This is a great place to live. There is history, culture, beautiful scenery, good food, and good people. Maybe you are brand new to the area or maybe you grew up here, left for a while, and want to come back. Where do you start? Take a minute and Google a map of Hampton Roads. Eyeball the center of all that geography. Right in the middle is Harbour View, in the heart of northern Suffolk.
Part of our series helping you find the right neighborhood for you, sponsored by Rose & Womble Realty Company.
Harbour View is fifteen minutes away from just about everything that Hampton Roads has to offer, but you don’t have to leave Harbour View to find great places to live, play, or eat. Harbour View has just about everything you need, and you can bike, walk, or take a bus to it all.
Bordered to the west by the Nansemond River and to the north by the James River, Captain John Smith sailed by Harbour View as he searched for the missing colonists of Roanoke Island in the early 1600’s. By 1650, early “Ancient Planters” colonists were farming the land.
Before the opening of the Monitor-Merrimac Memorial Bridge Tunnel in 1992, northern Suffolk was “the country.” Not anymore. This place is booming. It’s a great place to live and to visit. Here’s your guide, but note, there’s so much to cover, you are going to have to come and find out for yourself.
Living in Harbour View
You can build a custom home with spectacular sunset views on the Nansemond River in the Harbour View neighborhood of The Riverfront, if that’s your dream. Or, you can rent an apartment with a nice pool, exercise room and a beautiful clubhouse within walking distance of the river at Meridian Harbourview. There is also Hampton Roads Crossing, which is a convenient commute away from Lockheed Martin, Raytheon, Northrop Grumman, and Joint Forces Command.
The Crossings at Harbour View is a senior living community tucked into a wooded setting behind Starbucks, and close to Bon Secours Health Center at Harbour View. It offers senior independent apartments, assisted living and memory care facilities, all with outstanding amenities.
You can find houses, condos and rentals throughout the nine neighborhoods of Harbour View – The Riverfront, Golf Villages, The Masters, Madison Place, Club Villas, Linkside Cove, Waters Edge, The Soundings, and the Gables. The common areas are meticulously maintained. Neighbors are out and about, walking and riding bikes. Everyone says “hello.” The people who live here take pride in their community.
The Homeowners Association maintains 16 parks, 3 play areas, 2 piers that reach out into Nansemond River, volleyball and tennis courts, and an outdoor amphitheater for the nine neighborhoods of Harbour View. Andrew Sweet, HOA President, is proud that “the HOA has sponsored community-wide events including outdoor concerts, movie nights, a dog show, health screening, paper shredding truck, holiday party and food drive.”
Eating in Harbour View
If you’re a fast food fan, you’ll love Harbour View. Harbour View East is a quick jog down Hampton Roads Parkway and a safe bridge across I-664. There is Burger King, Chick-fil-A , Wendy’s and more. My favorite “quick service” restaurants are on College Drive – Chipotle and Jersey Mike’s Subs.
But don’t worry, there is much more than fast food in Harbour View. One of the most highly rated restaurants in Hampton Roads has a Craftsman-style building tucked in the corner of Harbour View. The River Stone Chophouse serves aged and custom cut Hereford beef and locally grown produce. You can join their Carnivore Club and receive invitations to special tasting events.
There are also many choices between fast food and fine dining. Yoyo Sushi and Pho has both Japanese and Vietnamese classics on the menu. Rajput Indian Cuisine, the Harbour View outpost of the popular Ghent restaurant, offers vegetarian options and halal chicken, lamb and goat.
If you’re craving classic New York pizza, Harbour View has one of the best, Gianna’s Pizzeria. Gianna’s is a neighborhood hangout. It’s family friendly and the food tastes like it’s straight from your Mama’s Italian kitchen. The owner has a short commute. He lives in Harbour View.
Another popular spot in Harbour view is The Egg Bistro. The Egg Bistro is good for breakfast, lunch, dinner and drinks on the patio.
Taste just opened on Harbour View Blvd. It is the seventh location of this family-owned “gourmet food shop and up-scale café.” There is nice patio dining to park your bike and eat lunch or snack on gelato.
You can get a bagel for breakfast at Panera. Buffalo Wild Wings, Ruby Tuesday and Applebee’s are all in Harbour View. Pancakes are coming soon at the new IHOP. There are also more new restaurants on the way. If you really want to do your own cooking, Harris Teeter, Wal-Mart and Kroger Marketplace (just down the road on College Drive) have everything you need.
That is a lot of food. Time to work it off.
Playing in Harbour View
There are plenty of places to play in Harbour View.
The Riverfront Golf Club, designed by Tom Doak, has the reputation of being the golf course in the best condition in the Tidewater area. It is also one of the most beautiful courses. The course meanders through Harbour View, along the Nansemond River, tidal marshes, creeks, and ponds. There’s a nice clubhouse and a driving range where strolling deer have to watch out for flying golf balls.
Harbour View is a perfect for runners, walkers, and bicyclists. Harbour View Blvd. has a bike path just off the road for most of the way. The neighborhood streets are wide and there is never much car traffic. There are kids using their training wheels, families biking to the pool and serious bikers racking up the miles. You can take a quick one-mile walk around a pond or a ten-mile training run.
There are parks, playgrounds and all kinds of green space in Harbour View. There is fishing, canoeing and kayaking. Marinas and the Bennett’s Creek Park with boat launching sites are nearby.
After all that running, walking and biking, you might need to put your feet up and relax. The Regal Harbour View Grande 16 has got those fancy new recliners and 16 screens to watch. Did I mention that there is a Cold Stone Creamery right next door?
Some people shop as a recreational activity. There are plenty of shopping opportunities in Harbour View, including the big stores, like Kohl’s, OfficeMax, and T.J. Maxx. You will also find some smaller stores, like The Velveteen Rabbit, a family owned children’s boutique.
Just down Route 17 is A. Dodson’s, a shopping “destination” housed in a candy-colored old home. A. Dodson’s has a unique blend of “trendy clothing, distinctive home furnishings, exquisite gifts, and antiques of yesteryear.”
There are more stores on the way. Just down College Drive from Harbour View East will be a Michael’s, Ross and Designer Shoe Warehouse (DSW will be here soon – be still my beating heart), all anchored by the new Kroger Marketplace.
Feeling Great in Harbour View
If you are not feeling so great, and in need of a doctor, you can take your pick in Harbour View. Bon Secours Health Center at Harbour View has an ER, a Surgery Center, family practice docs and specialists. Bon Secours Cancer Institute is the next phase for the Health Center in Harbour View.
If you need physical therapy, the “latest evidence-based sports training methods to prevent injuries and improve performance” or help with nutrition and weight loss, Bon Secours In Motion has a state of the art facility in Harbour View.
Jessica Gordon wants you to come and try out her Sky Pilates Fitness to feel great and have some fun. Sky Pilates uses beautiful blue silk “hammocks” for aerial yoga, Pilates and fitness. When you are suspended, the silks hold between 40 to 60 percent of your body weight, making more difficult yoga and Pilates positions that much easier. Jessica, who lives in Suffolk, says, “Harbour View is the heart of Suffolk. I watched this area grow and grow and I wanted to be part of it.” Sky Pilates fitness also offers traditional Pilates mat classes, Zumba and Piloxing (Pilates + boxing).
River Yoga is close by, in Bennett’s Creek Shopping Center at the corner of Route 17 and Shoulders Hill Road. They offer classes in traditional Hatha Yoga, Vinyasa Yoga and Deep Stretch Yin.
Anytime Fitness is in Harbour View, and the name says it all. You can work out anytime, 24/7 , 365 days a year.
Working & Learning in Harbour View
You can work and you can learn in Harbour View. TowneBank has a beautiful campus adjacent to the Riverfront golf course that serves as a conference and training center for all of TowneBank’s businesses. Lockheed Martin, McDonnell Douglas, Sysco and more, have offices in the Bridgeway Commerce Park, along Harbour View Blvd.
You can help your child “ignite a love of learning” at Harbourview Montessori School. This school is for ages three through the elementary years. The curriculum focuses on the unique abilities of each child, the child’s social and emotional development, and the belief that “there is far more to education than mastering facts.”
You can earn your Master Captain license or learn big rig truck driving skills at Tidewater Community College’s Center for Workforce Solutions. Old Dominion University’s Tri-Cities campus is within biking distance.
Nansemond Suffolk Academy is breaking ground on a new pre-kindergarten through grade three campus in Harbour View. Expected to be open by fall of 2016, it will be equipped with the latest in educational technology.
Harbour View is all this and more. Harbour View is not suburban sprawl. It’s a carefully planned community. It is close to everything, and everything is close. You don’t need a car. If you live here, you can bike or walk to stores, restaurants, movies, happy hour, the river, tennis courts, the bank, the dentist and work. If you don’t feel like walking or biking, there is a cute little bus, the Suffolk Transit Blue Route, that runs in a loop around northern Suffolk with stops all around Harbour View, Harbour View East and even the North Suffolk Library.
Harbour View is the “heart of northern Suffolk.” As Andrew Sweet says, “the community is growing in a great way and the residents are all part of what is taking shape in Harbour View.”