Originally Posted by FidelCashflow
Lately I've been trying to grapple with this. I'm young, no commitments, and in a mobile profession - so sometimes I think I should just randomly go to another place for a few years.
Every 'dream city' topic does indeed need to specify 'for whom;' seems like even Monocle (the magazine that fanatically addresses the topic almost every month) fails to recognize this point. For us, I'd say the typical SF-er is 22-35, educated, single (slightly nerdy), and with an appreciation for history. A dream city for those guys is entirely different from a 30+ married/LTR dude, or a -22 undergrad student. Global cities with an interesting historical setting, desirable and plentiful females, communal/mingling areas (plazas, squares, walking streets), and proximity to other such cities should appeal much more to the SFer, and I'd put Paris and other Continental cities at the top of that list. I hesitate to put NYC or London there since they're too familiar and honestly they can be quite bleak if you're single and don't have connections. Tokyo or other Asian cities, though great, really only work if you speak the language.
If however you've secured a mate already, that suddenly opens up other cities where the social life may not be that great but there are other attractions like outdoors, weather, scenery, or an exotic local culture- Sydney, Seattle, Seoul, Rio, Singapore, Zurich, etc, and a host of smaller cities and towns.