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Community

Best Places to Live: Frisco

Just last year, Frisco was rated the number one place to live by Money Magazine. The city that was once a small, quiet community is now the most sought out place to call home. So why all the fuss? The city of Frisco provides a higher quality of life for its residents. From its outstanding schools to its spectacular shopping and dining, Frisco is making a name for itself that is recognized nationwide.

People are Flocking to Frisco

Known as a city of progress, Frisco has consistently been one of the fastest growing cities in the country since 2000. Today, Frisco is home to over 180,000 residents!

Business and Jobs

Jobs in Frisco are projected to grow by nearly 15 percent over the next four years, thanks to the reasonable cost of living the city affords its residents. Blue-chip companies like AT&T, Toyota and Oracle have built offices in Frisco so they can provide jobs where houses are affordable for their employees. The growing city has made room for multiple major corporate headquarters in its mixed-use developments. Employees relocating to Frisco will experience a diverse community of skilled workers that are delighted in the city’s lower cost of living and shorter commute times.

Homes

With the high quality of life and the rapid population growth, there is plenty of room for home builders to flourish in Frisco. Darling Homes is among the top builders in Frisco with nine authentic communities to choose from.

The communities these homes are located in are not your average neighborhoods. Newman Village, a master-planned community built around a deep appreciation for European and Mediterranean architecture, has created an eclectic streetscape like no other. The Estates at Shaddock Park is another master-planned community that offers residents a central location with resort-style amenities and a 6-acre park.

Edgestone at Legacy provides residents with miles of winding trails throughout the community as well as neighborhood parks and upscale amenities like a fitness center and a clubhouse with a swimming pool. Canals at Grand Park is home to low-maintenance luxury properties that offers homebuyers modern style with upscale suburban comfort.

Education

The Frisco Independent School District is a top-rated school district with an extremely high graduation rate of 98.2%. Frisco’s exceptional public-school system has more than 70 campuses in the area with 92% of their students meeting state standard in all grades and all subjects. The district also offers high school students the opportunity to gain real-world experience in specialized programs from health science to hospitality through their state of the art Career and Technical Education Center.

Frisco ISD also benefits from private partnership arrangements that provide high-level sports, art and technology for the city. Its partnership with the Dallas Cowboys allows high school teams to use the NFL team’s indoor athletic practice facility, the Ford Center at The Star, for practice and games.

Entertainment

Speaking of the Dallas Cowboys, the team chose to move their world headquarters to Frisco, noting that the city aligns with the Cowboy’s core values, which include youth sports, health, safety and community. Not only are the Cowboys calling Frisco home, but so are seven other Dallas-area professional sports teams who have moved their headquarters to the city, making Frisco a sports enthusiast’s dream.

However, if sports won’t draw you to the city, the shopping might. You can occupy your time with over nine million square feet of retail and dining, award winning hotels, parks, concerts and events in Frisco. Stonebriar Centre in Frisco offers locals a variety of entertainment from shopping through a wide range of incredible stores to relaxing at the movie theater or dining in a full-service restaurant. The Shops at Legacy offer even more dining and shopping opportunities. Want more? Downtown Dallas is just 25 minutes away, offering access to exciting Metroplex destinations.

Weather

Last but not least, you can’t forget about the excellent weather the city sees almost every day. With an average of 232 clear days per year, you can’t help but enjoy a better quality of life in Frisco.

Thinking of making the move to Frisco, too? Take a look at some of the exceptional communities and properties that Darling Homes has to offer. Let us build you the home of your dreams in the number one place to live.

Community

For Darling Homes, the Giving Season Means Giving Back to Local Communities

As the year begins to close, people turn their attention toward the giving season. In addition to the presents expected under the tree this time of the year, many charities also rely on the months of November and December to help fund their worthwhile operations year-round.

There are numerous worthy charities in Dallas as well as excellent charitable organizations in Houston. At Darling Homes, the company trains its focus on being good partners in the community throughout the year. Nevertheless, the holiday season always makes for a festive time to do even more.

In December, team members from the builder’s Frisco office wrapped gifts and donated cookies and other snacks for Dallas Life, the largest homeless recovery center in North Texas. This is the second year Darling Homes has participated in the gift-wrapping drive for the group’s Christmas Toy Store. The store allows parents to shop for their kids, picking out special gifts for their family which are then wrapped on-site by volunteers, giving the children a special surprise waiting for them under the tree.

The Taylor Morrison sales team also staged a food drive for Frisco Family Services Food Pantry in November, creating ready-made cookie kits from the more than 600 pounds of flour, sugar and baking items that the team received in donations from the Dallas Division staff. The kits were free for shoppers at the pantry and the contents in each kit did not count toward the weight of the food allotted each family per visit, giving each family a special treat for the holidays.

For the ninth straight year, Darling employees rounded up coats and outwear to help the less fortunate combat the area’s coldest months. This November, they donated approximately 300 coats to the Transition Resource Action Center (TRAC), a CitySquare program that aids young adults who have aged out of foster care and are integrating into society. The remaining coats will be distributed through CitySquare to men, women and children in need throughout the Dallas area. To date, more than 6,000 coats have been donated.

Meanwhile in Houston, the giving continued. Houston team member, Michael Carroll, hosted a party at his model home where he collected toys to send to Texas Children’s Hospital for their treasure chests. The toys were a welcome sight for the children, many of whom were battling life-threatening illnesses. The treasure chests allow children staying at the hospital to pick out a special toy for the season.

Michael’s idea to give back also inspired other Darling Houston team members. For Michael and his co-worker, Brandi Parker, Texas Children’s Hospital had been an important part of their immediate family. Each had seen their sons diagnosed with cancer and treated by the hospital.

To give back, Michael and Brandi collected toys during an event hosted at Darling’s Woodforest 65s model and at their team Sales Rally on December 5. By the end of the day, they were able to deliver an SUV full of toys to the Texas Children’s Hospital Downtown.

Inspired by what Brandi and Michael had done, David Vigil collected toys at an event with over 60 attendees at Darling’s Waterbridge model home. David’s nephew is currently battling Neuroblastoma, a cancer that attacks the adrenal glands. The toys collected at the event were delivered by Brandi to the Texas Children’s Hospital in The Woodlands.

Not only did the Houston division demonstrate their generosity by donating toys to various Texas Children’s Hospitals, but they also gave back to the Gamez and DeLaCruz families through the Houston Children’s Charity Outreach 2018. The two families were emotional and grateful as a parade of team members guided carts full of presents down to family’s vehicles.

There are many charitable organizations that Darling Homes contributes time and resources to each year. For the Texas homebuilder, the giving season lasts all year long.

Community Travel

Best Places to View Fall Foliage in Texas

Leaves are beginning to change in Darling Homes communities in Dallas and Houston, and there are a few hidden gems throughout the Lone Star State where visitors can go to experience autumn’s beauty.

Below are three Texas state parks and natural areas that offer visitors an unparalleled look at fall colors, and this leaf color map from Thrillist is an excellent tool to keep track of when leaves are at their most brilliant.

Lost Maples State Natural Area

Lost Maples State Natural Area, located northwest of San Antonio, is known for its radiant beauty during autumn. Filled with striking maple trees that turn brilliant hues of orange, yellow and red, Lost Maples is renowned for its rugged beauty.

At this park, visitors can indulge in a variety of outdoor activities, including:

  • Over 10 miles of trails meandering along the edge of a 2,200-foot cliff
  • Camping at a selection of over 30 campsites
  • Fishing in the Sanibal River or Can Creek
  • Geocaching
  • Wildlife watching
  • An off the grid weekend – no cell service here!

Tyler State Park

At Tyler State Park, a peaceful retreat nestled in northeast Texas, visitors will delight in seeing the changing leaves from the comfort of the car with a scenic drive or getting an up close view at the vibrant hues from one of many hiking and walking trails.

This beautiful park offers its visitors a plethora of activities, including:

McKinney Falls State Park

Near Austin, at McKinney Falls State Park, visitors will find themselves enchanted by the capital region’s hill country, where Onion Creek flows over limestone ledges to create a breathtaking waterfall. During autumn, this scenic park is brimming with incredible colors.

While visiting McKinney Falls State Park, explore the outdoors by:

  • Camping at one of 81 sites
  • Mountain or road biking
  • Fishing in Onion Creek
  • Bouldering
  • Joining a Ranger Program on birding, geocaching and more

Texas is filled with incredible opportunities to see fall foliage while exploring the outdoors!

Community Fashion

Finding the Best Shopping in Dallas and Houston

For fashionistas, people shopping for new clothes for an event, or those simply looking to enjoy a day out on the town with friends, there are numerous shopping destinations near Dallas or Houston Darling Homes communities with convenient access to today’s best brands.

Dallas

When it comes to shopping in and around Dallas, there is no shortage of fantastic choices. NorthPark Center provides its patrons with a broad range of shopping, dining and event options. This metropolis often houses special displays inside, such as its current exhibition on ‘The Fabric of Opera’.

Stores at NorthPark Center include:

  • Neiman Marcus
  • Versace
  • J.Crew
  • Express
  • Fossil
  • Williams-Sonoma, and a variety of other shopping options

In Allen, the Allen Premium Outlets are conveniently located near several Darling Homes communities and provide a large, walkable outdoor mall filled with opportunities to get high-quality brands at great prices.

Outlet stores include:

  • Ann Taylor Factory Store
  • Guess Factory Store
  • J. Crew Factory
  • Loft Outlet
  • Armani Outlet and much more!

At the Stonebriar Centre in Frisco, locals can take a day to go to a movie, grab lunch from a snack station or dine in a full-service restaurant, and shop at their favorite stores::

  • Athleta
  • Bath & Body Works
  • Disney Store
  • Vera Bradley and a wide range of other incredible stores

Houston

It’s easy for residents of Darling Homes communities in the Houston area to find first-class shopping close to home.

One of the best destinations in Houston is The Galleria, an upscale retail hub that houses delectable dining options including FIG & OLIVE, Nobu Houston, The Oceanaire Seafood Room and more to cater to any craving. This exceptional space is renowned for being the largest mall in Texas and home to extraordinary special features, including an expansive ice rink that is adorned with a giant Christmas tree during the holiday season.

Stores include:

  • Saks Fifth Avenue
  • Sephora
  • Nordstrom
  • Neiman Marcus
  • Lululemon Athletica
  • Armani Exchange and hundreds of other choices

At Katy Mills Mall, a large indoor mall in Katy, near the Darling Homes community of Elyson, shoppers can purchase goods from:

  • Bass Pro Shop
  • Calvin Klein
  • Coach
  • Converse and more popular stores

Market Street, a diverse shopping center situated in The Woodlands, offers its customers a full experience with restaurants, local artworks and an ongoing calendar of social events. Stores here include:

  • Kate Spade New York
  • Francesca’s
  • Tiffany & Co.
  • Lucky Brand and other stylish options

Both Houston and Dallas have incredible, upscale shopping opportunities for residents to enjoy year-round.

 

Community

Celebrate Labor Day near your Community

Labor Day was created to honor the American labor movement, and the federal holiday provides a much-desired three-day weekend for many workers across the United States. With an extra day off, Darling Homes residents in Dallas or Houston can join in a celebration near their communities to revel in the unofficial end of summer.

Dallas

Parade of Activities | Garland

Head to Garland to catch a parade starting at 9 a.m. in the historic downtown area. Following the parade, the festivities will continue with a car show, a kids’ BBQ festival and more Labor Day activities.

Truly Texan Labor Day | Plano

For a truly Texan Labor Day, head to The Texas Pool in Plano for a fun-filled day in the sun. The regular snack bar will be open for business, and food trucks for Kona Ice and 5-OHH BBQ will be on location to keep visitors well-fed throughout the day. Modeled after the state of Texas, this community pool features:

  • Diving board
  • Two water slides
  • Island and a wading area for kids

Houston

Luau for all Ages | Spring

Wet’n’Wild Splashtown in Spring is throwing a Labor Day Luau for all ages on Monday. Enjoy the incredible fun of a waterpark and stay cool under the hot sun with some added elements, listed below, to make the holiday more memorable:

  • Fire and luau dancers
  • Face painting
  • Balloon art

Restaurant Weeks | City-wide

Foodies in Houston can take advantage of the last 2018 over the weekend. This annual fundraiser gives residents and visitors special deals for exceptional dining throughout the city while contributing to local food banks. With brunch and lunch deals for $20 and dinner options ringing in at $35 and $45, diners enjoy delicious and photo-worthy meals for a good cause.

American History

Military personnel have the opportunity to view a bit of history on Labor Day with free entry for active duty members and their families to all three presidential libraries and museums in Texas.

How will you spend Labor Day?

Community Food

Get a Taste of Texas Coffee

Darling Homes’ communities in Dallas and Houston are situated in suburbs filled with hidden gems from boutiques to restaurants and more. Whether you’re a resident or visitor of the community, take time to explore the surrounding area and enjoy one of these local Texas coffee shops or cafes.

Dallas

Darling Homes builds an incredible range of homes in several communities in McKinney, which is also home to a series of highly-rated coffee shops and cafes. At the McKinney Coffee Company, a new family-owned establishment in town, delicious varieties of coffee and pastries are on display. That’s not all the shop has to offer the city – this location is filled to the brim with artwork made by friends and loved ones of the coffee shop’s owners, giving it a unique and cozy atmosphere.

Spoons Cafe, also in McKinney, offers its loyal customers all-day breakfast, lunch, comfort foods, snacks and dinner options throughout the day. Nestled in a historic building with sidewalk seating, this cafe has gained a reputation for its friendly atmosphere, including weekly live music, and good food.

At Snug on the Square, locals can indulge in a menu of quick, delicious bites and coffee creations at their McKinney or Prosper locations. The coffee menu offers both coffee classics and specialties, including honey cinnamon lattes and sweetly inspired drinks such as cini-mini mochas, peppermint bliss and snickerdoo.

Houston

In Cypress, Darling Homes residents can head over to The Bake Shoppe and Cafe for a refreshing meal and a cup of joe. The homey atmosphere at this cafe provides its customers with fresh drinks, food and dessert and the high-quality care doesn’t stop there – this cafe offers an entire line of frozen lasagnas for patrons to take on the road for a later meal.

The Season’s Harvest Cafe treats its guests to only the freshest ingredients. The restaurant in Cypress is a farm-to-table establishment, utilizing locally-grown and in-season foods for their menu. With meat and vegan options available, this cafe has options to offer every diet.

For impeccably decorated cookies, cake pops, quick bites and savory coffee, Plum Coffee is the place to visit in Cypress. This adorable location has a full range of food choices, but it’s known for its dessert and pastry menu, which are great to take to parties or on-the-go.

What is your favorite coffee shop or cafe near your Darling home?

 

At Home Community

Hike, Bike and Walk around your Darling Homes Community

In Houston and Dallas, Darling Homes has gained a reputation for incredible, high-quality, gorgeous home designs in ideal locations. For people who love the outdoors, Darling Homes builts within communities filled with hiking, biking and walking trails that create the perfect environment for outdoor exercise.

Houston

The Woodlands  boasts more than 7,000 acres of green space and 200 plus miles of trails dedicated to hiking, biking and walking space, putting outdoor exercise at the forefront of every neighborhood. Residents of the community can enjoy both the natural beauty and the architecturally-diverse homes built throughout.

Bridgeland, a community based on the concept of residing within a park, will have over 250 miles of interconnecting trails upon completion. Currently, residents have the opportunity to enjoy the outdoors with the already completed trails which offer fitness stations, wildlife observation areas and educational signs.

Dallas

Tucker Hill is a community on the rise, with plenty of outdoor space and more hiking and biking opportunities still to come. Acres of natural space back up to creeks, mature trees and featured ‘green centers’ situated no more than 5-10 minutes from each home. The community also has plans for a paved hiking and biking trail that fits within the city of McKinney’s master plan.

The Tribute is an ideal space for outdoor lovers, situated on a peninsula interspersed with incredible hiking, biking and walking trails. With more than 10 miles of trails meandering through the community and along Lake Lewisville, residents can enjoy perusing educational signs and taking in extraordinary, scenic views.

If hiking, biking and walking is an important factor for you when searching for a home, be sure to check out Darling Homes communities with outdoor spaces built for beautiful living, or get outdoors and explore options in your current neighborhood.

Community

Take a Walk Down Memory Lane in Dallas

The city of Dallas, the site of many incredible Darling Homes communities, is also home to a multitude of historical sites with significance to Texas and the United States. From presidential monuments to Bonnie and Clyde, this beautiful city has something to offer history buffs.

 

Presidential Tours

Dallas has connections to several presidents and is home to multiple sites with historical significance. President John F. Kennedy’s assassination remains a fascination for Americans, and companies such as Fun Dallas Tours offer  visitors the opportunity to view the site of the shooting, as well as other locations tied to the assassination including admission to The Sixth Floor Museum at Dealey Plaza. Want more presidential memorabilia? A tour of The George W. Bush Presidential Library and Museum displays documents, artifacts and more from Bush’s first and second terms.

 

Bonnie and Clyde

Two of the most notorious outlaws in the U.S. to date, Bonnie and Clyde, had deep ties to Dallas. The Dallas Historical Society and DFW Historical Tours put the couples’ lives and crimes on display all the way to their deaths. Stops include Bonnie and Clyde’s:  

  • Schools
  • Homesites
  • Places of employment
  • Locations of crimes
  • Gravesites

 

Architecture, Arts and More

Dallas is a city with an incredible range of history, arts and architecture. The Dallas Center for Architecture provides options to take a walking tour through different districts and soak in the sites. Starting at the Dallas Museum of Art entrance, The Arts District tour features buildings from the 1890s to present day. The center also has tours for the Main Street district and the West End District, presenting a varied look at the city’s architecture.

Whether on bus, by car or on foot, a tour is a great way to experience the city and explore more of Dallas’ rich history.

Community

Getting Ready to go Back to School

Summer break is winding down in most school districts, and Darling Homes’ residents in Dallas and Houston communities are preparing their children to go back to school for the year.  

From getting ready to do homework to preparing for early mornings, the school year can bring big changes in the daily routine for all of your loved ones, but PBS offers a series of tips and tricks that can help everyone feel prepared for the new schedule.

Think Ahead

Meeting the teacher, touring the school, getting any necessary books and school supplies ahead of time is a great place for students to start.

Go Shopping

From pencils and notebooks to textbooks and locker decor, each child’s school list will vary depending on the school, grade and specific classes. Setting aside time for a shopping trip is a fantastic way to meet individual needs before the semester starts.

In addition, shopping for nutritious snacks, signing up for extracurricular activities and planning ahead for difficult classes or subjects can make a large difference heading into a new year.

Another important tip is to take time to adjust to the new schedule. A steady timetable for each day can help children feel more ready for the year.

Setting aside time for exercises at home like reading, writing or other educational activities can also help students get back into the swing of everyday learning.

Heading back to school with the proper materials and preparation is made easy by all of the incredible schools and shopping areas surrounding Darling Homes’ communities in Dallas and Houston.

 

Community Music

Celebrating Jazz in Houston Style

Fans of jazz music in the Houston area will delight in the chance to attend the annual Houston International Jazz Festival on August 4, near many Darling Homes Houston communities.

Held at the House of Blues, this event brings together musicians and jazz enthusiasts eager to celebrate various styles of the music. The 28th annual event has tickets ranging from $45-$60 and features international, regional and local jazz musicians.

With two-time Grammy Award nominated artist Mindi Abair performing with the band The Boneshakers and other artists including Althea Rene and Ashleigh Smith, this year’s festival is bringing in talent that jazz fans won’t want to miss.

Doors open at the House of Blues at 7 p.m., with the show beginning at 8 p.m., with options including standing room and cabaret tables. While this annual event draws some big acts to Houston, the local jazz scene continues throughout the rest of the year.

Jazz Houston offers locals of all ages music lessons throughout the year and hosts events and concerts to help connect city residents to jazz as well. Restaurants and bars, including the House of Blues, help spread the music through the city.

At Catbirds, visitors can enjoy cocktails and scrumptious bites while indulging in jazz events. Martini Blu, a jazz cafe, not only offers up drinks, food and incredible music, they also hosted their first Jazz & Wine Fest earlier this year and continue to host music events.

Whether you’re a music enthusiast, a jazz lover or a local wanting to explore more of Houston’s concert scene, the city’s restaurants, bars and festivals provide plenty of opportunities to explore the area and its culture.