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VOICES: Scott Russell // Downtown Asheville’s top neighborhoods

River Arts District // @AVLtoday

Written by Scott Russell, owner of Freestone Properties. This is a contributor-submitted Voices piece. Want to join the conversation? We invite you to write for us. Learn how to share your voice here.

One of the biggest attractions in Asheville, NC for both tourists and residents is the convenience and walkability of many of the city’s neighborhoods.

As a real estate broker in Asheville, I constantly meet people from other states who want to move here after visiting and checking out some of the attractions near downtown Asheville. They love the idea of being able to walk or bike downtown, but they sometimes want to be a bit removed from the hustle and bustle of downtown living.

Fortunately, downtown Asheville is surrounded by great neighborhoods, and each offers a unique vibe. Here are our favorite selections near downtown.

1. Montford Historic District – Located just across I-240 from downtown, Montford is made up of many houses that were constructed in the 19th century. In addition, there are some newer homes and some beautifully renovated craftsman and Victorian homes. Add in some parks and great restaurants, and you have one of Asheville’s most popular neighborhoods!

2. Kenilworth – Centrally located just south of downtown, Kenilworth is one of the largest neighborhoods in the Asheville city limits. Kenilworth features an incredible variety of architectural styles and ages of homes, as well as parks and playgrounds. It’s also very close to Asheville’s medical district and Mission Hospital, making it popular among nurses and medical workers.

3. River Arts District – One of Asheville’s hippest communities is the River Arts District. The RAD sits above the French Broad River and has been revitalized in recent years, with dilapidated warehouses and commercial buildings being transformed into restaurants, breweries, and art studios. Homes in the RAD are all within a short walk of amenities.

4. Grove Park – The Grove Park neighborhood is famous for being home to the Grove Park Inn, an upscale resort and spa that has hosted many celebrities, U.S. presidents, and professional athletes. And as you might expect, homes in Grove Park are typically older and pricier. Residents here enjoy mature trees and sidewalk-lined streets near one of the area’s most popular tourist attractions.

5. Five Points – A smaller and lesser known neighborhood near Downtown is Five Points, an eclectic neighborhood that is popular among UNC-Asheville students and professors. Five Points is close to downtown and also offers lots of Asheville area restaurants and breweries along the Merrimon Avenue corridor.