"Best" places to retire (assuming you can)

KnightBridgeAZ

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Come to the Bay area of California if you want vast selections of wonderful Asian cuisine. By the hotel I am staying at there is Chinese, Japanese, Thai, Korean, Indian, and Vietnamese. Second most prevalent is Mexican. Real, authentic Mexican...not the americanized On The Border stuff. Bagels, sadly, are hard to find. But I don't need them anyway. Seafood, especially crab, is also plentiful. And forget about donuts. Dunkin Donuts shops are non-existent, and haven"t seen any other chains for that matter. Starbucks, though, are everywhere
I've had Chinese in the Bay Area, wonderful selections. Mexican is of course prominent in Tucson as well, the real stuff. We do have an On the Border - don't sell them short, some of their food is quite tasty, although we prefer the local "real" Mexican restaurants. Like some other areas of the country, they "roll up the sidewalks" early, and the chains - OTB, Applebees and the like - are the only things open, say after a WBB or softball game.

My doctor doesn't think Donuts are a good idea, but I tried one of the very few Dunkin's in town and found them stale and nasty.
 

HuskyHawk

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Was going to start a new thread for the offseason and found this one. So a 7+ year bump it is.

My plan was always Cape Cod and I foolishly didn't buy a house and rent it ten years ago. Prices have more than doubled in that time. This past year prices climbed absolutely everywhere I have looked, even cheaper places like the coast of NC, SC and GA. Florida seems to be up as well.

I'm struggling a bit to find what I think we will want. 1. winters that aren't severe 2. No more than 1-2 drive to a city that has major concerts, airport, hospitals 3. some walkable downtown character, restaurants, bars, brewery, shops 4. near the water.

Anybody have any hidden gem locations I should check out? What are your plans for retirement? I really don't want to just stay in a big house in the Boston suburbs.
 

HuskyHawk

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Adesmar123

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Was going to start a new thread for the offseason and found this one. So a 7+ year bump it is.

My plan was always Cape Cod and I foolishly didn't buy a house and rent it ten years ago. Prices have more than doubled in that time. This past year prices climbed absolutely everywhere I have looked, even cheaper places like the coast of NC, SC and GA. Florida seems to be up as well.

I'm struggling a bit to find what I think we will want. 1. winters that aren't severe 2. No more than 1-2 drive to a city that has major concerts, airport, hospitals 3. some walkable downtown character, restaurants, bars, brewery, shops 4. near the water.

Anybody have any hidden gem locations I should check out? What are your plans for retirement? I really don't want to just stay in a big house in the Boston suburbs.
I may have written this earlier. We did the surgery x month thing for a while in Cocoa Beach FL until we had 4 grandkids in 3 years. Then it was back to CT.
Cocoa Beach is a barrier island about 8 miles off the Fl coast so it always has a nice breeze. It's mid state so it's cooler than the Miami environs. There is a short winter where highs are low to mid 60's.Its Fl hot in summer but again always a sea breeze. It's a city of 13.000 residents that dwells to 50,000 in summer.The city is very cognizant of the need to stay a family friendly city. It has a commercial area but not honky tonk. It has a pier with restaurants and fishing. It is located 1 he from Orlando and 30 minutes from Cape Canaveral and the Space Center. It has a good size cruise port.

It clearly is not as la dee da as the Fl west coast. It is a surfing mecca.

Unlike people's thoughts of Florida, it is a place where ALL types of people get along and enjoy the ocean together. It's a friendly place to live. There are lots of small and mid size homes as well as condos.

Hope you find a place!

Alan
 

HuskyHawk

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I may have written this earlier. We did the surgery x month thing for a while in Cocoa Beach FL until we had 4 grandkids in 3 years. Then it was back to CT.
Cocoa Beach is a barrier island about 8 miles off the Fl coast so it always has a nice breeze. It's mid state so it's cooler than the Miami environs. There is a short winter where highs are low to mid 60's.Its Fl hot in summer but again always a sea breeze. It's a city of 13.000 residents that dwells to 50,000 in summer.The city is very cognizant of the need to stay a family friendly city. It has a commercial area but not honky tonk. It has a pier with restaurants and fishing. It is located 1 he from Orlando and 30 minutes from Cape Canaveral and the Space Center. It has a good size cruise port.

It clearly is not as la dee da as the Fl west coast. It is a surfing mecca.

Unlike people's thoughts of Florida, it is a place where ALL types of people get along and enjoy the ocean together. It's a friendly place to live. There are lots of small and mid size homes as well as condos.

Hope you find a place!

Alan

Fantastic. Thanks. As it happens I was checking it out on Zillow yesterday. I recall going there for spring break in the 80's (we also went to Daytona).
 

Adesmar123

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Fantastic. Thanks. As it happens I was checking it out on Zillow yesterday. I recall going there for spring break in the 80's (we also went to Daytona).
When Spring Break got too crazy there the City shut it down. By the way the island has the ocean front on one side and the Banana River on the other. It has great surf casting and other fishing. You can sit by the river side and watch dolphins.
 

8893

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Seems your wife, unlike mine, does not demand her own bathroom.
That can also be arranged:

 

HuskyHawk

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So aside from @8893 who will be camping and pooping in box (beats being homeless!) and Cocoa Beach, any small cities, big towns you guys have visited and enjoyed?

On the whole, I'm torn between a desire to play more golf and maybe take up ocean fishing (which I've never really done) and having a place to walk (minimal hills would be good) and having less healthy fun, like say Frenchman Street in New Orleans, live music, food, beer etc. My wife is a prolific concert goer, and I know she will want to be able to go to shows, even if it means driving a bit and staying at a hotel. I looked at the Tampa/St. Pete/Clearwater area, but it sure seems densely populated.

I could see Burlington Vermont being great for about 6 months a year. Breweries, bands, the lake, mountains, trips to Montreal. Where is there a Burlington, VT in a warmer climate? I know Savannah, GA well and Charleston fairly well.
 
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So aside from @8893 who will be camping and pooping in box (beats being homeless!) and Cocoa Beach, any small cities, big towns you guys have visited and enjoyed?

On the whole, I'm torn between a desire to play more golf and maybe take up ocean fishing (which I've never really done) and having a place to walk (minimal hills would be good) and having less healthy fun, like say Frenchman Street in New Orleans, live music, food, beer etc. My wife is a prolific concert goer, and I know she will want to be able to go to shows, even if it means driving a bit and staying at a hotel. I looked at the Tampa/St. Pete/Clearwater area, but it sure seems densely populated.

I could see Burlington Vermont being great for about 6 months a year. Breweries, bands, the lake, mountains, trips to Montreal. Where is there a Burlington, VT in a warmer climate? I know Savannah, GA well and Charleston fairly well.

St. Augustine is one that we liked and are targeting. Just south of Jax, nice downtown that used to be more geared towards tourists but now has some great restaurants. Barrier island at the St. A Beach is wide and actually has some elevation and a fair amount of housing inventory.
 

Chin Diesel

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Was going to start a new thread for the offseason and found this one. So a 7+ year bump it is.

My plan was always Cape Cod and I foolishly didn't buy a house and rent it ten years ago. Prices have more than doubled in that time. This past year prices climbed absolutely everywhere I have looked, even cheaper places like the coast of NC, SC and GA. Florida seems to be up as well.

I'm struggling a bit to find what I think we will want. 1. winters that aren't severe 2. No more than 1-2 drive to a city that has major concerts, airport, hospitals 3. some walkable downtown character, restaurants, bars, brewery, shops 4. near the water.

Anybody have any hidden gem locations I should check out? What are your plans for retirement? I really don't want to just stay in a big house in the Boston suburbs.


I know you've brought this up a few times over the past six months.

The real DMV- DelMarVa peninsula. Eastern side of the Chesapeake Bay. Forget Delaware and Maryland. They're tourist traps. If you get down in to eastern Virginia on the Peninsula you have access to Atlantic Ocean and Chesapeake Bay. DC is about 1-2 hours north. I expect you already know what to do around there. IF not, google it.

To the south you have Virginia Beach, Cheseapeake, Norfolk, etc. Greatest place in the world? As a person who lived in Va Beach for nine years? No. But you can come across plenty of quality opportunities for a weekend.

I saw someone mention St. Augustine south of Jax. You also have Amelia Island north of Jax and a bunch of Islands and small towns in southeast Georgia- Just go to Google maps and look at area between Savannah and the Ga/Fl border.
 

Chin Diesel

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So aside from @8893 who will be camping and pooping in box (beats being homeless!) and Cocoa Beach, any small cities, big towns you guys have visited and enjoyed?

On the whole, I'm torn between a desire to play more golf and maybe take up ocean fishing (which I've never really done) and having a place to walk (minimal hills would be good) and having less healthy fun, like say Frenchman Street in New Orleans, live music, food, beer etc. My wife is a prolific concert goer, and I know she will want to be able to go to shows, even if it means driving a bit and staying at a hotel. I looked at the Tampa/St. Pete/Clearwater area, but it sure seems densely populated.

I could see Burlington Vermont being great for about 6 months a year. Breweries, bands, the lake, mountains, trips to Montreal. Where is there a Burlington, VT in a warmer climate? I know Savannah, GA well and Charleston fairly well.

Huntsville, Alabama. Check it out.
 

CL82

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When you retire to a Southern State, is it a requirement that you have to start smoking and eating beignets and bacon wrapped meatloaf ?
Is it OK if I only do the second two?
 

HuskyHawk

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So my wife was looking at places as well, and found this. What's Here - The Pinehills
It's interesting, seems similar to the developments I see in SC, GA and I assume Florida, where people often travel within it in golf carts. But it's in Massachusetts. Plymouth gets winter, maybe a bit worse than Cape Cod, but not too bad. I like the village green and beer garden, Mayflower makes some solid beers.

Worth checking out.
 

HuskyHawk

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Huntsville, Alabama. Check it out.

I almost expected to hear Mobile, I know they have an older Mardi Gras/Carnival than New Orleans. Huntsville is in an interesting spot between Nashville, Birmingham and Atlanta.
 

storrsroars

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Much as I've always wanted to retire in Europe, it's looking more and more like that ain't gonna happen. I have a sneaking suspicion it'll be south of Tampa, around Bradenton. We're familiar with it from several trips to Pirates spring training. Meets the basic requirements: more affordable than Pgh, golf, good Latino food, baseball, good microbreweries, not horrible hurricanes, proximity to decent airport, and an actual good pizza place (albeit in Cortez). Wife's dream retirement job is as a starter on a golf course. I could have a food truck serving all the crappy regional Pgh delicacies for all the homesick Pittsburghers in the area.
 

Chin Diesel

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I almost expected to hear Mobile, I know they have an older Mardi Gras/Carnival than New Orleans. Huntsville is in an interesting spot between Nashville, Birmingham and Atlanta.

Mobile is a dump.

To the east of Mobile and Mobile Bay is Baldwin County where you could look at Spanish Fort, Foley, Orange Beach or Gulf Shores.
 

Chin Diesel

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Much as I've always wanted to retire in Europe, it's looking more and more like that ain't gonna happen. I have a sneaking suspicion it'll be south of Tampa, around Bradenton. We're familiar with it from several trips to Pirates spring training. Meets the basic requirements: more affordable than Pgh, golf, good Latino food, baseball, good microbreweries, not horrible hurricanes, proximity to decent airport, and an actual good pizza place (albeit in Cortez). Wife's dream retirement job is as a starter on a golf course. I could have a food truck serving all the crappy regional Pgh delicacies for all the homesick Pittsburghers in the area.

I'd rather be a Marshall than the Starter on the course.
 

SubbaBub

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I may have written this earlier. We did the surgery x month thing for a while in Cocoa Beach FL until we had 4 grandkids in 3 years. Then it was back to CT.
Cocoa Beach is a barrier island about 8 miles off the Fl coast so it always has a nice breeze. It's mid state so it's cooler than the Miami environs. There is a short winter where highs are low to mid 60's.Its Fl hot in summer but again always a sea breeze. It's a city of 13.000 residents that dwells to 50,000 in summer.The city is very cognizant of the need to stay a family friendly city. It has a commercial area but not honky tonk. It has a pier with restaurants and fishing. It is located 1 he from Orlando and 30 minutes from Cape Canaveral and the Space Center. It has a good size cruise port.

It clearly is not as la dee da as the Fl west coast. It is a surfing mecca.

Unlike people's thoughts of Florida, it is a place where ALL types of people get along and enjoy the ocean together. It's a friendly place to live. There are lots of small and mid size homes as well as condos.

Hope you find a place!

Alan

We've been starting to think about this. Our priorities are beachfront, warm, and within an hour of an international airport. Surprisingly, on the entire east coast, only FL meets that requirement (MCO and MIA are the only airports with decent non-stop connections, FLL and TPA are a notch below). Now sure how I feel about living in FL as I haven't spent more than a few days there at a time. Will definitely do a trial run before deciding anything.

Cocoa Beach is the northern boundary of our east coast search area down to Miami. West Coast is Clearwater to Venice. Venice is a bit over an hour from TPA, but if we found the right place, we would deal with it.
 

Chin Diesel

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That's because you like yelling and people and have control issues ;-)

Exactly. Nothing like rolling up on a group a 1/2 a hole behind, swapping a few stories and getting a few laughs and then throwing out a "Now get your asses on speed before I boot you off the course".

I'll leave the "Today's pin are in location #3. Be careful of the cart path on #4, it's a bit broken up. Hit 'em straight and keep an honest score. See you at the turn" BS to others.
 
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