Old Town is called Old Town because it is the oldest part of Alexandria. Old Town was originally laid out in 1749 it is a nationally designated historic district. Many of Old Town’s 4,000 historic buildings houses, art galleries, antique shops and restaurants are historic sites. Once the site of the second-largest slave market in the United States, Old Town’s Market Square now contains a large fountain, extensive landscaping and a Saturday morning farmers’ market.
Old Town is known for its illustrious residents and guests. George Washington called it home. Robert E. Lee worshiped at Christ Church and Thomas Jefferson entertained at nearby Gadsby’s Tavern. Old Town Alexandria offer a full menu of dining choices with restaurants ranging from fast-food to white tablecloth. A night on the town can be had at spots such as the Oyster Bar and Club Room at Union Street.
Some of the most desirable addresses in Old Town are found on the south side along the Potomac River. St. Asaph’s Square and Porto Vecchio are two condo communities in the south end. St. Asaph’s Square is found in a neighborhood near Lyles Crouch Elementary.
Porto Vecchio straddles the Mount Vernon trail which runs upriver toward Reagan National Airport and downriver toward Mount Vernon. Many residents of Porto Vecchio have views of the Belle Haven Marina or the Belle Haven Country Club.