My work takes me all over Los Gatos, but usually I’m driving. The other day I noticed some fanciful roof art as I was a passenger and had the leisure of looking up, down, and all around while my husband kept his eyes on the road.
I did almost miss it, as the large trees enjoyed in the Glenridge neighborhood made the fanciful roof art visibility more like a Where’s Waldo? game. (For a better view, click on the photograph below and you’ll see a larger version of it.)
I did a double take and then we doubled back when I noticed something on the roof’s peak. We do see interesting weather vanes, and sometimes intricate wood details on Victorians, but this was something else. This time Jim also got to see it and we decided it was worth parking the car to take a photo with a simpler backyard. (Click image to see larger photo.)
I’ve never seen a gargoyle on a residential roof before, but I thought it was wonderful and worth sharing. It’s topped off by the dragon weather vane!
These can be seen along Pennsylvania Avenue in the Glenridge area of Los Gatos. Are there other homes with curious and fun art on the roofs here in town? If so, I’d love to see them!
Beautifully remodeled one bed, 1.5 bath Glenridge condo now available! Welcome home to 600 Pennsylvania Avenue #14, Los Gatos! This home is an end unit and it enjoys a good sized patio with views of the hills and the historic homes nearby.
Quick facts on the Glenridge condo at 600 Pennsylvania Av # 14
Living space 864 SF
Year built 1962
Patio features a gate, ideal for entertaining!
Extensively remodeled in 2012
HOA dues $629 per month
Close to Bachman Park
Just 1/2 mile to downtown Los Gatos!
Los Gatos Union School District
Laundry shared with just one other unit & maintained by the HOA
Offered at $899,000
The 2012 remodel (by a previous owner) included a “down to the studs” renovation for most of the unit. That prior owner remodeled the kitchen, half bath, full bath, put in double pane windows, and upgraded the electrical system as well – all with permits and finals.
More recently the owners have replaced the refrigerator and both toilets and also repainted the interior.
Want more info? Please see all the details, images, floorplan, and photos at the virtual tour.
If you drive through the Edelen, Almond Grove, Fairview Plaza, Glenridge and other older and historic Los Gatos neighborhoods, you may have wondered how far back in time these architecturally interesting properties go. What are the oldest residences in town, or close by?
Los Gatos Historic Homes
Are there Adobes?
In the Santa Clara Valley, there are a handful of old adobe homes here and there, such as the Peralta Adobe in downtown San Jose (built in 1797), and the Santa Clara Women’s Club Adobe (built in 1790), and many more. I can’t say for certain if there are any remaining 18th-19th century adobe homes in Los Gatos. If they exist the most probable properties are around the Los Gatos Saratoga border, are private, occupied homes, and have extensive additions and modifications.
Victorian Era: Gold Rush to Gem of the Foothills
When discussing historic homes in the Bay Area, the Victorian undoubtedly comes to mind. And Los Gatos has plenty! A search of county real estate records for Los Gatos homes (in town, 95030 & 95032 plus the mountains, 95033) spanning the era from 1837-1901 revealed hundreds of properties identified as Victorian construction. It displayed about about 375 in 95030, 120 in 95032, and also about 140 in 95033.
The smallest cluster of homes along Alberto Way is Las Casitas, a pretty townhome community with 18 units and abundant open space near downtown Los Gatos. Here are some quick facts about this attractive community:
The legal name of the complex is “Las Casitas IV of Los Gatos”.
Built in 1979.
This is a condo complex. Units are shaped like 2 story townhouses, but the ownership type is condominium. (Some townhomes are PUDs, Planned Unit Developments.)
The 18 units all appear to have the same floor plan: 3 bedrooms, 2.5 bathrooms, 1448 SF, laundry closet in kitchen, patio & storage closet off of living room, multiple skylights, some vaulted ceilings on the 2nd floor.
There is a little variation in the lot sizes, but only by the tiniest of fractions. All units overlook the greenbelt from the back.
Each unit is assigned a carport and storage closet at the rear of the property (near the freeway)
Las Casitas is within the Los Gatos Union School District – a big draw for home buyers. The schools appear to be Van Meter Elementary, Fisher Middle, and Los Gatos High. All are within 1 mile as the bird flies.
As of April 2021, the monthly dues are $560
The units are slightly staggered, which makes for a pleasant look, but also more privacy on the back patio.
The Glenridge neighborhood of Los Gatos s one of the most scenic residential areas anywhere in Silicon Valley. It features beautiful, custom, mostly historic homes on meandering streets. Set just above the Almond Grove neighborhood on a gentle hill it, too is close to town but with a little more altitude and better vistas.
Bachman Park is set in this area too and includes several acres alongside a creek. The park offers picnic tables, a playground, basketball courts and a large grassy field for picnics or play. A paved path follows the creek on one side of it – making a wonderful place just for strolling.
Where is the Glenridge area?
This charming older Los Gatos neighborhood is set just up the hill from the Almond Grove Historic District and adjacent to Fairview Plaza.
The Town of Los Gatos is about 11 square miles and is comprised of dozens of neighborhoods in various parts of town, with different schools, zip codes, price points, plusses and minuses. Here on the Live in Los Gatos blog there have been many, many real estate articles devoted Los Gatos neighborhoods. Below please find links to neighborhood posts with descriptions and photos, primarily on “Live in Los Gatos” but in some cases on one of my other sites.
(More neighborhoods to come as time permits – I have about 25 on my list. Want your subdivision included? Please email me and I will put it on the To Do list!)
Fairview Plaza feels like a step back in time – and in many ways, it is. This little neighborhood is so quaint and unique that it seems perfect for a movie set. Located close to downtown and equally close to huge expanses of open space, it enjoys its own park, has an interesting history and is enough off the beaten path that it goes largely undisturbed.
In 1880, Frank McCullough came to Los Gatos and bought 166 acres of prime real estate. From that land, in 1915 he donated a parcel to become a park, now Fairview Plaza Park. At one time it included playground equipment and a bird sanctuary too. Today it’s a little more congested with cars on the street, but it’s still quite pleasant. This little park is the heart of the neighborhood. Have a look at the video to get a feel for the area, then continue reading for more info on the neighborhood.
Fairview Plaza Historic District
Being an older part of town, Fairview Plaza is an official historic district for the town. It gets some special attention for this, but also some restrictions so that the character of the neighborhood is not harmed by bad remodeling or additions.
A prized part of Fairview Plaza is not actually visible from the street. Tucked behind the other homes is the Clara Huntington Perkins house, which was designed by Julia Morgan in about 1918-1919.
To get to Fairview Plaza, you have two choices. You can make use of a walkway / staircase that rises from Bayview and makes a direct connection to the neighborhood, or you can arrive there via Pennsylvania Avenue, Fairview Avenue, and then Fairview Plaza. The street is really an enormous cul-de-sac, with no “through traffic.” But unlike the cul-de-sacs of suburbia, this one is an entire community unto itself. Make a visit up there and rest a bit in the community park. You will enjoy pretty architecture but also a glimpse back in time. Enjoy!
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