Philadelphia has hundreds of neighborhoods, all with nicknames that designate something about the area, from Strawberry Mansion to Fishtown to Pennsport. And many of these names have nicknames. Because why would you want to say Graduate Hospital when you could say G-Ho?

Billy Penn has attempted a quick catalogue for many of these nicknames and has explained the nicknames that need a little background to understand. This is by no means a comprehensive list. If you have other nicknames for these neighborhoods or other neighborhoods, let us know.

Bella Vista

“The Italian Market”

Callowhill/North Chinatown

“Eraserhood”: This is the area where director David Lynch lived when he made his 1977 movie “Eraserhead.” He said he based its setting on his experience of Philadelphia.

“Loft District”: Lot of lofts in this area.

Fairmount/Spring Garden

“The Art Museum”



Graduate Hospital



“South of South”

“Southwest Center City”

Grays Ferry

“Devil’s Pocket”: It’s an area tucked in the Southwest corner of the border lines of Grays Ferry and Graduate Hospital. Some people call both neighborhoods Devil’s Pocket.

Forgotten Bottom“: This name represents an old title for the whole neighborhood as well as a smaller part of it near the Schuylkill River.

Lower Moyamensing


Midtown Village

“The Gayborhod”


Da Bottom”: Not to be confused with the Forgotten Bottom.

Northern Liberties


“SoNo”: This is the area around 5th and Spring Garden developers are trying to rejuvenate;  they appear to be calling it SoNo, but that could only apply to the building.

Old City

“Land of 1000 Snookis”: This name was given to Old City in a Richard Rys Philly Mag article from a few years ago. Why? Because he wrote about a ton of people who resembled the cast of “Jersey Shore” living it up at Old City bars.

Passyunk Square/East Passyunk Crossing

“East Passyunk”

Point Breeze

“The Breeze”

“Newbold”: Some consider this an official neighborhood. Others say this portion of South Philly is just a part of Point Breeze with a new name slapped on by a developer.

Rittenhouse Square/Fitler Square


River Wards

“Port Fishington”: Pieces of Kensington, Fishtown and Port Richmond. It’s popular among the artists.

Spring Garden

“Franklintown”: Developer’s idea for a neighborhood. Also encompasses some of Logan Square.

University City


“The Penn Bubble”: Those Ivy students who never cross the Schuylkill River. NEVER.

Mark Dent is a reporter/curator at BillyPenn. He previously worked for the Pittsburgh Post-Gazette, where he covered the Jerry Sandusky scandal, Penn State football and the Penn State administration. His...