Finding the Best Places to Retire Since 2006!
San Antonio, Florida
Not Far from Lake Jovita in West Central Florida, San Antonio is Slightly Overgrown with a Rural Quality, Some Fun Festivals and Peaceful Way of Life
San Antonio, known as San Ann by the locals, is a quiet town just to the west of Lake Jovita in west central Florida, about 30 miles north of Tampa. It was founded as a Catholic colony in 1881 and is the only surviving community out of the five original villages.
Agriculture, particularly orange groves, has long sustained this little hamlet, and it still has a rural, slightly overgrown quality with leafy neighborhoods and lush pastureland just beyond neighborhoods. Homes are a mix of older concrete block styles and new, polished country club residences. Tampa Bay Golf and Country Club is a gated 55+ community. The annual Garden Festival and the Fall Festival bring everyone out for food, arts and crafts and music. Retailers include a pottery shop, a lumber store, shoe stores, clothiers, bicycle shops and a few others. The dining scene is primarily made up of BBQ smokehouses and pizza places, but Pancho Villa's is famous for its Mexican food. San Ann Liquors (aka Ralph's) has a restaurant and live music on Friday and Saturday nights.
Population: 1,200 (city proper)
Age 45 or Better: 35%
Cost of Living: 22% below the national average
Median Home Price: $305,000
Climate: Summer and early fall are hot and humid. Late fall and winter are less humid and cooler. On average, the area receives 55 inches of rain per year.
At Least One Hospital Accepts Medicare Patients? No, but Pasco Regional Medical Center, five miles away, accepts Medicare patients.
At Least One Hospital Accredited by Joint Commission? No, but Pasco Regional Medical Center, five miles away, is accredited.
Public Transit: No
Crime Rate: Meets the national average
Public Library: No
Political Leanings: Conservative
College Educated: 30%
Is Florida Considered Tax Friendly for Retirement? Yes
Cons: The tornado risk is 135% higher than the national average.
Notes: San Antonio's population has gone up and down during the last decade and is now where it was 10 years ago. Home prices have increased 16% since a year ago. St. Leo University, a private, Catholic liberal arts university with 17,000 students, is in St. Leo just to the east of San Antonio. Hurriance Ian in 2022 bypassed San Antonio.
Recommended as a Retirement Spot? Yes
Named Pascua Florida by Juan Ponce De Leon, the Sunshine State did not enter the Union until March 3, 1845. Balmy mild winters began attracting snowbirds to the state in the late 19th century. Retirees continue to flock to the state. It's not hard to see why tourism has become the leading industry.
International trade and citrus are also major contributors to the state's economy. Eighty percent of the nation's oranges and grapefruits are grown here, and 40 percent of all U.S. exports to Latin America flow through Florida.
Florida's landscape includes uplands and coastal plains. It contains more than 11,000 miles of waterways and about 4,500 islands spread across 10 acres.
The state has 1,250 more golf courses than any other state in the Union. The 47 mile Pinellas Trail is the longest urban trail on the east coast. Orlando theme parks attract more visitors than any other theme parks in the U.S. The only place in the world where alligators and crocodiles co-exist is in National Everglades Park.
Florida, particularly the Keys and the Gulf Coast, were struck by Category 4 Hurricane Irma in early September, 2017. Towns will rebuild, perhaps this time with climate change in mind, making them safer and better equipped to handle major hurricanes going forward.
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