When the London family was ready for a change, Suburban Jungle was there, every step of the way.
At the start of 2022, restaurateur Erika London and her husband Matt Kranz were temporarily renting a house in the New York suburbs after leaving the city post COVID with their two young kids. While they loved their life in NYC, they weren’t sold on NY suburbia and were itching to make a move to a new vibrant community. Fast forward to 2023, the family is happily settled – but not in the New York suburbs. Instead of staying close, the family opted for a big move to Boca Raton, Florida. Now, they’re in their new home with a new baby, and a booming restaurant business that they brought down with them.
“We lived in NYC for over 17 years and thought we’d be there forever,” London said. “We’re both in the hospitality industry and we need to be in a place where there’s a lot going on — restaurants, entertainment, activities, a pulse.”
For Erika, NYC had been home for her entire life. After growing up on Long Island, at age 18, she left Syosset to attend New York University and never left. In 2020, her and Matt were living on the Upper West Side with their two kids soaking in the arts, culture, and NYC lifestyle. Then COVID-19 hit.
“When the pandemic hit, we were looking to get out of Manhattan,” said London. “We weren’t sure where we wanted to go, but we knew New York wasn’t right for us anymore.”
From the start, Matt was excited about the prospect of Florida, but they weren’t really sure what the right move was for them. Ultimately, they headed east to Long Island and rented a home while they figured it out.
They rented there for two years, but by the end of the first year realized they weren’t going to be happy there long term. After being used to a very active lifestyle, being in the ‘burbs during a COVID winter pushed them to make a decision.
Exploring Suburban Jungle
Many of Erika’s friends were also exploring life outside of New York at this time and one of them introduced her to Suburban Jungle.
“My friend was working with Melissa Schneider, a Strategist at Suburban Jungle. She told me, ‘Melissa is amazing. When you talk to her, it’ll feel like you’re having a conversation with someone you’ve known for years. She was spot on: Melissa really listens – she was so committed to getting to know us and exactly what we wanted in order to determine what would be the best choice.”
Erika and Matt are both family and business oriented and were looking for a place that provided their family with access to high quality education as well as opportunities for their businesses to flourish. A vibrant community that would allow them to continue their dynamic personal and professional lifestyle was also key.
Continuing the Journey Together
After the initial conversation with Melissa, Erika realized their family wasn’t quite ready to pick up and move just yet, but she and Melissa would talk every few months and Melissa would send different options for them to consider based on their family’s needs. “Ultimately, we decided South Florida was where we wanted to be but didn’t know exactly where. I think Melissa knew that Boca was the right option for us based on our conversations but she didn’t push it and she gave us lots of different suburbs outside of Miami to consider as well.”
Melissa arranged town tours in the Miami area, but the couple fell in love with Boca Raton and quickly put in an offer on a home. In August 2022, they officially moved in.
Since then, Erika and her husband have welcomed a new baby to their family, opened two new Sushi by Bou restaurants in South Florida, and made tons of new friends and connections in their new hometown of Boca Raton.
Not only do Erika and Matt love their new South Florida lifestyle, they are crushing it in business and just opened the fourteenth location of Sushi by Bou — their intimate sushi omakase speakeasy experience.
Are you ready to make your move? Schedule a free Suburbs Strategy session now.