Belmont Growing Up

Just a few years ago, Belmont was almost entirely residential, with only a few businesses, the sorts that had been there for decades. Now, with the hipification of the neighborhood and some hot spots clumped together, it’s all changing. David Hendrick writes in today’s Progress:

Following in the pioneering path of the popular tapas restaurants Mas, a trio of new businesses – one open, two soon to come, are bringing an increasingly commercial, urban feel to a pocket of the neighborhood.

Come fall, it looks likely that a combination wildlife photo gallery and café will share space at the Monticello Road-Hinton Avenue nexus with a fine dining jazz club and the already bustling La Taza, a coffee bar and eatery.


“It’s very unusual in that it has a village sort of feel,” Easter said of the area surrounding La Taza. “Some people describe it as the Soho of Charlottesville, which really cracks me up.”

What this new Belmont feel reminds me of, more than anything else, is the urban pockets that circle suburban Paris, a few miles outside of the arrondissements. I like it.

3 Responses to “Belmont Growing Up”

  • Maybe I had a bad day, but it reminded me of some super-generic semi-hip playground for the well-heeled. Mas was one thing, but with Taza and all, it’s just gotten too damn cheerful for me.

  • This really isn’t news in the sense that it just happened, but it certainly is a recent trend. I think Mas is very cool, but I can’t eat olives straight up. What’s happened to Belmont is just the next step in what’s happening to Charlottesville overall – everyone wants to live here.

  • This really isn’t news in the sense that it just happened, but it certainly is a recent trend.

    I’ve recently resolved to write more about incipient matters, as opposed to the sort of one-time things that result in press releases. Slow change can be both the strongest and the least-noted force in society.

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