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7 Reasons why we love living in Syracuse

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They’re an international family, but Esmir and Amina love Syracuse

Both Esmir and Amina were born outside the United States, and found themselves here in Syracuse for the opportunities it offered them. “Amina and I both agreed that Syracuse is a great place to start a business, or explore opportunities because of the affordability. Especially for someone like her, because she came from a big city [Toronto] that’s very competitive and cutthroat. Syracuse can be very welcoming in that sense.”

Esmir and his family immigrated to the United States when we was a young boy. Since, then he’s seen Syracuse change dramatically in the face of its own unique challenges and growth. The Onondaga Historical Association and its downtown museum offer engaging and elaborate information on this area.

From beach to snow, Brett loves the fall

Not everywhere in the world is lucky enough to have a legitimate, colorful autumn, but Central New York is a vacation destination for many people. The reds, the yellows, the oranges. My girlfriend Taylor and I moved to Syracuse over the summer from San Diego, and despite everyone warning us about the snow and long winters, no one told us how beautiful the fall would be. Driving down Comstock Avenue, passing Oakwood Cemetery, and seeing all the changing leaf colors is a comfort for the soul. We consider ourselves truly lucky to have moved to an area of the world that actually has seasons.

She loves Cracker Barrel, and Veldin loves local eateries

Veldin and his wife love finding a great spot around town to enjoy a bite. He says that even with the variety of food in this area, “My wife’s favorite place is still Cracker Barrel!” Can’t hardly blame the Miskic’s for loving a savory buffet, but they also say that Otro Cinco, located in the historic University Building on South Warren Street in downtown Syracuse, is one of their favorite spots. “The brunch menu is to die for!” according to Veldin. So next time you see or speak to Veldin, maybe you can ask him for a recommendation on where he’s eating lately, and what’s good around town.

Family, nature, and free college. Mirza Tihic loves Syracuse

Dr. Mirza Tihic is an Adjunct Professor at Syracuse University, a close friend and mentor to Esmir, and a great client with our company. His work doesn’t begin and end at the university, and in fact this article is a great read on the type of character in which Mirza exhibits. Mirza not only loves the Syracuse area, but his profession proves it. Mirza’s PhD from Syracuse is in Cultural Foundations of Education, so we thought to ask him, someone who has spent decades in Syracuse, what he loves about this area.

Syracuse is a great place for families, as it has numerous resources that are family oriented; state and city parks, ice skating, skiing, and modern YMCAs. Personally, I love it because nature is a 5-10 minute drive away. On top of that, Syracuse City School District has the Say Yes to Education program, enabling kids to attend Syracuse University for free. The cost of living is great compared to income and expenses in major metropolitan areas as well.

-Dr. Mirza Tihic, PhD, Syracuse University

Cooking with local flavor, Brett loves the CNY Regional Market

Fruits, vegetables, breads, organic dairy products. It’s all there! Depending on the day, my girlfriend Taylor and I will sometimes grab coffee, and maybe a breakfast sandwich, at the Saturday Farmer’s Market, and spend hours perusing all the different buildings. One of our favorite things to do is ask about the chickens from our favorite egg sellers. It’s always a welcoming environment, and there’s no way we could cook some of the delicious food we really like without the CNY Regional Market. We also love the organic goat cheese stand!

If you see people stopped, staring up at the buildings, maybe it’s because Esmir and Veldin love the city

Coming from the Western United States, I can tell you two things for sure that really aren’t common where I come from: (1) basements, and (2) historic brick buildings. Esmir and Veldin elaborate:

The buildings really motivate me. I’ll purposely drive through downtown and observe the brilliant Architecture and paintings on walls. The old style brick exposed buildings are still my favorite and remind of properties in Boston, MA. The city is the perfect size, traffic is low and the streets are kept clean.


To add to Veldin’s comment, I’ve also noticed that Syracuse has been growing the past few years, new buildings, roads, developments, malls, etc. It’s a lot different than it was 5 years ago, I’ll tell you that.

One thing I’ve always liked is that we’re pretty close to a lot of different places. In five hours you can reach Toronto, NYC, Philadelphia, Boston, Pittsburg, the Adirondacks – just an overall convenient spot.


To both Esmir and Veldin’s credit, Gov. Andrew Cuomo and a campaign named “CNY Rising,” approved $500 million for the Upstate Revitalization Initiative. The goal of the URI is to tax state tax payer money, drive down poverty, and create jobs. Although there are critics of government involvement and actual change (a New York Times article on Syracuse University, and New York State, graduate students, for example) the program began in 2015, and hopefully will help this area we all love so much.

Spring comes, summer waits, fall leaves, and winter longs

Syracuse, like any city, has had its share of ups and downs. The salt, the Erie Canal, the Underground Railroad, all these pillars of not only Syracuse history, but United States and international history, came before a booming manufacturing industry in the 1870s saw its biggest struggles the 20th Century.

When Taylor and I moved here from California this summer, we’d never heard anyone speak so proudly about where they’re from, let alone which grocery store at which they shop religiously. Esmir, and our whole team at Loft & Manor, have been an incredible blessing to us amidst a massive life change, and a new world away from both of our entire families. It’s not hard to see the genuine, honest person Esmir is, and why Loft & Manor is a business with honor.

We’ve also been very fortunate to not have many natural disasters or instances [here in Syracuse]. We’re a pretty safe place to be, other than the snow at times.


To quote a popular show, and one thing I’m sure we can all agree upon, “Winter is coming.”

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