What is your housing like? What are typical housing sizes, locations, and commute times for expatriates?
Downtown has lots of nice apartments within walking distance of shops and parks. Further out there are suburbs where families tend to live. They are close to the international school, but not necessarily close to bars, cafes, and most restaurants. - Jun 2020
We had a larger house than most due to husband's position, so our situation was not typical. Typical housing is either walled houses in the outer part of Tbilisi near the embassy (Dighomi 7, 8. 9) or townhouses near QSI School (Zurgovani) or apartments in Vake, more trendy and closer to the center of town (but more polluted from car exhaust). Most commutes would be 10-40 minutes in traffic (traffic is heavy during evening rush hour). - Jan 2019
There are three housing areas - Dighomi, Zurgovani, and Vake. We live in an apartment in Vake (we don't have kids or pets). The apartment is sort of a weird layout (most of the Vake apartments are), but it's really nice--three bedrooms, two balconies (we had a phenomenal view for NYE fireworks). We didn't have enough storage space initially, but the embassy asked our landlord to built some large wardrobes in the three rooms.
The embassy community in Vake is pretty spread out, and most of the people here don't have kids. The commute is about 15-20 minutes in the morning and 30-40 minutes in the evening (although it's more like 25 minutes in the summer time). My husband really doesn't like the commute, but we both really love the location. We're able to walk to Vake Park, the grocery store, a ton of fruit/veggie markets, and downtown. - Apr 2017
We chose to live in Digomi, the suburbs north of Tbilisi and close to the Embassy location. Our house was very large - about 3,000 or 3,500 sq ft. It was in a neighborhood where all of the houses were walled off and the street were not paved (and therefore muddy and rutted most of the year). Our house had several fruit trees and grass. We commuted about 6 or 7 minutes to the embassy. Most families lived in houses near the Embassy and singles and married couples with no kids often opted for living downtown. For those who lived downtown, it is apartment living, it would be smaller - maybe 1500 to 2000 sq ft and you'd have a much longer commute depending on traffic - 30 min up to an hour. - Feb 2017
Vake- Downtown, smaller apartments. Commutes can be bad, as traffic can back up. Some people commute 45 minutes. Embassy is north of downtown about 6-7km, so Dighomi is better for families, bigger homes with private yards and dedicated generators. Our commute from Dighomi is < 10 minutes. Zurgovani (known as the American Village) is a gated community fairly close to the Embassy, primarily housing American diplomats.Homes in Zurgovani are townhome style, and is very close to the International school (QSI) - May 2016
The Embassy dealt with four different neighborhoods. Downtown, Saburtalo, Digomi, and Zurgovani. Singles and couples with no kids typically choose the first two and families were in the later two. Most we're very pleased with their housing. Commute times depending on the location weren't more than 15 to 20 minutes to as little as 5 minutes depending on which neighborhood you got. Shorter commutes for some meant longer trips to the city center. - Jul 2014
Embassy employees live in four neighborhoods: Zurgovani (cookie-cutter Western-style houses near the embassy--good for families with kids but dismally boring for singles), Digomi (large houseswith poor roads near the embassy; the quality of homes here varies), Saburtalo (townhouses and single family homes closer to the city center; popular with singles with pets and couples), Vake (downtown living in high rise apartment buildings; generally the top choice of singles and active couples. Many things are walking distance from Vake (restaurants, parks, etc). Commute times are 5 mins from Zurgovani or Digomi; 20-30 mins from Saburtalo, and 30-40 mins from Vake; traffic is often several to the latter two neighborhoods in the evening and a bit less so in the mornings as Georgians tend to go to work quite late. - Oct 2011
Embassy housing in four areas - There are townhouses, single family homes and apartments. All have backup generators except for apartments. - Sep 2011
Housing is of low standard compared to Yerevan and Baku and any place in Latin America. I live in Vake, the most prestigious district of Tbilisi, but there is nothing prestigious about it. Georgians are very bad neighbors in terms of hygienic standards. I have smelled urine in the lift on a couple of occasions, and graffiti is all over my building, inside and out. It looks like a crack-house apartment building in DC, and yet the most affluent Georgians live here. - Apr 2011
Single-family homes with yards in Zurgovani and Digomi. In Zurgovani, you are living with your co-workers. Not a lot of privacy. Digomi is nice, but streets are bad and really muddy when it rains. Digomi and Zurgovani are within 5 minutes of the US Embassy. Saburtalo has townhome style and single houses. Is typical city housing, but if you love being in the city it's perfect. In Vake you will live in an apartment. It's the closest to living in a European city. Lots of great restraunts, park, close to the Old City. - Jun 2010
Sabartalo took about 20-40 minutes to get to the embassy, and 10-20 minutes to get to most parts downtown. - Oct 2009
We lived near the Embassy and so had a wonderful, enviable commute of about five minutes that we will never see again. Sigh. - Jan 2009