By staff writer

March 2019

Long known as the “City Beautiful,” Coral Gables has always been an important city in Miami-Dade County. Home to the University of Miami and known for its elegant real estate and lush vegetation, the centrally located city has rapidly become an attractive destination for international businesspeople.

Invest: Miami recently sat down with Raul Valdes-Fauli, the mayor of Coral Gables, and he provided a unique perspective on the city’s development, having also served as the city’s mayor from 1993 to 2001.

“It’s a different city today,” said Valdes-Fauli, reflecting on the city as it was when he previously served as mayor. “It is much more developed and more modern.”

He also pointed to the city’s cultural offerings as one of its assets, highlighting the Coral Gables Museum — which has a unique focus on environmental preservation and urban design — as well as the city’s selection of local bookstores and theaters, “which is wonderful for a community of our size.”

Given the fact that Miami’s already cemented status as an international destination has grown with the area’s economy, it makes sense that well-developed areas outside of Downtown, such as Coral Gables, have also started to fall under the radar of companies and executives overseas.

According to its website, the city is now home to over 20 consulates and foreign government offices, along with more than 150 multinational corporations, an astounding number for a city with a land area of 12.92 square miles.

When Invest: spoke with Socrates Melo, managing director of international human resource consulting firm Randstad’s Miami office, he pointed to Coral Gables as a hotspot for international companies looking to develop their business in the United States and the Americas.

“There are people here [Miami] who understand both U.S. and Latin American culture,” he explained. “As such, companies coming to the region have a unique advantage if they want to develop their business in South America, Central America and the United States. The areas seeing the highest demand are Kendal, Doral and Coral Gables.”

These observations were echoed by President and CEO of Sora Global Insurance Efrain Sora, who, in conversation with Invest:, pointed to the city’s location within the county as one of the keys to its growth.

“Coral Gables has become an international hub, both in terms of business and people coming from overseas to live here,” said Sora. “The city is located at the center of Miami-Dade County as well, so our location is favorable in terms of attracting business from all over the country and the world.”

With over half of its 50,000-resident population being fluent in another language and a projected future job growth of 36.7 percent, the velocity of the growth of the city’s international appeal shows no signs of slowing down.

To learn more about our interviewees, the Coral Gables Museum and the City of Coral Gables itself, please visit: