Areas to live in Lima / vicinity?

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jennyramos
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Areas to live in Lima / vicinity?

Postby jennyramos » Mon May 30, 2016 7:58 pm

Hello! I am moving to Peru with our daughter in late August. My husband's a Peruvian citizen (dual US); we met and married here in the US 13 years ago. Our 12 year old daughter just got her DNI from the Consulate, so she's also now a dual citizen. I'll be getting my visa when I arrive.

My husband's pursuing some business interests in Peru, and is already there staying with family until we finalize our own accommodations. We've been to visit; I've taken some Spanish college courses and spoken with his family for years (learned enough to talk with my suegra at least!); and I've been studying Peru and Peruvian cuisine for over a decade now. So I do have some cultural background and preparation.

We've been trying to figure out where we'd like to settle. We are almost certainly going to rent for the first 1/2-1 year, probably in either Surco (near his family and work) or possibly La Molina, where he has many friends (we're willing to put up with the traffic, at least temporarily).

We've been surprised by the rapidly rising home costs. But friends have been talking about Pachacamac as a very new and rural but growing suburb, where many people are purchasing land and building homes. I have been trying to do a little reading about the area, but there's very little on the internet. The only things I see in that area (aside from the archaeological site of course) are an explosives factory, mines, and Villa El Salvador, which I know is a very economically disadvantaged area. So it seems odd that a new suburb would spring up there, especially so far from Lima proper (though I know that Peru's / Lima's rapid growth could be fueling this). Has anyone heard anything about it - or have any opinions on safe(r), good family areas to live? Any information would be greatly appreciated.

Also - crime is of course always a concern; though it seemed that property crimes was more the norm. Lately, I've been alarmed by the seemingly growing number of violent crimes involving guns. I don't have any way of knowing if this is sensationalist media, or a growing concern, or something else. I do know the basics of safety (keep things low key, don't flash money or cellphones, etc.). Any thoughts?

Thanks very much for any info you can provide!

Jennifer


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gringolandia
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Re: Areas to live in Lima / vicinity?

Postby gringolandia » Tue May 31, 2016 6:59 pm

The increase in crime is real, not sensationalized, but if you exercise the appropriate caution that you mentioned you should be fine. Sounds like you know what you are getting into.

Crossing over to La Molina from the rest of Lima is a HUGE pain if you're doing it during high traffic times, so make sure you don't need to do that. I think Colegio Newton is in La Molina so if you child goes there that would be okay. Colegio Roosevelt might be doable too, just because it is so close once you get over the hill.

In any case I sure wouldn't want to commute from La Molina to downtown Lima everyday. Gag, the thought just revolts me.

The Chacarilla area in Surco is nice, and it is pretty easy to get most places from there. Some other parts of Surco are more affordable and still reasonably nice, but I'm no expert on that.

I also don't know anything about the Pachacamac development, but I can say that whenever I head south on Panamericana Sur during high traffic times, there is always a HUGE line of traffic at the exit that goes towards Villa El Salvador. As I pass by I always think to myself how glad I am to be passing by that mess instead of merging into it (and I feel so sorry for the ambulance driver who has to try to squeeze through the mess, and the patient in the ambulance who will probably be dead if immediate surgery is required).

Maybe check out Playa San Pedro (about 25km south) if you are interested in an American style house along the beach not too far from Lima. There are several American families there.

And if money is not an issue, Mira Flores is the place to be. That's the one place that seems almost immune from the increase in crime. The worst I've heard there is the date-rape drug being used on women, but that happens anywhere in the world, even the US. I've heard they even have an app for your phone you can use to report crime. If you can afford it, live there.

Good luck pursuing the business opportunities! I still think Peru is a great place to start a business right now. So much potential for growth.
jennyramos
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Re: Areas to live in Lima / vicinity?

Postby jennyramos » Tue May 31, 2016 8:35 pm

Thanks so much for the information! I think traffic will be the number one difficulty, both getting used to it and learning to drive in it. It was a shock (to put it mildly!) when I first was exposed to it. But trying to navigate it in an emergency - I hadn't even thought of it. That's truly something to consider.

My husband's family lives very near the Chacarilla area of Surco, and it's where he's opened his business. It is a very nice, quiet area; maybe we'll stick to that. Miraflores may be a possibility if/when his business takes off! :) But we're still not sure which school we'll choose - that will definitely have a huge bearing on where we live. We'd been looking at schools in La Molina, but if the traffic is that horrible to navigate, maybe we'll look more towards Surco / Miraflores.

Thanks again for your input, and your kind wishes!

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