LIVING IN THE CITY: Getting a New Lease on Life in a Brand-New Condo

Portugal transplant Julieta de Carvalho assimilates smoothly into downtown San Diego living

“Living In the City” is the San Diego Sun‘s feature Q&A with downtown San Diego residents. It’s a way to get to know the city by meeting the people who live here. This is an ongoing series.

Name: Julieta de Carvalho

Location: The new, 41-story Diega in East Village, just opened in 2021.

Personal deets: From Lisbon, Portugal. I’m a leasing and asset management associate for Regent Properties. My husband Chris and I have been in San Diego for 10 months.

Pets: A 5-year-old miniature poodle-bichon mix named Mel. She has nine stuffed squirrel toys she must bring to bed before sleeping. Unfortunately, Mel was banned from one of the downtown dog salons because a groomer said she was too feisty.

Pet peeve: Wish there were more dog parks in downtown San Diego.

[COVER PHOTO: Julieta, Chris and friends prepare for a downtown night out.]

Mel, the poodle-bichon mix, looks cute, but has a record.

Best shows streamed during the pandemic: Marvelous Mrs. Maisel, Succession, Ozark.

Working from home: No. Most days, I work in the office. I’m often traveling for work between Phoenix, Dallas, Houston, Austin, and Denver.

Best reason to live downtown: Proximity to restaurants and nightlife.

Worst aspect of living downtown: The very visible social inequalities.

Best aspect of your current location: Diega is a new condo building with nice amenities.

Worst aspect of your current location: Parking for friends and visitors can be challenging.

Diega by Bosa in East Village.

Scooters: I appreciate the practicality scooters offer; however, I strongly believe the city needs to further regulate their use. I often see reckless scooter users who may cause serious injuries and accidents.

Scariest moment: My husband and I were rear-ended at the intersection of A Street and Eighth Avenue. It was a hit-and-run that totaled our car. Luckily, a good Samaritan chased the perpetrator onto the highway and phoned the perp’s license plate number to the police!

Safety: I find downtown to be reasonably safe.

Areas to avoid: I don’t go east of Eighth Avenue or south of Broadway at night.

Cost of living: Downtown is slightly more expensive than the rest of San Diego.

City infrastructure: Well-maintained roads and public parks. However, San Diego needs more regular cleaning and maintenance.

Must-sees for guests: The Gaslamp Quarter and Little Italy.

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Achilles Coffee at Eighth & B Street.

Cool coffee shop: Achilles Coffee Roasters (Eighth & B). I love their service and outdoor seating. My go-to order is The Finest City (cinnamon, vanilla cream).

Lunch faves: It’s a tie between The Taco Stand and Empanada Kitchen, both for speed of service and quality of food.

Must-do dinner: Café Sevilla because of the quality and variety of the food; and the outdoor dining is great.

Best bar: J & Tony’s Discount Cured Meats and Negroni Warehouse.

Parking advice: Don’t drive through Little Italy on the weekend.

Grocery shopping: La Jolla Whole Foods, La Jolla Trader Joe’s, Mission Valley Ralphs.

Last insider tip: It’s worth exploring the locally-owned coffee shops scattered throughout the city. Try Sultan Baklava for a spot of Turkish Coffee and baklava. SDSun


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