St. Louis Hills

St. Louis Hills is a neighborhood located in southwest St. Louis City on the eastern border of St. Louis County.   Most of the building stock dates from the 1930’s and 1940’s while some in the southern portion of St. Louis Hills estates may have been built later.  Most homes have been updated or rehabbed with all of the amenities and conveniences of the 21st century.  The residences in the neighborhood consist primarily of 2 story brick dwellings that are either single family homes and 2 to 4-family flats.  There are also many well cared for apartment buildings scattered throughout the neighborhood primarily on the main streets such as Jameson.  The southern portion of the neighborhood known as St. Louis Hills estates consists of a primarily suburban style streetscape with mid-century ranch dwellings.  Prices for a single family home can range from the $180,000 up to $450,000 or more for a large home that faces Francis Park.

The history of St. Louis Hills starts with the great David Rowland Francis, who was president of the Louisiana Purchase Exposition (1904 World’s Fair) from 1889-1904.  Francis was the biggest celebrity in the city during the latter part of this tenure playing host to world leaders and spending much time with Presidents Theodore Roosevelt and  William Howard Taft (Secretary of State at the time) who visited the World’s Fair under Francis’ watch.  Francis was the primary landowner of the forested area that later became known as St. Louis Hills.  His namesake, Francis Park, is now the centerpiece of the St. Louis Hills neighborhood.  He had originally intended to clear the area and develop it for use during the Worlds Fair but the remote nature of the location forced him to rethink his plan and Forest Park eventually was chosen to be developed for the fairgrounds.   When Francis was later appointed as the ambassador to Russia he donated the land that became Francis Park to the city.  Cyrus Willmore, the namesake of St. Louis Hills’ other major park was responsible for developing the fine homes that came to overlook the Francis Park and line the streets and avenues that spider off of it in all directions.

Many of the homes that are near Francis Park are built in the art deco style which is notable for its stained glass and fine wood work and moldings.  There are also many gingerbread style houses in the neighborhood that are identifiable by their shape as well as their intricate stone and brick work on the exterior of the homes.

St. Louis Hills Estates to the south of Francis Park gives a whole different perspective on city living.  It is one of the few places inside the city limits where a subdivision style of living with mid-century ranch homes can be found.   The streetscape does not follow the normal city block model.  Rather, there will be a single entrance to the different subdivisions, winding streets with wide lots, big yards, attached garages and even complete with cul de sacs.

St. Louis Hills is bordered by 2 major commercial corridors on Chippewa and Hampton.  As a result, anything a resident could possibly need is within a short walk or a 2 minute drive.  Several St. Louis landmarks are within the neighborhoods boundaries such as Ted Drewe’s Frozen Custard and St. Gabriel the Archangel Catholic Church.

St. Louis Hills is considered to be one the city’s most desirable neighborhoods with beautiful homes and parks.  Its a neighborhood where people tend to put down roots and some families have lived in the neighborhood for several generations.

There is a strong and active neighborhood association in St. Louis Hills and they have a great website as well.  For more information on the St. Louis Hill Neighborhood Association please click on the link below

St. Louis Hills Neighborhood Association

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If you have any questions about the St. Louis Hills Neighborhood please feel free to contact me through the website or call Jim Willen at 314-753-8540



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