The paper describes four distinctive types of urban residential settings,each of which has been around, in some form, for a long time, and each ofwhich is considered, according to taste, the most desirable place to live.These settings are characterized as:Pares A somewhat romantic vision of the city as the center of opportunity,entertainment and culture, a marketplace of goods and ideas; a center ofsophistication, fashion and diversity; a place of important monuments,impressive buildings, and grand public spaces, where associations are richand layered.The Hamlet The urban equivalent of a small town. A part of the city that hasits own name, that provides most of the basic necessities of life, where youknow most everybody who lives there and they know you, where theinstitutions are small and locally run, and serve as common meetinggrounds.The Club A residential community with its own facilities and amenities, thatforms a protective cocoon with selection procedures, and covenants andregulations, and often its own system of governance, that protects residentsagainst outsiders and undesirable developments.The Estate A retreat, removed from the hustle-bustle of the city, where onecan enjoy the simple life, commune with nature and enjoy, undisturbed, thecompany of friends and family. There is likely to be a considerable amount oftravel involved in getting to work and services.Each of these types of setting has its own particular qualities of form andappearance. Each has a different way of dealing with basic issues of privacy,security, community and self-identity. Because each satisfies the housingpreferences and lifestyle needs of a particular segment of the urbanpopulation, each should be present in every metropolitan area.During the past forty years, most residential growth in American cities hastaken place in the suburbs and, until recently, most new settings have been of the Club type. Old Parees and Hamlets were allowed to deteriorate. Now,dissatisfaction with the Club is resulting in a resurgence of interest inParee and the Hamlet. We see new forms of development in the suburbs andof redevelopment in in-town neighborhoods. Many of these forms, however,emphasize club-like qualities.It is useful to develop an understanding of historical setting forms. It ismore important to understand the essential qualities of each setting typebecause as conditions change, old forms must be re-interpreted.