11/29/2008

11-28-08 - Historic Capitol Hill

One of my favorite things to do here is just walk around the neighborhood. The streets are lovely; not exactly tree-lined because Seattlites have a great loathing of trees that block the sun, but still verdant, and with great old houses, lovely brick apartments , and lots of variety.

I really dig the "Tudor style" (or "mock tudor" or "Tudorbethan") medieval-esque apartments, many with round towers. One of the men primarily responsible is Anhalt ( and more ). Most of the stuff was built in the late 20's just before the Great Depression, in our penultimate building boom. Architecturally most of the buildings are absolutely monstrous; they combine country cottage style elements with pretentions of grandiosity. They mix graceful decorative elements with heavy blocky imposing forms, and it all seems just randomly slapped together with little logic. Still they are like jewels compared to modern construction.

As the Mike Whybark guy says the Loveless building is also quite lovely; sometimes the gate is open and you can wander into the interior courtyard. Bacchus is gone and in its place is Olivar, a very mediocre restaurant, but the Russian-themed murals on the walls are quite remarkable, and apparently original.

Random other page with historic capitol hill photos .

It's annoying that "Capitol Hill" also exists in Washington DC.

Other local highlights : mansion row on 14th street is okay of course. The mansions over at Harvard and Prospect are good too; here's an example . Hmm. Weird. Google Maps shows that spot as "Lakeview Place" which is supposedly a park, but I haven't noticed a public park there. It has a bare bones entry at seattle.gov

Also I just heard the stairway over at E Blaine and Broadway is nice.

Oh, and the St. Mark's Greenbelt is mostly lame; it should have great views but there are too many trees. I was very amused to find this story by a guy who made a fort in the Greenbelt though.

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