Many think of St. Louis as the home of the Gateway Arch and Anheuser-Busch. The former is the nation’s largest manmade monument, the latter is the largest brewery. But of course, there’s so much more to the Gateway City.
Credit St. Louis’ early growth to its strategic location. It is at the confluence of the Mississippi and Missouri rivers. Today, 2.8 million people live in the greater St. Louis area and it is the 20th largest metropolitan area in the country.
Before your move, you might find yourself pondering some key questions. What will it cost to live in St. Louis? What are some of the prime attractions? What else is there to do? Here are some key things to consider.
1. Cost of Living
What does it cost to live in the St. Louis area? The cost of living is 5.6% lower than the national average. Average housing costs are 15.1% less than the national average. RentCafe reports that the average rent is $1,058. This is substantially lower than the nationwide average of $1,628. A common standard is to devote roughly 30% of your pre-tax income to rent. Nationwide, the average is 28.4%. By comparison, in places like Miami, Los Angeles, and New York City, average rent-to-income ratios exceed 40%.
2. Employment Opportunities
According to the St. Louis Federal Reserve, the unemployment rate stood at a modest 3.5% in February 2022.
The headquarters of three of the nation’s 100 fastest-growing companies are here. They are Panera Bread, Talx, and Engineered Support Systems. The economy is also buttressed by the presence of major companies. St. Louis is the home of 19 Fortune 1000 companies. Among them are Anheuser-Busch, Monsanto, and Graybar Electric. Major automakers like Ford and GM also operate assembly plants in the area.
Forbes recently recognized St.Louis as a hub for healthcare biotech. Both Pfizer and Centocor conduct research in the area.
3. Sports, Culture, and Sightseeing
In 2015, the Wall Street Journal named St. Louis the nation’s “Best Sports City.” The MLB’s St. Louis Cardinals have won 11 World Series, second only to the New York Yankees. The Cardinals play their home games at Busch Stadium, which is right downtown. The NHL’s St. Louis Blues won the Stanley Cup in 2019. The Blues play their home games at the Enterprise Center.
The St. Louis Zoo is known as “America’s top free attraction.” It is home to 14,000 animals representing 500 species. Nearby is the St. Louis Art Museum, another destination that does not charge admission.
When you hear “City Museum,” it’s only natural to imagine stately columns framing a classic edifice. City Museum in St. Louis is not that. Not even close! Rather, City Museum immerses the senses in the most eccentric and idiosyncratic of journeys—it is not to be missed!
4. Weekend Getaways
St. Louis residents regularly take advantage of weekend getaways just one or two hours away from the city.
Eighty miles west of St. Louis is the picturesque community of Hermann—with two Ns. Locals pay tribute to the community’s German roots with festivals like Maifest, Oktoberfest, and Wurstfest. Hermann also happens to be in the heart of Missouri’s wine country. Follow the Hermann Wine Trail to seven family-owned wineries.
The Shawnee National Forest is 75 miles southeast of St. Louis. Enjoy fresh air and exercise while hiking, biking, or kayaking. Consider rock climbing, rappelling, or bouldering as well. View waterfalls like Jackson Falls or traverse a floating boardwalk in a cypress swamp. On the way home, cruise the Great River Road along the Mississippi River.
Last but not least, Meramec Caverns is 60 miles west of St. Louis via I-44 and I-64. Of Missouri’s 6,000 caves, Meramec Caverns is the largest of them all. Imagine a series of underground rooms stretching for more than four miles! Some are 70 feet high.
5. Dining and Entertainment
Residents and visitors alike seek out the best spots for the city’s famous toasted ravioli and St. Louis-style BBQ ribs. St. Louis is the birthplace of some refreshing treats as well: both the ice cream cone and iced tea first appeared at the 1904 World’s Fair.
Enjoy Italian dishes at Trattoria Marcella and Charlie Gittos ‘On the Hill.’ Enjoy a steak at The Tenderloin Room or visit the award-winning Cinder House at the Four Seasons. St. Louis magazine highlights a series of new restaurants opening in 2022.
The entertainment possibilities are virtually endless. Every May, ArtWalk celebrates the contributions of 14 galleries and museums. Street performers, live music, and an outdoor movie add to the revelry. Hundreds of films are screened at the St. Louis International Film Festival. And, believe it or not, Mardi Gras in St. Louis is second only to New Orleans’ Mardi Gras. For more entertainment ideas, check out the events calendar from St. Louis magazine.
Luxury Apartment Properties in St. Louis
Draper and Kramer is a family-operated real estate firm founded in Chicago in 1893. In Summer 2022, Draper and Kramer expands its St. Louis presence with the opening of the 225-unit Moda at The Hill in the historic and charming Hill District. It is just west of the Missouri Botanical Garden. Residents enjoy a courtyard oasis replete with a resort-style pool and hot tub. Private cabanas, an outdoor gaming area, grilling stations, and a fire pit grace the courtyard as well.
Hampton Gardens is also in The Hill district, only eight minutes from downtown St. Louis. Amenities include a fitness center, sand volleyball court, fitness center, and community room. EVO Living is in Richmond Heights, less than 10 miles west of downtown St. Louis. The community includes both apartments and townhouses. It features a heated outdoor saltwater pool open year-round.
Browse Draper and Kramer’s entire selection of luxury apartment homes today.