Explore Another Neighborhood
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Some people like to get high—high above the downtown's bustle. So they come to the Avenues and Capitol Hill, two charming, historic, liberal neighborhoods. Take an urban hike around the Aves or the Hill and notice the prim, proper, and historic homes that line the streets. As you poke around, you’ll notice a mix of shops and restaurants which add to the neighborhood's character.


Avenues residents celebrated when they got their own neighborhood pub. Avenues Proper specializes in regional and lesser-known ales and lagers and puts their own spin on contemporary American. For an upscale yet homey dining experience, check out Avenues Bistro on Third or Em’s Restaurant—both are fine choices for brunch as well as lunch and dinner. The neighborhood Nepalese joint Cafe Shambala is an excellent option for a heaping portion of Himalayan-inspired curries on the cheap. And Saffron Valley East India Cafe plates salacious food inspired by Indian street vendors—the aromas are intoxicating.

With a large population of doctors, students, and business people, the Avenues and Capitol Hill take their coffee seriously. Cucina Deli, open 365 days a year, has delicious breakfast, baked goods, and bottomless coffee, as well as lunch and dinner. Cafe on 1st is the cozy, funky place where students congregate. And Alchemy Coffee is a welcome addition for the folks by the Capitol as well as lawmakers on their way to the Capitol.

For nightlife, there’s two prominent options. The roadhouse The Garage on Beck has hand built interior furnishings from reclaimed wood, a hearty and delicious menu of comfort food, and live music throughout the week. Club Jam is one of Ski City’s premiere LGBTQ bars, featuring DJs, dance parties, and glitter galore. 


Many residents in this area commute downtown or to the University of Utah, and they get cycling gear at Wild Rose Sports. Additionally, Saturday Cycles has an incredible selection of bikes and a friendly and knowledgeable staff to help you out.Four generations have helped to make the name Hatch Family Chocolates synonymous with amazing hand-dipped chocolates and confections. If you call Jack Mormon Coffee to place your order, they will fresh roast your beans and have them ready within the hour.


Make it a “must do” to see one of the fine plays put on by the Salt Lake Acting Company. If it's nice outside, City Creek Canyon is wonderful for a walk, hike, or bike ride, and is super fun to explore on snowshoes after a winter storm. Memory Grove is picturesque in the summertime for picnics, book-reading, or get-togethers. Above the Avenues, the Bonneville Shoreline Trail is easily accessible, dog-friendly, and filled with hikers, trail runners, and mountain bikers making their pre- or post-work rounds. After a short hike, Ensign Peak rewards with a spectacular view of both the Wasatch Mountains and the Great Salt Lake.

The little yoga studio on K Street, Avenues Yoga, is an excellent place to practice asana, and this neighborhood is also a great place to get pampered with the Avenues Day Spa and the Kura Door Holistic Japanese Spa as options for massages and relaxation. After you’re all kneaded, you can take a stroll to see a number of beautiful buildings, places of both god and government, such as Utah State Capitol Building, the Masonic TempleThe Cathedral of the Madeleine, and the Governor's Mansion.


For quaint B&B charm, options include Ellerbeck Bed & Breakfast (140 N. B Street, 801-355-2500) and Inn on the Hill (225 N. State, 801-328-1466), both perched above the city, in the Avenues and Capitol Hill, respectively. For budget travelers on a shoestring ski vacation, Avenues Hostel has private rooms and extremely cheap bunk beds in shared rooms available.

While state law prohibits the sale of wine in grocery stores, the shopping plaza at 6th Ave. and E St. in the Avenues is a next-best convenience. Stock up on food at Smith’s Grocery after stocking up on high-point beers, spirits, and wines at the DABC store on the lower level.


There are sunsets for days in the Avenues and Capitol Hill. Perch on the wall at 8th Avenue and A Street, where you can watch the sun sink over the Capitol Building, or park on 11th Ave. to see the Wasatch Mountains wrapped in lovely pink and orange light.

Photos: See Credits
Words: Austen Diamond