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please help with location...

Arizona   (1,046 Views 9 Comments)
by dlaura22 dlaura22 (Member)

2,062 Profile Views; 50 Posts

Hello,

I am from out of state (WI) but am considering making the move to AZ as a new grad. I was out there for the first time this past weekend visiting my bf who recently got transferred out there. I loved the weather but thought the area was majorly lacking in character in culture (ie: stripmall central!). Guess it makes sense since it is a "new" area...

I was wondering what some areas might be that are more historic or have a bit more character (such as non chain restaurants and shops and stuff in walking distance...more of a "neighborhood feel") that I could look around to live in. I didn't get to see the entire area but was looking for some advice. I thought St. Joes in Phoenix looked like a good hospital to work at. How is the Biltmore area?

I love the warm weather and want to be closer to my boyfriend so I'm looking for any help I can get. Thanks!

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65 Posts; 2,994 Profile Views

Hello,

I am from out of state (WI) but am considering making the move to AZ as a new grad. I was out there for the first time this past weekend visiting my bf who recently got transferred out there. I loved the weather but thought the area was majorly lacking in character in culture (ie: stripmall central!). Guess it makes sense since it is a "new" area...

I was wondering what some areas might be that are more historic or have a bit more character (such as non chain restaurants and shops and stuff in walking distance...more of a "neighborhood feel") that I could look around to live in. I didn't get to see the entire area but was looking for some advice. I thought St. Joes in Phoenix looked like a good hospital to work at. How is the Biltmore area?

I love the warm weather and want to be closer to my boyfriend so I'm looking for any help I can get. Thanks!

Hello! Check out www.city-data.com

It's sort of like this, a message board where it's free to register and then you can psot stuff etc.. They have a forum for each state..maybe more poeple from Arizona cold anwser you and give you more specific information...but your right I think because Arizona in general in new..but I'm sure you can find somewhere you like!! Good luck!!!!!

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192 Posts; 3,458 Profile Views

I'm not sure you will be able to find what you're looking for out here. :( At least not in the Valley. Some of the smaller, non-metro towns have character, if that's something you'd consider.

I'm a former Wisconsinite myself, born and raised there. And I know EXACTLY what you're talking about. I have the same gripes about Arizona -- all strip malls, new new new, and the food sucks. I really miss the food. Even the grocery stores out here aren't the same -- no variety.

Sorry to sound negative. I've been here for gosh, seven years now, and I'm still not a fan of the place......so bear that in mind.

You can find pockets of charm out here, but I don't know of any place which has it in any abundance (and is a safe neighborhood). We've lived in the far east valley this whole time. It started out as a semi-podunk little town, with some (pretty hokey, in my opinion) "charm" and even that now is gone, replaced by strip malls and chain restaurants serving bad food.

OTOH, there's the weather! Back in WI I could spend all winter with a nasty cold, only to be plagued with horrible allergies during the Spring and Fall. Here, I'm hardly ever sick like that. Weather is gorgeous 8 months out of the year (and hellish those 4 summer months).

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50 Posts; 2,062 Profile Views

Thanks for the replies!

AZ mom, that is kind of what I"m thinking. I'm weighing the options, and for me the weather factor is HUGE. There are some great things about Milwaukee, but most of them are in summer! I actually loved the 100 degree AZ days! I'm thinking maybe I was just disappointed with the surroundings but I guess it isn't everything. Hmm...I still have some time to figure this out. Thanks for the advice!

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897 Posts; 12,008 Profile Views

There's not much ethnic influence from Ellis Island around here. There's authentic south west character in Cave Creek though. Probably not a place you'd be living as it could be a long commute but is otherwise a nice place to visit on weekends. Old Town Scottsdale turned into a blend of a center for the arts and captures some of the old south west.

About an hour north is Prescott and that also has south west history (I think it was once the state capital). Nearby is Sedona if your into nature and the new age.

As far as food goes, there's always good places to eat. Several small non-chain Mexican restaurants that folks rave about. I've prefer cleaner deli meat sandwiches instead of those fatty dogs, etc. We sometimes eat at Chompie's deli/restaurant as it has a New York attitude. There's plenty of other places.

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selaz specializes in ICU, Oncology.

54 Posts; 1,643 Profile Views

I think the Biltmore area is certainly nice (and expensive)...and is probably less "chainy" and "strip-mally" than the many of the places in Phoenix. Another great area is the Arcadia (also expensive) area. Arcadia has a couple of interesting non-chain restaurants and a few cute boutique-type places. Also, I agree that Old Town Scottsdale is less strip mall (that's where I live --I can walk to non-chain restaurants/bars/art gallerys, ha ha). You can also find some historic areas in Phoenix (Willow, Coronado, and Encanto districts) where the homes are built from early 1900's - circa WWII. The Willow district has some cool coffee shops and restaraunts. That's about all I know.

Also, check out the central corridor --I am not sure of the exact boundaries --maybe someone can help you out.

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486 Posts; 9,700 Profile Views

I think that some places with character include Scottsdale and Cave Creek. The Biltmore and the downtown historical district might suit you, too. (I would like to be in a more remote place like Cave Creek in future...)

Good food can be found here in non-glamorous places (as I see it) --Korean, Japanese (still haven't found fresh enough ikura for my taste --but that was even hard to find in L.A. and S.F.), Mexican, Italian, Indian, Chinese (decent dim sum) Peruvian, Ethiopian, Israeli, other Middle Eastern varieties, etc. There are some excellent barbecue places out here... --I haven't been as impressed with the higher-end places as I have been impressed with the non-descript strip mall places.

I am from San Francisco most recently, and I have to admit that that city still beats Phoenix for French, Japanese, Thai, and Vietnamese (on the other hand, L.A. trounces SF for dim sum, Ethiopian, and Armenian....

I've been to Wisconsin a couple times and fell in love with some of the local fish...it was fried in a manner that was out of this world...won't find that out here...but it gives you an excuse to go there to visit...

AZ won't offer museums like those in SF, LA, NY, or Chicago, but it does offer other historical riches and landscape.

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RainDreamer is a BSN, RN and specializes in NICU.

3,570 Posts; 12,583 Profile Views

Don't come here if you don't think you'll like it!!! :) That's the best advice I can give you. The valley is HUGE and has way too many people in it now, and a lot of them hate it .... "if you don't like it, leave" is my motto. Sounds harsh, but it just gets old hearing from people that they don't like it here yet they stay. Of course there are some great things here, and some not-so-great things .... it's just like everywhere. We've got the great weather but you can't have it all.

The valley is huge though, so you definitely need to check in all different areas. Scottsdale and Tempe are a couple of my favorites, as I live in Tempe and love the feel of Tempe.

I don't know, maybe I'm just a cranky ole valley native .... as I remember the days when it was much smaller and way different than it is now, before all the out-of-towners moved here in search of a warmer life, yet all they do is gripe about it.

Good luck to you, I honestly wish you the best in your hunt!! :)

Edited to add:

If you want to see some good historical places .... check out Tombstone down by Tucson. Gotta love all the old wild west stuff! There's plenty of historical things to check out, you just have to go looking for them!

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8 Posts; 788 Profile Views

Where exactly in AZ are you referring to? It is a large state with great deal of variety as you move from south to north. Personally, I'm from Tucson and live in OR now, but AZ is unique and I miss it alot. If you are looking for character (and this is strictly opinion), metro Phx is not really going to offer it, although it is the biggest city with the most job opportunities. I really am not a fan of Phx...its too big, too suburbanite, too LA-ish wanna be. If your idea of "culture" is fine dining, resorts, and fancy shopping areas, Scottsdale is your place. On my end, I really feel out of place in Scottsdale and prefer the laid back feeling of Flagstaff and parts of Tucson. Some of the smaller towns in AZ (like Bisbee, Prescott) have tons of character, but jobs? And "good" hospitals? Not so sure. I think you first have to narrow down whether you are going to live in a city - Tucson, Phx, Flag - or in a smaller town. Tucson is growing rapidly and near the UA it is pretty much the college party feel, but there are some neat parts of Tucson that are growing such as the downtown area and N.Tucson. I think central Tucson still has its charm in a way, once you get to know all the nooks and crannies, cool hangouts, great Mexican food, etc. But if you are looking for a cosmopolitan lifestyle, Tucson isn't it. Phx is trying, but AZ in general will always have its own desert flavor. If you appreciate the desert and enjoy its natural beauty, you'd really like the accessibility Tucson has to offer by means of hiking, biking, climbing, etc.

But yeah, the height of the summer sucks. I used to drive up to Flag pretty much every weekend just to get out of the heat!

Good luck with your decision....

Kris

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