Situated on about 15.5 square miles approximately seven miles south of Washington, D.C.'s downtown, Alexandria, Virginia has a lot to offer the modern house hunter. Home of one of the nation's first designated historic districts, the area of Old Town boasts 18th century charm evident in every aspect. The city boasts waterfront views of the Potomac River alongside with cobblestone streets, delighting visitors and inhabitants alike. High property values coupled with its convenient geographic location make it a great buy for those seeking to buy real estate.
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Similar to other cities in the surrounding area, modern Alexandria has been profoundly influenced by its location near D.C. Much of the population (around 139,000 according to 2010 census figures) works in the U.S. military, the federal civil service, or for a federal government private contractor. There is also an abundance of job opportunities available in a variety of industries. The climate features mild to cool winters and hot summers. Those families with children of school age appreciate the topnotch public school system in addition to the presence of some of the area's premier private schools: St. Agnes and St. Stephen's, Episcopal High School and Bishop Ireton High School. There are also 45 schools of higher education within a 50-mile radius including George Mason University and Marymount University.
Alexandria's historic center of Old Town features a unique and diverse collection of high class dining establishments, theaters, antique shops, boutiques and more. It is a gathering place for residents and a major tourist attraction. The city's focus on walkability and cultivating a welcoming environment are readily apparent. Seventy major parks cover upwards of 950 acres, one of the largest being Chinquapin Park Recreation Center and Aquatics Facility. In addition to its close proximity to the nation's capital, the city is conveniently situated near Richmond, VA, and Annapolis, MD. Nationally recognized as an arts hub, arts lovers have plenty to do here. One destination is the Torpedo Factory Art Center featuring artist galleries and studios spanning three floors. Music fans will find some of the top acts in rock, folk and country at the Birchmere, a well-known venue offering an ongoing rotation of outstanding performers. Those who appreciate a wide range of high quality dining experiences will find lots to whet their appetites in a city whose offerings have been praised by The New York Times, Bon Appetit and Food & Wine. An emphasis on independently owned restaurants and chef-driven menus is the standard. Alexandria residents and tourists alike appreciate the aptly balanced mix of historic preservation with the sophistication of a modern metropolis. These draws and more make Alexandria a smart place to buy a home, for inhabiting or solely as an investment purchase.