Belltown is named after William Bell, who claimed the land where the neighborhood grew up. The uncommonly flat terrain of today is the result of the removal of Denny Hill, a project started in 1897, the final phase of which was completed in 1930.
For many years Belltown was a blue collar, working class part of town (e. g. Catholic Seaman’s Club), with plenty of taverns and a small manufacturing bent, especially along Third Avenue.
Things started to change in the 1980s, with cheap studio space for artists and musicians. In the 1990s Mother Jones named Belltown the nation’s “hippest” neighborhood, with the Crocodile Café serving as Seattle’s version of Liverpool’s Cavern Club. The hip bubble has since moved in Georgetown’s direction.
Belltown has many attractions besides the clubs and bars: The P-Patch and Cottage Park — the cottages stand where the original shoreline was; the Two Bells Bar & Grill, 2313 Fourth Ave (maybe the best burgers in the city); 10 art galleries and a wide variety of restaurants, which range from the 5 Point Café, 415 Cedar St. (voted Seattle’s best dive bar in one poll) to Tom Douglas’ Dahlia Lounge, 2001 Fourth Ave; Belltown also has some 15 apparel shops and a dozen hotels or hostelries.
• Belltown Business Association www.belltownbusinessassociation.orghas a downloadable map and list of neighborhood businesses.
• Belltown Community Council: www.belltowncc.org
• Belltown P-Patch, 2520 Elliott Ave. www.speakeasy.org/~mykejw/ppatch
• The Olympic Sculpture Park, 2901 Western Ave (www.seattleartmuseum.org).
Zip: 98121. Boundaries: North: Denny Way; South: Virginia Street; East: Fifth Avenue; West: Elliott Bay