Areas and Suburbs in Santiago


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Santiago has a diverse range of areas in which expats tend to settle. What Click for larger image of Santiago metro stationsconstitutes the best area for each expat depends entirely on what features one values. Some expats prefer family-friendly suburbs; others prefer areas with quiet parks and plenty of green space; and still there are those who opt for the centres with a Bohemian vibe or a youthful and lively nightlife.

Much like any large world-class city, Santiago has it all. Here is a snapshot guide of where to live as an expat moving to Santiago.
 

Lo Barnechea District


Located in the east of Santiago, this district is divided into three areas, El Arrayán, Los Trapenses and La Dehesa. Characterised by luxury houses and mansions, beautiful green areas and private security, this residential space is considered to be the most exclusive in the city.

In this district, expats will find silence, tranquillity and low pollution levels. There are several shopping malls, social clubs and international schools, but residents may find themselves rather isolated, and therefore having a car is an essential part of living here, as the distances are huge and the area is not well served by public transportation.
 

Las Condes District


Las Condes area of SantiagoLas Condes is a wealthy district surrounded by parks, great shopping malls, such as Mall Sport, Alto Las Condes and Parque Arauco Mall, various stores, gyms, restaurants and coffee shops. It is divided into the areas of San Damian, San Carlos de Apoquindo, Nueva las Condes and El Golf.

San Damian and San Carlos de Apoquindo are the most exclusive residential areas of Las Condes and, again, it is vital to have a car to get around this section of town. From this neighbourhood, the Andes mountains and ski resorts are almost close enough to touch.

Nueva Las Condes is a neighbourhood comprised of modern and spacious apartments, as well as luxury offices. It also includes one of the largest shopping centres in the country and excellent parks, specifically Parque Arauco and Parque Araucano. Stores and restaurants abound and also create a pleasant ambience. Nueva Las Condes is very close to Alonso de Córdova, an area home to the most exclusive clothing shops and restaurants in Santiago.

►Closest metro stations: Escuela Militar and Manquehue

El Golf area is a modern neighbourhood that mixes residential areas and offices. This space is far quieter than the Providencia or Santiago districts, and claims a completely different style of coffee shops, restaurants and bars. It should be noted that it is also definitively more expensive, but expats consider it worth the extra price.

On weekends, the area is calm. During summer time there are jazz groups playing in different squares, art exhibitions in the street and a regular antique market.

►Closest metro stations: El Golf and Alcántara
 

Vitacura District


Vitacura is a family-orientated district reputed for offering its residents the best quality of life in Chile. It is divided into historically residential areas, such as Santa María de Manquehue, Lo Curro, Jardín del Este and Vitacura.

Santa Maria de Manquehue and Lo Curro are beautiful and luxurious; and embassies often choose to place their representatives within these areas. Each house tends to be completely different to the next one, but they all offer plenty of space to exercise and they each boast unique architecture. A car is needed to live in this area, as distances are great.

Jardín del Este is often chosen by traditional Chilean families. Expats will find brand new apartments, but houses are old, usually built across only one floor. This area has great boutique stores and amazing restaurants. Public transportation is accessible, and it's easy to get around with buses and taxis.
 

Providencia District


Orrego Luco is a cosmopolitan and popular neighbourhood in Providencia District just as packed with stores, bars and restaurants as it is with incredible traffic. Luckily, expats who live here can still find some peace inside their own homes. Vegetarians will be delighted to know that this areas has many veggie food shops and restaurants. Orrego Luco attracts plenty of young people from different countries.

►Closest metro: Pedro de Valdivia

Salvador and Manuel Montt neighbourhoods are quieter residential areas, but they are still busy during rush hours. Expats will find beautiful parks and small squares throughout. As a residential area, there are fewer stores, bars or restaurants. The architecture is a mix of styles from the beginning of the century to modern structures from the current decade.

►Closest metro: Salvador and Manuel Montt
 

Santiago District


Belles Artes area of Santiago
 
Bellas Artes is a neighbourhood is full of life. Expats will find lots of cosy coffee shops, restaurants and bars and many local designer boutiques and handicraft stores. Expats choosing accommodation in Santiago should note that this is a cosmopolitan area with great architecture, but it is very noisy during weekdays because of the surrounding offices and street traffic.

Interesting places abound, including the Fine Arts Museum, Forestal Park, Central Market (Fish market) and La Vega, which is the main food market of Santiago, with fresh vegetables, fish, meat and cheap eateries.

►Closest metro: Bellas Artes

Lastarria neighbourhood is the traditional centre for artists, and is home to many theatres, art galleries and restaurants. It is characterised by French, Neo-Classical architecture. Nearby is Cerro Santa Lucia hill, an elegant park prime for exercise or just a simple escape from the daily stress. Lastarria has an identity all of its own and also boasts its own museum, The Museum of Visual Arts, or MAVI, which is located just off the Plaza Mulato Gil. There is an interesting flea market every afternoon in front of the Plaza Mulato Gil; books, antiques, and, occasionally on weekends, a couple of Chilean tango artists performing for the passers-by. Similar to Bellas Artes, this area is very noisy during the daytime.

►Closest metro: Universidad Católica

Recoleta District


The bohemian neighbourhood of Bellavista, which is packed with restaurants, bars, dance clubs, theatres and art galleries, is an interesting alternative area in which to live. For those who like nightlife, this is the place to be. At the end of Bellavista street is the zoo and the entrance to Cerro San Cristobal, a hill that offers magnificent views of the city, as well as cable car rides and a great spot for running, biking, picnicking and more.

►Closest metro: Baquedano

La Reina and Peñalolen are areas famous for their image of “comuna parque”, meaning low population density residential areas with plenty of parks and green spaces. Both have an interesting combination of economic classes, and expats can find ecological communities, mainly in Peñalolen. For those who want calm in their life and can´t afford to live in Lo Barnechea, this could be a suitable option.

►Closest metro: Just reach the border of this area and thereafter plenty of transportation via bus, taxis or cars

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