Manouela Valtcheva’s perspective

I have had the experience of trying out most of the student housing options - a summer at Olin Residence Hall,  a year in an apartment in the Central West End, and currently owning a house in historic Lindenwood Park. Olin is great if you dislike commuting because it is physically connected to the medical school. I hear nothing beats going to lecture in flip-flops in the middle of January. Renting just a short walk from campus in the Central West End offers many social benefits as most students live in this area. Here you can find wonderful restaurants and bars with outdoor seating perfect for enjoying the weather. For a more family-friendly feel, there are several historic neighborhoods a short drive from campus where some students, including myself, have bought their first homes.
In terms of things to do, St. Louis has much to offer and most of it is free or cheap. Forest Park is the location of the St. Louis Zoo, St. Louis Art Museum, the Muny, and the History Museum. Seasonal attractions include Shakespeare in the Park, ice skating, and the Great Forest Park Balloon Race. The Missouri Botanical Gardens host free concerts on Wednesday evenings during the summer, which are perfect for enjoying a picnic dinner with friends. If you're a baseball fan, student tickets for Cardinals games are cheap and easy to obtain. As a city, St. Louis isn't overwhelmingly crowded and is often described as having more of a small town feel.
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