Seminole is a small city located in Pinellas County. Stretching only a little over 5 and a half square miles, if you aren’t familiar with the area, it’s easy for this city to get dwarfed by the other popular larger cities such as Clearwater and St Petersburg.
Incorporated in 1970, Seminole has transitioned from a sleepy town for retirees to an in-demand area fueled by people of all ages wanting to be centrally located, near the beach and close to amenities and activities.
So if Seminole is on your mind, or you are considering moving to Seminole, Fl, here are 15 reasons why you’ll be thankful you did!
1. Seminole City Center
Originally known as Seminole Mall, the previous indoor mall featured a variety of stores including at one point a K-Mart and a Publix. Some may say that the city of Seminole during that time had lost touch with the people that lived there with a lack of updates and a direction that was only catering to an older demographic (Freedom Square assisted living facility being located behind the mall).
When the development plans were announced for this new mall to replace it’s predecessor (which had been largely abandoned by many stores and had become a ghost mall), there began an immediate shift to revitalize the community. With new jobs coming in as well as modern stores and amenities, more people started to consider Seminole as a great city to establish roots. There was even a non-functioning water tower that was tore down and replaced with a park due to increased demand of the local living space.
So now that you know a little of the history of Seminole City Center and the area, what makes this mall so great? As of early 2018 the mall is still adding in stores. Featuring a wide variety of options including a Miller’s Ale House, Earthfare, Chipotle, Studio Movie Grill, Tuesday Morning, Ulta Beauty, LA Fitness and much more! (Store Listings Here).
With the variety of stores and the movie theater here, it’s creating an increased demand to travel into Seminole, Fl. This is great for the local economy, bringing in bigger names, entertainment, events, and commerce.
There’s also stores located across from the mall including a Publix and Boston Market on 113th, and many other options on Park Blvd. Living in a small city where you no longer have to make long drives to other malls to access modern conveniences is a luxury.
I was fortunate enough to buy my home near the mall shortly after it opened and I’m happy to be one of the many residents that frequents it. Chipotle again for the third night in a row? Don’t mind if I do.
Seminole City Park – One of my favorite parks to take my family! The park is clean, large and features a great playground, picnic shelters for eating or organizing, a seating area for events and plenty of trees and shade. With a beautiful view of the water, ducks are typically walking around and there are plenty of events that are held here. The local favorite is called Music In The Park. It’s an annual music festival featuring local artists and is definitely worthy of checking out if you live in the area.
Boca Ciega Millennium Park – Featuring a dog park, an observation tower overlooking the intercoastal, picnic shelters, and even a spot to launch kayaks, this is a great park to check out. Ideal for walking, there are many winding paths to take including a boardwalk.
Lake Seminole Park – With multi-use trails for walking, running, and biking, this park offers a variety of activities. With a boat ramp to launch into the water, they offer plenty of choices. The water view is stunning, you can even rent a bike or small boat, and it’s also a great place to bring kids.
Seminole, FL is a great place for families. With low crime rates, great schools and plenty of options for entertainment, Seminole has a charm about it. Bauder Elementary is one of the most positively rated public schools in the area, and depending on where you live in Seminole, you may find yourself zoned for it.
My wife and I being parents knew we wanted to be in a safe area that had plenty of amenities and Seminole was at the top of our list when deciding to buy our home.
Let’s jump into some of the local family-friendly restaurants in the area:
Miller’s Ale House – Located on 113th Street, this restaurant chain was a welcome addition to Seminole. Showcased in front of Seminole City Center, the restaurant/bar is very popular featuring a large menu with a wide variety of foods (check out their chicken zingers) and beer.
Two Cousins Pizzeria – Looking for a warm, friendly local pizza place? Check out Two Cousins – famous for their lasagna and NY Style pizza, they’ve been around since 1981.
Memphis Style BBQ – My personal favorite place for BBQ in the State Of Florida (I even wrote an article about it here). This place is absolutely out of this world! Check out their bourbon bbq baked beans!!!
Mamas Kitchen – A local favorite, this place is known for their generous portions and variety of breakfast choices. If you are looking for great service and food, check them out!
Brooklyn Pizza Company – People get very protective over their pizza choices and it’s the same with this establishment. With a huge fanbase, some describe their pizza as “absolutely amazing” and “the best pizza in Florida” – give them a try and see where they stack up on your list!
Zom Hee Chinese Restaurant – Described as a local hidden secret, they’ve been serving the community for decades with authentic Chinese food.
Trip’s Diner – A local chain with 3 locations, the one located on Park Blvd is always friendly and offers delicious breakfast choices. On the weekends this place gets packed due to it’s popularity but they also have options for delivery through Bite Squad.
Know of a local favorite that wasn’t mentioned? Send us a message and we’ll check it out!
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As a realtor who studies the market everyday I see a lot of value in Seminole in the present and in the long-run. I bought my home here in early 2017 and I believe strongly over the coming years those that choose to purchase their homes here will see stronger than average appreciation due to the proximity near the beach and the growth of Seminole City Center.
Let’s go back in time and look at the history of the housing market in Seminole, FL.
Just to put that in perspective, if you are saving up to buy a home for around $200,000 and wait an entire year with that appreciation rate… that same home will be $222,800 the next year. That’s a very important question we ask prospective home buyers is to consider what makes the most economic sense. Chris and I have a pressure-free approach when representing our clients (no one likes someone that is just trying make a sale). Because we are very active in studying the market and writing about it, we believe the data is an invaluable resource that our clients can use to make that crucial decision if now is the right time for them.
Another thing to know is most homes in Seminole, FL were built in the 1950s and 1960s, although there are some new constructions that pop up from time to time as well.
If you are weighing your options and you want to get our expertise on the pros and cons of buying in the Seminole market – Schedule a consultation here.
I know people that live in St Pete that would love parts of Clearwater Beach, but because it feels so far away (even though it really isn’t), they tend to stick in their city and rarely venture out.
Although Seminole does have some amenities, most of the time when you go to events and have the urge to explore you’ll be venturing outside the city limits. If you plan on living here and are looking to get the full experience, you’ll want to have transportation. It’s also nice being centrally located to keep fares down when you have to uber to get a night on the town.
There’s 3 main roads you’ll be using a lot living in Seminole:
Park Boulevard – If you take this road west it will lead you to to Gulf Boulevard and the beaches. If you take it east it will eventually turn into Gandy Boulevard which leads to the Gandy Bridge crossing into Tampa (Hillsborough County).
102nd Avenue – If you head west on 102nd, it almost reaches the beach but actually leads you into a neighborhood called Imperial Point unless you go North On Hamlin Boulevard towards Walsingham Road. Driving east on 102nd eventually turns into Brian Dairy road and then 118th avenue where you will have options to take I-275 or heads towards Roosevelt Boulevard which continues East.
Seminole Boulevard – Driving north on Seminole (Alt 19) eventually turns into Missouri Avenue which will place you in the heart of Clearwater. If you take the Boulevard south you’ll pass through the area known as Bay Pines turning into Bay Pines boulevard changing to Tyrone Boulevard and leading to 5th Avenue which takes you towards downtown St Petersburg.
One way to look at this is you can’t really compare counties that border the sea with counties that are more centrally located in Florida. There’s a huge difference the coastal winds make on our temperature and it’s one of the under-realized advantages of our area.
Here’s a look into what the weather was like for 2017 in Seminole, Florida.
|Month||Temp. (min)||Temp. (max)||Temp. (avg)||Precipitation|
As you can see the average temperature was in the 60’s for 5 months of the year and the low to mid 80’s for the hottest parts of the year. During the summertime is when we get most of our rain, but throughout most of the year rain is pretty rare with an occasional shower here and there. The Tampa Bay area in general is known for having many clear days and lots of sunshine so it’s something you get used to.
7. Close To The Beach
It’s not uncommon to see people riding their bikes or running to the beach. There are multiple places to park depending on which beach you are going to. Many of them have stations where you can pay and print out a ticket depending on the hours you think you’ll be there. I will say that beach parking is very strict in the area, so be careful when it comes to signs or parking in areas you aren’t supposed to because you’ll likely be towed or fined.
So what does the walkability in Seminole really look like? It completely depends on your objective. If you want to minimize dealing with traffic and being in an urban environment, Pinellas Trail runs through the heart of city and is the preferred route of many runners and bikers that live in and out of the city.
If you’re looking to make your way to a local restaurant or grocery store, if you live along 113th Street which passes by many popular stores including Seminole City Center, you’ll have access to sidewalks to keep you free from having to worry about traffic.
As you get to know Seminole, you’ll discover that there are sidewalks through most of the city and even many neighborhoods as well.
When it comes to those that value walkability, Seminole is a great option.
I’ll go over some of the most popular events that happen in our city (in no particular order):
Music In The Park – As mentioned earlier in our post, this annual music festival takes place in Seminole City Park. The musicians that participate always blow away the crowds.
Field Of Screams – Looking for a family-friendly way to enjoy Halloween? The annual Field Of Screams events brings together 100s of people that participate in Trick-or-Treating, Costume Contests, Bounce Houses and a whole lot more!
Holiday Craft Fair – Ready to start your shopping for the holidays? This is a great way to support local artists and vendors that showcase many homemade crafts available for sale.
Art In The Park – Every year you can check out the Art in the Park event in Seminole City Park. Local artists and crafters show off their pieces to the local community. Pinellas County in general is very supportive of the local art communities, so this is another way to appreciate where we live. The event is free to participate in and you have the ability to purchase many of the art pieces displayed as a souvenir.
Winter Fest – Yeah we live in Florida but who says we can’t experience a little winter spirit? Winter Fest kicks off the celebration with a tree lighting and features a variety of appearances and activities including Santa himself, train rides, snow hills and food vendors to bring in the holiday season.
POW WOW Festival & Parade – This festival & parade has been going on for over 50 years and is the oldest and largest event in the city. The Seminole Recreation Center hosts the event and it’s a very impressive gathering of the local community. With fireworks, carnival rides, a parade and lots of entertainment, many locals have been attending since they were young kids.
If you’re looking to meet other people, we are also the founders of three social groups: The Pinellas County Meetup with almost 3000 members, The Pinellas County Young Professionals, and The Pinellas County Parents Social Club. We host events all over the county so if you have something you’d like to participate in, feel free to reach out to us!
10. Sports & Recreation
As an area that caters to a lot of families, there are plenty of options for sports and recreation. In this reason we’ll be focusing on options that are not directly tied to local schools as many of the schools have fields and options but typically are only available to the students or their opponents during games.
The Seminole Recreation Center is the most popular spot for sports options for both youth and adults. Interested in Basketball, Pickleball, Archery, Flag Football, Volleyball, and Soccer? These are just some of the activities that have been offered by the local recreation center.
The Seminole Youth Athletic Association is another option as a non-profit corporation that offers several programs to Seminole residents. Football (Seminole Chiefs), Cheerleading, Baseball (Seminole Little League), Soft Ball, Tee Ball, and Soccer (Santos) are the programs they are known for.
Looking for places to play tennis? The two most popular spots are Seminole Lake Tennis Center and Tennis Club Park. We’ve hosted several meetups at Tennis Club Park which has 4 courts located on 113th and is free to access for residents and their guests.
This minimized Seminole’s chances of flooding and damages when other areas could have been at risk of being underwater if the hurricane had been bad enough. Also when it comes to flood insurance, most parts of Seminole are not in a flood zone unless they are located near a lake or the intracoastal waterway.
This makes the area even more desirable because you get to live a few minutes from the beach while keeping a healthy elevation in the event of disaster. If you are looking in a specific area in Seminole we can help you identify if it’s listed in any of the flood zones using the FEMA flood map and referring to our local insurance contacts.
In the event you end up buying in Seminole and are in a questionable zone, you can use what’s called an elevation certificate to make a final determination whether you would be subject to flood insurance.
12. Pinellas Trail
The Pinellas Trail officially known as the Fred Marquis Pinellas Trail is a 38 mile path from St Petersburg to Tarpon Springs. It is by far the most popular running and biking trail in the entire county because it is cleverly designed to go through cities where you can pull off the trail and enjoy the amenities.
The trail runs through the heart of Seminole, FL passing through many well-known streets including Seminole Boulevard, 113th Street, Park Boulevard, 86th Avenue, and 102nd Avenue.
What makes the Pinellas Trail so special in Seminole is the location. Seminole is centrally located so it gives you the advantage to be able to enjoy most of the cities of Pinellas County by riding a bike if you choose to. Both St Petersburg and Dunedin are within 15 miles of Seminole so at an average cycling speed of 10-15 mph you can reach either city in an hour to hour and a half on bike.
Not bad at all… just another reason we love Seminole!
Seminole, FL is very friendly towards boaters. That’s right… you don’t have to be on the beach to enjoy the water in this city. The 3 most well known boat ramps in the city are: Lake Seminole Boat Ramp, Bay Pines Boat Ramp, and the boat ramp located at War Veterans Memorial Park.
If you take off from Bay Pines or War Veterans Memorial Park, you’ll find yourself in the intracoastal which is the water that separates the main peninsula from gulf boulevard and the beach.
Boating in the intracoastal is something I’d recommend adding to your bucket list. You’ll see beautiful homes, wild life, and you’ll enjoy the tranquility of the water without the rush of people that flock to the beach.
A very popular motto and bumper sticker you’ll see on cars here is “Salt Life.” What it means may be different based on the person, but it is most definitely viewed by some as a style of life.
Are you ready to start your Salt Life in Seminole, Florida? Reach out to us and let’s talk about your goals and dreams and how we can help!
Seminole is really an open community to all. From families to young professionals to retirees, it doesn’t matter your background or where you come from, you can find a home in this city.
So we’ve gone over many of the events and choices you’ll have when living in Seminole, so for this section I’d like to share a personal story that I feel hits home on how powerful the community is here.
I purchased my house in April of 2017 located in the heart of Seminole. As it usually is for most home owners, there tends to be a lot of work at the beginning as you turn a house into a home.
During that time, my wife and I were painting, furnishing the home, dealing with any small repairs and trying to get settled in. Although we waved at a few of our neighbors we didn’t really know them.
When Hurricane Irma was projected to hit our area in late 2017 that changed everything. Although that was one of the most difficult events this area has had in decades, it really brought out the community in our neighborhood.
There were many times we would speak to our neighbors, offer help and share resources as we prepared for this event. We ultimately decided to evacuate but for our neighbors who stayed, they looked after our home and showed the power of this small community.
As I’ve become more involved with the events and businesses that make up Seminole, I can say that this area feels like one large family. I encourage you to get to know your neighbors if you end up living here, as Mr. Rogers says: “Won’t you be my neighbor?”
Yes, the majority of tourists that come to this area are here for the beach. Something we might take for granted is a unique vacation opportunity for people from different parts of the country and world.
But why Seminole? We don’t have the beach in our city. True… but it’s 5 minutes down the road and when you live an area where beach prices can fluctuate drastically depending on where you’re staying, some tourists don’t mind renting a home and making a small trek to the beach.
There’s plenty of Airbnb rooms and homes for rent in Seminole, Florida. Although if you are thinking of offering daily or weekly rentals with your own home in Seminole, we would advise getting familiar with local laws and ordinances as you could be breaking the law.
Tourism plays a healthy part in keeping Seminole viable. We have a lot of jobs in the service industry here and many people who work outside the service industry will usually be commuting for work to other cities such as Tampa and St Petersburg.
With all that being said, wouldn’t you love to live in an area where people only come to on vacation?
As you discover Pinellas County, it’s our goal to share with you that each city has their own unique benefits and advantages. Seminole, FL is home for me and likely will be for sometime. I hope this article was helpful to you and if you feel like you still have some unanswered questions reach out to us.
You can contact us at firstname.lastname@example.org or you can reach me via text or phone call at my #727-777-3797. As you may have picked up from our website, both Chris and I do real estate for a living. If you’re ready to get started, or have anything you think may be holding you back, don’t hesitate to connect with us.
Are you looking to learn more about real estate in Seminole, Florida? Here are a few of our popular blogs and pages that might be helpful to you!
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(all data current as of 11/29/2020)
Listing information deemed reliable but not guaranteed. Read full disclaimer.