By Sindhu Satish
Sindhu Satish, originally from Mumbai, relocated to Luxembourg from Seattle in the US with her husband in June 2017. She is a social media specialist for a media and technology company.
We live in Clausen, a historic district in central Luxembourg. It offers the calmness of a residential neighbourhood and the bustle you would expect from an area with lots of great bars and restaurants.
We chose it because it is within walking distance of my husband’s office, five minutes by bus to the city centre and 15 minutes to Kirchberg, where I work.
It is also one of the most beautiful parts of the city, and close to other scenic areas: it is less than 10 minutes’ walk to Grund in the Alzette river valley and the Bock Casemates, a 17th-century network of city fortifications.
I prefer not to drive, but public transport is extremely good and inexpensive. There are several bus lines, clean trains and a cool, brand new tram line: its sleek design features different coloured glass in each section and seats with LED lighting.
Around 40 per cent of the country’s population are expatriates and I have found interacting with people from other countries to be an enriching experience. I work with colleagues from Hungary, France, Germany, Italy, Romania and Israel.
The mix brings many unique perspectives on solving problems. Outside work, my husband and I have made some wonderful friends from the US, Somalia and the UK.
Given the number of expats in the country, English is widely understood and spoken; you can get by in most places, from supermarkets to bars and government offices, with English and a smattering of French.
French is also useful for understanding official communications and bills, while some jobs require you to speak French or German.
Besides well-known sites such as LinkedIn and Monster, the Agency for the Development of Employment is a useful service for jobhunters.
Luxembourg’s landlocked location in north-west Europe means that the city of Luxembourg is only a 20-minute drive from the Belgian border, 25 minutes from France and 35 minutes from Germany. Meanwhile the capital’s airport is within 15 minutes of the city centre.
Some of my favourite cities for a day trip include Metz in France and Trier in Germany. Metz, an hour’s drive from Luxembourg, has beautiful architecture and an excellent variety of restaurants and bars.
Trier, 45 minutes away, is full of life in the summer. Try the food trucks and stalls in the centre, serving everything from churros to crêpes and hot dogs. The Porta Nigra, a Roman city gate, is worth exploring.
I also love Trier Imperial Baths, which is not only an excellent example of Roman architecture but gives an insight into how much care the Romans took of themselves.
Luxembourg’s hair salons employ some of the best stylists I have come across. Many are French or have been trained in Paris, and you notice the quality.
My favourite salon is Urban Chic , whose stylists are friendly, talented and offer excellent value. For example, they use very little heat and make an amazing hair mask with argan oil that helps my hair grow quickly while retaining its thickness.
What do you wish you’d known before you moved?
It takes two to three weeks to get a WiFi connection installed at home.
Photographs: Dreamstime; Dreamstime — Richard Winterberg, Reinhard Tiburzy, Joaquin Ossorio-Castillo