Royal Oak

Welcome to Royal Oak

A vibrant social scene drives this bustling community.

Oakland County is well-known for the number of sleepy little hamlets within its borders. There are, however, several cities that defy this notion. Royal Oak is such a place. Originally founded at the turn of the 20th century, the city is hitting its stride in the 21st as the county's leading entertainment and cultural destination.

A suburb of nearly 60,000, Royal Oak is the perfect draw for those on the move who are not yet ready to settle down. Housing in Royal Oak is more affordable than other parts of Oakland County. From starter townhomes to larger Craftsmen and colonials to new construction, there is a wide variety of options.

With its lively downtown, there's also a considerable number of new and remodeled condo units for those seeking low-maintenance living close to the action.

What to Love

  • The dynamic artist community, including the Art Explored downtown art displays 
  • Central location—30 minutes to Detroit, 45 minutes to Waterford Township, an hour to Ann Arbor 
  • Plenty of nightlife and an eclectic bar and restaurant scene 
  • An abundance of outdoor activities 

People & Lifestyle

Thanks to its location and high-energy downtown, Royal Oak skews younger than its sibling suburbs. Noted as a top destination for young professionals in Michigan, the city often serves as a launching pad for newly-minted graduates or those taking the next step in their careers.

40% of Royal Oak's population is between the ages 25 and 44, and another 25% is even younger. It's an educated group too—56% of adults hold a Bachelor's degree or higher, and another 25% have attended some level of higher education.

The city is decidedly suburban-urban, which is a tremendous draw for the next-gen American workforce.

Dining, Shopping & Entertainment

One of the most significant aspects of living in Royal Oak is its culture. There is a spirited enthusiasm for art and its central tenet as a social experience. 

Royal Oak’s art scene includes the downtown Art Explored Program, the Royal Oak Arts Council, Arts, Beats, and Eats, and the 11 Mile Art Project. For film and theater, there is the Main Art Theater, Emagine Royal Oak, and Stagecrafters at the Baldwin Theater. When it comes to music, look no further than the Royal Oak Symphony Orchestra and the Royal Oak Music Theater.

Of course, food and drink are just as much a cultural experience as art, theater, and music. Royal Oak boasts an impressive selection of bars and restaurants that would make any foodie happy.

Must-visit establishments include Ronin Sushi Bar Restaurant, Vinsetta Garage, which celebrates Detroit's classic car roots, and the retro Redcoat Tavern. Beer fans shouldn't miss The Royal Oak Brewery and River Rouge Brewing Company downtown on East 4th Street. For spots focused on locally-sourced ingredients, check out Cafe Muse or the vegan Inn Season Cafe.

Things to Do

It's not all about the nightlife and arts in Royal Oak. The area is also home to the popular Detroit Zoo, which features over 2,000 animals, including polar bears and red pandas. 

The city's park system is equally impressive, with over 50 parks and two natural reserves totaling over 310 acres of public space. Highlights include the dog run and disc golf at Wagner Park and Whittier Park's sports fields, pickleball courts, and splash pad and playground.

Royal Oak also features an active events calendar, with favorites such as the Farmers' Market, Memorial Day Parade, Summer Concert Series, and Restaurant Week.