What is your housing like? What are typical housing sizes, locations, and commute times for expatriates?

The U.S. Consulate offers two housing options, apartments in a high-rise luxury apartment building, and townhouses in a gated community shared with other expats and Indonesians. Both have advantages. The apartments are large, have a nice view, and are located on a compound with a good swimming pool, gymnasium, and sauna, all of which are free to use by residents. There is also a large sward with a small playground. There are two good restaurants on-site, and several malls, grocery stores, and other restaurants are located within walking distance (should you want to do such a crazy thing) or a short taxi drive. Depending on traffic the commute to the Consulate is usually 15-30 minutes. The townhouses are larger than the apartments, have tiny private yards, and are located next to the school attended by Consulate children. Townhouses have better amenities than the apartments including dishwashers, extra freezer(s), and capacious servants quarters. When school is not in session residents are able to use the school pool, track, etc. Restaurants and shopping are further away than in the apartments. One advantage of the townhouses is that they are located a short walk from the Consulate. By car it takes less than two minutes to get to work. Many residents use the Consulate gym which is well equipped, though not as nice at the one in the Apartments. Where you get assigned is mostly a function of availability, but in general families with school age children are assigned to the townhouses while singles, couples, and families with young children are assigned to the apartments. - Nov 2018


Suburban row houses, but large. High rise apartments. In the suburbs, commute times are short. Any commute that takes you into any part of the city during the day can be challenging. Average maybe 5 or 10 miles per hour. Poor road design with several bottlenecks throughout town. - Oct 2015


Housing for the U.S. Consulate is mixed between single-family houses and a high-rise apartment building. The houses are a 5 minute drive to the Consulate and the apartments are about a 20 minute drive. The apartments are convenient to more shopping than the houses, and are pretty well-furnished. The houses are on a quiet, gated street, and neighborhood kids enjoy a lot of freedom to run & play. - Apr 2015


Many expats reside in spacious shared-wall, town-house style homes in gated communities with private security services. For those who work and live in the new development of Citraland (the Little Singapore of Surabaya), commutes are minimal to nil. - Oct 2012


Houses are nice especially the ones near the new consulate. - May 2012


Housing is excellent. A new Consulate is currently under construction in a high-income suburb, so housing stock is slowly shifting closer to where the new Consulate will be. Housing is divided between huge serviced apartments in a beautiful luxury high-rise(includes cable TV, a swimming pool, and membership in an on-site health club; internet service is available for an additional fee), and nice large homes with a small yard. - Oct 2010


Most expats live in gated communities with single-family homes and small yards, some live in luxury high-rise apartment buildings. - Aug 2009


New book from Talesmag! Honest and courageous stories of life abroad with special needs.

Read More