Here's what I like best about living in downtown Asheville, North Carolina:
Shopping in quirky, locally owned stores. All along Lexington Avenue and Broadway street are great local shops offering, among other things: wigs, gifts, household decorating and furniture items, used books, high-end and inexpensive clothing, a real general store, groceries, natural foods, handmade art, and so much more. It's not a mall with mega-chainstores, but a real unique downtown shopping experience. Asheville store owners encourage people to buy local, and with so much to choose from, you won't be disappointed.
Dining on the foods of many nations, just steps from my home. Living downtown means you never have to cook, ever again. Within a 5 block radius of Pack Square, the heart of the downtown, you can dine on Japanese, Indian, Chinese, French, Caribbean/South American, Cuban, Thai, Italian, Cajun, Mexican, Southern, Continental, New American. I'm sure I've left off a few cuisines here but you get the idea.
Drinking locally brewed beer. Asheville is second only to Portland, Oregon, in the number of microbreweries per capita. Several local bars and restaurants serve dozens of beers on tap, and three new brewpubs have opened within the last year, all in downtown Asheville. There's also a great specialty beer store on Broadway Street that specializes in high-gravity brews and has a tasting every Thursday evening.
Sharing coffee and dessert. It's not quite the large rainy city in the Northwest, but Asheville has numerous independent coffee shops and delectable locally baked desserts. For chocolate lovers, we have at least two specialty chocolatiers; pastry and cookie mavens can choose from several bakeries (one specializing in dog cookies!), and some outdoor cafes for people watching with your coffee. Ice cream fans have a couple of tasty options too. Sitting outside on a sunny day in Pack Square sipping something nice and sharing a dessert with someone special is pretty unbeatable.
Those of us who living downtown can find both new and historic condos, from the spartan to the luxurious, city and mountain views, small and large spaces, traditional and modern floor plans, high and low rise buildings. In short, if you can't find a condo that fits your needs, you're not looking in downtown Asheville!