San Diego

Downtown Waterfront Neighborhoods

September 8th, 2012 by


Summertime brings back happy memories of family jaunts to the Jersey shore at the tip of Long Beach Island. Each August, we would pack up the car and leave our suburban New York home for two glorious weeks on this sandy spit with a picturesque bay on the west, and crashing Atlantic waves to the east. Our temporary home was a little beach cottage (I use the term loosely) and slice of heaven.


Those early experiences influenced my desire to live close to the water and, later, working in midtown New York added a love for all things urban.


If you share these passions, downtown San Diego is an ideal city to call home, with three different neighborhoods bordering the bay:


Little Italy: As the name suggests, this area was originally settled by Italian families — many of who moved to the area to participate in the profitable tuna trade following the 1906 San Francisco earthquake. Today, this northwestern-most section of downtown features bistros, coffee houses, boutiques and galleries. A variety of colorful events and annual festivals lure visitors and residents alike, mostly along tree-lined India Street in view of the iconic Little Italy sign.


Approximately twenty area residential properties are currently offered, ranging from a $229,000 one-bedroom to $949,000 for a three-bedroom condominium. A four-bedroom townhome, priced at $575,000, has direct street access, projecting qualities of a single-family residence.


Columbia: This largely commercial district includes the Broadway Pier with cruise ship berthing and ferry service to Coronado, the historic Santa Fe Depot, the U.S.S. Midway and the San Diego Museum of Contemporary Art, and Federal, State and County administrative facilities. Here, the waterfront encompasses a significant portion of the North Embarcadero Visionary Plan, slated to include a pedestrian esplanade for enhanced public access and bay views, extensive landscaping, art and cultural sites, plus entertainment, dining, and shopping.

Red Bull Air Show from REN

Red Bull Air Show competition above San Diego Bay viewed from the South Tower at Renaissance in the Marina District


Of about 35 current condominium listings, offered residences range from a one-bedroom for $317,500 to a luxurious, contemporary 34th floor two-bedroom unit value-ranged at $2,995,000-$3,475,000.


Marina District: Previously composed of warehouses and vacant lots, this now highly desirable, tree-lined area of parks and promenades amidst fountains and reflecting pools, includes amenities such as two trolley stops, Embarcadero Marina Park and Seaport Village, Children’s Museum, and restaurants and hotels. San Diego’s celebrated waterfront convention center, entertaining plans for a third expansion, extends from of the Marina District.


Residential offerings currently exceed 60 units, including a studio for $230,000 and, at the high end, a 38th floor three-bedroom unit, encompassing 4,170 square feet, for $4,950,000. Town homes featuring street-level direct entries include a two-bedroom for $525,000 and one-story, two-bedroom unit for $689,000.


Downtown is never at a loss for activities and waterfront destinations are a major draw, including restaurants, outdoor shows, concerts, museums and boating, as well as just a stroll along a pleasant path in the sun.


Note:  If you would like my Blog delivered directly to your email inbox, please use the top-of-page Navigation Bar “Contact” link and send me your email with a note to that effect.