North Hills

November 5, 2023

Explore North Hills, Raleigh, North Carolina, a walkable community with diverse shops and a suburban charm. Dive in now!!
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North Hills has a cool story. In the 1960s, North Hills was just an indoor shopping mall, known as the North Hills Shopping Center.

At that time, the area around it was mostly empty land. But, it sat at a prime location, where Six Forks and Lassiter Mill Roads crossed.

This made it a perfect spot for future growth. For many years, this shopping center was the top choice for shoppers in Raleigh.

Imagine this - a bustling hub filled with people, bags in hand, going from shop to shop, looking for the best deals.

It was a place where the community came together, where memories were made. Then, in the early 2000s, things started to change.

The shopping center was getting old, and it was time for a makeover.

That's when Kane Realty Corporation stepped in. They bought North Hills, with a grand vision in mind - to turn it into a trendy urban village.

To bring this vision to life, they started a massive renovation project in 2005. This wasn't just a small touch-up.

It was a $200 million project, led by famous developers, John Kane and Henry Kaestner. They had a plan and were ready to transform North Hills.

Parts of the old mall were torn down, making way for new developments.

In place of the old structures, they built a pedestrian-friendly street.

This wasn't just any street, though. It was lined with shops and restaurants, creating a lively, walkable space for people to enjoy.

But they didn't stop there. They added tall residential towers, providing homes for people right in the heart of the city.

They built office buildings, attracting businesses and creating jobs.

They also added hotels, a luxury movie theater, and public green spaces.

North Hills was turning into a place where people could live, work, and play.

Finally, in 2007, after years of hard work and planning, the new and improved North Hills opened.

It was no longer just a shopping center.

It was a vibrant, bustling urban village, filled with life and energy.

It quickly became the hottest spot in Raleigh, a place where people wanted to be.

And that's the story of how North Hills became the thriving community it is today.

Notable Neighborhoods Within North Hills

St. Albans

A residential area west of North Hills with mostly single family homes built in the 1950s-60s.

North Hills Estates

A small suburban neighborhood north of North Hills.

North Hills Park

A neighborhood centered around the North Hills city park, just northeast of North Hills.

Anderson Heights

Anderson Heights is a fabulous residential community east of North Hills. The community is central to North Hills, The Village District, Five Points and Downtown Raleigh.

Country Club Villas

Located just west of North Hills, Country Club Villas is a small, intimate golf course neighborhood with a mix of amazing luxury homes.

Drewry Hills

Drewry Hills is a charming neighborhood located to the east of North Hills. It features a variety of home styles, from mid-century modern to traditional brick houses.


Ramblewood, situated to the west of North Hills, is a neighborhood known for its townhomes and apartments, offering a more urban lifestyle.

Bellevue Terrace

Just south of North Hills, Bellevue Terrace is a quiet, residential neighborhood with a mix of homes, from older, charming bungalows to newer constructions.

Chestnut Hills

Chestnut Hills, located to the northwest of North Hills, is a well-established neighborhood with tree-lined streets and a variety of home styles.

Hickory Hills

Hickory Hills is a small neighborhood nestled to the northeast of North Hills. It offers a mix of single-family homes and townhouses.

Farrior Hills

Farrior Hills, located to the west of North Hills, is a neighborhood known for its spacious lots and traditional homes.

Nine North

Nine North, located directly north of North Hills, is a newer neighborhood featuring modern townhomes and apartments.

Woods of St Albans

The Woods of St Albans, located to the northwest of North Hills, is a quiet residential neighborhood with a mix of traditional and contemporary homes.

Location and Proximity

As a local real estate expert and a former Midtown resident, I understand the importance of commute times and convenience for residents of North Hills.

Whether you're a professional with a job in the Research Triangle Park, a frequent traveler, or someone who enjoys the downtown lifestyle, knowing the best routes and average travel times is crucial.

Here's a comprehensive guide to help you navigate from North Hills to key locations in the area.

RDU Airport

The Raleigh-Durham International Airport is a vital transit hub for both business and leisure travelers. From North Hills, you can expect:

  • Average commute time: About 18 minutes
  • Quickest route: Typically via I-540 W

Downtown Durham

For those working or exploring in Downtown Durham, here's what you need to know:

  • Average drive time: Approximately 25 to 30 minutes
  • Most direct route: I-40 W
  • Rush hour considerations: Plan for additional travel time

Downtown Raleigh

Downtown Raleigh is a short distance from North Hills, with:

  • Average commute time: About 14 minutes
  • Fastest route: Along Six Forks Road, heading south
  • Alternate routes: Wake Forest Road or Capital Boulevard

RTP (Research Triangle Park)

RTP is a major employment center in the region, and those commuting from North Hills can expect:

  • Average drive time: Around 20 to 25 minutes
  • Optimal route: Typically via I-40 W
  • Important considerations: Stay updated on traffic conditions, especially during rush hours

Ideal Commute Routes

While the above-mentioned routes are the most straightforward, it's important to consider factors like time of day, weather conditions, and any ongoing roadworks.

Using real-time traffic updates from apps like Google Maps or Waze can significantly enhance your commuting experience by providing the best possible route at any given time.

Remember, Raleigh is actively working to improve its major highways to alleviate congestion, so keep an eye out for infrastructure updates that might affect your daily commute.

With a little planning and flexibility, you can enjoy a smooth drive to and from North Hills, no matter your destination.

Builders in North Hills

North Hills offers homebuyers the unique opportunity to build a fully customized dream home within this amenity-rich community.

Luxury custom home builders like Curtis Custom Homes and Trinity Custom Homes have developed stunning bespoke residences throughout North Hills, especially in the Bedford neighborhood.

Homeowners work directly with architects and designers to create a one-of-a-kind home tailored to their lifestyle.

From gourmet chef's kitchens to home theaters and wine cellars, no detail is overlooked in these multi-million dollar custom estates.

Builders in North Hills

The North HIlls community has been a premier community for decades but has had a major facelift in the past 10 years. The real estate climate is very unique in North Hills compared to the national average.

Infill is the norm in this community. In many cases a strip of dirt in North Hills is worth more without the house that sits on it. Here is a list of builders in North Hills:

Vibrant Festivals and Nightlife

Beyond its shopping and dining, North Hills hosts exciting community events year-round.

The Midtown Music Festival also known as "North Hills Beach Music Series" takes place every summer with live concerts under the stars.

Foodie events like the North Hills Restaurant Week showcase the district's culinary offerings.

Holiday celebrations like the North Hills Tree Lighting and Menorah Lighting bring residents together.

For nightlife, the restaurants and bars offer live music on weekends and popular clubs like Babylon Lounge draw crowds late into the night.

The buzzing social scene makes North Hills a highly desirable destination to call home.

Dining on Both Sides of Six Forks

While the North Hills Main District contains most of the restaurants and retail, excellent dining options also exist across Six Forks Road in the Midtown East District.Wherever you are in North Hills, mouthwatering cuisine is never far away.

Here is a list of establishments worth checking out in North Hills:


French brasserie serving seafood, steak, and other classic French cuisine in an upscale setting.

Las Ramblas

Lively Spanish tapas restaurant offering paella, sangria, and other traditional dishes in a charming atmosphere.


Contemporary American restaurant with an eclectic menu and craft cocktails in a stylish space.


Authentic Italian eatery serving housemade pastas, Neapolitan pizzas, and more in a modern trattoria.

Giorgio's Pizza

Casual pizzeria dishing up New York-style pies along with subs, salads, and other standard fare.

Capital City Grille

Upscale steakhouse serving aged steaks, fresh seafood, and specialty cocktails.

Yard House

Spacious gastropub with an extensive beer list, classic American fare, and outdoor seating.

Rosewater Kitchen and Bar

Southern-inspired cuisine, craft cocktails and extensive wine list in an upscale setting.

Firebirds Wood Fired Grill

Polished chain serving wood-fired steaks, seafood, and classic American fare in a stylish atmosphere.


Hip, upscale taqueria featuring tacos, margaritas, and other Mexican-inspired bites in an industrial-chic space.

The BBQ Lab

Laid-back barbecue joint offering smoked meats, sandwiches, sides and local beer on tap.


Chic Australian-inspired eatery and bar serving brunch, lunch, and dinner fare in an airy, modern space.

Another Broken Egg

Upscale breakfast and lunch cafe dishing up eggs benedict, pancakes, sandwiches and more.


Lively Tex-Mex restaurant chain offering enchiladas, fajitas, margaritas and more in a funky setting.

Cow Bar

Burger bar and ice cream shop with specialty burgers, shakes, floats and sundaes.

Things to Do in North Hills

Coastal Credit Union Midtown Park

Outdoor concert and event venue hosting live music also known as "Midtown Beach Music Series" and other entertainment.

Silverspot Cinema
  • Upscale movie theater providing a luxury viewing experience with recliners, dining, and more.
Lifetime Athletic
  • Large fitness center and gym offering classes, equipment, personal training, and more.
Midtown Greenway
  • Landscaped walking and biking trail perfect for recreation and exercise.
Hand & Stone Spa
  • Full-service spa and massage studio providing relaxing treatments and pampering services.
  • Boutique indoor cycling studio offering intense spin classes in a high-energy environment.
Kings Bowling
  • Bowling alley, arcade games, bar, and American comfort food restaurant.
Level 7 Rooftop Bar
  • Trendy rooftop lounge with craft cocktails, small bites, and city views.


The center of North Hills has an outdoor shopping district with over 60 stores. You'll find big national brands like Anthropologie and MAC Cosmetics.

But there are also local boutiques. Fashion lovers flock to high-end stores like Arhaus and Restoration Hardware.

Hotels in North Hills

For visitors looking for upscale accommodations in North Hills, there are two excellent hotel options:

The AC Hotel North Hills is a stylish European-inspired hotel offering sophisticated modern rooms and convenient access to North Hills.

Guests praise the chic decor, rooftop pool, and proximity to shopping, dining, and entertainment.

The Renaissance North Hills Hotel is a contemporary high-rise hotel with spacious, modern rooms, an indoor pool, and floor-to-ceiling windows.

It's connected to the North Hills shopping and dining district.

This pet-friendly hotel is known for outstanding service and luxury amenities.

Both the AC Hotel and Renaissance North Hills deliver

Final Thoughts from a Local Expert

As a 17-year veteran real estate agent and founder of the Tim M. Clarke real estate team serving the Triangle, I highly recommend North Hills for home buyers looking to buy or build a property with tremendous lifestyle amenities.

The convenience, vibrancy, and sense of community here are second to none. My advice is to visit North Hills to experience it for yourself.

Stroll around the shopping and dining district, catch a movie or show, and chat with residents to get a feel for the culture.

Consider attending a community event like the summer concert series or holiday celebrations.

When touring homes, don't just look at the interior. Step outside to walk the neighborhood and check out communal green spaces.

Talk to neighbors you see to get their take on building management and community spirit.

If walkability and a thriving social scene are priorities for you, North Hills checks all the boxes. The diverse housing options give buyers great flexibility.

Contact our team today to begin your home search in this fantastic Raleigh community!

Frequently Asked Questions about North Hills

What kind of homes can you find in North Hills?

North Hills is a mixed-use community offering a variety of housing options, including single-family homes, townhouses, condos, and apartments.

Styles range from mid-century modern to traditional and contemporary.

What amenities are available in North Hills?

North Hills offers a wealth of amenities, including a wide array of dining and shopping options, fitness centers, parks, and entertainment venues.

The community also hosts various events throughout the year.

How far is North Hills from Downtown Raleigh and Downtown Durham?

North Hills is approximately 10 minutes from Downtown Raleigh and about 20 minutes from Downtown Durham, offering easy access to both cities.

Can I build a custom home on a lot in North Hills?

Yes, depending on the availability of lots, you can build a custom home in North Hills.

It's recommended to work with a local real estate agent to understand zoning laws, building restrictions, and to find a reputable builder.

What is the North Hills Music Festival?

The North Hills Music Festival, also known as "Midtown Beach Music Series," is a popular summer event that features live beach music.

It's a great opportunity for community members to come together and enjoy good music and good company.

How is the nightlife in Raleigh?

Raleigh offers a vibrant nightlife with a variety of entertainment options. From cozy wine bars and craft breweries to lively music venues and dance clubs, there's something for everyone.

North Hills itself is home to several popular nightspots, making it a great place for those who enjoy an active nightlife.

What are some popular neighborhoods within a 0.5-mile radius of North Hills?

Popular neighborhoods within a 0.5-mile radius of North Hills include Lassiter Place, Drewry Hills, Ramblewood, Bellevue Terrace, Chestnut Hills, Hickory Hills, Farrior Hills, Nine North, and Woods of St Albans.

What are the educational facilities near North Hills?

North Hills is near several top-rated schools, including Lacy Elementary and Martin Middle.

There are also prestigious private schools like Ravenscroft School and colleges like Meredith College nearby.

What healthcare facilities are available near North Hills?

Top-ranked hospitals like Rex Hospital and Duke Raleigh are located near North Hills, offering residents access to excellent healthcare services.

How far is North Hills from the RDU airport?

North Hills is conveniently located about a 15-minute drive from the Raleigh-Durham International Airport.

Listings in North Hills

**NOTE: If you're not seeing any listings, then currently there are no available homes in this community.**

Tim M. Clarke

About the author

17 years as a Realtor in the Research Triangle, Tim seeks to transform the Raleigh-Durham real estate scene through a progressive, people-centered approach prioritizing trust & transparency.

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