To Downtown San Diego: 10 minutes
ZIP CODE 44118
For Sell $7.99K - $2M
For Rent $795 - $10K
1 Middle School
Shop & Eat
The variety of University Heights
University Heights, California is located just north of Downtown San Diego. This neighborhood is increasingly popular with many different demographics and offers a variety of housing options from basic apartments to million-dollar homes. University Heights offers easy access to Balboa Park, the San Diego International Airport, and San Diego State University. Neighboring communities include Normal Heights, North Park, Hillcrest, and Mission Valley.
This safe and eclectic community is very walkable, with much of the action happening along Park Boulevard. The pedestrian and bike friendly streets are lined with historic bungalows, vintage shops, laid-back brunch spots, and local cafes. Vegan and vegetarian options are common here, and local restaurants offer a variety of other diverse cuisines. Just some of the many popular local eateries to choose from include: Grains, Madison, Parkhouse Eatery, Lestat’s on Park, Bahn Thai, Meraki Cafe, and Plumeria Vegetarian.
University Heights residents enjoy living in a vibrant community with plenty to see and do. Nightlife options include several local pubs and dive bars like The Lancers, Cheers, and Small Bar. On weekend nights, residents also enjoy gathering at the rooftop deck on Kairoa Brewing Company or enjoying live music and games on the patio at Park and Rec.
There are many other live entertainment options to choose from including comedy nights at Twiggs, plays and musicals at Diversionary Theatre, and free concerts at Trolley Barn Park. Annual events such as The Taste of University Heights, Party on Park, and Lights in the Heights continue to draw large crowds.
As one of the first “streetcar suburbs”, University Heights enjoyed prosperity and commercial development due to its connection to downtown San Diego. In the early 1900s, the neighborhood was home to the original site of San Diego State University, Mission Cliff Gardens, Bentley’s Ostrich Farm, and the San Diego Silk Mill. Other notable local landmarks include the University Heights Street Sign, several historic churches, Panorama Drive, and the Valle Vista Terrace Historic District.
Despite its name, the community currently does not house any institution of higher learning. Founded in the late 1880s, University Heights was originally designated as the location for a branch of the University of Southern California. After the deal fell through, the neighborhood instead became home to the San Diego Normal School specifically designated for the education of teachers. This school later went on to become the San Diego State College (today known as San Diego State University) after moving to its current location on Montezuma Mesa.
The area grew in popularity after the 1915 Panama Pacific International Exposition in nearby Balboa Park brought an increase in tourism and access to public transit. Today, University Heights still sees a fair amount of tourism, due to its close proximity to popular sites like Balboa Park and the San Diego Zoo. Several chain and boutique hotels service the area including the popular Lafayette Hotel & Swim Club.
Local homes represent several popular early 20th century architectural styles including Craftsman, Spanish Colonial Revival, American Colonial Revival, and Tudor Revival. Residents of University Heights today continue to work hard to preserve the community’s unique history and character. There are many ways to get involved in civics, and local organizations include:
University Heights Art Association
University Heights Community Association (UHCA)
University Heights Community Development Corporation (UHCDC)
The University Heights Historical Society
Between Heights Community Association
University Heights is a hidden gem that offers the perfect solution for Southern California residents searching for a neighborhood with all the latest amenities, an eclectic vibe, and historic homes. Give this unique community a tour today and see what makes University Heights such a great place to live!