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Seattle?

#1 User is offline   y66 

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Posted 2016-December-08, 12:42

Any water cooler visitors live in Seattle? My wife and I are thinking about moving and Seattle is on the list. The Laurelhurst neighborhood near UW looks appealing and we will probably visit soon to check it out. Other suggestions in Seattle or Northwest appreciated.

Our criteria:

Walkable, urban or semi-urban, good schools, near a college or university, moderate climate, decent public transportation, within an hour or so of fun places to hike and (occasionally) be compelled into aesthetic contemplation of something commensurate to our capacity for wonder.

Places we also like: San Francisco, Berkeley CA, Vancouver BC (not ready for Canada yet), Portland OR near 23rd and Kearney, Chicago near Bucktown (cold in winter), Nashville near Cherokee Park neighborhood (possible, my wife is a Southerner), Austin (Texas), Maine coast (cold), Middlebury VT (cold), Cambridge MA (expensive, cold).
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#2 User is offline   hrothgar 

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Posted 2016-December-08, 13:32

View Posty66, on 2016-December-08, 12:42, said:

Any water cooler visitors live in Seattle? My wife and I are thinking about moving and Seattle is on the list. The Laurelhurst neighborhood near UW looks appealing and we will probably visit soon to check it out. Other suggestions in Seattle or Northwest appreciated.

Our criteria:

Walkable, urban or semi-urban, good schools, near a college or university, moderate climate, decent public transportation, within an hour or so of fun places to hike and (occasionally) be compelled into aesthetic contemplation of something commensurate to our capacity for wonder.

Places we also like: San Francisco, Berkeley CA, Vancouver BC (not ready for Canada yet), Portland OR near 23rd and Kearney, Chicago near Bucktown (cold in winter), Nashville near Cherokee Park neighborhood (possible, my wife is a Southerner), Austin (Texas), Maine coast (cold), Middlebury VT (cold), Cambridge MA (expensive, cold).


Cambridge is lovely.

If you like it, you might also want to consider Toronto
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#3 User is offline   mycroft 

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Posted 2016-December-08, 13:52

Yeah, because Toronto isn't expensive or cold, unlike Cambridge MA. Or in Canada, unlike Vancouver BC, of course :-).

But yes, there are several places in TO that are almost worth what the natives' opinion of the city claim them to be. Just not the places that they advertise as "Toronto's greatest".

Not as expensive, just as cold, more snow (if that's possible), Canadian, and also French - but I fell in love with Montreal the day I arrived.
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#4 User is offline   ggwhiz 

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Posted 2016-December-08, 14:57

If you consider Toronto, reconsider something like Stratford. Better climate and gorgeous wine country. Vancouver (as is Toronto) are both too expensive for my taste but Victoria if you can stand being on an island or inland BC might suit. The Regional in Penticton is Canada's version of Gatlinburg.
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#5 User is offline   helene_t 

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Posted 2016-December-09, 09:46

The centre of Seattle is quite amazing but the area where I stayed in the North of the city I found scary. Now it is so long time ago that I don't remember exactly where it was so this advice is a bit useless, sorry.
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#6 User is offline   mikeh 

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Posted 2016-December-09, 10:17

I admit to bias, but if you are looking to the NW, even if not quite ready for Canada, you might want to take a trip to Victoria. Much smaller than Seattle, and Vancouver, it has just about everything you listed, and a lot less rain than either Seattle or Vancouver.

Lots of hiking. Good schools, a decent university, modern hospitals (the cancer centre is one of the best in Canada). The pace of life is a lot slower than in the major centres, and whether that is a feature or a bug depends on you :D

US dollar is worth more than 1:30 Canadian so house prices, tho high in Canadian terms, aren't astronomical.

Few people move here then move away, which says a lot.
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#7 User is offline   Vampyr 

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Posted 2016-December-09, 11:02

Is it so easy for Americans to obtain residency in Canada?
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#8 User is offline   mycroft 

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Posted 2016-December-09, 11:45

Easier than the other way around. Having said that, no.
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#9 User is offline   hrothgar 

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Posted 2016-December-09, 11:48

View PostVampyr, on 2016-December-09, 11:02, said:

Is it so easy for Americans to obtain residency in Canada?


Money talks
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#10 User is offline   kenberg 

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Posted 2016-December-09, 14:51

I did indeed like my stay in Seattle but that was some years back. I have canoed on the lake, I forget its name, near the University. The city is, or at least was, very easy for bike riding. I hiked in the snow on Mt. Ranier in July. I did some combined biking and ferry riding that got me to various islands in the Sound. As I recall, there is/was a somewhat artistic community on Orcas (one of the islands). At any rate Orcas has some great views, suitable for your hoped for aesthetic contemplation. You could consider a little island hopping on your visit. I had a bike, so I don't know how easy it is to get around on foot or by bus.See http://www.visitsanj...ds/orcas-island

A native suggested: Rain is a state of mind. This statement has no meaning whatsoever, but you do get wet there from time to time so you need the proper attitude.

Visiting there and living there are different things of course, but I suspect I would like it. As I get older, the quality of medical care becomes an issue. I think Seattle ranks well in that department, but I am not certain.
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#11 User is offline   y66 

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Posted 2016-December-09, 21:53

Thanks for the input. We also fantasize about a semi-nomadic lifestyle for a few years in which we ditch most of our possessions and move around staying in a bunch of different places for as long we like until we're ready to try something new. If we ever do that, all of the places mentioned above sound like good candidates for our list.
If you lose all hope, you can always find it again. Richard Ford in The Sportswriter
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#12 User is offline   Phil 

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Posted 2016-December-09, 22:53

Pros

1. No state sales tax.
2. Perhaps the most scenic big city in America barring San Diego.
3. Many activities and natural beauty - Rainforest, Olympic Peninsula, island hopping in San Juan.
4. Good bridge community!
5. Good economy tech based economy / Pacific rim
6. Still a good music scene

Cons

1. Pretty bad traffic
2. Forget about rain - just 9 months of dreariness.
3. Some areas have a remarkable amount of blight.

You could do worse.

We are considering the Oregon coast in a few years. We'll see.
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#13 User is offline   Phil 

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Posted 2016-December-09, 22:56

View Postkenberg, on 2016-December-09, 14:51, said:

I did indeed like my stay in Seattle but that was some years back. I have canoed on the lake, I forget its name, near the University. The city is, or at least was, very easy for bike riding. I hiked in the snow on Mt. Ranier in July. I did some combined biking and ferry riding that got me to various islands in the Sound. As I recall, there is/was a somewhat artistic community on Orcas (one of the islands). At any rate Orcas has some great views, suitable for your hoped for aesthetic contemplation. You could consider a little island hopping on your visit. I had a bike, so I don't know how easy it is to get around on foot or by bus.See http://www.visitsanj...ds/orcas-island

A native suggested: Rain is a state of mind. This statement has no meaning whatsoever, but you do get wet there from time to time so you need the proper attitude.

Visiting there and living there are different things of course, but I suspect I would like it. As I get older, the quality of medical care becomes an issue. I think Seattle ranks well in that department, but I am not certain.


Went camping on Orcas when I was a teenager (note it looks like the plural of the whale, but its pronounced Or-CUSS).

I think you are thinking of Lake Washington which is adjacent to UW.
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#14 User is offline   y66 

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Posted 2016-December-10, 09:09

View PostPhil, on 2016-December-09, 22:53, said:

We are considering the Oregon coast in a few years. We'll see.

After the big one?

Have you played golf at Bandon Dunes? It was golf heaven 14 years ago. The Rogue River is not far if you're into white water sports and fresh water fishing. My favorite local bridge pro left here a few years ago and is now living in Bend OR. Haven't talked to him since he moved. Will remedy that.
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#15 User is offline   y66 

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Posted 2016-December-10, 09:13

I showed my wife some houses for sale in Victoria. She is keen on the Arts & Craft style which many houses there appear to have been inspired by. I should ask: what are the rules on length of stay and property ownership in Canada for U.S. citizens?
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#16 User is offline   BillHiggin 

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Posted 2016-December-10, 19:29

View PostPhil, on 2016-December-09, 22:53, said:

Pros

1. No state sales tax.
2. Perhaps the most scenic big city in America barring San Diego.
3. Many activities and natural beauty - Rainforest, Olympic Peninsula, island hopping in San Juan.
4. Good bridge community!
5. Good economy tech based economy / Pacific rim
6. Still a good music scene

Cons

1. Pretty bad traffic
2. Forget about rain - just 9 months of dreariness.
3. Some areas have a remarkable amount of blight.

You could do worse.

We are considering the Oregon coast in a few years. We'll see.


I do live in the Seattle area. Unfortunately not the "No sales tax" part tho. Washington very definitely has state (and local) sales tax, but does not have state income tax.
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#17 User is offline   Phil 

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Posted 2016-December-10, 19:41

View Posty66, on 2016-December-10, 09:09, said:

After the big one?

Have you played golf at Bandon Dunes? It was golf heaven 14 years ago. The Rogue River is not far if you're into white water sports and fresh water fishing. My favorite local bridge pro left here a few years ago and is now living in Bend OR. Haven't talked to him since he moved. Will remedy that.


Yeah I've read the New Yorker article too. But the actual tsunami zones are much smaller than you'd think so the reality is that that its not as big of a deal and such an outlier event. The preparedness is better than they portrayed too, but that doesn't sell magazines.

I haven't played golf at Bandon, but on the other hand I don't have about $400 laying around to light on fire either. B-) I used to be pretty avid but not so much anymore.

Bend is nice, but we prefer the ocean more.
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#18 User is offline   Phil 

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Posted 2016-December-10, 19:42

View PostBillHiggin, on 2016-December-10, 19:29, said:

I do live in the Seattle area. Unfortunately not the "No sales tax" part tho. Washington very definitely has state (and local) sales tax, but does not have state income tax.


Yeah meant income tax.....sales tax is fairly steep IIRC.
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#19 User is offline   foobar 

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Posted 2017-January-23, 14:35

Am a little late to the post, but we just moved here a couple of weeks ago after almost a quarter century in Portland, OR and really loving it so far.

Few comments FWIW:

  • At at risk of being tautological, Seattle is very beautiful
  • If you are employed, please pay attention to your commute times. The short version is that if you work downtown, it comes to a tradeoff between commute times vs. larger homes, suburban vs. city life, etc.
  • Distances can really deceptive, so while some areas like West Seattle are really close to downtown...
  • I haven't had to visit a bridge club, so if you have any pointers, that will be appreciated

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#20 User is offline   johnu 

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Posted 2017-January-26, 19:16

View Postfoobar, on 2017-January-23, 14:35, said:

[*]Distances can really deceptive, so while some areas like West Seattle are really close to downtown...
[*]I haven't had to visit a bridge club, so if you have any pointers, that will be appreciated
[/list]


Yeah, I live in West Seattle and my house overlooks Elliot Bay so I can see the downtown buildings, waterfront, and the ferries. Maybe 2-1/2 miles as the crow flies, but can easily take 45 minutes during rush hour to get downtown, or to get home.

For bridge clubs,

http://www.bridgeins...rg/#/clubs/all/

Toughest game in the area (and one of the few evening games) is at Mercercrest on Mercer Island, but just 1 game a week. Eastside BC and Seattle BC are the 2 more or less full time clubs. Eastside frequently has 20+ table games on Saturday afternoons.
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