Hollywood, Florida – close to both Miami and Downtown Fort Lauderdale, makes it a great location for people who commute to work or are looking for a well-established Jewish community in South Florida. Hollywood’s Jewish community, with synagogues, kosher restaurants, Jewish schools, and plenty of businesses serving the community fits the bill. Hollywood has a large number of Jews with a mix of overlapping communities comprised of Israelis, Sephardim, Modern Orthodox, Orthodox, and Conservative Jews.
Young Israel of Hollywood, located on Sterling Road, was established in 1987, boasts a large membership, and has been attracting people looking to live outside the bustling city, yet close enough to commute. The community has a mikvah located away from the synagogue with regular daily and weekly services. In recent years, smaller orthodox houses of worship have opened in the community.
B'nai Sephardim Synagogue, completed in 1999, is located near Young Israel, and caters to the Sephardic community. The synagogue is ranked among the leading Sephardic congregations in the USA, with a Mikvah on the premises. There are currently seven hundred families affiliated with the synagogue, and the community continues to grow.
There are several Chabad synagogues in the area, and the Chabad yeshiva Hebrew Academy of Margate is located just north of the community. Chabad centers which are Orthodox are mostly outreach centers and serve a mostly non-religious membership.
Temple Sinai, Hollywood's only Conservative synagogue, boasts an excellent early childhood education center for children up to 5 years of age. There is a daily prayer service that has been running for 70 years.
Brauser Maimonides Academy, the largest modern orthodox co-ed day school in the area, consists of a student body of over 350 students, has an early childhood program and offers classes nursery through 8th grade. David Posnack Jewish Day School is made up of a mostly reform/conservative student body, and offers grades K-High School. Posnack sits on the JCC’s beautiful campus, containing the schools, and a 60,000 square foot gymnasium.
Kosher restaurants and markets have flourished (KC Kosher Center, The Grove, and Aroma), and additional businesses serving the orthodox Jewish community have opened in recent years. Housing in the community runs the full gamut in pricing. Be aware that many communities are condominiums and homeowner associations, which have rules regarding property maintenance and the opening of a shul in your home. There are also plenty of affordable rental communities, mostly with non-Jewish residents.
Be aware that if you attend the Young Israel communities on the Southside of Sheridan Street must cross a 6 lane heavily traveled street to get to the Synagogue. The entire community is surrounded by an Eruv and has plenty to offer for Orthodox, as well as non-religious Jews.
Access to the Florida Turnpike and interstate I95 as well as commuter rail service to Miami make it easy for commuting. Hollywood boasts the Hollywood/Fort Lauderdale International airport, with Miami International airport just twenty miles south.