Get to know…Mandarin

Spanish moss drapes from the ancient oaks in a part of Jacksonville once called a "tropical paradise" by famed author Harriet Beecher Stowe. Mandarin's farmlands are gone, and in their place are homes, large and small with big back yards and perhaps, a view of one of the many tributaries that feed the St. Johns River. Your Mandarin apartment is located a short drive south of Downtown Jacksonville, on the east side of the St. Johns. Mandarin is home to a growing white-collar class, families and young professionals, who don't mind the commute to work knowing their neighborhood is one of the best in town.

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With its proximity to several major highways and interstates, Mandarin is easy to leave for work and even easier to come back home to your apartment. Fed by the commercial real estate along San Jose Boulevard and I-295, Mandarin is a hub for businesses looking to serve the thousands that rent apartments and work in Mandarin and the surrounding areas. Schools in the area perform well beyond average. Because of the number of small creeks and tributaries, water sports are popular in this southern section of town. The upscale neighborhoods also attract an upscale crowd. Mandarin is quiet, family-oriented and crime is relatively low.

Heads Up

Mandarin tends to be more costly than other parts of town. Property values are higher than nearby sections of the Southside. Due to its popularity with families, especially those new to the area, Mandarin has seen an increase in congestion. Despite the six lanes of San Jose Boulevard, four lanes of Philips Highway and Interstate 295, traffic backups near your apartment may be frequent.

Area Attractions

The St. Johns River, Julington Creek and Goodbys Creek are popular for maritime fanatics. Mandarin is jam-packed with history of the area before Jacksonville became the sprawling metropolis it is now. Leave your apartment to take a drive down Mandarin Road for a glimpse of expansive historic waterfront mansions, while driving under massive oak trees.

If you're tired of staying in and cooking in your apartment's kitchen, let someone else do it for you! Take the family to dinner at Clark's Fish Camp one of the most popular neighborhood attractions. While you wait for your scallops on the half shell, or a platter of chargrilled crocodile, take a tour amongst what's considered one of the largest personal collections of … taxidermy! (And be thankful it's not your roommate's collection!) Stop in at Kanki Japanese Steakhouse to have your meal prepared tableside. 3 Sisters will help cure your sweet tooth with cupcakes of every flavor. (If you like to sing for your supper….and who doesn't?) Harmonious Monks is a must-do! The restaurant/karaoke bar is popular every day of the week. Maybe, just maybe you'll go platinum with your pipes! (Keep practicing in the shower!)

These are the opinions of writers and not the opinions of or any of our advertising partners.