When I rolled into Rome for a new job on a slushy cold January day my first thoughts were "I'm am not staying here". In April I bought a home, because I realized I like the town. It meets my criteria for a nice place to live. The homes are affordable. There is a community college that is being expanded to accommodate new programs. I can get most of what I need on a daily basis within 4 miles from groceries to car repair to dry cleaners to healthcare. There is a small movie theater for current films and the Capitol Theater, built in 1929, that hosts vintage film festivals and live shows. There is a Library, a YMCA, the JFK arena with roller skating in the summer and ice skating in the Winter, a put put course, a paddle boat and bumper car attraction, Ricky's Petting Zoo and more. A big plus is that the people are nice with lots of civic and veterans organizations to include an active Senior Center and Garden Club. Nice local restaurants are Teddies, the Savoy, DiCastros and Delta Lake Inn, but if you are looking for chains there is Applebees, Subway, McDonalds, Arbys and all kinds of pizza places.
Marcy, a town about 12 miles from Rome, is the new location for two high tech businesses and over the next few years an estimated increase of 4000 jobs is projected.
Another plus is that Sanger Street indoor Mall and other outdoor malls are about 13 miles away in New Hartford. One of the biggest indoor malls in the country is Destiny Mall in Syracuse about 45 minutes away. For those that like Vegas type shows and gambling, Turning Stone is about 9 miles away. Utica has the Stanley Theater for live shows and antique fairs, while the Marque Theater is a big film complex for all the newest movies.
Further afield is Lake Placid and Niagara Falls (about 4 hours away). Albany and Tupper Lake are about 2.5 hours away, while Old Forge and the gate way to the Adirondacks about 1 hour away. Not too far are the Finger Lakes and there are places for wine tasting, apple picking, etc. There are numerous state parks and lakes in the area, including historic Fort Stanwix in Rome center.
The summers are glorious, but the winters are cold. There are definitely 4 seasons. Roads have to be plowed and sidewalks and occasionally roofs cleared of snow. This is NY so there are taxes for state, county and city. It is better to have a car for although people do walk and there is a bus system this is not a downtown community and things are spread out.