The heart and soul of the Pacific Northwest!
| Queen Anne
Ballard is a neighborhood located in the northwestern part of Seattle. Crown Hill is to the north, Phinney Ridge and Fremont is to the east, the Lake Washington Ship Canal is to the south, and Puget Sound's Shilshole Bay is to the west.
If you are visiting, check out the Hiram M. Chittenden Locks (known locally as the "Ballard Locks") to see how boats get from the Sound to the Lakes.
Historically Ballard is the traditional center of Seattle's ethnically Scandinavian seafaring community, who were drawn to the area because of the salmon fishing opportunities. As you can imagine, in recent years, the fishing industry has decreased the proportion of Scandinavian residents but the neighborhood is still proud of its heritage.
Make sure you stop by Archie McPhee's for fun, weird, crazy toys and novelties. You'll have a fun time perusing through their goods!
If you want a bite to eat, there's always Ivar's Fish and Chips, close to the Locks and for your sweet tooth, pick up a cupcake at Cafe Verite for a Cupcake Royale treat!
For finer, more upscale (translates to more expensive) fare, check out Ray's Boathouse and Anthony's.
Queen Anne Hill is a neighborhood and a huge hill in Seattle. This hill is the highest named hill in Seattle with a maximum elevation of 456 feet. Queen Anne is located just north of the Seattle Center, south of Fremont, across from the Lake Washington Ship Canal. Because of its location (being on a high hill) and having gorgeous views, the area quickly became a magnet for the elite and wealthy to build their mansions.
For a nice leisurely walk, walk down Queen Anne Avenue, eat at the 5 Spot (especially if there is no line), check out the cute shops. For a cup of joe, Starbucks and Tully's are right across the street from one another, so take your pick! There is also a Jamba Juice and a Noah's Bagels.
I used to frequent Chinois in my younger days but haven't been there recently. It wasn't bad but sometimes the wait times were long.
Fremont is a neighborhood in Seattle named after Fremont, Nebraska. The neighborhood is situated along the Fremont Cut of the Lake Washington Ship Canal to the north of Queen Anne, east of Ballard, south of Phinney Ridge, and southwest of Wallingford.
When visiting Fremont, you must stop and say hello to the Fremont Troll (he's 18 feet high). He lives under the north end of the Aurora Bridge.
One of the biggest events is the Summer Solstice Parade & Pageant but for those who don't like to see nudity, you may want to skip this as there are hundreds of Solstice Cyclists, peddling their hearts away in their birthday suits.
Also important to Fremont is the large block on Linden Avenue North that contains B.F. Day Elementary School. B.F. Day is the longest continually operating school in the Seattle school district, having been founded in 1892. I used to live across from this school in the condos across the street on Fremont Avenue North. This intersection has 5 different points coming out of it... we were always amazed that there weren't more accidents there.
If you are hungry, you must try a hole in the wall place called "Paseo's". It has the best Cuban sandwiches. You can check them out on my Restaurant Recommendations.
I used to hop on my bike and pick up the Burke Gilman Trail by the water and either head into Ballard and downtown Seattle or head towards the University of Washington up north into Lake Forest Park, around Woodinville and down to Redmond and back.
| Newport Hills
Since the neighborhood of Enatai overlooks Lake Washington from the western slopes of Bellevue, waterfront homes and property can be found in this neighborhood.
So you ask? How did this neighborhood get its name? A ferry run called the Enatai once ran between Seattle and Bellevue. The ferry run is now closed but the name Enatai was kept for the neighborhood. Enatai now connects to Seattle via the I-90 corridor and bridges spanning Lake Washington.
There is a great park in Enatai, it is actually underneath a part of the I-90 bridge. In the summer, you can rent kayaks and launch from the park. The address is: 3519 108th Avenue SE. It's advisable to contact Cascade Canoe and Kayak (boat rentals), 425-430-0111 just before heading out on a hot sunny day in the summer, since they can run out of kayaks and boats. For picnic reservations, call: 425-452-6914. Hours: Dawn to dusk. Amenities include swimming, a dock, boat house, picnic area, restrooms, and canoe and kayak rentals in warm weather. Lifeguards are on-duty late June through Labor Day.
Directions: From I-90, take Bellevue Way exit north. Turn left on 108th Avenue SE. Parking in lot under overpass and further east down Lake Street.
Home prices have skyrocketed in the last few years due to the high demand for homes with easy access and short commutes to downtown Seattle and Bellevue and AMAZING VIEWS. It also doesn't hurt to have award-winning schools such as Somerset Elementary, Tyee Middle School, and Newport High School. Newport High School was listed among the Top 100 public high schools in the country in Newsweek Magazine. (Did I mention the INCREDIBLE VIEWS?)
Somerset Elementary was recently renovated. The existing 43,000 SF building was demolished and replaced with a new 71,000 SF two-story building. The project provided District standard 1000 SF classrooms; gymnasium and multi-purpose room; stage areas; music rooms and art/science project rooms. The school has interactive white boards (Smart Boards) and LCD projectors in every instructional space. The school is both hard wired for data and has full wireless capability as well. The wireless access enables the use of mobile laptop computer lab to be used in every classroom rather than dedicating a space for a computer lab. Construction began in June, 2003, with the school closed for the 2003-2004 year and was completed in August, 2004.
Newport High School is currently undergoing renovations. 8 of 12 buildings covering approximately 116,000 SF have been demolished and will be replaced with a new 145,000 SF three-story classroom, library and administrative wing with internal pedestrian corridors connecting it to the four remaining structures. Modernization will occur to the remaining 71,000 SF, which includes the existing performing arts center, two gymnasiums and the technology wing. When the renovations are complete, the school will have interactive white boards (Smart Boards) and LCD projectors in every instructional space. The school will be both hard wired for data and have full wireless capability as well. The wireless access will enable the use of mobile laptop computer labs to be used in every classroom across the campus. Construction began in July 2005 and the new classroom addition and much of the civil work is scheduled for completion in December 2006. At that time students and staff will move into the new classroom building and the demolition of the current classroom areas will take place to allow for new softball and soccer fields. The project is scheduled to be substantially complete by spring 2008.
The Somerset HOA's website can be found at: www.somerset98006.org The voluntary dues for each home is $50 a year.
Many people are unaware that there are hiking and walking trails within the neighborhood. They are known as the Somerset Greenbelts.
Address: 4738-136th Avenue SE
Hours: Dawn to dusk
Amenities: Trails, 6 acres. A natural area with a system of maintained trails that connect to other open space sites including Westwood Highlands Greenbelt and Forest Hill Park. By following the signage system and using sidewalks you can hike throughout the south of I-90 greenbelt system. Go down Coal Creek (King County trails), connect with Cougar Mountain Wildland Park, then Squak Mountain, over to Tiger Mountain. Go up to Snoqualmie Pass, connect with the Pacific Crest or John Wayne trail, which will take you to Idaho, Canada, and Mexico. Contact Dept of Parks & Community Services, 425-452-6881 (reference "Trail Guide") for further information.
Lakemont is comprised of numerous neighborhoods, many with community parks and trails. Lakemont residents enjoy convenient access to the Lakemont shopping and retail center (Matthew's Thriftway, Starbucks, Blockbuster, Saviano's Restaurant 4957 Lakemont Blvd. S.E.Bellevue, WA 98006 Phone: 425-564-0927), the Golf Club at Newcastle, Lake Sammamish, Issaquah, and Bellevue.
William Buchan Homes is adding 8 new homes to the appealing Lakemont community named Albion. Prices from just over $1,000,000.00 with the houses finishing completion in 2008.
New homes currently available at CamWest's newest community at Cougar Ridge West. 4-6 Bedrooms Homes with 2 & 3 Garages, priced from the mid-$800,000's. These homes are in the Issaquah School District.
Lakemont Community Park, 5170 Village Park Drive SE
Field Scheduling: 425-452-6914
Picnic/Shelter Reservations: 425-452-7158
Hours: Dawn to Dusk
Amenities: Play area, 2 picnic shelters, basketball court, 2 tennis courts, trails, restrooms, softball field, 16 acres.
Directions: From I-90, take exit #13 (W. Lake Sammamish Pkwy, Newport Way, Lakemont Blvd). Turn south from the ramp onto Lakemont Blvd. Go through the stoplight at Newport Way. Go through the stoplight at 171st Avenue SE (Matthew's Thriftway). Make an immediate left onto Village Park Drive SE. Make another immediate left. The park is located behind the office building.
Lakemont Highlands Neighborhood Park, 15800 SE 63rd Street
Hours: Dawn to dusk
Amenities: Trails, picnic tables, play area, basketball and tennis court, 1.32 acres. 4 + 1 handicapped parking spaces.
Directions: From I-90, take exit #13 (W. Lake Sammamish Pkwy, Newport Way, Lakemont Blvd). Turn south from the ramp onto Lakemont Blvd. Go through the stoplight at Newport Way. Go through the stoplight at 171st Avenue SE (Matthew's Thriftway). Go through the stop sign at 164th Avenue SE. Turn right onto SE 63rd Street. Park is on the right.
So are you wondering what the boundaries for Newport Hills are? Well, since Newport Hills is not a city, there is no formal boundary but there are approximately 3,200 households in this area.
There is a small community shopping center right in the center of the Newport Hills which includes a Red Apple Market and a restaurant that I always forget to try but have heard rave reviews about named South China Perry Ko's restaurant. The shopping center is surrounded by a church and Eastside Catholic High School to the west, the Newport Hills Swim and Tennis club to the north and apartments and condos to the south and east.
Be careful when purchasing a home in Newport Hills, particularly if you want to stay in the Bellevue School District since the Renton School District and the Bellevue School District encompasses and serves this neighborhood. All of these homes will have a Bellevue address but they may not be served by the Bellevue School District so make sure to check with the District.
Here is a good website for more information on Newport Hills: Newport Hills Community Club
Eastside Catholic High School is a private Catholic school under construction in Sammamish, Washington with its current Bellevue, Washington location in a leased facility from the Bellevue School District in the Newport Hills neighborhood. The school has approximately 535 students in grades 9-12.
Newport Hills has a really nice community park located at 6029-120th Avenue SE. To reserve the field or for picnic reservations, contact the following numbers:
Field Scheduling: 425-452-6914
Picnic Reservations: 425-452-7158
Hours: Dawn to dusk
Amenities: Picnic area and play area, lighted soccer field, ball field and restrooms, 7.82 acres. 31 regular parking spaces plus 2 handicapped, also street parking.
Directions: From I-405, take Coal Creek Pkwy exit heading east. Turn right on SE 60th Street. Turn left on 120th Avenue SE. Park is on the right.
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Take 112th Avenue SE exit off I-405, turn east at top of ramp. Turn left at the 3 way stop onto SE 60th Street. Turn right on 120th Avenue SE, park is on right.