Miami Beach 411
Like what you see? Let's talk about how
we can help your vacation --> Contact Us
Results 1 to 16 of 16
Like Tree4Likes
  • 1 Post By Marc Middleton
  • 1 Post By Lisa
  • 1 Post By Matt Meltzer
  • 1 Post By Blackford Oakes

Thread: Living in Doral

  1. #1
    New User
    Join Date
    Jun 2013
    Posts
    5
    Likes Received
    0

    Default Living in Doral

    Hello, my wife and 18 month old daughter will be moving to the Miami area to live/work for about 2-3 years (i.e., no school concerns). I've seen some negative and positive stuff regarding Doral on the internet and wanted to get a locals perspective. The negative stuff I've seen is that its nothing but warehouses and traffic. I view time sitting in traffic as time off my life that I'll never get back, so I'm wondering if there are any nice areas in Doral to live. We'd like something close to shopping, parks and safe...a gated community is okay as well (any specific recommendations?). We are also both completely fluent in Spanish. The closest neighborhood to my new job is Costa Verde...any thoughts? Our budge is $2500-$3000/month. Thanks!

  2. #2
    Senior Member Marc Middleton's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jan 2010
    Location
    North Miami
    Posts
    1,310
    Likes Received
    389

    Default Re: Living in Doral

    Doral is a suburb surrounded by a famous golf course. It is not considered a bad area and the crime there is the usual Miami car-break ins, vandalism, kid stuff, etc.

    $2500-$3000 should get you a nice 3 bedroom+ house in some of the nice communities. A lot of new homes are going up and there is a major latin buying spree happening. The Dolphin mall is off 107th near SR-836 and its a huge shopping center with restaurants.

    Besides the Mall, golf course, a few stand alone restaurants, there isn't much else (as is the case with most Miami suburbs). Traffic leaving Doral @ 5pm to the causeway or up 87th/41st can be very bad (for Miami comparisons). The 826 Causeway is usually a mess and the 836 going to Downtown from Doral is not as bad as the other way around. (Downtown to Doral at 9AM is fine where as Doral to Downtown at 9am is bad).

    I worked in Doral for 3 years and commuted from South Beach. We don't have kids and love the ocean & don't speak Spanish so Doral/Kendall doesn't work for us. We'd rather commute 30-40mins and then live somewhere that you don't have to drive anywhere (which is uncommon pretty much anywhere else in Florida).

    If you need help finding a rental house, please send me a private message and I'll send you what's on the market so you have an idea of pricing and locations. Keep in mind you'll need atleast 1st/last/security as well as proof of income and possible good credit to rent a house in Miami. You'll be responsible for all minor maintenance, utilities, and yardwork.

    Hope this helps!
    smithpd likes this.

  3. #3
    Editor Matt Meltzer's Avatar
    Join Date
    Feb 2007
    Posts
    10,738
    Likes Received
    847

    Default Re: Living in Doral

    Ok first off, Dolphin Mall SUCKS. Actually, all of Doral pretty much sucks. Like Marc said, it's a suburb, but a heavily Latin one where even if you do speak Spanish you're going to feel like an outsider. I'd suggest avoiding it unless absolutely necessary.

    The main thing is...where are you working? Maybe you can live closer to there. Doral is probably the last area I'd recommend next to Kendall, which is the worst place on Earth. Ok, not on Earth. But at least the worst place south of Orlando.

  4. #4
    New User
    Join Date
    Jun 2013
    Posts
    6
    Likes Received
    1

    Default Re: Living in Doral

    Hello Smithpd,

    I have been living in Doral for the past year. My overall feeling of Doral is, I CANT WAIT TO LEAVE!!!!!!

    I hate to say that. I have grown so much since moving straight to Doral from Palm Beach. But I really think Doral is just one big facade. A lot of stuff looks nice from the outside, but the quality is just lacking in so many ways. The quality of people is especially lacking. Very few people here speak English. You are looked at funny if you dont speak spanish, like somethings wrong with you. I have eaten at many restaurants here and have not really had good experiences. There is ZERO nightlife (unless you think going to Hooters, Flannigans, Chilis, or the Dolphin mall is nightlife. The traffic, oh god the traffic is HORRENDOUS. It doesnt matter what time of day it is. I lived around the dolphin mall, about 5 min north. I would drive right out of my complex and directly into bumper to bumper traffic. The mayor of Doral said it himself.. there are 100,000 people COMMUTING to Doral for work. Thats a lot of cars on the roads! And a lot of pissed off people just dying to cut you off without a signal. The only real plus here is that I really liked the INSIDE of my apartment and the commute to FIU is super easy, depending on the time you leave. For a 6:30pm class, I need 45 min to make a normal 15 min drive due to heavy traffic.

    Oh btw, where I lived there was not enough parking for all the tenants. So you had to pay a ridiculous fee for an extra spot (we needed two). Of course we got by by parking in visitor spots which resulted in many annoying lime green WARNING stickers on the window and we even got our car towed once. A nice $450 towing fee for Xmas.

    I would advise NOT living in Doral unless you fit these qualifications:

    You are over 30 and have no intention of enjoying the area you live in.
    You do not enjoy speaking English.
    You have a car and like spending a lot of time in traffic.
    You enjoy spending a lot for rent in a boring, low-quality area.
    You dont really enjoy good dining and have an affinity for sub-par chain restaurants.
    You enjoy the cookie-cutter lifestyle.

    I know this sounds super negative. And I wouldn't take back moving here, because it helped me understand what I dont want out the area that I live. But honestly, my boyfriend and I really did not enjoy living here. But then again, I'm 24 and hes 26. And we dont speak spanish. This area is more for people with families who just want a place to sleep and eat. Not really a place I would want to raise my kids though.

    If you like living in Doral, sorry about all the hate. It just wasn't my cup of tea at all. Thinking about moving to SoBe.
    Jess likes this.

  5. #5
    New User
    Join Date
    Jun 2013
    Posts
    5
    Likes Received
    0

    Default Re: Living in Doral

    Matt, thanks for the info. I will actually be working at the corner of 97th and 33rd in Doral. Looks like I could actually walk to work in 5 minutes from Costa Verde or bike in 2 minutes. My main concerns are a safe/decent place for my 18 month old (i.e., a kiddie park nearby and a pool maybe) and a short (time-wise) commute. I don't want to spend half of my life in a car, whether I'm in traffic or not. Where would you recommend outside of Dorall? Thanks again!
    Quote Originally Posted by Matt Meltzer View Post
    Ok first off, Dolphin Mall SUCKS. Actually, all of Doral pretty much sucks. Like Marc said, it's a suburb, but a heavily Latin one where even if you do speak Spanish you're going to feel like an outsider. I'd suggest avoiding it unless absolutely necessary.

    The main thing is...where are you working? Maybe you can live closer to there. Doral is probably the last area I'd recommend next to Kendall, which is the worst place on Earth. Ok, not on Earth. But at least the worst place south of Orlando.

  6. #6
    New User
    Join Date
    Jun 2013
    Posts
    5
    Likes Received
    0

    Default Re: Living in Doral

    We were also looking in Coral Gables, but I read somewhere else that if you work in Doral, do not live south of there due to traffic. We've go friends that live in Weston and Homestead that commute to Doral, but they have to extend their work day just to cut down on traffic...again, I'm not a fan of being away from family due to traffic, unless there's no way around it.

  7. #7
    New User
    Join Date
    Jun 2013
    Posts
    5
    Likes Received
    0

    Default Re: Living in Doral

    Lisa, we'll be working in Doral at a military building there. If not Doral, is there a better place that would have a short commute to Doral? Thanks!

  8. #8
    New User
    Join Date
    Jun 2013
    Posts
    6
    Likes Received
    1

    Default Re: Living in Doral

    Quote Originally Posted by smithpd View Post
    Lisa, we'll be working in Doral at a military building there. If not Doral, is there a better place that would have a short commute to Doral? Thanks!
    Unfortunately for your needs, it may not get much better than Doral. For something that is close to work, is nice and safe, and has parks and stuff for kids, it is probably going to be where you will end up. Honestly, there really isn't anything wrong with the area, aside from the heavy traffic at all hours of the day. It's mostly parents and families just trying to make a living. It can be expensive to live there, and people can definitely be rude sometimes, but I would hate to completely deter you from trying it for yourself. Like I said, I would never take back living here. It just wasn't right for a young couple in their mid 20's.

    I can set you up with a really wonderful realtor who helped me find a place in Doral. She focuses in this area and has been here for 17 years or so. She was a lifesaver when we came down here from New York, where we were staying and working last summer. She really was amazing. Let me know if you would like her info =)

  9. #9
    Senior Member Marc Middleton's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jan 2010
    Location
    North Miami
    Posts
    1,310
    Likes Received
    389

    Default Re: Living in Doral

    You can't escape traffic in Miami unless you move right by your job. So once you move away, you might as well move some where you are going to Enjoy or save a bundle.

    Coral Gables is beautiful and is great for families (Houses $2500+/month, condos $2000+). Homestead is incredibly boring unless you go to the Keys every weekend and you'll save a ton on rent (3 Bedroom house for $1500).

    Kendall sucks, Weston is almost exactly like Doral but without the golf course and huge mall so you are better off in Doral. Despite Matt's comments on the Dolphin Mall, its the biggest mall south of Aventura and is the only place to really go in Doral.

    You'd be surprised how fast a year goes so if I were you, I'd get a rental house in Doral at the bottom of your budget and live right by your job. Make life easy, adapt to the city, get to know where everything is, and find a better home in the future. A terrible mistake is moving far away in a new city and really hating life your first year and then moving away because you made a bad decision.
    I think had we moved to Doral instead of South Beach our 1st year, we would have left already.


    Let me know if you need help!

  10. #10
    Moderator
    Join Date
    Jun 2008
    Location
    South Beach
    Posts
    10,353
    Likes Received
    698

    Default Re: Living in Doral

    Can't add to this at all as far as living as I'm a beach girl for life. But Lisa... Your post was priceless!

  11. #11
    Editor Matt Meltzer's Avatar
    Join Date
    Feb 2007
    Posts
    10,738
    Likes Received
    847

    Default Re: Living in Doral

    Yeah if your main priority is avoiding a commute, then Doral it is. It's not a bad commute from downtown, actually, as you can go straight on 836. But, still, a minimal commute can be a great thing so if you think it's for you got for it.

  12. #12
    New User
    Join Date
    Jun 2013
    Posts
    5
    Likes Received
    0

    Default Re: Living in Doral

    Matt, what areas to the east toward the beach would be good for a small family? I saw a lot of folks recommended Surfside, but google maps says it's a 40 minute drive (I'm assuming that's without traffic) to Doral. Like Marc said, if I'm going to have to sit in traffic, I might as well live somewhere cool (like on/near the beach, etc). Thanks!

  13. #13
    Editor Matt Meltzer's Avatar
    Join Date
    Feb 2007
    Posts
    10,738
    Likes Received
    847

    Default Re: Living in Doral

    Ohhh no no no. NOT Surfside. The street traffic getting there is horrendous, as there's no convenient freeway access. 40 minutes is being generous, probably more like 50-60 during peak times. No sir, not that area AT ALL.

    Miami Springs and Miami Shores are both great family areas. The Shores especially. Even going a little north into the MiMo district (don't ever say Upper East Side, but that's what some realtors and the like will call it) is a cool area too, and really convenient to the freeway.

    Your child is young, so you could even look at Midtown if you can afford it, as that's pretty family friendly and that's a super-easy trip to Doral. Coral Gables is also a nice area and not a bad drive to Doral at all. You really have a lot of options.
    Marc Middleton likes this.

  14. #14
    Senior Member Blackford Oakes's Avatar
    Join Date
    May 2009
    Location
    Brickell Key / CFL
    Posts
    5,850
    Likes Received
    562

    Default Re: Living in Doral

    One might be suprised if you study Doral's indexes. It favors the nation average by a considerable unexpected margin in several categories.

    Business in Doral has been phenomenal so far.

  15. #15
    Moderator
    Join Date
    Jun 2008
    Location
    South Beach
    Posts
    10,353
    Likes Received
    698

    Default Re: Living in Doral

    I can only assume people live in Doral for the climate. Year round sunshine. Cos it has nothing else going for it. It's like Kendall in that respect.

  16. #16
    Senior Member Blackford Oakes's Avatar
    Join Date
    May 2009
    Location
    Brickell Key / CFL
    Posts
    5,850
    Likes Received
    562

    Default Re: Living in Doral

    Quote Originally Posted by Jess View Post
    I can only assume people live in Doral for the climate. Year round sunshine. Cos it has nothing else going for it. It's like Kendall in that respect.
    Funny that you also mentioned Kendall. That's were our second location is going to be.

    Any decent size city is going to have a requirement for sprawl. That's why thousands commute from Rialto to LA to go to work each day. It might just be the best affordable option.

    As far as Doral having something or not going for it; you might want to consult a Venezuelan before you conclude. Restricting yourself to a foreign language ( English ) limits yourself to comprehending only a tiny sliver of Miami.
    moltobene likes this.

Posting Permissions

  • You may not post new threads
  • You may not post replies
  • You may not post attachments
  • You may not edit your posts
  •