It’s hard to believe.
The one year mark of moving from NYC to LA has officially come and gone, and here we are, still living and loving life in LA. But, despite trading snowy winters for eternal sunshine, it hasn’t been all palm trees and blue skies. Over time, as the excitement has has worn off and the rose-colored glasses have changed to clear, it’s definitely become apparent that we don’t love everything about LA. And yes, we most certainly miss NYC (especially our Cobble Hill neighborhood). But we what do love about living on the west coast, so far, outweighs the things we don’t. (But like, I totally wouldn’t oppose that bi-coastal life…if I could just find a pot of gold to support it!).
Of course, no place is perfect and no place has it all. I’ve lived in many areas and each has had their pros and cons. It’s nothing against a place or the people that live there, but rather what my lifestyle requires at the time. Tbh, some of the things we miss most about NYC are rather trivial, and if we hadn’t moved from a city that has it all at all times, we probably wouldn’t even notice that LA doesn’t have these things.
Since I get asked all the time about our move, living in LA, if we miss NYC, etc., I thought it would be fun to put together a little pros and cons list since we’ve now been here for a full year. Please keep in mind that these are my personal pros + cons and thoughts + opinions based on our lifestyle, needs and preferences. These are not meant to offend anyone nor do I expect everyone to feel the same way, which is great, because, I mean, let’s be real, imagine if we all only loved the same things and all only wanted to live in the same one place. How small and boring would the world be?!
Anyways, now that my official disclaimer is out of the way, let’s dive in.
*Fall doesn’t exist (As a native east coast gal I definitely miss that foliage)
*Walkability is mostly non-existent, minus a few pockets here and there
*I haven’t had too much of an issue with overall traffic (mostly because we stay on the westside) but parking really drives me crazy, mostly because it doesn’t exist or it’s valet or parallel parking (which I have avoided at all costs for the entirety of my driving life). Unlike in NYC where you could just walk around the corner and get something, here you have to go, then find parking and pay for parking and before you know it running to get a coffee has become a 60 minute ordeal that now costs you $10.
*Speaking of paying for things, restaurants out here definitely get sneaky with some charges. Certain places add an additional fee if you’re dining in versus taking out (and they don’t even tell you about the fee…we’ve started having to ask) and all the restaurants have an additional fee to cover benefits for their employees.
*Not as many stores here (things like Mango, H&M home, etc. just don’t have locations here, yet they have them in NY)
*People tend to be a bit more flaky, so it can be harder to make plans or see a turn out at events
*Networking at events is much harder and people only want to connect if you can do something for them right away
*Style is either very relaxed, very valley girl, or very boho desert vibes, so I don’t feel like I try as hard with my wardrobe, or that my style always fits in here
*Restaurants close so early and finding food after 10pm (even on Saturdays) is sometimes impossible
*It feels like the majority of restaurants that are new are either Italian or pizza, and there isn’t much variety in the food scene
*It can be hard to find restaurants with a good vibe (Dave and I have started specifically noting restaurants that have a NYC buzz haha)
*The homeless population (that no one seems to care about or do anything about)
*Natural disasters (wildfires, earthquakes, etc.)
*It can be hard to stay driven at times because there’s definitely more of an emphasis on ‘play’ in the work hard, play hard attitude out here, not to mention, it’s always nice, so I always want to be outside
*High cost of living
*Pressure to be out all the time at the hottest parties, newest restaurants, etc.
*Drinking and eating out more
*Snow (especially annoying to deal with when trying to go about day-to-day life in the city)
*People being more in their own bubble and not as pleasant to deal with
*No personal space
*No peace and quite
*Feeling more stressed and anxious and a lot more pressure to always be on
*Traffic (I don’t care what anyone says, its just as bad, if not worse than LA)
*The subway (yes it’s convenient, but they also are severely outdated, always delayed, always packed and there’s never enough of them)
*The NY crazies (I’ve literally never seen some of the most terrifying and crazy things as I did while living in NY!)
*I think the city has become less diverse as high cost of rent has driven smaller, family businesses (the business and people who made New York what it was) out and replaced them with the cookie cutter chains (like Starbucks and Target)
*Everything takes longer to do or to get to because there are so many people and lines and traffic
ARE YOU TEAM LA OR TEAM NYC…or team both? I’m pretty solidly the latter, so please don’t make me choose!
*Beautiful weather all the time
*Feeling less stressed and anxious and more calm, healthy and balanced
*No winter (and consequently no bundling up or shoveling snow)
*Variety of terrains in landscapes (mountains, dessert, beach, country, city, winery) all easily accessible
*Incredible fresh produce at actual reasonable prices
*So many amazing hikes
*Hearing the birds outside my window and watching the hummingbirds and giant monarch butterflies outside my window every morning while I sip my coffee
*The variety of foliage and produce that grows everywhere (it’s not abnormal to see peaches, passionfruit, oranges, lemons, limes, mangos, kiwis, pomegranates and avocados growing in any given neighborhood)
*Friendly, kind people + a true community feel (the way the community rallies here is unlike anything I’ve seen anywhere else, even the Midwest)
*An emphasis on a more relaxed, well-balanced, overall healthy lifestyle (less pressure to be out all the time + at all the latest spots)
*Proximity to beaches (that are actually nice)
*Insane tacos and Mexican food
*The art and creative scene
*Overall more affordable cost of living
*Weekend getaways are easier (and there’s more of a variety of options, besides just the standard “escape the city and go upstate” in NYC)
*Being close to other parts of the world that I’d love to explore, such as Hawaii, Alaska and Asia
*Having everything so accessible at all times
*More of a global network, especially for work
*So many of my favorite brands have stores in NYC (and don’t in LA)
*Being able to walk everywhere
*Never being bored because there is always something to do and there’s always a buzz
*A wide variety of people, cultures, restaurants, shops, food from all over the world
*Christmastime in the city
*The cultural scene
*Being a quick flight from Europe
*Being close to New England and closer to family
*The entrepreneurial buzz, vibe, community and spirit
*Incredible food, bars, jazz music and overall atmosphere for going out