Boulder’s downtown area is most commonly just called Pearl Street.
Boulder has won more accolades than any other city in America for its recreation, culture, health, business climate and overall quality of life – and this is reflected extremely well in the diversity of the Pearl Street area. Pearl Street is an eclectic mix of homes, a pedestrian-only outdoor mall and large office spaces, all right under the Flatiron Mountains and next to the crystal-clear Boulder Creek.
Downtown Color and Excitement
This area is perhaps best known for the Pearl Street Mall, a four-block, walking only (not even a bike or a skateboard can be ridden through here) smorgasbord of boutiques, restaurants, bookstores and entertainment. Huge trees and bright flowers compliment the red-brick pathway, and several historical buildings (renovated for fabulous shopping) add distinct charm and quaintness to this clean, well-maintained area. The center of Pearl Street Mall houses the Boulder Courthouse, with lush lawns, an impressive fountain and several shaded-benches on its grounds.
The selection of merchandise on Pearl Street makes shopping a stimulating endeavor-you can find anything your heart desires tucked away somewhere on the mall. Peppercorn, a store older than most of its customers, boasts an enviable array of kitchen and bar wear, along with great, kitschy gifts. Outdoor Divas dedicates its square footage to active-wear clothing for women only, and also hosts mountain bike and other classes throughout the year. If The Boulder Bookstore doesn’t have the title you need, it probably doesn’t exist (or, they’ll order it and have you snuggled up, reading in their café in no time). Restaurants like Antica Roma, Lazy Dog, Hapa and Pearl Street Pub overwhelm your senses with smells of marinara sauce, coffee, French fries and sushi – picking a lunch spot may actually be a bit of a chore.
With so much happening on the mall, it’s easy to forget that people do in fact live in this neighborhood. As one of the oldest residential areas in Boulder, the homes here are charismatic and historic. Delightful Victorian details dot most houses, as do lovely colors and interesting shapes. Although these houses don’t have too much yard space, their big trees and relaxing front porches more than make up for it. Unlike some suburban residential neighborhoods, this neighborhood feels alive and vibrant – you can walk anywhere you could possibly need to go, then return to a quaint Victorian retreat.
Pearl Street has something for everyone, and so much of it that you’ll never get bored. If you’re fortunate enough to live in the neighborhood, you’ll relish in the diversity that surrounds you and the cheerful, relaxed feel of downtown Boulder.