Wednesday, October 30, 2013

Central West End of St. Louis: What to Do, Where to Go, and What to See

Central West End of St. Louis: What to Do, Where to Go, and What to See
Extending from Midtown’s western tip down to Union Boulevard, the Central West End neighborhood of St. Louis is one of the city’s most affluent communities and home to an array of free attractions, as well as being the “heart of the city”. For example, this wealthy neighborhood is home to the Cathedral Basilica of Saint Louis, which has the largest collection of mosaics in the world, as well as Forest Park, and the quaint turn-of-the-century lamp posts and cobblestone streets that give the neighborhood its historic atmosphere. This community also has many residential areas, some of which are actually listed on the National Register of Historical Places, such as Westminster Place and Washington Terrace.
Central West End was historically the home of playwright Tennessee Williams, and also of poet T.S. Eliot. The 1904 World’s Fair—held in nearby Forest Park—gave Central West End even more popularity and its population grew after the fair was over and many of the fair’s visitors stayed in the area. The neighborhood is now a mix of residential areas and a commercial/retail space that is located along Euclid Avenue, stretching from Forest Park Parkway, Delmar Boulevard, and also many restaurants are nestled in the Euclid/McPherson and Euclid/Laclede areas. Maryland Plaza is another area with many of the neighborhood’s restaurants and shops, including resident favorites like Brasserie by Niche, Scottish Arms, Atlas, and Herbie’s Vintage 72.
This scenic and historic community also has other tourist attractions, other than just restaurants and shopping; the Saint Louis Public Library Schlafly Branch is located here, on Lindell Boulevard; the architecture of the historic homes and buildings is a tourist destination in itself, including the large homes in Westminster Place, built from 1890 until 1910, and also homes in Washington Terrace which date back to 1892; and Chase Park Plaza, located at Kingshighway between Lindell Street and Maryland Plaza, features hotels, opulent private homes, a movie theater, restaurants, and banquet facilities.
Nightlife is a plus in the neighborhood as well, with lots of great bars and pubs along Laclede Avenue, Euclid, and Maryland Plaza, including popular favorites like Rosie’s Place, Luna, Bar Italia, Club 34, Bad Dog Saloon, and the Viva Club.
Demographically, the Central West End neighborhood consists of mainly Caucasians (58%), with a mix of African Americans, Asians, and Hispanics. The median household income was $64k as of 2012, with a home value of around $115k. Many of the homes in the historic residential areas are large, built in the mid 1900s, and several are on the National Register of Historic Places. Tourists are drawn to these large homes set along quaint cobblestone streets that truly give this “heart of the city” of St. Louis its reputation for being the best area for living, living it up, and enjoying the nightlife.

Visit Frank & Laurie at STL MO HOMES
Frank J. Helderle St. Louis, MO June 2013 ©

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