Miami Autism Dad

Living With Autism in Miami’s “Coral Gables” Neighborhood

Autism Friendly Coral Gables Florida
The Biltmore Hotel located in Coral Gables

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The Charms of Living in “The City Beautiful”

Hello, my future Miamians! Welcome to Coral Gables, Florida. Known locally as “the Gables,” Coral Gables is a stunning Miami gem. It is known for its Mediterranean-style architecture, verdant boulevards, and rich cultural mosaic. The City Beautiful blends old-world sophistication with a warm, welcoming ambiance.

It’s a city that appeals to those with discerning tastes who appreciate the finer things in life. For families with autistic children, finding a community that aligns with their unique needs and high standards is crucial. With its comprehensive amenities and services, Coral Gables is a compelling choice.

In this article, we will explore the advantages and challenges of residing in Coral Gables for families with autism. We’ll look at education, healthcare, community support, and recreational opportunities, juxtaposing the benefits with the potential drawbacks. The aim is to equip you with the insights to discern if Coral Gables aligns with your family’s aspirations and lifestyle. Let’s embark on this enlightening journey together.

Are you buying a home in South Florida? I’m a Realtor and Autism Dad specializing in helping autism families buy their dream homes. Email: or call/text 305-401-6224

Education Excellence, Shaping Future Leaders

Education is a cornerstone of the Coral Gables community. The city is home to prestigious institutions like Coral Gables Preparatory Academy and Gulliver Prep. Exemplary schools respected for their commitment to excellence. 

Gulliver Prep located in Coral Gables

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The schools provide programs designed for all students, including those with Autism Spectrum Disorder (ASD) and related disabilities. They work with families to create a positive learning space that helps each child achieve their best. This dedication to excellent education makes Coral Gables a leading choice for families who want the best for their children.

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Premier Healthcare and Therapeutic Services


University of Miami Miller School of Medicine located in Coral Gables


Coral Gables is home to a robust network of top-tier healthcare facilities and therapy centers. Each addresses a wide range of needs. The city’s strategic location near the University of Miami Miller School of Medicine offers families an added advantage.

This proximity to leading medical institutions ensures residents have access to cutting-edge research and treatments. Providing peace of mind that the best healthcare options are available.

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Embracing Community Spirit

Coral Gables Community Foundation of Coral Gables


One of the pillars of this supportive community is the Coral Gables Community Foundation. This respected organization hosts cherished events such as the Special Needs Family Picnic. This annual event brings together families for a day of joy, connection, and sharing of valuable resources. Thus reinforcing the city’s commitment to nurturing a supportive and inclusive environment.

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Recreational Riches, Unearth the Fun!

Life-size dinosaurs at Fairchild Tropical Garden located in Coral Gables


Coral Gables is a city that knows how to play. It offers a wealth of recreational activities that cater to diverse interests. Whether taking a refreshing swim in the historic Venetian Pool, exploring the lush landscapes of Fairchild Tropical Botanic Garden, or enjoying a round of golf at the Biltmore Golf Course, there’s something for everyone.

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Cultural Kaleidoscope

Actors’ Playhouse at the Miracle Theatre located in Coral Gables


Coral Gables is a city that celebrates culture. It’s home to various theaters and museums that enrich the community’s character. For instance, the Actors’ Playhouse at the Miracle Theatre is known for its engaging performances. It hosts sensory-friendly shows designed for children with Autism Spectrum Disorder (ASD) and related disabilities. 

The Lowe Art Museum at the University of Miami is another cultural gem. Known for its diverse art collection, the museum often organizes sensory-friendly tours and art programs. These initiatives create an inclusive environment where autistic individuals can engage with art without the stress of sensory overload.

These Coral Gables cultural institutions show the city’s commitment to accessibility and inclusivity, ensuring that autistic persons can enjoy enriching cultural experiences in a comfortable and accommodating setting.

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Living Your Best Life in Coral Gables


Shops at Merrick Park located in Coral Gables


Coral Gables is not just a city; it’s a lifestyle. Known for its elegance and sophistication, the city caters to those who appreciate the finer things in life. From high-end shopping districts such as Miracle Mile and Shops at Merrick Park, offering a selection of luxury brands, to gourmet dining options that feature world-class cuisine, Coral Gables is a city that knows how to indulge its residents. 

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Crème De La Crème Homes

The city’s real estate is impressive, with a range of magnificent homes and condos that offer stunning architecture and amenities. The city’s reputation for elegance, combined with its commitment to inclusivity and support for families with autism, makes it a unique and appealing choice for discerning families.

The Cocoplum neighborhood of Coral Gables

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Public Safety at Its Finest:

The Coral Gables Police Department

Coral Gables is served by the dedicated Coral Gables Police Department, which prioritizes the safety and well-being of its residents. The department is committed to maintaining a secure and peaceful environment, ensuring that families can enjoy the city with peace of mind. This reassuring backdrop and sense of security provide a comforting environment that enhances the quality of family life.

The Coral Gables Police Department unveiled a cruiser to spread autism awareness

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The Coral Gables Fire Department

In addition to the police department, the Coral Gables Fire Department is a vital part of the city’s commitment to public safety. This department is devoted to ensuring the safety of residents and their properties, providing swift and professional responses to emergencies. The presence of this dedicated fire department contributes to the overall sense of security and well-being in Coral Gables, making it an even more appealing choice for families.

Coral Gables Fire Department

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Crime Watch Program

Coral Gables is also home to an active Crime Watch program, a community-led initiative that works in close collaboration with the Coral Gables Police Department. This program encourages residents to be vigilant and report any suspicious activities, contributing to the overall safety and security of the neighborhood. The Coral Gables Crime Watch serves as an extra layer of protection, fostering a strong sense of community and shared responsibility for public safety. This initiative further underscores Coral Gables’ commitment to creating a secure and peaceful environment for all residents, including families with children on the autism spectrum.

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CLICKABLE LINK: Coral Gables FL Crime Rate 1999-2018

Coral Gables is a city that values the safety and security of its residents. The city’s crime rate is consistently lower than the national average, providing peace of mind for families. 

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Planning Ahead, the Pros and Cons

While Coral Gables is an Autism-Friendly city that offers a wealth of benefits, it’s also essential to consider certain aspects that may require additional planning for families with autism.

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The High Cost of Living Your Best Life

Coral Gables is synonymous with a refined lifestyle and an elevated cost of living. For families requiring services and support for autism, this could necessitate careful financial planning.

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Public Transportation, Moving Around the City


Free Trolley Service in Coral Gables


While Coral Gables is a city that prides itself on its walkability, public transportation options may be less extensive. For families who rely on public transport, this may necessitate additional planning when accessing certain services and amenities.

Luckily, Coral Gables offers a fantastic solution: the free trolley service. This trolley runs through the heart of the city, providing a convenient and cost-effective way to travel. It’s not just a mode of transportation; it’s an experience that adds to the city’s unique character.

For families like yours, the trolley can be a great option. Here’s why:

1. Avoiding Traffic: By using the trolley, you can bypass heavy traffic, making your journey smoother and more enjoyable.

2. Sensory Considerations: The trolley offers a less crowded and quieter alternative to buses or cars, catering to the needs of those who may be sensitive to noise.

3. Strategic Travel Times: Planning your travel around the trolley’s schedule can help you avoid peak hours, ensuring a more comfortable ride.

4. Exploring the City: The trolley route covers many of Coral Gables’ attractions, allowing you to explore the city without the stress of driving.

The free trolley in Coral Gables is more than just a transportation option; it’s a thoughtful consideration for families, particularly those with special needs. By embracing this unique feature of the city, you can navigate Coral Gables with ease and confidence, making your family outings more enjoyable and stress-free. So next time you’re in town, hop on the trolley and let it take you on a delightful journey through Coral Gables.

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The Weather in Coral Gables

Hurricane Irma leaves scattered debris in downtown Coral Gables


Located in South Florida, Coral Gables is in a region susceptible to hurricanes. Preparing for and managing such natural events can be particularly challenging for families with autistic children, who may find changes in routine and environment distressing. However, these challenges can be managed with proper planning and preparation.

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Weighing the Pros and Cons of Living in Coral Gables

Coral Gables is an Autism-Friendly city that offers an array of benefits. Still, families with autism must balance these advantages against the considerations. Each family’s situation and needs are unique, and what may be a significant factor for one family might be less so for another. Being well-informed and considering all aspects of life in Coral Gables is vital to making the best decision for your family.

Ultimately, deciding to reside in Coral Gables or any community is deeply personal. What makes a house a home is the sense of belonging it offers. For families with autism, finding a community that embraces and supports them is invaluable. As you balance the advantages and considerations, remember that the happiness and well-being of your family members with autism are critical factors.


Embracing the Supportive Community: Groups, Organizations, and Health Services

Social services directories for persons with disabilities

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Autism Speaks: A national organization with local resources that aims to increase understanding and acceptance of people with ASD through advocacy and support.

Autism Speaks Miami: A chapter of the national organization that advocates for the needs of individuals with autism and their families.

Best Behavioral Solutions: A therapy center providing comprehensive services, including Applied Behavior Analysis (ABA), Occupational Therapy (OT), and Speech-Language Therapy to children, adolescents, and adults.

Department of Exceptional Student Education: The Department of Exceptional Student Education (ESE) in Miami-Dade County is dedicated to providing high-quality educational services to students with Autism Spectrum Disorder (ASD) and related disabilities.

Easterseals South Florida: Offers a range of services, including early intervention, education, and therapy.

Florida Diagnostic & Learning Resources System (FDLRS)The Florida Diagnostic & Learning Resources System (FDLRS) is a comprehensive, statewide network of diagnostic, instructional, and technical support services that assist families and their children with exceptional learning needs.

Institute for Child and Family Health (ICFH): A private, not-for-profit organization providing health, behavioral health, educational, and prevention services to the children, adolescents, and families of Miami-Dade County for over 60 years.

Jewish Community Services of South Florida: Offers programs and services for persons with disabilities, including Autism Spectrum Disorder (ASD) and related disabilities.

McKay K-12 Scholarship Programs: For Students with Disabilities Program provides scholarships for eligible students with disabilities to attend an eligible public or private school of their choice.

Miami-Dade Disability Service Programs: Miami-Dade Disability Service Programs are a range of initiatives provided by Miami-Dade County to support residents with disabilities, including those with Autism Spectrum Disorder (ASD) and related disabilities. Services include vocational training, employment assistance, recreational programs, and accessibility improvements.

Miami-Dade Parks: Miami-Dade Parks offers a variety of aquatic activities and facilities that are inclusive and accessible to children and adults with disabilities. The parks provide adaptive swimming lessons, water therapy sessions, and other programs tailored to the needs of people with disabilities.

Miami-Dade Public Library System: The Miami-Dade Public Library System, a network of libraries spread across Miami-Dade County, has been recognized as an Autism Friendly Partner by the University of Miami-Nova Southeastern University Center for Autism & Related Disabilities.

Nicklaus Children’s Dan Marino Outpatient Center: This center offers comprehensive evaluation, treatment, and intervention services for children with neurodevelopmental conditions, including autism, Down syndrome, and other intellectual disabilities.

Nicklaus Children’s Hospital: Founded in 1950 by Variety Clubs International, Nicklaus Children’s Hospital is South Florida’s only licensed hospital exclusively for children, with approximately 800 attending physicians, including more than 500 pediatric sub-specialists.

Parent to Parent of MiamiA community parent resource center for families of children with disabilities. 

The Children’s Trust: The Children’s Trust prioritizes investments in high-quality early care and education, after-school and summer programs, health and wellness services, and programs that support children with unique needs, including those with autism and related disabilities.

The Friendship Circle: A non-profit organization that provides programs and support to the families of autistic persons.

The WOW Center: Offers support and programs for adults with developmental disabilities.

The University of Miami Miller School of Medicine: The University of Miami Miller School of Medicine is a renowned institution known for its excellence in research, patient care, and education.

UM-NSU CARD: The UM-NSU CARD (University of Miami-Nova Southeastern University Center for Autism & Related Disabilities) is a state-funded resource and support program dedicated to improving the lives of people with autism and related disabilities.

Are you buying a home in South Florida? I’m a Realtor and Autism Dad specializing in helping autism families buy their dream homes. Email: or call/text 305-401-6224


Let’s work together to choose the best possible home for our family.


Autism-friendly residential areas served in South Florida:

Miami, Miami Beach, Coral Gables, Brickell, Brickell Key, Bay Point, South Miami, Golden Beach, North Miami, Miami Shores, Biscayne Park, Surfside, El Portal, Pinecrest, Sunny Isles Beach, Miami Lakes, Palmetto Bay, Doral, Cutler Bay, Indian Creek Village, North Bay Village, Bay Harbor Islands, Bal Harbour, Aventura, Key Biscayne, Venetian Islands, Fisher Island, Sunset Islands, Hibiscus Island, Palm Island, Star Island, Indian Creek Island, La Gorce, Belle Meade Island, Biscayne Point, Normandy Isles, Normandy Shores.

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