Welcome to Palmer Woods
An architectural treasure trove
Bounded by artful shrubbery, winding streets, and stunning, world-renowned architecture, Palmer Woods is the perfect escape from the grid of downtown Detroit. Regarded as one of the best places to live in Detroit and brimming with architectural gems and green spaces, this compact, 300 to 400-home neighborhood appeals to anyone seeking an atmosphere steeped in scenic history.
Gifted as a park to the city in 1883 by Senator Thomas W. Palmer, Palmer Woods remained a park until the early 1900s, when the Palmer family sold the 188-acre plot to a developer who took advantage of the natural woodland beauty the area provided.
Today, Palmer Woods boasts houses in a number of stunning styles such as Tudor Revival, English Tudor, Elizabethan, and even the occasional Greek Revival and Mediterranean designs. These iconic houses come attached to the acclaimed names of their architects, such as Minoru Yamasaki, Clarence Day, and most notably, Frank Lloyd Wright. For those looking to not only appreciate history but to live it, Palmer Woods is the place.
Things to Love
- Diversity and community of the tight-knit neighborhood
- Proximity to downtown Detroit as well as shopping centers and eateries
- First-rate nearby school systems
People and Lifestyle
Home to a small population of around 1,000, Palmer Woods is awash with a warm and friendly atmosphere that welcomes everyone. With a sparse suburban vibe matched by shaded tree-lined streets and picturesque homes, Palmer Woods is a stable community, as most people own their homes. Most residents are also highly educated — over half of the population holds a master’s degree or higher. The local area also has great public and private schooling opportunities, lending itself well to families and city transplants, as well as retirees seeking a quiet atmosphere.
Dining, Shopping, and Entertainment
The small-scale suburb might be compact, allowing for some amazing community and charming streets, and you’ll find ample amenities nearby. Only a short drive from other suburbs and downtown Detroit, Palmer Woods is teeming with options.
As Palmer Woods is a mere 10 miles from downtown Detroit, there are a plethora of activities always available. Gateway Marketplace
, for instance, offers over 340,000 square feet of retail and restaurant options for the community. As if that weren’t enough, Ferndale’s
shopping, dining, and entertainment are only a short distance away, offering even more in the way of options.
Take a short trip to the Livernois commercial district to sink your teeth into a sweet treat from Good Cakes and Bakes
, a brightly colored bakery. Or, for a distinctly different
vibe that’s still all-encompassing, head over to the world’s oldest jazz club, Baker’s Keyboard Lounge
, to be thrust back in time by music and food, or even to Motor City Brewing Works
for some local beer and numerous events held in its charming taproom.
Things to Do
Palmer Woods boasts a whole host of local events, festivals, and more, both because of its perfect location and because of its lively community.
Palmer Park Art Fair
, a popular favorite of the local festivals, takes place annually and provides insight into local art of all varieties as well as food and entertainment, creating a cultural explosion of local color. Harkening back to Detroit’s music scene, the Jazz on the Ave
event offers great live music and food for any music-lover and jazz aficionado (or amateur) in an annual celebration of community and jazz.
With everything from a splash park to bike paths to handball courts and community involvement, Palmer Park
is complete with over 296 acres of scenic nature. Or, for an elegant excursion into nature, visit the Detroit Golf Club
, which boasts fitness classes, tennis, and swimming in addition to a world-class golf course. To top even those events, immerse yourself in the local history with the Palmer Woods Biennial Homes and Garden Tour
Palmer Woods is home to several excellent schools. Top educational opportunities include:
- The University of Detroit Mercy, a university in the Catholic and Jesuit traditions
- The School at Marygrove
- University of Detroit Jesuit High School and Academy
- Palmer Park Preparatory Academy
- Detroit Public Schools Community District campus that includes a partnership with the University of Michigan