Are you considering living in St. Louis? Not only is STL one of America’s best cities for high salaries and low costs of living, but it’s also a top foodie destination and an excellent place for first-time home buyers. If you’re a single or young professional thinking about moving to St. Louis, these five neighborhoods are ideal spots to settle down!
- Central West End
- Lafayette Square
Central West End
- Home Price: $292,806 median purchase price; $856 median monthly rent
- Crime Rate: Safer than 43% of Missouri cities
If any St. Louis neighborhood checks all the boxes for singles and young professionals, it’s Central West End. Located between Forest Park and St. Louis University, this vibrant locale has it all. Its collection of restaurants makes it a foodie haven, and the business district along Euclid Ave is a walkable shopping destination with boutiques, bookstores, live music venues, and more. CWE also has several pubs and nightclubs, so there are plenty of places to meet up with friends for happy hour or a fun night out. Be sure to set your calendar for neighborhood events like St. Louis Greek Festival, The Legendary CWE Halloween, and BookFest St. Louis. Of course, it’s not all play in Central West End! The neighborhood is also home to Washington University School of Medicine, St. Louis College of Pharmacy, and BJC HealthCare, so it’s a great spot for students and health care professionals. On top of all that, it’s just off I-64, so it takes just minutes to get to Downtown St. Louis!
Things to Do in Central West End
Discuss your favorite literary works in a book club at Left Bank Books. Venture to Forest Park to visit Saint Louis Zoo, tour Saint Louis Art Museum, or take your dog for a walk. Sample international and craft beers from more than 125 breweries each spring at St. Louis Microfest. Match wits with the locals during a game of chess on the patio at the World Chess Hall of Fame. Listen to live music while enjoying Bananas Foster Stuffed French Toast and Dr. Bob’s Bloody Mary Bar during Sunday Swing Jazz Brunch at Evangeline’s Bistro and Music House. Pair a cup of Brisket Chili with Truffled Grilled Cheese at Dressel’s Public House. Savor Steak Tartare and Pan Roasted Trout at one of St. Louis’ best restaurants, Brasserie by Niche. Wind down the day with friends, a plate of Candied Bacon, and a 4 Hands Incarnation IPA at Retreat Gastropub. Or explore unique concoctions from the craft cocktail menu like the Tully Sour and Blood & Sand at Scottish Arms.
- Home Price: $98,675 median purchase price; $818 median monthly rent
- Crime Rate: Safer than 36% of Missouri cities
Want to live in the lively center of the city? Downtown might be the best neighborhood in St. Louis for you! There’s no shortage of things to do here, and while tourists will flock to the Gateway Arch and events at The Dome at America’s Center, local residents can find all kinds of off-the-beaten-path attractions, restaurants, and nightlife to explore. Living in Downtown St. Louis means you can choose from all kinds of apartments, lofts, and condos in refurbished buildings with tons of character—and many of those options come at very affordable prices. Downtown is also a great place to find a job, as Nestle Purina PetCare and Ameren are headquartered here, and the Anheuser-Busch Brewery is just a short drive away!
Things to Do in Downtown
Cheer on the St. Louis Cardinals (MLB) at Busch Stadium. See the city from a different perspective during a relaxing St. Louis Riverfront Cruise. Show your support for the St. Louis Blues (NHL) by rooting them on at Enterprise Center. Enjoy the interactive art, sculptures, and rain gardens while strolling through Citygarden. Learn more about St. Louis’ history—including the famous Dred Scott case—in the Old Courthouse at Gateway Arch National Park. Meet your pals for a hearty brunch with a B.E.L.T. Sandwich and a Farmer’s Platter from Rooster. Introduce your palate to Peruvian dishes like Ceviche de Pescado and Fried Sweet Plantains at Mango. Try all eight types of oysters at Broadway Oyster Bar. Build your personal flight with dozens of beers from local breweries like 2nd Shift Brewing and Civil Life Brewing Company at Bridge Tap House & Wine Bar. Or overlook the city while you sip on a Spice Box Lemonade or Frico Sangrito on the rooftop at Three Sixty.
- Home Price: $229,940 median purchase price; $691 median monthly rent
- Crime Rate: Safer than 68% of Missouri cities
Though it’s just a few blocks south of Downtown, life in Lafayette Square moves at a slower pace. Replacing the stadiums and giant businesses are quiet streets of colorful Victorian homes and cozy townhomes. Everything centers around Lafayette Park, a 30-acre green space that’s perfect for walking the dog, going on a morning run, or taking a peaceful stroll in the evening. The park also hosts movie nights, food festivals, and a summer concert series, helping give Lafayette Square a strong sense of community. Better yet, this safe neighborhood provides easy access to I-44 and historic U.S. Route 66, so commuting to other areas of the city is a breeze. If you want to enjoy all of the Downtown attractions while maintaining a quiet lifestyle, Lafayette Square is one of the best places to live in St. Louis!
Things to Do in Lafayette Square
Try incredible food and drinks from some of the finest St. Louis restaurants at the annual Taste of Lafayette Square. Switch up your workout routine by climbing the walls at Climb So iLL. Kick off Labor Day weekend by participating in the neighborhood’s annual bike race, Tour de Lafayette. Cool off from the warm St. Louis summer weather with a cone of Midnight Pleasures Ice Cream or alcohol-infused treats like Boozy Banana Rum Ice Cream at Clementine’s Naughty & Nice Creamery. Feast on a Loaded Dog or a Smoked BBQ Pork Sandwich during a Patio BBQ Thursday at SqWires Restaurant & Annex. Get a taste of Italy by ordering an Antipasta Board and Wild Boar Ravioli at Eleven Eleven Mississippi. Enjoy beers like the Maple Stout and Smokey Blonde alongside hand-crafted spirits like Urban Bourbon and Starry Night Absinthe at Square One Brewery & Distillery. Or snack on Ranch Chex Mix and throw back specialty cocktails like the Solid as a Rock and Paper Plane at Planter’s House.
- Home Price: $209,833 median purchase price; $910 median monthly rent
- Crime Rate: Safer than 86% of Missouri cities
Looking for a safe neighborhood where you can experience the great outdoors in the big city? Shaw is a great choice! The neighborhood has parks on nearly every border—Tower Grove Park to the south, Missouri Botanical Garden to the west, and Compton Hill Reservoir Park to the east—giving you all kinds of space to exercise, hang with friends, and enjoy nature. Shaw offers home buyers a variety of classic brick Victorians and Colonial-style houses, and renters have plenty of picks for affordable apartments and brick townhomes. In addition, this up-and-coming neighborhood is just a ten-minute drive from Midtown and Downtown St. Louis, so employment opportunities, dining, and entertainment are always close by. All this makes Shaw a popular place not only for people who want to have a good time, but also those who want to eventually settle down and start a family.
Things to Do in Shaw
Revel at the beautiful work of local and national artists while enjoying live music and tasty food each fall at the Historic Shaw Art Fair. Let your furry friend run off the leash and socialize with other dogs at Shaw Dog Park. Host a barbecue with friends and family on the spacious grounds at Old Playground Pavilion. Explore tropical plants not native to the region in the domed Climatron at the Missouri Botanical Garden. Start your day with a Lavender Rose Latte and a Garden Scramble Breakfast Bowl from Fiddlehead Fern Cafe. See why Food Network and People Magazine love Steve’s Hot Dogs by trying hot dogs like the Gorilla Mac & Cheese Dog or Backyard BBQ Dog. Polish off your Audre Lorde’s Chikn Challenge Sandwich with a Big Momma Cinnamon Roll at SweetArt. Indulge your sweet tooth with cones of German Chocolate and Cherry Cordial ice cream at Ices Plain and Fancy. Gather the crew for a night of Tenacious Trivia at Thurman’s in Shaw. Or relax on the patio with cocktails like The Wild Carrot and an Espresso Martini at Sasha’s on Shaw.
- Home Price: $207,300 median purchase price; $742 median monthly rent
- Crime Rate: Safer than 5% of Missouri cities
If it’s the St. Louis nightlife you crave, Soulard might be the perfect neighborhood for you! Pubs and bars are peppered throughout the diverse neighborhood, which showcases its festive personality in the annual Soulard Mardi Gras celebration, one of the largest Mardi Gras events in the U.S. Parties aren’t all you’ll find in Soulard, however. Located just south of Downtown, Soulard has quick access to lots of St. Louis jobs and offers various housing styles. You’ll find brick rowhouses, Victorians, and alley houses at varying price points, as well as apartments and lofts for rent. In addition, Soulard is right off I-55, so you can get anywhere in the city pretty quickly. There’s so much to experience here that most residents don’t find many reasons to leave!
Things to Do in Soulard
Cheer on the floats and marching bands at the Bud Light Grand Parade, the highlight of the annual Mardi Gras festivities. Peruse the goods of 150 local vendors at the Soulard Farmers Market, which has been in operation since 1779. Enjoy a drink in the Biergarten after a tour of the historic Anheuser-Busch Brewery. Test your bravery during a Hive Live Zombie Hunt at The Darkness Haunted House. Snack on a Boba Fett Melt while you challenge a friend to one of the hundreds of board games at Pieces Board Game Bar & Cafe. Devour some of the nation’s best barbecue with a Slab of Ribs or a Burnt Ends Sandwich from Bogart’s Smokehouse. Finish off a feast of Bangers and Mash with a slice of Bailey’s Cheesecake in the outdoor garden at John D. McGurk’s, one of America’s best Irish pubs. Chow down on Hot Fried Chicken Tacos or a Three Little Piggies Burrito at Mission Taco Joint. Check out the drag shows or join in for Karaoke Night at Bastille. Relax with a beer while Fido makes friends in the play area at The Doghaus. Or order a stiff drink at friendly neighborhood dive bar Cat’s Meow.
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Neighborhood statistics from AreaVibes