St. Louis is a city with a lot to offer for a diverse range of people. Besides the beauty and charm we see on the surface, it’s a small city that can feel like a “big” small town and within its borders, it is made up of diverse and unique neighborhoods, communities that are cultural microcosms unto themselves.
Being that it’s on the water, it can feel a little more east coast than many midwestern cities. With only 100 miles between St. Louis and Chicago, it’s becoming a popular and affordable place to settle as urban real estate prices continue to climb.
It isn’t the beach and it’s not a financial powerhouse, but there are plenty of jobs and the standard of living is high. The focus here is on culture, the arts, and living well, as there are always plenty of things to discover and do.
Free Arts And Culture In The City
St. Louis has placed a major emphasis on cultural institutions as evidenced by the Zoo-Museum District, a property tax subsidized district with its own governing body. Attractions that are supported by these funds include the Saint Louis Art Museum, the Missouri History Museum, the Saint Louis Zoo, and the Science Center.
Residents of both the city and the county receive discounts to these attractions every day they are open as well as free admission to the Missouri Botanical Gardens before noon on Wednesdays and Saturdays. Admission to the Zoo is also free for residents. In fact, St. Louis has more free tourist attractions than any other city in the United States.
The Botanical Gardens, or “Botan”, as the locals call it, is the oldest botanical garden in America. Throughout the year, it features some amazing festivals and special events throughout the year, including a wine festival, a Japanese festival, music festivals, markets, amazing light shows, and the Gardenland Express Holiday Flower and Train Show in November and December.
More To Love…
St. Louis also hosts the second largest Mardi Gras festival in the country, after New Orleans. Our outdoor amphitheater, the Muny, offers 1,500 free seats that are available to anybody for every single performance.
The food scene in St. Louis is nothing short of legendary – and we’re not just talking about pizza fit for a president (the Obama’s are partial to Pi) or toasted ravioli. From Italian to Ethiopian, Vietnamese, Thai, Middle Eastern, and Bosnian, it’s easy to tempt your palate every single day – if that’s your thing. And let’s not forget Gerard Craft, a James Beard Award-winning chef who runs several of the city’s top eateries, including Sardella, Brasserie by Niche, Pastaria, and Cinder House (in the Four Seasons Hotel) which features wood-fired cooking at its very best.
St. Louis may be Chuck Berry’s hometown, but its music scene has roots beyond rock’n’roll. Jazz and blues get top billing here, but there’s truly something for everyone, from punk to hip hop, pop, singer-songwriter, and so much more. There are an estimated 45 music festivals hosted in the city every year, from the Big Muddy Blues Festival to the Alterntive Point Fest, and all the way down to the rootsy charm of some of the most entertaining open mic nights you’ll find anywhere.
Urban Green Space
Forest Park covers more than 1,300 acres in western St. Louis, making it at least twice as big as Central Park in New York City. It’s also home to the St. Louis Art Museum, the Science Center, and the Muny, among other attractions. It’s where the city hosted the World’s Fair in 1904, and you can spend the day in a beer garden or rent a boat to drift around Post Dispatch Lake. The Jewel Box is another must-see within the park; it’s a historical art-deco greenhouse with peaceful lily ponds and beautiful statuary to explore.
St. Louis Is Great For Families
With so many places to go and things to see and do, St. Louis is a perfect place to raise a family. Additionally, there are plenty of jobs to go around as some of the country’s top employers and innovators make their home here.
Microsoft recently opened a new tech facility here, which will bring thousands of new jobs to the city. New hotels are opening up to support the influx of new visitors, and the National Geospatial Intelligence Agency has its headquarters here as well. The healthcare and research industry are considered to be the dominating force in employment, and the unemployment rate is well below the national average.
Of course, we could go on and on about all the great things St. Louis has to offer, but you get the picture. We love our fair city and we hope you do too. What are your favorite things about St. Louis? We’d love to hear about them! Reach out today and let us know!