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Zurich is the place to be. Apparently.

At least according to Mercer's 2007 Quality of Living survey.

Zurich is followed by that other 24 hour party city Geneva, with Bern also making the top ten. Mercer is a bit reluctant to define its methodology, but quality of living would seem to be rather dependent on good sanitation, low crime, international schools and the like, rather than the quality of the night life, vibrant culture and the like. Still, if the international assignees that the survey is aimed at can all be persuaded to hot foot it to Switzerland, it cannot be an entirely bad thing. A further four German speaking cities (Vienna, Dusseldorf, Frankfurt and Munich) make it into the top ten, as do Vancouver, Auckland and Sydney. I think I'd opt for Vancouver.

London, New York, Paris, Milan, Singapore, Tokyo and Madrid suffer the ignominy of being outperformed by Luxembourg City and Brussels, inter alia.

Mercer's attempted weaselling is worth repeating: "The Quality of Living index is based on several criteria used to judge whether an expatriate is entitled to a hardship allowance. A city with a high Quality of Living index is a safe and stable one, but it may be lacking the dynamic je ne sais quoi that makes people want to live in world-renowned cities...Sometimes you need a little spice to make a city exciting. But that "spice" may also give a city a lower ranking".

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Anonymous this guy said... 4:26 pm

Hmm. so the Ville-Lumiere is only 33. Behind Hell-sinki, with its unconscious drunks lying in the snow. At least we got away without the Swinging London tag.

Montreal & Oslo did OK, despite the state alcohol monopolies.  

Blogger CityUnslicker said... 9:21 pm

so C where would you live for a month if you had the choice? IS there a world beyond Croydon?

I think for me it would be Tokyo, a place I have not been and so foreign as to be truly intriguing.  

Blogger Croydonian said... 10:41 pm

CU - There's always Purley.

I rather fancy Honkers, or closer to home, Berlin, Amsterdam or Tallinn. Being a somewhat warped individual, I also have a yen to spend time in Greenland. However, I do not suppose Godthåb is especially lovely at this time of year.  

Anonymous nomad said... 7:14 am

Party city Geneva is spot on! I lived there, near the centre of town, for 3 years in the mid 60s. One new year's eve there was a slight covering of snow so the town looked eerily pleasant in the moonlight. At midnight I went out on to the balcony to listen to the celebrations to welcome the new year, you know, fireworks, church bells, music, that sort of thing. What did I hear? Absolute silence!

But if the record player was on after 10pm, the woman downstairs would be banging on the ceiling with her broom. Drive through any Swiss village after 9.30pm and it would be in darkness with lights out and shutters closed. Way to go! I have not been back to Switzerland for over 25 years; it might have changed since then.

If you want somewher really nice and peaceful to stay (but not in winter!)try Banff in the Canadian Rockies. I seem to recall being told that it was the highest town in the world; can anyone confirm that?  

Blogger Croydonian said... 7:22 am

I had a long weekend in Geneva a while back, and it was absolutely dead after about 10.30, so not a lot has changed....  

Anonymous this guy, ever pedantic said... 11:57 am

Godthaab (Good Hope)is now Nuuk. It is, of course, subsidised to the hilt by the Dansk tax-payer.
It may well mean "Good hope of yet more hand-outs from Hamletalia, esp. to support our traditional way of life, i.e. living on hand-outs..."  

Blogger Croydonian said... 12:04 pm

TG - I knew that, I prefer the Danish version in the same way that I prefer Moscow to Moskva, Bombay to Mumbai etc etc.

One of these days I might do the everything you have ever wanted to know about Greenland post I have mulled on, featuring such gems as its football team having beaten Sark 16-0, and that in 1972, a fifth of the population had the clap. Yes, really - the latter was extracted from official stats.  

Blogger Jeremy Jacobs said... 2:25 pm

Not Ramsgate then  

Anonymous this guy said... 4:05 pm

Only a 5th?

I prefer Mumbai, because I'm irritated by the yammering about "Bollywood", which shd obv' be Mullywood. On the anniv of 50 years of Ghana's independence (50 years of f@@@-all), I decided to go back to Gold Coast.

Rhodies never die!  

Blogger Croydonian said... 4:08 pm

Very combative TG. You could go that little bit further and call Nigeria 'Oil Rivers'.  

Anonymous verity said... 5:37 pm

I too prefer Bombay. And Madras to Chennai and Calcutta to Kolkata - although I don't mind Kolkata so much as that is how the Bengalis have always pronounced it anyway. But I think Bombay and Madras are sad losses to Anglophones.

CU - Tokyo - v difficult. The language, for starters. Don't think that "they all speak English" because, in my experience, no one does.

If I had my choice of anywhere in the world, I'd live in New Delhi. But the Indian government doesn't let foreigners buy property, which is a bit of a nerve, given all the real estate owned by Indians in Britain, Canada, the United States, Oz ...  

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