Given all the discussion about the inevitability of higher taxes in the news lately, you might think that the most frequent answer given to the question “Why did you move to Florida?” would be “Because there is no state income tax.” Not so. It is true that Florida has no state income tax, but according to a recent survey taken by Conde Nast, the reason most people move to Florida is because of “the lifestyle.” Now I grant you, that’s a pretty amorphous answer, but when I thought about it in the context of Southeast Florida, and more particularly, Palm Beach County, where I live, it makes imminent sense. The “lifestyle” of Northern Palm Beach County consists of many elements, some of which are available elsewhere. But I know of no place other than here where they are all available all the time. Let’s explore.
Of course, there’s the weather. Warm all year-round. No snow. No Ice. No freezing rain. Just lush green landscapes as far as the eye can see. And the beaches — Palm Beach County has more than 47 miles of Atlantic Ocean coastline. Homes of every sort — from the large estates on Palm Beach and Jupiter Island, to the cozy town houses of Tequesta, to the comfortable condominiums in North Palm Beach, Juno Beach and on Singer Island – have warm, refreshing, blue and turquoise water as a backdrop. From your own backyard, you can swim, snorkel, dive, fish, ski, surf, jog, walk or simply enjoy an incredible sunrise over the ocean. All of our beaches are easily accessible. Just about every major east-west road ends at the beach. No matter where you live, you’re never far from the beach. And even if you don’t live on the ocean or go there frequently, just knowing it’s there has an amazingly calming effect on how you view life.
Fish? Own a boat? Wish you could do more fishing or own a boat? Here in Palm Beach County, you can cruise the Intracoastal Waterway, Lake Worth Lagoon or head out through one of many inlets to the Atlantic Ocean, where the warm waters and rich fishing of the Gulfstream are only a few miles offshore. Many communities, like Old Port Cove, have marinas and others, like Admirals Cove, offer single family homes that have their own dock.
Golf? Often called the “Golf Capital of the World,” according to a recent article in the Palm Beach Post, Palm Beach County has 148 golf courses. The best architects have done their work here – Arnold Palmer at Frenchman’s Reserve, Jack Nicklaus at Ibis and Lost Tree, Pete Dye at Old Marsh, Arthur Hills atJonathan’s Landing, Tom Fazio at Jupiter Hills and PGA National, Greg Norman at The Medalist, Ray Floyd at Old Palm,to name a few — and you can live on many of these courses.
Tennis anyone? Palm Beach County has some of the best tennis facilities in the country. There are many great places to play tennis here, from public courts to exclusive private country clubs. Many communities, like BallenIsles and Mirasol, have dozens of tennis courts and extensive tennis programs staffed by resident tennis professionals. Throughout the Palm Beaches, the variety of housing available with access to tennis is boundless.
Worried about the waistline? Here in Palm Beach County, just about every community offers a fitness facility as one of its amenities. From the largest gated communities in Jupiter and Palm Beach Gardens to the smallest neighborhoods in Hobe Sound, most at least have fitness rooms and many offer much more extensive, state-of-the-art, fitness facilities, including personal trainers, classes and a spa. Don’t want to join a club? There are literally hundreds of miles of biking, hiking and walking trails throughout the Palm Beaches, often taking you through nature preserves, around lakes and along rivers and streams. And don’t forget the miles and miles of beautiful, sandy beaches you can walk and jog.
Add to that world-class theatre, museums and cultural venues, world-class shopping and world-class restaurants and there you have it – the “lifestyle” that brings people to Southern Florida. One last thought – Florida isn’t just for retirees anymore. Real people live, work and raise their families here. Why? The “lifestyle.” Plus the fact that we have a growing business community that attracts new entrants from all over the country. And don’t forget – there’s no state income tax!