Seattle's International District is the center for food, products and entertainment from a variety of Asian cultures. Chinese, Japanese, and Filipino settlements first sprang up in this area in the early 1900's. In the mid 1970's Vietnamese families also moved into the area, connecting the ID and Central areas with a string of popular Vietnamese restaurants and grocers along Jackson Street. Today these communities, and many more, use the ID as a gathering place to enjoy Asian foods and access multi-lingual services available to residents and visitors alike.
The deli, restaurant, and bakery choices in the ID are innumerable and incredible; our recommendation: Try them all. Other favorite spots include: Uwajimaya Village Market - a bustling center for groceries from around the world; Panama Tea located in a recently refurbished section of the historic Panama Hotel; the Wing Luke Art Museum, is home to art, history and culture of the Asian American experience and offers neighborhood historic tours; and the Bush Gardens, the unofficial business center of the neighborhood, posing as a karaoke bar - this club is often filled with a "who's who" of the area's leaders relaxing after a community meeting or event.
Housing in the International District has historically been lower-income, and often age-restricted, rentals. Recent revitalization efforts have greatly increased the number of market-rate condominiums, but the development emphasis is still on providing affordable housing and services for the community's elderly population. The neighborhood's central location, with quick and easy bus service to downtown and the waterfront, in addition to the plentiful amenities within walking distance, make the ID a great spot for anyone, young or old, who wants to live in the city without a car.