Finding an apartment for me and the HTB: Charlottesville vs London

Finding an apartment for me and the HTB: Charlottesville vs London

Written by Heather

Topics: Planning & Reflection

When Gavin and I began talking about marriage, we found ourselves planning the first few years together in the USA from the start. I had recently returned to the US from living in Australia for a year and wanted to be home for a while. Gavin had thought about living overseas before and welcomed an opportunity to live in Virginia. It’s much easier for him to work remotely than it is for me. And it will be easier for us to do the visa process in the USA (for him) and then England (for me) instead of the reverse.

Taken on Gav’s first visit to the USA last fall

Since returning from London three weeks ago, I have been on the hunt for the perfect apartment for me and Gav. I knew it could prove to be a challenging task as real estate in Charlottesville is expensive and we will be on a modest budget. After looking at a handful of places, we decided to pick the most exciting one for us — it’s in the middle of town and has the BEST kitchen of any complex I had viewed.

The kitchen SOLD us on this place. They have all been renovated lately and have shiny new appliances. And more counter space. And it’s open to the dining and living areas.


The model I was shown was decorated with orange and blue throughout. These colors are important to me as they are the colors of my alma mater, and Gav’s started acting like a C’ville local already by sporting orange and blue on a regular basis. We love the look of the model apartment so much that we’re considering using orange and blue in a couple of rooms in ours! And in case you’re not following me on Pinterest, orange and blue just might be used in our wedding O:-)


In the future, once Gav has permanent residency, we may move to England for a couple of years to spend time with his family and our friends and work on a visa for me. A beautiful kitchen will also be our top priority as we search for exciting and unique apartments in London. After years of visiting London, one day I’ll probably live there!

This may sound silly coming from a traveler, but it’s almost hard to imagine that in a few years time I could be living overseas again. Living in Australia was a dream come true, and I’m amazed and so appreciative that my future could hold more long-term overseas adventures — and not just in London, but around the world. Gav and I have often discussed that we want to experience destinations around the world like a local by taking our work on the road and living in a destination for a period of time before returning to a home base.

I especially want to return to Australia for a while and introduce Gavin to the place that captured my heart. I loved road tripping around the gorgeous country as much as I adored living and working in Sydney’s Inner West. The suburb of Petersham became my home away from home. I worked in Rozelle and visited Zumbo’s Rozelle and Balmain shops whenever possible. One day I want to show him all of the reasons that I could be happy to call Australia home.

I <3 Petersham


I named my blog “There’s No Place Like Oz” because I love Australia, and for me, there’s no place like it (sorry, Dorothy). But I also love Charlottesville and can’t wait to help Gavin feel like a local in my hometown.

16 Comments Comments For This Post I'd Love to Hear Yours!

  1. That is a really nice kitchen! I like that while someone is cooking, others can be sitting at the bar talking to the chef :)

    • Heather says:

      Exactly! As soon as Gav saw the photos of the three places I visited that day (and the places before it), he was sold on this set up

  2. Gav says:

    Love the article beautiful :-* So looking forward to being your husband and moving in with you :-)!

  3. Jaime says:

    Ahhh this makes me want to have an apt. & settle down. This is why I know I can’t travel forever. I want a small apt for my self and wanna decorate it and make it beautiful. Glad yall found the perfect apt. That kitchen is amazing. I hope one day I can visit and have a meal with yall. That would be amazing. I’m so excited to follow how your life has unraveled. It’s so weird, but so cool…lol!!!

    • Heather says:

      You’d be welcome any time!

      I think a home base is really important to me. We’re trying to figure out how to have one and still travel at least several months a year. For now, we just need to focus on the next couple of years :-) And decorating OUR place!

  4. Kyle says:

    That apartment is BEAUTIFUL! You are going to be able to make the most amazing maroons there!

    • Heather says:

      I have a few recipes I want to try, and our gal Deidre just sent me the ganache recipe she recently used :-)

  5. Carrie says:

    Nice place, Heather! I’m glad you found a beautiful apartment!

  6. Laura says:

    The kitchen is nice! I miss having my own kitchen (okay I have one here, but all of my kitchen stuff is in storage in my parents’ basement). I want to get back in to cooking and baking more. I’ve realized lately that my skills have gone downhill… and they weren’t that great to begin with! haha. Hope I get to come visit you in your fab new place! When do you move in?

    • Heather says:

      You’re more than welcome for a visit!! I’ll move in mid-August and Gav will join as soon as he can :-)

  7. Ali says:

    The visas sound overwhelming. I have a hard enough time planning what I’m going to do next month, and you’re already thinking of what you might be doing a few years from now! I wish I could do that a little better. Sounds pretty exciting though to maybe be living in London!

    • Heather says:

      We’re thinking about what we *might* do in the future, but we’re not planning it out :-) Gotta focus on the next year first :-)

  8. Sinéad says:

    Oh Heather, this kitchen is gorgeous! I am so excited for you guys right now! xx

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