Love Where You Live: Why I Love Living In Pinecrest


After Hurricane Andrew left a destructive wrath of fury over South Florida including our home, we found ourselves living in the Grand Hotel Downtown (no longer there) for three months. As Miami began to rebuild, my family bought a home in 1992, in what we now know as the Village of Pinecrest. That same year was supposed to be the start of my freshman year at Gulliver Prep, right up the street. Circling back and living here today with my family feels familiar yet different. As I bike through the shady streets that were once lined with mango trees, I recall the twenty-five years we spent in our gorgeous home here. A lot of good times, including unforgettable white parties (some of you may have even attended one or two). But I digress.

Where to begin. Pinecrest is centralized (in my opinion), and has so much to offer. The Village of Pinecrest is located between US1 and SW 57th Avenue/Red Road and stretches between SW 88th Street/Kendall Drive and SW 136th Street/Howard Drive. It is easily accessible to highways and everything in between. 


Boasting 12+ schools in the area, both private and public, there are a plethora of amazing schools for your family ranging from pre-k/elementary through high school. I’m a proud alum of Gulliver Schools, attending and graduating from both Gulliver Academy and Gulliver Prep. Looking at it today brings me down memory lane and also blows my mind by how much it has grown. As we register our 2-year old for school this fall, I tell my husband I don’t have any bias (ha ha), but I do feel opinions are best left to families on what is the right fit for their children. You can see more about schools in the area here

Sandra with her parents at a high school football game (Love Where You Live: Why I Love Living In Pinecrest Sandra Jacquemin Contributor Miami Mom Collective)


There are 8 parks in the area, and we have visited all of them with our little one. For a couple of years during high school, I actually volunteered as a cheerleading coach at Suniland Park. Included in these parks is the Pinecrest Community Center offering everything from gardening classes to Mommy-and-me classes, spinning and fitness programs and so much more! It is actually attached to Pinecrest Gardens–formerly known as Parrot Jungle–which opened in 1936 by the way (the year my father was born).  Some things may have changed, and the cockatiel riding the bicycle may be gone, but the beautiful trees and wild birds are still there. Parks are lush and friendly including everything from soccer and baseball fields, to tennis and basketball courts. 

Sandra and her son at an outdoor racquetball court (Love Where You Live: Why I Love Living In Pinecrest Sandra Jacquemin Contributor Miami Mom Collective)Dining

There are so many dining options it is difficult to select just a few. I’ll share some personal favorites that are not only family-owned, but they are as traditional in Pinecrest as they are to my family. They hold memories for us, and I can’t wait to continue sharing with my son. 

  • Daily Bread – opened in 1978, serving up amazing Middle Eastern food. Their marketplace is full of staples and some snacks that remind me of childhood. It also includes products from around the world including Syria, Lebanon, Greece, and more.  Whatever you do, try the falafel platter (yum!) and end it with an Angel Kiss. 
  • Joanna’s Marketplace – a true family business, founded by the late Alan Lederman and his wife, Joanne. Today, their sons John and Mike continue the legacy, along with the support of John’s wife Kelly. As I mentioned, my family purchased a home in Pinecrest in ’92, a block away from Gulliver and one mile from Joanna’s–which opened that same year. I remember it by the original marketplace, with hanging salami and artisanal breads adorning the walls. For more than two decades we were faithful clients coming by every week for their fresh croissants, pastries, and coffee (and a little friendly chatter with the locals). Today, the marketplace looks different but the vibe remains the same–families and friends welcome. I remember so many birthday cakes specially made here–and their catering was always a holiday must. If nothing else, their pain au chocolate is a classic and the almond croissant was my dad’s favorite. If you’re there for lunch, try their outdoor BBQ on weekends or grab a fresh salad or sandwich inside.
  • Pinecrest Wayside Market – or as we know it, the fruit and milkshake stand. If you’re a local, you know this place. If you’re a tourist, you’ve probably visited this place. It has been around since 1948 and not only sells fresh fruits and veggies but prepared foods. It’s nestled between shady trees right on 57th Ave/Red Road, where you can sit at the friendly picnic tables and watch bikers ride by. As their wood carved sign declares, the strawberry milkshake is the showstopper here. After tennis lessons next door at the club, I remember coming by for cookies and a shake (not often) but enough to love it. 

A plate of baked treats (Love Where You Live: Why I Love Living In Pinecrest Sandra Jacquemin Contributor Miami Mom Collective)

Convenience, Style, and More

By now you’ve probably been to one of the only Trader Joe’s locations in SoFlo. Dadeland Mall is nearby, in addition to several local boutiques. It’s easy access to the Metro if you’re headed Downtown/Brickell for work or a Heat game. Pinecrest is definitely family-friendly and continues to grow year after year. I love it, and I encourage you to visit, as you will too! 

This post is part of our Love Where You Live series. Be sure to check out the other posts in the series here!

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Sandra Jacquemin
Sandra is born and raised in Miami, fluent in 4 languages and credits her upbringing to be Brazilian-French thanks to her parents. After graduating high school from Gulliver Prep, she pursued a degree in Elementary Education followed by earning a Bachelors in Marketing and International Business. While working on post-grad in the South of France, she decided to be her own boss and opened her boutique marketing agency working with a roster of recognized global brands spanning from entertainment, to sports and beyond. Sandra and her husband, a former U.S. Marine, are first-time parents to their son Marcelo Joseph whose middle name pays homage to Sandra's late father. They’re also pet rescue parents to their adopted chihuahua Ellie. Sandra's affinity for Disney started when her Mom took her at only 7 days old. Coming around full circle, she has not only worked with the company behind-the-scenes, but they are now loyal Disney Passholders. She transitioned to eating plant-based in 2015 for a healthier lifestyle, and swapped everyday products to non-toxic. Today, they reside in Pinecrest and are enjoying discovering life as new parents. In 2021, Sandra and her husband launched a company with a mission, to help others with their mission, donating 100% proceeds from a t-shirt subscription to charities. Learn more here . Look for her posts sharing her love of decluttering, transitioning to non-toxic products, the journey to becoming vegan, starting a small business and so much more! Follow her on Instagram


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