A few days ago I embarked on a life changing event that occurred within the walls of my condo complex. I stepped foot into my gym for the second time since living here (I’ve been here for three years) and joined a “Body Combat” exercise class. I was absolutely blown away by this class! It was challenging, professional, very popular, and so much fun!
This realization has revolutionized my life! I can now exercise without leaving my condo and avoid sitting through the infamous Jakarta traffic!
This little find has once again solidified my decision to live in a condo rather than a stand alone house.
Sure, I would love to have my own house in Jakarta. They are beautifully big, spacious and have what most Australians treasure the most, a backyard. But in reality, my husband and I quickly decided that living in a house in Jakarta wasn’t the right decision for us, right now.
We were initially very tempted to move into a house here, after living in a tiny condo in Singapore, but having very young children, we prioritize EFFICIENCY, CONVENIENCE and SAFETY. Three very important factors, when living in Jakarta.
Condo living gives us all of these three factors. Our condo is secure, and we don’t have to worry about hiring our own personal security guard for our property. It is efficient because we don’t have to manage the maintenance of the property, such as gardening, pool cleaning, electricity power outages or fogging of mosquitoes, etc.
Condo living is convenient because we have access to almost everything we need without leaving our complex. This is a big positive for me because it’s extremely difficult and frustrating to go anywhere with three young children! I have access to a playground, swimming pools, a gym, a convenience shop, a restaurant, dry cleaners, hair dresser, massage, a doctor, recreational activities and classes for me and our kids. Having all of this right at my doorstep is priceless in Jakarta. One of the most frustrating things about living in Jakarta is traffic and if you can avoid it, your experience of the city improves drastically.
Another reason that we chose condo living for us, is because I am a social person. I’m not the loud, talk a lot, steal the party kind of person but I love to be around people. I love to go out for social gatherings, have someone to talk to, shop with, watch a movie with, drink and dinner with. If I stay at home with my children, I need to see other grown ups through out my day. This is something that I know about myself and it was imperative that I position myself to be around other people.
My children have countless friends to play with in our condo and I’m a part of a great group of friends where we have friday drinks by the pool and monthly Book Club meetings. If my husband is out for work at night, my condo BFF can pop in for a DVD and Martabak to keep me company; and one of the biggest advantages I’ve found is having a network to lean on. Recently a neighbor got very sick and needed to be rushed to hospital. She didn’t have a car available and her nanny had already left for the day. After a rushed call to me, she was in my car using my driver and on her way to the hospital, while I took care of her kids. A condo allows quick access to neighbors in cases of emergency.
Of course, there are drawbacks to condo living. Privacy and having your own space is limited. I can’t go for naked, late night swim in my own pool or walk outside with my kids without passing several neighbors and security guards. There are also a million rules to the complex that frustrate me tremendously. However for now, I’m happy with our decision and it is truly one of the reasons why I love living in Jakarta so much!
I’d love to hear from the other point of view. For those who are living in their own stand alone hom, what do you like and dislike about living in a house?