Villa Felice was once a lodge and restaurant with live music, good food, and amazing views of Vasona Lake. I have fond memories of visiting there with family, friends, and on prom night.
Today the large parcel is very pretty Mediterranean style housing, with 14 townhomes in one section and 34 single family homes in the other.
In Italian, Villa Felice means “happy villa” or a happy country home. It’s appropriate that the name stay on in these two communities. The view from the bluff is sure to make visitors smile!
Where is the Villa Felice neighborhood?
These two areas are located between Winchester Boulevard and University Avenue between Vasona Terrace and Milani Court in Los Gatos 95030. The homes are accessed from Winchester Boulevard – there are no driveways or access paths from University. It has a steep embankment. This is about at the midpoint of the reservoir.
Bella Vista Village is an upscale, fairly young townhome community off of Alberto Way in Los Gatos. These 47 townhouses are close to downtown Los Gatos and offers easy access to Highway 17, Highway 9 (Los Gatos-Saratoga Road), and Los Gatos Blvd (once called Los Gatos-San Jose Road). Alberto Way is a cul-de-sac, so a plus is that there’s no through traffic here.
This whole area is at the doorstep to downtown Los Gatos and there are many things for which residents here may elect to walk or ride a bike rather than take a car. It’s an enormous benefit.
Built in 1997, the first section is Tract 8820 and consists of 34 townhouses on Cuesta de Los Gatos except for 5 on Treseder Ct . This is the area closest to Alberto Way. The second phase, completed in 1998, is Tract 8976 with just 13 homes, all of which are on Maggi Court. In the map at the right, you can see that there are two sections of Bella Vista Village.
What are the homes like at Bella Vista Village?
Because these homes are so young, they are delightfully light, bright and open. They feature double pane windows and are quiet inside, too. Outside, the looks is contemporary Craftsman style. The grounds and exteriors are well maintained and attractive. The private driveways are kept up.
Homes range from 943 SF to 1735 SF, offering 2-4 bedrooms (most are 3) with 2-3 bathrooms. All appear to be 2 story homes, though one was listed as a 3 story in the MLS. (more…)
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 that Clair and I did in 2014 to get a feel for the area, then continue reading for more info on this corner of Los Gatos.
The Glenridge and Bachman Park neighborhood of Los Gatos is 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. The other nearby neighbor is the Fairview Plaza. So much history in such a close area!
These are really two separate neighborhoods or districts, but they are similar in many ways and are directly adjacent to each other, so we are covering them together.
Bachman Park is set in in the middle of this area 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. (Bachman Park refers to both the park and its immediate neighborhood.)
Where is the Glenridge and Bachman Park neighborhood?
This charming older Los Gatos neighborhood is set just up the hill from the Almond Grove Historic District and adjacent to Fairview Plaza. (more…)
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. (more…)
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!
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