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Where to Live Now in Seattle

A look at seven of the city's most distinct neighborhoods.

By Darren Davis August 24, 2015 Published in the September 2015 issue of Seattle Met

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Average rents provided by Redfin

1. Bainbridge Island

  • Pro  A quaint, distinctly Northwest community 
  • Con  Isolated, lacks entertainment variety 
  • Average Rent  $1,646 
  • Unique Traits  The 8.6-mile ferry route between downtown Seattle and Bainbridge is the most active water commute around.
  • A $50 Night Out  3 small plates, tip at Hitchcock $42; 2 scoops at Mora Iced Creamery $8

2. Ballard

  • Pro  An affluent mix of multiunit neighborhoods and single family homes
  • Con  Minimum 15-minute commute downtown, can feel more like a suburb than a Seattle community
  • Average Rent  $2,000
  • Unique Traits  The Ballard Farmers Market is a bustling tourist spot during summer and a local’s produce hub in colder months.
  • A $50 Night Out  Tiki drink, tip at Hotel Albatross $12; Moules frites, glass of wine, tip at Bastille $38

3. Greenwood

  • Pro  Family friendly neighborhood up north
  • Con  Not exactly a hot spot for young singles
  • Average Rent  $1,622
  • Unique Traits  Green Lake Park offers a three-mile jog, swimming, and a small theater. 
  • A $50 Night Out  Bottle of wine, pint of ice cream at Ken’s Market $20; Takeout for two, tip at Tiko Riko $25; Video on demand $5

4. South Lake Union

  • Pro  State-of-the-art condos surrounding the Amazon campus
  • Con  Tech employees, and only tech employees
  • Average Rent  $2,306
  • Unique Traits  Amazon’s forthcoming headquarters is set to be a futuristic tech wonderland.
  • A $50 Night Out  Salad, burger, cocktail, tip at Re:Public $50

5. Capitol Hill

  • Pro  The cultural epicenter of Seattle
  • Con  The gentrification epicenter of Seattle
  • Average Rent  $2,022
  • Unique Traits  More than 30 bars and restaurants have opened in Capitol Hill over the last year.
  • A $50 Night Out  Prosecco, Chickpeas, 12 happy hour oysters, tip at Anchovies and Olives $35; Cocktail, tip at Canon $15

6. Belltown

  • Pro  Urban living that maintains a neighborhood feel
  • Con  Loud on weekends, no parking
  • Average Rent  $2,475
  • Unique Traits  Belltown is the most densely populated neighborhood in the city.
  • A $50 Night Out  A show at The Crocodile $8; Half pizza, beer, tip at Rocco’s $30; Nightcap, tip at Bell and Whete $12

7. West Seattle

  • Pro  Traditional, single family neighborhoods away from urban density
  • Con  Rush-hour nightmares on the West Seattle Bridge
  • Average Rent  $1,835
  • Unique Traits  Alki is one of the most popular, and swimmable, beaches in Seattle.
  • A $50 Night Out  Two strong beers, tip at Locöl $12; Pupus, half fried chicken, tip at Ma’ono $38


This article has been updated since publication to include Redfin as data source.

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