Best Neighborhood to Live In

Columbia City

A dozen years ago, when Deputy Mayor Darryl Smith was a South End realtor, he hyped Columbia City as a sophisticated enclave for diversity lovers. The spin was more aspiration than reality at that point. The business district had a couple of good cafes and a charmingly antiquated tearoom, but that was about it. Today, Smith's aspiration is literal fact. Columbia City is the destination point for the entire South End, home to great eateries, one of the city's best bakeries, a happening music club, a bookstore, clothing shops, an art gallery, and more. White yuppies have moved in, for sure, but the area still boasts what for Seattle is an unparalleled diversity. The Columbia City environs also boast a family-friendly feel, closeness to magnificent Seward Park, and hidden pockets of relatively affordable housing. NINA SHAPIRO

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