Shaw

  • Shiny
  • Hip
  • Historic
  • Edgy

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Find cool local shops, foodie restaurants, concert halls and African American history in this rapidly developing downtown zone.

@adventure.with.rach - Shaw Neighborhood Rowhouses - Neighborhoods in Washington, DC

Delve in to African-American history and a cool shopping and food scene in one of DC’s oldest neighborhoods. The site of businesses, theaters and rowhouses since the 19th-century, the Shaw neighborhood is situated east of the U Street corridor, famously known as “Black Broadway” thanks to still-in-business spots like the Lincoln Theatre and the Howard Theatre. It was there, in the early 20th-century, where acts like Cab Calloway and Pearl Bailey once played. Nearby, the legendary 9:30 Club hosts rock and alternative acts in a two-level, warehouse-like space.

Shaw is now one city’s hippest up-and-coming neighborhoods, with attractions like the shops and eateries at The Shay and the Atlantic Plumbing complexes and bustling cafes like Compass Coffee and La Colombe.

Shopping also blooms here with plant and flower studio, ReWild, or visit Brightside Boutique for the latest trends in women's fashion. The southern end of Shaw gives way to high-end shopping mecca CityCenterDC and the retail-filled Penn Quarter & Chinatown neighborhood.

@melissabeat - Dacha Beer Garden and Liz Taylor Mural in Shaw - Best things to do in Washington, DC's Shaw neighborhood

The dining and bar scene in Shaw sizzles, with new spots opening up on 7th and 9th Streets and in the neighborhood’s quirky, historic alleyways. Happy hour at Dacha Beer Garden, a dog-friendly brewtopia and cafe pouring German, Belgian and American suds, is a must. Hot tables include Espita Mezcaleria for inventive southern Mexican cuisine and The Dabney for Mid-Atlantic seafood and southern sides cooked over a wood fire.  

Chefs Dish DC: Marjorie Meek-Bradley Explores Shaw

Spend the day with former Top Chef finalist Marjorie Meek-Bradley as she shares what she loves about the neighborhood, digs into killer breakfast sandwiches and visits a mezcal mecca.

Locals Love

Espita Mezcaleria for all things mezcal, flicks at the Atlantic Plumbing Cinema, drinks at the Columbia Room, Right Proper Brewing Company's hilarious mural art on the walls, bringing their dog to Dacha Beer Garden.

Getting There

Metro’s Green and Yellow lines service the area, with stops at both U Street and Shaw-Howard University. Numerous city buses stop here as well, and the area is highly walkable.