June 29th, 2023

Arden Resident Spotlight: Juan Andrade

Arden, South Florida’s first Agrihood, has welcomed families and individuals from across the United States and around the world to join its tight-knit, nature-centered community. One resident, Juan Andrade, sat down with us to share why he and his family moved to Arden and what makes the Agrihood so unique.

Q: Tell me about yourself.

Juan: I was born and raised in Colombia. I moved to the United States around 2000 to attend Arizona State University and have been here ever since. Now, I work in the banking industry. My wife, Carolina, is Peruvian, so we are very connected to our South American roots. We have three sons and all three of them were born in different states.

Q: What made Arden the perfect place for you and your family?

Juan: Before moving to South Florida, we were living in Houston, Texas for about four years. We then moved to the Royal Palm area before quickly deciding to relocate to Arden in December 2019. Carolina and I have a very holistic approach to things, especially when it comes to raising our kids. We really encourage our boys to get outside and live healthy lives. We loved that Arden was developed around nature and that we could take advantage of the green spaces and trails.

Q: What Arden amenities do you enjoy the most?

Juan: We obviously love the soccer field, which we use on a weekly basis. We also love the Arden Lakehouse, the bi-level pool, and all of the community rooms. We also love making home-cooked meals using the fresh produce from our monthly farm share basket.

Q: Do you participate in any activities or events at Arden?

Juan: I love how social Arden is and the community is incredibly welcoming. We try to be involved in as many events as possible. Our family loves the movie nights, the game nights for the kids, and any of the food truck events where we can enjoy a nice evening on the Event Lawn with our neighbors.

Q: Tell me about the soccer program you coach at Arden. 

Juan: When COVID-19 hit and everyone was under lockdown in 2020, my wife and I wanted to find a way to get our kids out of the house. I played soccer back in college and coached a team at the YMCA in Houston, so I decided to take my sons out to the soccer fields and teach them how to play. Soon enough, our friends started to see us out on the field and wanted to join.

We suddenly had a lot of interest in a league, so we set up a program exclusively for Arden residents. Since 2020, we’ve had 14 seasons which take place over 5 weeks and group kids based on age. During the week, we host practices where we teach kids basic soccer skills and on the weekends, we host games. It’s not a competitive league, it’s just a great way for kids to get exposed to soccer and meet other kids in the Agrihood.

In our last two seasons alone, we’ve welcomed 80-100 participants and we’re excited to continue the program into the future!

Q: Tell me about your home.

Juan: We live in a Ryan Homes Corin Model house. It’s a 2-story home with 4 bedrooms and 2.5 bathrooms. We keep our home very modern, and we love all of the windows and natural light we get on our lot. We built our own pool in the backyard a few years ago and it has been a great setting for entertaining our neighbors. We have a close group of friends here at Arden and we love hosting game nights and grilling outside.

Q: If you had to sum up your experience living in Arden in a few sentences, what would you say?

 Juan: Living at Arden has really brought me back to my childhood in Colombia. When I lived back home, I grew up with my friends close by, playing soccer, and riding my bike around my neighborhood. That is the childhood I have always envisioned for my own kids and Arden has given me that.

Are you currently living in Arden and interested in being our next resident spotlight? Reach out to our Lifestyle Director, or DM @ardennaturally on Facebook or Instagram to be featured today!

Enjoyed reading about Jonathan’s life at the Agrihood? Check out our other interview with Arden residents Jake and Emily Shapiro here.