5 Best Neighborhoods in Cleveland

Morgan Garcia
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Without question, Cleveland is radiating incredible growth, excitement, and promise for the future. Most life-long Clevelanders are experiencing first-hand a rebirth, a true renaissance of the city, and this reawakening doesn’t stop at the borders of downtown. Cleveland’s magic extends into its lively, quirky neighborhoods that each offer their one-of-a-kind personalities.

If you’re planting roots in the CLE, here are five of the best neighborhoods to consider calling home.

1. Rocky River.

Great for families and outdoor activity lovers.

A pinnacle of Cleveland neighborhoods, Rocky River has it all: beautiful homes, quiet, safe streets, highly rated schools, and a short drive to downtown.

What makes the Rocky River neighborhood so desirable?

  • This established neighborhood is an oldy but oh-so-goodie that will never go out of style. Rocky River – shortened to River by locals – lives on the shores of Lake Erie and is more old money than new. Rocky River has stunning Victorian and Colonial-style homes – some with the most beautiful lake views you will ever see.
  • This neighborhood has excellent rated schools. Rocky River High School: 10, Rocky River Middle School: 9, Kensington Intermediate Elementary School: 9. In fact, Rocky River Schools are ranked second in the whole state of Ohio.
  • This neighborhood has easy access to the Cleveland Metroparks and Emerald Necklace Marina – an outdoor lovers delight. Residents and Cleveland locals flock to the parks for boating, kayaking, paddle boarding, biking, hiking, fishing, and much more.
  • This neighborhood has upscale salons, shops, restaurants, and bars that make you feel extra special on a warm summer evening (or anytime, really).

2. Detroit-Shoreway.

https://twitter.com/dimitarchitects/status/945681100655022081

Great for millennials, singles, artists, and entrepreneurs.

Riding the wave that is the Cleveland resurgence, the Detroit-Shoreway neighborhood is on the rise and attracting the likes of eager, ambitious millennials, creatives, and start-ups.

What makes the Detroit-Shoreway neighborhood so desirable?

  • This neighborhood is minutes from downtown and Lake Erie. Edgewater Park and Beach is built into this community.
  • This neighborhood is home to EcoVillage – a group of newly constructed green homes that work to replace ‘consumption and waste with preservation and regeneration.’
  • For those who crave a house that has more charm than is eco-friendly, this neighborhood has what you’re looking for, too, with turn-of-the-century homes that make for modest, low-cost fixer uppers.
  • This neighborhood completed a $100 million development project that turned twenty vacant industrial buildings into a beautiful residential development called Battery Park.
  • This neighborhood gives off an urban vibe dedicated to sustainability.
  • This neighborhood has great bars, restaurants, shops, and art galleries.

3. Ohio City.

https://twitter.com/ELUSIONCLOTHING/status/922179969475850243

Great for millennials, young professionals, singles, and artists.

Living west of Downtown Cleveland, Ohio City is a hip, always-happening urban oasis that is concentrated on the well-known West 25th Street. Jam-packed with all the trendy dining and entertainment spots one could want, Ohio City is great for art, business, living, and gathering.

What makes the Ohio City neighborhood so desirable?

  • This neighborhood is home to the historic West Side Market. Opening its doors now for over 100 years, the Market consists of 100 locally owned and independent businesses that sell just about everything, such as fresh meats, cheeses, seafood, fruits, veggies, baked goods, spices, flowers, and more.
  • This neighborhood offers a mix of historic homes and modern apartment complexes, both of which have proven to be perfect for the vast majority of people who call this neighborhood home.
  • This neighborhood has one of the best and longest-standing breweries in Ohio. Great Lakes Brewing Company is Ohio’s first brewpub and microbrewery and has been producing award-winning beer since 1988.
  • This neighborhood knows how to do night life with places like Town Hall, Market Garden Brewery, Speakeasy (which is in the basement of Bar Cento), and the list could go on and on. Great bars, great tunes, great vibes.

4. Bay Village

Great for families, parklike setting-lovers, suburban dwellers.

Located on the west side of Cleveland, Bay Village is 15 miles west of downtown but is a highly-coveted suburb of the city with an average livability score of ‘A.’ Great for both young and growing families, Bay Village has a mix of small bungalows and large, charismatic homes.

What makes the Bay Village neighborhood so desirable?

  • This neighborhood is a safe, family-friendly suburb receiving an A+ in crime rates from AreaVibes.
  • This neighborhood has a superior school district, with Bay Village High School: 9, Bay Village Middle School: 8, Westerly Elementary School: 10.
  • This neighborhood is home to one of Lake Erie’s most esteemed lakefront parks in Huntington Beach and Reservation and a pretty impressive public swimming pool, complete with slides, diving boards, splash and spray center, and a toddler area.
  • This neighborhood is a tight-knit community where residents foster a strong sense of belonging and have a shared commitment to keeping Bay great.

5. Lakewood

Great for families, singles, millennials, and young professionals.

Home to the densest population between New York City and Chicago, Lakewood is a large neighborhood that continues to grow. Lakewood boasts a large homeowner and renter population consisting of families, singles, millennials, and young professionals just starting out in this exciting and opportunity-filled city. 

What makes the Lakewood neighborhood so desirable?

  • This neighborhood is located just outside downtown. Lakewood skips city congestion and is an ideal place to rent or own a home with yards, parks, and sidewalks.
  • This neighborhood has good schools. Lakewood High School just completed a major remodeling and reconstruction project that gives students more space and new classrooms.
  • This neighborhood is a growing community that offers charming homes built in the early 1900’s. They’re large, reasonably priced, and perfect projects for people who love character and minimal fixer-upper tasks.
  • This neighborhood delivers great restaurants, with some even appearing on the Food Network – like the Proper Pig, Melt Bar & Grill, and Angelo’s Pizza.

Cleveland has a multitude of other great neighborhoods – both on the East side and West side of the city. Be sure and check out Tremont, Shaker Heights, Kamm’s Corner, Old Brooklyn and University Circle to see if any of those fit your fancy.

Editor's Note: This article was originally published on March 8, 2018 and has been updated for accuracy and comprehensiveness.

Morgan Garcia

Morgan is a writer based in Cleveland, OH.
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The SpareFoot Blog offers tips about self-storage, information about storage auctions, advice about home organization, news about SpareFoot and much more.
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