2019 rank: 37
A huge swing in sale prices—from a minor drop in 2018 to a nearly 10 percent upturn in 2019—slingshot this neighborhood into our top five. Defined by its Craftsman bungalows, Victorians, and modern scrapes, West Highland is a residential enclave. It feels more like a locals’ neighborhood: It’s not quite as trendy as Highland, its sister ’hood to the east (and number eight on our list), or Berkeley to the north (number 11 on the list), but it’s equally well outfitted. West Highland is home to two well-ranked schools, two convenient bike corridors (on West 29th and 35th avenues), and the bustling Highlands Square.
How we got these numbers: We utilized the city’s official list of 78 neighborhoods (only 74 had enough data to be included), and ranked them using four variables: home prices, crime data, school rankings, and an X factor score that accounts for things like access to open space, proximity to public transportation, and restaurant and shopping options. For more on our methodology, return to the main page.
Eat & Drink
Highlands Square is the nucleus of commerce here. It’s where you’ll find a number of bars and a diverse array of cuisines; among our favorites are El Camino Tavern (Mexican), Himchuli (Indian and Nepali), Sushi Hai (Japanese), and Salt & Grinder (sandwiches). There are also myriad ways to support artisan purveyors, from the Sunday farmers’ market in the summer to Mondo Vino wine store, St. Kilian’s Cheese Shop and Market, and 46-year-old Seafood Landing fish market. Venture to other corners of the district to find equally satisfying venues, including the Inventing Room Dessert Shop and American Elm.
Ladies will find plenty of boutique options in West Highland, like RusticThread and Dragonfly. For gifts, look no further than the Perfect Petal’s bouquets or the creative cards at Wordshop. Just down the road on 32nd Avenue, Vert Beauty is one of the best clean beauty stores in town.
Break A Sweat
Sloan’s Lake Park is nearby, but there are also plenty of fitness studios within walking distance, too. Choose between spin (Epic Ryde, Rush Cycle), boot camp (Orangetheory Fitness), barre (Barre 3, Pure Barre), yoga (Zenver Yoga), and Pilates (Highlands Pilates). Got kids? Let them expend their energy at Ta Da Gymnastic Studio.