Mary Hopper, executive director of University City Partners, is all about promoting her side of town. These days, University City appears to be the place to be anyway. When IKEA opened, the entire city of Charlotte seemed to descend on the place. But Hopper says there is more to University City than funky furniture.
How would you describe University City?
Richly diverse with a lot of surprising discoveries -- from beautiful greenways to wonderful cultural offerings.
What is the most eye-catching landmark in your neighborhood?
The lake at the Shoppes at University Place, which functions as University City's town center with its summer concerts, restaurants and paddleboats. It has something for everyone!
What are the top three places to shop in University City?
IKEA, Trader Joe's and the Shoppes at University Place.
Top three places to eat?
Lava Bistro and Melting Pot for high-end; the wide array of ethnic restaurants for diverse flavors; and Ninety's for a touch of the old soda shop.
Top three party spots?
Flying Saucer for its beer offerings and the two jazz clubs for something really unique in Charlotte.
What's a little-known fact about University City?
That if University City were incorporated it would be North Carolina's 7th largest city.
Where is the first place in University City you would take a newcomer?
The Wine Vault, where everyone and their dogs gather.
How has the recession changed your neighborhood?
It has allowed people to appreciate the fact the shops offer high value for affordable prices.
Why should people move to University City?
Your home purchase buys you a lot more.
Name one downside to living in your neighborhood?
That nobody realizes it is so close to downtown and is the city's second largest employment node after Center City.
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