Elizabeth is a neighborhood in Charlotte. It is just south of Uptown, extending out of town along Elizabeth Ave. and 7th St. It blends the affluence of the Myers Park neighborhood to the west with the middle-class livability of Plaza-Midwood to the east. The neighborhood is roughly bounded by Independence Boulevard (NC Highway 74) to the north and west, Randolph Road to the south, and a small creek to the east.
Elizabeth Avenue is the heart of the neighborhood, and 7th Street (which turns into Monroe Road as it heads southbound) is also a large thoroughfare. The neighborhood is served by the Charlotte Area Transit System (CATS), which operates bus routes #14, #15, and #27 through Elizabeth.
Independence Park - The city's oldest public park. Though its edges have been eroded by development over the years, it is still sizable and pleasant.
Visulite Theater, 1615 Elizabeth Ave., +1 704-358-9200, . Long-lived movie theater-turned-music house on Elizabeth Ave. near Uptown. Hosts a variety of acts, and is well-reputed as one of the city's most intimate atmospheres.
Lava Lounge, 1420 Elizabeth Ave., +1 704-376-3347. Tu-Th 8PM-2AM, F-Sa 8PM-4AM. By far the hippest place to go for post-dance chillout. This is literally a lounge, though the small dance floor is often quite active. DJs play a diverse array of music while hookah smoke floats in front of live candles. A very low-key, exotic vibe. Cover charged only after 2AM on Friday and Saturday. $5.
Central Piedmont Community College, 1201 Elizabeth Ave (facilities are in multiple locations around Elizabeth Avenue), +1 704-330-6534, . This excellent community college is a center of activity. It regularly hosts events of all sizes, and its newly-constructed theater building is already a landmark.
Heroes Aren't Hard To Find, 1957 E 7th St., +1 704-375-7462, . This inviting comic book store has served Charlotte's kids (and kids-at-heart) for nearly 30 years. Friendly service, vivid decor and convenient location -- nearby are a deli and a coffeeshop for reading -- make this one of Elizabeth's most endearing stores.
VisArt Video, 1945 E 7th St., +1 704-343-3031. The city's best video store, hands-down. Specializing in independent and foreign films, VisArt's selection puts larger chains to shame. The employees are knowledgeable (and tasteful), and can help you navigate the labyrinth of shelves. Also, the front end of the store has an excellent community bulletin board that is part of the pulse of the local alternative scene.
Lupie's, 2718 Monroe Rd. (follow 7th St. away from Uptown until it changes to Monroe Rd.), +1 704-374-1232, . One of the best-loved restaurants in Charlotte, for a variety of reasons. A highly diverse crowd (from families to punk rockers) and casual atmosphere allow anyone to feel at home; the low prices and oversized servings make sure you won't go home hungry. The menu is somewhat limited, but most items are commendable; experiment with the three varieties of chili or the daily specials if you're not sure what to order.
Cajun Queen, 1800 E. 7th St., +1 704-377-9017, . Set in a refurbished century-old home, this is one of the jewels of the Elizabeth neighborhood. Very good Cajun cuisine is only one of the attractions; the artsy decor and live jazz bands (upstairs) add to an attractive atmosphere. The service is on-and-off because the restaurant is usually busy. Dinner only.
Philosopher's Stone, 1958 E 7th St., +1 704-350-1331, . Very popular restaurant with both the lunch and dinner crowd, and reasonably priced. A well-rounded beer list and philosophy-themed decor distinguish "the Stone", and it has a solid after-hours scene.
La-Tea-Da's, 1942 E. 7th St., +1 704-372-9599, . A quaint coffee-and-tea cafe in the Elizabeth neighborhood. Very close to where 7th St. turns into Monroe Rd., La-Tea-Da's is surrounded by other excellent restaurants and unique shops.
Fig Tree, 1601 E. 7th St., +1 704-332-3322 . Continental cuisine with French and Italian influences. Located in a restored 1913 bungalow in the heart of the neighborhood, this is a slightly pricey but well-reputed option for fine dining.
Carpe Diem Restaurant, 1535 Elizabeth Ave., +1 704-377-7976, . This local favorite has survived 20 years in three different locations. Menu has a good variety, including vegetarian options. Consistent quality, service, and interior have kept this restaurant on Zagat and local paper's top restaurants in Charlotte.
Hawthorne's NY Pizza, 1701 E. 7th St., +1 704-358-9339. One of the cornerstones of the neighborhood, this pizza place rarely has a quiet night. Though parking can be a little frustrating during peak hours, Hawthorne's is one of the few good NY-style pizza joints in Charlotte.
NOFO on Liz, 1609 Elizabeth Ave., +1 704-444-9003, .
Volare Ristorante Italiano, 1523 Elizabeth Ave., +1 704-957-3685, .
Cuisine Malaya, 1411 Elizabeth Ave., +1 704-372-0766, .
Showmars, 2004 E. 7th St., +1 704-376-0565, . One of many of the local chain's citywide locations, this Greek restaurant is probably the most unique fast-food fare in town. This location is easily walkable from nearby shopping.
Meskerem, 601 S. Kings Dr., +1 704-335-1197. Lentils or meat served on a large round sheet of bread called injera. Try the avocado salad. Lunch buffet and dinner. Within walking distance of CPCC, or take the Kings Drive bus.
Central Piedmont Community College - The main branch is located just southeast of I-277, though there are others scattered around the area. CPCC has been noted as a relatively high-quality community college, and has increasingly integrated itself into the life of the city (though the central campus itself is still a bit bland). Recently, the college constructed a major new theater building, with a landmark statue on its front lawn.
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