities 3/5
  • Schools 3/5
  • Childcare 3/5
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"Sun Worshippers Apply Here"

The Alki area is a neighborhood centered around a two-and-a-half mile stretch of sandy, yielding coastline in stark contrast to some of Washington’s other pebbly beaches that are crowded with logs and evidence of wildlife. The beach itself serves as the Mecca for sun-worshipping Seattlites and visitors when the rain stops and the clouds break. All manner of beach sports and recreations get participation here, along the paved walkway just above and on the beach proper.

Housing in this area has its perks and its downfalls: this is no place for a rush-rush lifestyle (especially during the summer months, when low speed limits are exaggerated by congested roadways and daring pedestrians) and the demand for parking easily beats the space. Blocks away from the beach area, expect to see families pulling up in front of your house, extracting coolers and folding chairs, and trekking seaside. The views are spectacular, and if you’re looking, you may be able to pick between small beach homes, the larger houses, and the relatively new beach side condos.

And what would a beach side community be without a good place to eat? Try Sunfish for your seafood cravings—fish and chips are the absolute staple. And then when it’s after dusk and you want to drink until you forget how sunburned you are, you have your choice of a raucous Celtic Swell (if you don’t mind having to yell over the music) or the biker-bar looking Alki Tavern. Anywhere else isn’t worth your time in Alki.

The beach scene definitely has its own uniform, as well. So if you’re not privy to the look, take a peek inside the Coastal Surf Boutique, a seasonal clothing store. They’re the go-to retail location for snow, skate, and maybe the best swimwear and beachwear shop in Seattle, let alone Alki. Build your look and show it off!
Recommended for
  • Professionals
  • Singles
  • Families with kids
  • Retirees
3/5 rating details
  • Neighborly Spirit 3/5
  • Safe & Sound 5/5
  • Clean & Green 4/5
  • Pest Free 5/5
  • Peace & Quiet 5/5
  • Eating Out 1/5
  • Nightlife 1/5
  • Parks & Recreation 3/5
  • Shopping Options 2/5
  • Gym & Fitness 4/5
  • Internet Access 3/5
  • Lack of Traffic 3/5
  • Cost of Living 2/5
  • Resale or Rental Value 4/5
  • Public Transport 2/5
  • Medical Facilities 3/5
  • Schools 4/5
  • Childcare 4/5
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"A Suburban Paradise Right Off of Showtime"

Arbor heights is a retreat of sorts—a residential, family-friendly area with its own elementary school and private pool and tennis club which offers swim and dive lessons to non-members and hosts synchronization, water polo, tennis, swim and dive teams. It’s a good reason to make friends in the neighborhood, because the wait list is more than four hundred names deep for almost just as many spots. The area is almost exclusively zoned as residential property and the options range from affordable to upscale. A really nice place to start a family, the school system helps to eject kids from the “boring suburban life” just as they begin to need a little more space.
That said, this isn’t really the most diverse or exciting community in the city, and the families that settle here run a very realistic risk of sheltering their kids. True; here’s not a lot of traffic to contend with (though the homes are close enough to be claustrophobic), but it’s no exaggeration to say that the most celebrated restaurant in Arbor Heights is probably Starbucks. It’s a neighborhood that’s perfect for people who want to live out their fantasies of reenacting episodes of Weeds, without the excitement of the drug trade.
Recommended for
  • Families with kids

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