The Pulse of Lafayette Real Estate

Stay informed about the latest homes for sale and real estate market in Lafayette, Moraga and Orinda, CA

Category Archives: Living in Lafayette CA

The Creative Side of Lamorinda

creative-side-lamorinda-2Whatever your child’s artistic interest – theater, dance, visual arts, or instrumental music – Lamorinda schools and a vast number of private mentors and organizations can provide the instruction, encouragement, and outstanding opportunities to help fulfill artistic dreams.

Our elementary, middle, and high schools are fortunate to be supported by groups such as Lafayette Partners in Education, The Education Foundation of Orinda, and the Moraga Education Foundation – each providing donor funding for performing arts programs, instrumental and choral music, photography and art classes, and so much more. Our dedicated and enthusiastic teachers, such as Bob Athayde, director of music education at Stanley Middle School in Lafayette, often take their students’ learning and performing to new levels, helping to instill a lifelong love of the arts.  

Outside of school, groups such as Lamorinda Theater Academy, Town Hall Theatre, and California Academy of Performing Arts (Capa) help foster budding talent. The non-profit Lamorinda Arts Council supports programs such as the Lamorinda Idol singing competition, the high school Visual Arts Competition, and Art in Public Places. We are fortunate to live in an area that so highly values artistic endeavor. Here are a few recent grads who excelled in our high school and community arts programs and took their creativity beyond the bounds of Lamorinda:

Maritza Grillo (Miramonte class of 2015): Maritza began singing in her elementary school chorus at age seven and competed in her first Lamorinda Idol competition at age eight. She is the winningest Lamorinda Idol participant to date with solo wins in 6th and 9th grade, and group wins in 8th and 10th grade. At Miramonte she pursued drama and chorus and was the lead in two musicals – Fiona in Shrek, and Rona Lisa Peretti in Putnam County Spelling Bee. She has also sung the national anthem at A’s Baseball games and Saint Mary’s basketball games. Maritza is a sophomore at Yale where she sings with an acapella group (and plays goal keeper on the women’s soccer team.)

Matt Kolb (Acalanes class of 2013): Matt started his music education with piano lessons at age seven. At Stanley Middle School, he participated in band, learning percussion while also playing piano in the jazz band. At Acalanes, he continued with both the jazz band and the wind ensemble, and in his free time worked at Lamorinda Theater Academy teaching music theory and providing piano accompaniment. A self-taught guitarist and digital audio producer, Matt started writing, producing, and recording original music during high school under the name Eventide with his friend Ben Miller. Matt currently employs his talents as a composer and producer of original music at a high-end Santa Monica sound design studio. He plans to complete his higher education towards the goal of becoming a professional record producer/songwriter.

Carolyn Moore (Acalanes class of 2013): Carolyn traces her love of acting to her involvement at age six in Town Hall Theatre’s youth program musicals. Her subsequent participation in drama, choir, improv, and acapella while at Acalanes, and her love of each, inspired her to seek a BFA degree in acting at The Theatre School at DePaul in Chicago where she is currently a senior. “The skills I learned during my time at Acalanes and in the East Bay performing community created a strong base for the performing artist I am today. My exposure to acting and improv at Acalanes have led to my current training in clowning, contact improv, and movement work. My experiences in the choral program have prompted me to pursue work in musicals, TYA (theatre for young audiences), and voiceover work as well. I could not be more grateful for the loving and talented community of artists in the Lamorinda area. Without it, I would not be who I am today.”

James Prinzi (Acalanes class of 2013): James started piano lessons at age eight, and started drums at Happy Valley Elementary School in 5th grade. He played in the Stanley concert and jazz bands for three years with Bob Athayde, and the concert and Jazz bands for four years at Acalanes where he also sang with the Acalanes Chamber singers. During high school, he also played with the Young People’s Symphony Orchestra of Berkeley and was a member of the Berkeley Jazz School Studio band, with which he toured large Jazz Festivals in Europe. Now a senior at USC’s Thornton School of Music majoring in Popular Music, James also plays in Latin and Jazz ensembles, and takes Jazz drum lessons. He has played with amazing student musicians as well as professionals throughout Los Angeles and plans to stay in LA post graduation to continue pursuing his passion for music.

Bridgette Thornton (Campolindo class of 2010): Bridgette’s interest in art took hold at age nine with her first art class – Critters and Clay – through the Moraga Recreation Department. She enrolled in art and photography classes throughout high school, during which time she also took summer ‘pre college’ courses at California College of the Arts in Oakland from which she ultimately graduated with a major in Painting and Drawing and a minor in Visual Studies. She is now a successful painter, managing and creating art for her own website: bridgettethornton.com. She also creates art for a Bay Area based interior decorating company, Serena and Lily, and has participated in pop-up shops at West Elm and Anthropologie. Bridgette encourages aspiring artists to read Outliers by Malcolm Gladwell. “This book totally formed my work ethic and thoughts about what success means as an artist; it is a must read.” She also encourages young artists to be bold: “Do not be afraid to get your artwork out there. If you have a favorite clothing store or café, don’t hesitate; ask the manager if you can hang your work up for sale. It will change your life.” 

Lafayette Coffee Talk

dana-green-team-coffeeIf you’re like most coffee drinkers, you have a go-to spot to grab your morning caffeine fix and/or your afternoon pick-me-up. You know exactly what you’re getting at your favorite place – a mocha with just the right amount of whip, or a perfectly flavored salted caramel latte. If you’re enough of a regular that the barista has your drink ready before you’ve even ordered, maybe it’s time to step out of your coffee comfort zone and shake things up a bit. With so many coffee options now in Lafayette, and with pumpkin spice latte season approaching, it might be fun to try something new. You can always go back to your favorite haunt (rest assured that venerable Peet’s and mainstay Starbucks are here to stay) or maybe you’ll find a new place to call your own. Here are a few venues to consider:

Coffee Shop: Lafayette’s newest player in the coffee game is located in what was formerly the Art Room, across from Chow on Lafayette Circle. Featuring at least 10 different roasters from all over the United States (including general manager Nick’s personal roast – Zolo), Coffee Shop baristas recommend their seasonally changing ‘local favorites.’ When we visited, ‘Minted Iced Cold Brew,’ and ‘Coconut Orange Iced Latte’ graced the menu. We suspect that pumpkin will soon be a featured ingredient. And if you desire a little something more in your cup o’ joe, Coffee Shop lets you ‘spike’ it with an assortment of liquors and liqueurs.

Panache Caffe: Located next to 360 Burrito, across from Trader Joe’s, locally-owned Panache has been an under-the-radar java gem for the past ten years. Serving only delicious and rich Italian coffees (Illy and Umbria), Panache is actually best known for its tapioca drinks, and is the only place locally to find them. (Tapioca balls are made fresh, in-house, every hour.) The matcha chai, made with the authentic Japanese green tea powder, is also a customer favorite, as is the masala chai. Everything at Panache is homemade and made from scratch, including the incredible blueberry scones, which beg for a creamy cappuccino accompaniment.

Papillon Quality Gourmet Coffees: Familiar to nearly every Lafayette resident who has needed a quiet and convenient place for a small meeting, Papilion, at 67 Lafayette Circle, is akin to a community living room. It’s hard not to run into someone you know at this established coffee shop. Free wi-fi and ample seating are pluses. You’ll find a full menu of the usual brews and lattes including customer favorites such as the rich and chocolaty mocha and the icy and refreshing mocha frost.

Sideboard: Sister restaurant to the ultra popular Danville location, Sideboard recently moved into a space adjacent to Plaza Park. Serving Sight Glass, Four Barrel, and Temple coffees, Sideboard brews each cup individually. Choose from eight different varietals, in either ‘pour over’ or French press, and enjoy in house, or to-go. A particular customer favorite is the New Orleans iced coffee: cold brew, chicory, whole milk, and sugar. Perfect for the upcoming warm Indian-summer days of fall for which Lafayette is so well-known.

Cabernets, Chardonnays, and Zins! Oh My!

Wine Tasting in Sonoma and NapaIt’s easy to take for granted our proximity to the Napa and Sonoma Valleys, where some of the world’s best wine is made, and where people travel from all over the globe to sample the area’s treasures. If you haven’t ventured north recently, this is a great time to explore. The weather is nearly perfect (but then again, it almost always is in Northern California) and the summer crowds bring out the showmanship in your wine country hosts. But with more than 600 wineries throughout Napa and Sonoma, creating an itinerary can be daunting. You can simply hit the road and take your chances (though some high-end boutique wineries require reservations) or, let us guide you to some of our favorites.

These are a few of the wines that we at the Dana Green Team dream about. Book a visit – each of these wineries provides a great guest experience – or look for these at your local wine merchant and enjoy them in the comfort of your home where you can entertain your friends with these insights:

Alpha Omega Rose – Alpha Omega’s philanthropic owners Robin and Michelle Baggett are also the owners of Tolosa Wines in San Luis Obispo, where Robin played college baseball and is a member of the Cal Poly Athletic Hall of Fame. Cal Poly’s baseball stadium is named after him! 

Bernardus Chardonnay – We venture to Carmel for this one – another amazing wine territory that deserves exploration. This well-priced chardonnay can often be found at Costco, but treat yourself to a tasting room visit in the Carmel Valley to truly experience its magic. If you’re feeling indulgent, book at stay at nearby Bernardus Lodge, formerly of the same ownership group as the winery.

Frank Family ChardonnayProprietor Rich Frank is a former Disney executive; he served as Chairman of Walt Disney Television and Telecommunications and was President of Walt Disney Studios, overseeing the development of The Disney Channel, before dedicating himself to wine. His beautiful wife Leslie Miller is a former ABC7 reporter in Los Angeles, and is now host of “MORE One Life to Live” and “MORE All My Children” for The Online Network.

Hall Napa Valley: all the Cabernets – As much an art museum as winery, Hall is the home of the enormous silver rabbit sculpture that leaps skyward along Highway 29. “Bunny Foo Foo,” as he’s named by proprietor Kathryn Walt Hall, shows his sense of humor when he’s decked-out for various holidays in festive gear.

Patz & Hall Chardonnay – Winemaker James Hall (no relation to the other winemaking Halls) and sales manager Donald Patz bonded over their shared enthusiasm for rich and compelling wines while working together at Flora Springs Winery and Vineyards. They joined with Anne Moses and Heather Patz in 1988 to establish Patz & Hall.

Rombauer ZinfandelWhat can we say that you don’t already know about this luscious wine? With aromas of blackberry, boysenberry and sweet vanilla, Rombauer Zin tastes like a freshly baked pie, of which one piece will simply not do. Yum!

Walt Blue Jay PinotWalt Wines, based in Sonoma’s beautiful Alexander Valley, produces beautiful small lot wines and is owned by Kathryn Walt Hall and Craig Hall of the previously mentioned Hall Napa Valley. In fact, Walt wines are made in the state-of-the-art winemaking facilities at Hall. Kathryn Hall is proud to follow in the footsteps of her parents, Bob and Dolores Walt, who were dedicated winegrowers.

Lafayette, CA: Home of Destination-Worthy Cuisine

Chow Lafayette CA


With destination-worthy restaurants claiming territory in our corner of the Bay Area, Lafayette residents no longer feel the need to venture through the tunnel in search of quality cuisine. Lafayette has itself become the destination. From the west end of Mt. Diablo Blvd. to the east, one can find restaurant variety and caliber such as that in San Francisco, or in Alice’s Berkeley wonderland. Our town’s passionate restaurateurs and talented chefs might have touched down anywhere, but they chose Lafayette. How lucky are we? Let us count the ways:

  1. Our own gourmet ghetto: Berkeley might take claim for the term ‘gourmet ghetto’ – the Chez Panisse-anchored area of Shattuck and Vine – but Lafayette has its own version, fueled by skilled chefs and hospitable hosts. Lafayette Circle has become the go-to spot for a quick meal, a happy hour cocktail, or an indulgent celebration. With American Kitchen and The Cooperage American Grill flanking cornerstone Chow, and with each spot offering appealing al fresco dining, warm Lafayette evenings take on the appearance of a large, spirited block party.
  2. We’ve conquered SF. Now…to Lafayette! With two extremely successful locations in San Francisco, Roam Artisan co-owners Joshua Spiegelman and Lynn Gorfinkle considered a number of Bay Area sites for their third gourmet burger location. Lafayette, with its concentration of families and professionals who care about quality food and ingredients, was an easy choice for them. And when their friend Robyn Sue Fisher was seeking a fourth site for her nitrogen-made ice cream, Spiegelman and Gorfinkle suggested she and Smitten become their neighbor.
  3. Try them all! Can’t decide where to make your dinner reservation? Try small bites from a multitude of eateries during the Lafayette Chamber of Commerce’s Taste of Lafayette restaurant walk. Held each spring, this community event allows guests to meander Mt. Diablo Blvd. and side streets while sampling delectable offerings.
  4. Accountability: Many of Lafayette’s restaurateurs live here in addition to working here and thus have greater accountability to their friends and neighbors. When not overseeing their celebrated Metro Lafayette, Jack Moore and Erica Pringsheim Moore can be spotted at their son’s track meets. Seventh generation Californian and Lafayette resident Julie Mitchell and her partner Erik Peterson are found most nights at their popular Rancho Cantina (try their margarita!) And at Rustic Tavern, locals Gary and Tressa Rust are a partnership made in heaven – he works the kitchen and she handles front-of-house.
  5. Variety: In the mood for pizza? What kind? Thin crust, Chicago-style, or flatbread? Find them all in Lafayette. How about Chinese? Uncle Yu’s has manned its Oak Hill Rd. location for decades. Sushi? The tiny and popular Blue Gingko serves some of the best, as does Oyama Sushi at the other end of Mt. Diablo. If it’s a burrito you desire, Lafayette has you covered. From Casa Gourmet Burritos, to El Charro and El Jarro (and several in between) it will take you weeks to discover them all. But now that you’ve chosen Lafayette as your new home, you’ve got the time. Lucky you.

Our 5 Favorite Features of 1030 Dolores Drive, Lafayette, CA 94549

1030 Dores Dr


1.    Proximity to Downtown Lafayette. This traditional single-story is located within steps to downtown Lafayette where boutique shops, Michelin-rated restaurants, hometown cafes, and a variety of grocery stores await. 

2. Incredible Curb Appeal. Great Indoor/Outdoor Lifestyle. The indoor/outdoor flow of the home is amazing & begins with an inviting front yard featuring a white split-rail fence, charming front porch, level lawn and mature landscape. It then continues in the back with an oversized deck with bench seating ideal for entertaining, another level lawn, hot tub, beautiful oaks, a creek-side setting and an idyllic tree swing. Dolres D

3. Planked Ceilings. The spacious living room and the dining/family room combo both feature dramatic pitched, open-beam white ceilings.

4. Bedroom Retreats. The master suite features French doors leading to the backyard along with an updated en suite full bath with a stall shower. Two secondary bedrooms share the updated hall bathroom with dual sinks, a classic white subway tile backsplash and an elegant marble vanity.Dolres Dr

5. Indoor Updates and Amenities. A stone, wood-burning fireplace, newer mounted flat screen TV, and picture windows with plantation shutters adorn the living room. The remodeled kitchen features granite counters and stainless appliances. The interior was painted and carpeted in June 2016. Additionally, there is recessed lighting and an interior laundry closet with utility closet and built-in storage.

Gear Up for Dancing and Music In Lafayette Plaza Park!

Join us for beautiful summer evenings of dancing, music making,

and mingling in our wonderful community of Lafayette!

The below events are fun for all ages, families, or a casual date night.

We hope to see you there!

The Big Jangle Band

On the evening of June 17th a local favorite, The Big Jangle Band, will take to the Lafayette Plaza Park stage from 6:30 – 8:30 p.m. as the latest act in the Lafayette’s Chamber of Commerce free summer series ‘Rock The Plaza.’ The Big Jangle Band is known for performing rocking tributes to Tom Petty and The Heartbreakers.

Here is a sample of what to expect:

Make Music Day

Have you ever dreamed about singing or playing an instrument in a live band? If the answer is yes then Lafayette’s take on Make Music Day will be your golden opportunity. On June 21st Lafayette-Rock-The-Plaza-Posterfrom 6:00 – 8:30 p.m. you can join The Big Jangle Band in the Plaza to sing or play an instrument in a song of your choosing. For more information on how to sign up, click here.

If your intent is just to listen, treat yourself to dining out — many local restaurants will feature live music on the night of June 21st.

Lamorinda Idol

There will be a showcase of Lamorinda’s Idol finalists next Friday, June 24th, from 6:30 – 8:30 p.m. in the Plaza. With our top local voices spanning grades K-12 on display, this glimpse into our local youths’ talent will most certainly impress. This will be your best chance to watch our finalists before the winners are crowned in September!


Insiders’ Tips

We recommend bringing a blanket, a picnic, and your dancing shoes! Grab a bucket of the famous fried chicken from Lafayette’ newest restaurant, Sideboard and bring it with you. If you’ve been to the concerts before, please share your favorite tips with those who are new to the community.

 

Lafayette-Plaza-Park

Additional Information

All events are free of charge. Lafayette Plaza Park is located at the intersection of Mount Diablo Blvd. and Moraga Rd. with limited parking available on Golden Gate Way. For more information on any of these events you can visit the Lafayette Chamber of Commerce Website or call 925-284-7404.

5 Ways to Keep Your Fingers on the Pulse of Lafayette’s Real Estate Market

Whether you’re a home-buyer, or a home-seller, success in a competitive real estate market depends on staying informed. Here are Dana Green Team Sneak Peak 5 simple ways to keep up with the latest in Lafayette’s real estate market news.

  1. Subscribe to Sneak Peek. Sneak Peek subscribers receive news directly in their email inbox regarding:
  • Pocket Listings that are not expected to ever go on the MLS.
  • Exclusive previews of homes before they go on the MLS.
  • New listings that just hit the MLS.
  1. Sign Up for Dana’s Blog. At Home in Lafayette provides an insiders view of real estate trends, housing news, and features all of Dana’s listings. At Home in Lafayette also offers design tips and community news. Blogs are published weekly — you can read the articles on the website, or have them delivered via email.
  1. Follow Dana Green Team on Social Media. If you’re looking for up to the minute information, but don’t want to receive the emails, social media is the solution for you. Dana Green Team is active on Facebook, Twitter, Google+, and YouTube.
  1. Visit DanaGreenTeam.com. If you’re new to Lamorinda, or want to explore new areas, you can get an overview of the Lafayette lifestyle and varied neighborhood options by watching Dana’s Neighborhood Gallery videos.
  1. Give us a call. There’s no substitute, for a one-on-one conversation. If we can help you in any way, please call the office at (925) 339-1918, or email Dana directly at: Dana@DanaGreenTeam.com.

How Often Can You Have Your Cake and Eat it Too?

3654 Happy Valley RdEarlier this spring, we announced a unique opportunity in Happy Valley. 3654 Happy Valley Road, Lafayette, CA, which has two lots and endless possibilities.

Since we first listed these two parcels for sale, together, Parcel B, a classic, well-maintained home and property, has become available for purchase on its own!

This classic Happy Valley Estate was built in 1947; it has 4 bedrooms and 3.5 bathrooms. The 3,139 square foot house is nestled on a 1.41-acre pancake flat lot.

Parcel A is a vacant lot that sits on 1.01-acres.

You can purchase the house alone, or you can purchase the house with the adjoining lot — the choice is yours!

We encourage you to explore the many possibilities this home and property present. Both parcels will be available to view this Sunday, June 4th, from 1-4pm.

Lafayette Juniors Kitchen Tour in its 17th Year!

Lafayette Kitchen Tour 2016Established in 1953, the Lafayette Juniors is an organization of women dedicated to promoting social welfare, education, and civic improvement in Lafayette and the surrounding communities.

This organization allows members to experience the joy of giving to others and in return, gain long-lasting friendships as well as a stronger connection to the community. Their primary fundraising event, the Lafayette Juniors Kitchen Tour, has become an overwhelming success and is now running in its seventeenth year.

Dana Green, former president of the club created and implemented this annual event.  According to her, “It is extremely gratifying to see so many talented and diverse women join together to promote and strengthen our community.”Lafayette-kitchen-tour-2016

The Lafayette Juniors Kitchen Tour is host to six beautiful and distinctive kitchens. The tour highlights Lafayette’s distinctive and sought after neighborhoods: Happy Valley, Downtown Lafayette, Hidden Oaks, and Springhill. Local vendors are featured along with a wide array of color schemes, interior design themes, and architectural styles. Tickets include a gourmet-boxed lunch provided by Huckleberry Kitchen.

This year, the Kitchen Tour will be held on May 14th. The tour has become an annual Lafayette tradition that many look forward to. The mild May weather, incredible kitchens, and eager attendees make this event a success year after year!

Lafayette-Kitchen-tour-2016Each year Lafayette Juniors select different charities to donate to. This year’s tour beneficiaries are: Youth Homes, Diablo Ballet’s PEEK Outreach Program, Food Bank of Contra Costa and Solano, and Lamorinda Spirit Van. Each of these non-profit organizations provides services for children, families and seniors in Contra Costa and neighboring East Bay counties.

The tour tends to sell out every year, so be sure and purchase your tickets soon. For more information on the Lafayette Juniors, please visit their website.

*The kitchens shown here are from Dana Green’s Featured Listings and are not part of the 2016 Kitchen Tour. 

Our 5 Favorite Features of 600 Sky Hy Circle, Lafayette, CA

600-Sky-Hy-Circle-Lafayette-CA

5 Bedroom | 3 Bathroom | 2598 Sq. Ft. | .24-Acre Parcel | Built in 1976


  1. Optimal Location. Nestled in a private enclave of 29 homes, the gated neighborhood of Sky Hy Ranch is known for its sense of small town living. The neighborhood is ideal for dog walkers and outdoor play! 600 Sky Hy Circle sits on a pristine corner parcel. The property is surrounded by rolling hills and grazing cattle and is located minutes from downtown Lafayette and Moraga.
  2. Comfortable Common Rooms. The spacious living room has picturesque floor-to-ceiling windows that overlook the surrounding hills, and a beautiful stone gas fireplace. The family room, has built-in cabinetry and bookcase. The family room features a brick gas fireplace and sliding doors to the back patio.
  3. Storage Galore. 600 Sky Hy Circle has an interior laundry room with built-in cabinetry and a walk-in storage pantry. There is also an attached 3-car garage with built-in cabinetry and attic storage.
  4. Delightful Exterior Amenities. 600 Sky Hy Circle has wonderful curb appeal and front yard views of the surrounding hills and pasture beyond. From the backyard, there are sunset and skyline views. There is a level lawn, brick patios, a relaxing fountain, and a gated area for gardening or play. The property has a gorgeous variety of plants and shrubs including roses, climbing fruitless pear, hydrangeas, gardenias, and Meyer lemon trees.
  5. HOA Benefits. Members of the Sky Hy Ranch community enjoy common area maintenance, street sweeping, and security gate maintenance.

What is the Source of the ‘Happy’ in Happy Valley?

Lafayette Tower

 

What is it about Happy Valley that makes it a happy place to live? Is it the glorious proliferation of golden daffodils that pop-up on street corners each spring? Is it the white twinkle lights that adorn the estate gardens of Happy Valley Road, lighting our way on on a dark winter evening? Is it the sight of young children skipping to Happy Valley School each morning? The ‘happy’ in Happy Valley is certainly derived from all of these things, and so much more.

Happy Valley is a highly desired Lafayette neighborhood, offering some of the most prestigious addresses in town, if not the entire East Bay. And though it is the locale of choice for several titans of varied Bay Area industries, their decisions to live in Happy Valley are often made based on the neighborhood’s understated elegance and it’s ‘under-the-radar’ nature. Happy Valley is a live-and-let-live community. Come Saturday morning, as residents find commonality in their requisite baseball caps and college-pride sweatshirts, each may find him/herself standing next to a well-known CEO or MLB player while waiting in line at Millie’s for that perfect piece of butter-slathered coffee cake. Here are a few other reasons that Happy Valley is worth a look:

  • Proximity: Happy Valley is centrally located to – everything! Each end of the main thoroughfare connects you quickly and easily to the freeway. In Happy Valley, you are close to BART, the beloved Oakwood GymLafayette Reservoir, hiking and biking trails, the luxurious Oakwood Athletic Club, and most importantly, downtown retail. Need a late night ice-cream fix? Lafayette’s many gourmet eateries and
    grocery stores are minutes away.
  • Variety: Happy Valley boasts eclectic architectural styles among its mostly custom estate abodes; there is nothing ‘cookie-cutter’ in this neighborhood. You’ll find craftsman homes, mid-century modern masterpieces, and European style manses on a wide selection of parcel sizes. Find your bliss with a traditional rancher on the valley floor, or climb to the top of the foothills to find panoramic views. Choose one of the many tucked-away side streets that offer close proximity to neighbors, or select a gated estate with private grounds.
  • Ambience: Despite rapid growth in surrounding areas, Happy Valley has somehow managed to retain a semi-rural and old-fashioned feel. The lots here are spacious and spread out, leaving residents room to breathe. This pastoral vibe is refreshing and relaxing. Though close to everything that Lafayette – and the entire Bay Area – offers, Happy Valley provides an urbane escape where everyday stresses are minimized.Happy Valley School Wall
  • Happy Valley School: Those with young children will find a warm and welcoming school community at Happy Valley Elementary, home of the Huskies. One of 335 schools across the nation recognized by the U.S. Secretary of Education as a National Blue Ribbon School, Happy Valley Elementary has an enrollment of approximately 520 students in grades K through 5, and a committed and caring parent community. A new Happy Valley Road sidewalk allows children and families to safely walk, or skip, to school – and that’s a sight that makes everyone happy.

There are Endless Possibilities at 3134 Indian Way

4 Bed / 2 Bath | 2468 Sq. Ft. +/- | .31 Acres

List price: $1,275,000


3134 Indian Way, Lafayette, CAMove in and create your dream home in this 1970’s contemporary with a  private creek-side setting. 3134 Indian Way  is located on a desirable and rarely available Burton Valley cul-de-sac.

The home is positioned in the heart of Burton Valley – a quintessential “trick-or-treat” neighborhood where lemonade stands and dog walkers dot the streets.

Residents enjoy easy access to Burton Valley Elementary (only a few short blocks away), Rancho Swim & Tennis Club, Las Trampas Pool, the loved bike trail, the Lafayette Community Center and Park, horse stables, and local commute routes.

The interior features large spaces including a formal living and dining room with vaulted, open-beam ceiling, stone and wood fireplace, beautiful picture windows, newer carpets (February 2016), and Andersen sliding doors to the back deck.3134 Indian Way-Lafayette-CA

The home’s kitchen over looks the back deck and includes granite counters, many stainless steel appliances (2009) and a casual dining nook with views of the central garden atrium.

The family room has parquet hardwood floors, built-in bookcases, octagon window, and Andersen French windows and sliding door to the back deck.

The private master suite features dual closets, separate vanity, and updated bathroom with a stone stall shower.  Three secondary bedrooms share the hall bathroom featuring dual sinks, tile floors and built-in storage shelves and cabinet.

Additional highli3134 Indian Way-3 Lafayette, CAghts include hardwood floors, interior (February 2016) and exterior (2013) paint, newer carpet (February 2016), three newer Velux skylights (2016), updated light fixtures (dining room, hallway and bedrooms), spacious interior laundry/utility room with built-in cabinetry and shelves, and exterior door providing convenient access to the backyard, and two-car garage with automatic door opener (2011) and huge storage loft.

The recently enhanced exterior, with private setting is surrounded by beautiful Laurel trees perfect for entertaining, outdoor dining, play, and gardening.

The large redwood deck (2013) has access from both the dining and family rooms and newer front and backyard landscaping (2016) including automatic sprinklers, fresh landscape, lawn and bark.

Installed in 2016, the Timberline fiberglass shingle roof provides a transferable limited lifetime warranty and a transferable 10-year workmanship warranty.

We encourage you to explore all this home and sought-after Burton Valley location have to offer. Contact us today, to schedule a viewing.

Introducing our New Map of Lafayette!

The roads may not be paved with yellow brick, but the charming neighborhoods of Lafayette form the East Bay’s version of an Emerald City. From the pastoral, private estates of Happy Valley to the tree-lined, ranch house cul-de-sacs of Burton Valley, Lafayette offers its residents a welcome retreat from the urban energy that surrounds this Shangri-La.

Though we’ve simplified the topography just a bit, this map provides a generalized view of Lafayette and its distinct neighborhoods that are easily defined by our four elementary schools. While each quadrant features a distinct personality, the four unite to make a community that is truly greater than the sum of its parts.

We’ve featured a few highlights on our map – the places in town that provide a social and communal hub. The Lafayette Reservoir, for instance, is where you will find friends and family strolling the bucolic 2.7 mile paved path. You’ll know it’s spring when Lafayette Little League’s Buckeye Fields come alive with spirited youth swinging for the fences. And our 7.6 mile Lafayette-Moraga regional trail is shared by bikers, runners, and dog-walkers.

Use our map as a starting point for discovering Lafayette, then give us a call. We can’t wait to show you the real thing.

Lafayette, CA. Map

Bay Area Cities Rank Among Best in U.S. for Public Transit

BARTOne of the many reasons local residents love living in Lafayette, Moraga and Orinda, also known as Lamorinda. is the close proximity to San Francisco, and in particular, the ease of getting in and out of the city.  Our super-convenient BART system has been recognized nationally as one of the best public transit systems. SmartAsset just ranked the San Francisco Bay Area second in the nation as outlined in Pacific Union’s article, Bay Area Cities Rank Among Best in U.S. for Public Transit. We frequently hear our new buyers’ reservations about moving from SF, Oakland and Berkeley because of commute concerns, but once here, and using BART, they are so happy they moved to Lamorinda.  Most feel they get the best of both worlds, the experience the hustle and bustle only major urban centers can provide, but also enjoy the peace, quiet, scenery, and excellent schools Lamorinda provides.

Just Listed! 501 Winchester Court Lafayette, CA.

 

501 Winchester Court, Lafayette, CA

 

5 Bedroom | 4.5 Bath | 3798 ± Sq. Ft. | .39 Acre Lot

List Price: $2,225,000

Open House: Sun.  Feb. 28, 1 – 4 p.m.

Offers Due: Tues. March 1,  12 p.m.

 

 

501 Winchester Court is located in the sought-after, gated Baywood development. This custom home features a natural backdrop where Briones Regional Park is literally an extension of the backyard through a rare, private gate!

The 86-home community provides a close-knit environment for all ages to enjoy and is known to be one of Lafayette’s best “trick-or-treat” neighborhoods.  To top it off, participate in the local school bus program for transportation to Lafayette K-8 schools!

Renovated in 2014 & 2015, this charming traditional features clean lines, extensive millwork, exceptional finishes, tall ceilings, sun-filled rooms, and seamless indoor/outdoor flow.

The living room has a beautiful white wood planked ceiling, built-in cabinetry and built-in speakers. The adjacent dining room includes a white wood planked ceiling, exterior access through French doors and built-in speakers. 

501 Winchester Court, Lafayette, CA.

The oversized  kitchen is an entertainer’s delight. The kitchen features sliding doors to the backyard, a walk-in pantry, marble counters, a white subway tile backsplash, high-end stainless appliances (Dacor double ovens, Wolf 6-burner gas stove with hood), island with breakfast bar, large casual dining nook, and a built-in desk.

With gorgeous slate flooring, the family room also has sliders to the backyard, coffered ceiling, gas fireplace, and custom built-ins.

The upstairs master retreat features a coffered ceiling, Briones views, private balcony, walk-in closet with custom organizers, and en suite full bath with two sinks and an oversized stall shower with dual rainfall showerheads.

Three secondary bedrooms and two updated hall baths are also upstairs along with a large laundry room with storage and sink. An additional secondary bedroom with built-in closet organizers and desk along with an adjacent full bath is perfectly positioned on the main level for added flexibility.

Other highlights of the recent renovation include: smooth walls, hardwood flooring, formal front entry with custom Dutch front door, solar window coverings and plantation shutters, water efficient toilets, Haiku ceiling fans with LED lighting (4 bedrooms + family room), Velux solar powered retractable skylights, solar reflective tile roof and rain gutters, and an additional layer of attic insulation.

There is a four-car tandem garage with electric car charger and an additional “mud” area with storage closet and 1/2 bath with a door that leads to the backyard for convenient poolside use.

501 Winchester Court, Lafayette, CA.This property has wonderful corner lot with curb appeal, slate front porch, front and back lawns, remodeled pool with SunPower solar heating system and automatic cover, rose garden, and scenic views of the rolling hills.  To top it off, Briones Regional Park open space can be accessed through a private back gate where endless hiking, running, horseback riding, and nature viewing opportunities await.

It is ideally located to multiple BART stations, Hwy. 24/680, and top-rated Lafayette and Acalanes Unified schools, this home offers the best of city living in a private community setting.

 HOA dues are $500/quarter and include common area maintenance (including community mailboxes and road paving), gate maintenance, video surveillance, & management fees.

Just Listed! 599 Sky Hy Circle, Lafayette, CA.


Sky Hy Ranch Contemporary with Views!

4 Bedroom+ Bonus | 3.5 Bathroom | 3025 ± sq. ft. I .42 acre lot

Listed at $1,645,000

Open Houses: Sunday, Feb. 21, 2016, 1:00 PM – 4:00 PM &  Sunday, Feb. 28, 2016, 1:00 PM – 4:00 PM

599 Sky Hy CircleSurrounded by rolling hills and grazing cattle, the Sky Hy neighborhood is known for its sense of small town living making it ideal for dog walkers and outdoor play!

Located minutes from downtown Lafayette and Moraga, this convenient location offers easy access to shops, restaurants and commute routes, and feeds to award-winning Lafayette Elementary School, Stanley Middle School and Campolindo High School.

The formal living/dining great room showcases a wall of windows to enjoy the beautiful views, a pitched, wood-beam ceiling, built-in cabinetry, gas-burning fireplace with Crema Marfil stone surround, and convenient bar/buffet.

Remodeled in 2014, the eat-in kitchen features granite counters, custom stone backsplash, recessed LED lighting, stainless appliances (double Dacor ovens, Dacor 5-burner gas stove with Zephyr hood, warming drawer, Bosch dishwasher), and a casual dining area with an Andersen sliding door to the upper deck.599 Sky Hy

The private bedroom wing is located downstairs and includes a central family room, master suite, junior suite with updated full bath with limestone floor, and 2 additional large bedrooms (one that is currently used as an office) that share the hall bath.

The beautiful master suite includes large picture windows framing the views, sliding doors to a private deck and remodeled bath with dual sinks, Crema Marfil stone counters, hand-painted silk wallpaper, heated travertine marble floors, shower with rainfall shower head and limestone floor, hand blown glass sconces, and a large walk-in closet with California Closets organizers. 599 Sky Hy

Additional interior highlights include hand-scraped Hickory floors, Andersen doors and windows, a renovated ½ bath with a stunning glass tile backsplash and travertine marble floor, remodeled bathrooms with Graff fixtures, stone counters and limestone and marble flooring, crown molding, hand-blown glass light fixtures, and dual-zone HVAC.

Excluded from the home’s square-footage is a +/- 900 bottle wine cellar (double insulated) and an over-sized finished storage/bonus room that could double as home gym, art studio or game room – you decide!

The serene parcel borders only one neighboring property offering wonderful privacy and includes +/- 1,500 square-feet of multi-level redwood decking great for entertaining and outdoor living, an eight-person Jacuzzi hot tub, mature trees, rose garden, and terraced land with a gate that leads to a path to downtown Lafayette and K-8 school.

HOA fees are $193 a month and include common area maintenance, street sweeping, reserves, and security gate maintenance.

Just listed! 11 Leslyn Lane, Lafayette, California

11-Leslun-Lane-FrontIt’s your lucky day! Due to no fault of its own, 11 Lesyn Lane is back on market. This property appraised and inspected beautifully.

We encourage you to see this rare, close-in Reliez Valley contemporary with stunning views. The house features a family-friendly floorplan and plenty of space for everyone to enjoy.

Located on a private lane shared by 8 homes, this rare 4.37-acre usable, park-like Reliez Valley parcel provides a dream setting with level land and views just 20 miles East of San Francisco and minutes to top-rated Lafayette schools (Springhill Elementary, 11-Leslyn-NEW-LR-1Stanley Middle School and Acalanes High School – check availability), downtown and commute routes.

In addition, enjoy panoramic views of Mount Diablo and Briones Regional Park and wonderful natural light from dramatic walls of glass.11-Leslyn-Yard

Details

List price: $2,635,000

5 Bedrooms / 5.5 Baths

Open Sunday February 14th, 2016, 1 – 4 p.m.

Just Listed! 3683 Happy Valley Road, Lafayette, California

This newly renovated & expanded Happy Valley Estate3683-Happy-Valley offers a rare combination of views, terraced level land and privacy. Highlights include: easy indoor/outdoor living, a flexible floorplan and amazing proximity to top schools, BART and commute routes. The +1.24 acre property is fully-landscaped, has a pool, level lawn, play area, vintage grass tennis court, and 3-stall barn.3683-Happy-Valley-Dining-Room

The property is set behind private gates in the prestigious neighborhood of Happy Valley and features clean lines, beautiful light and views through perfectly placed windows, high ceilings, incredible use of wainscoting and molding, and many custom elements throughout.

A perfect setting for young families, Happy Valley’s elementary school is one of 335 schools across United States to be recognized by the U.S. Secretary of Education as a 2015 National Blue Ribbon School!

Here are additional details about this beautiful home.

3683-Happy-Valley-Backyard

  • 5 bedrooms + 1 office
  • 3.5 bathrooms
  • 4,574 Square feet
  • List price: $3,595,000
  • Open house: Jan 31

 

Please contact us today to schedule a showing for you.

 

 

Celebrating 12 Days of Christmas in Lafayette

For the holidays, we thought it would be fun to share some of our Lafayette favorites. We had fun putting together our “Twelve Days of Christmas” to share with you.

 

Collage of images used for 12 Days of Christmas in Lafayette CA

 

We hope you enjoyed our daily posts on Facebook. In case you missed any, we are repeating all twelve, below:

On the first day of Christmas, we shared our love of …  an old-fashioned holiday celebration in Lafayette Plaza Park!

 

1st Day of Christmas

On the 2nd day of Christmas, we shared our love of … the twinkle lights and banners that line Mt. Diablo!

 

2nd Day of Christmas

On the 3rd day of Christmas, we shared our love of … shopping for girlfriends at Farmyard Darlings, Gypsea Bungalow and Indigo & Poppy!

 

3rd Day of Christmas

On the 4th day of Christmas, we shared our love of … Lafayette’s four most famous trees!

 

4th Day of Christmas

On the 5th day of Christmas, we shared our love of … five fabulous historical sites in Lafayette!

 

5th Day of Christmas

On the 6th day of Christmas, we shared our love of … the amazing teachers at Lafayette’s six public schools!

 

6th Day of Christmas

On the 7th day of Christmas, we shared our love of … seven favorite 2015 Town Hall Theatre children’s productions!

 

7th Day of Christmas

On the 8th day of Christmas, we shared our love of …Venture Goods, and the eight California brands they offer that we love. (Stop by to identify these awesome brands!)

 

8th Day of Christmas

On the 9th day of Christmas, we shared our love of … the nine daily varieties of cupcakes at Susie Cakes on Mt. Diablo!

 

9th Day of Christmas

On the 10th day of Christmas, we shared our love of … the City’s top 10 ecological reasons to love Lafayette!

 

10th Day of Christmas

On the 11th day of Christmas, we shared our love of … eleven amazing Lafayette trails!

 

11th Day of Christmas

On the 12th day of Christmas, we shared our love of … walking to lunch along Lafayette’s Restaurant Row where we are frequent fliers at Lafayette’s top restaurants. (Ask about our favorite menu items!)

 

12th Day of Christmas

 

Saying Thanks: It’s a Wonderful Life in Lafayette Holiday Event 2015

Thank you to everyone who attended Friday’s 2015 “It’s a Wonderful Life in Lafayette” community holiday event and tree lighting. 


Lafayette-Holiday-Event-2015-collage-1

We love working on this annual event with Branagh Development and the Lafayette Chamber, and sharing it with you! We hope you had as much fun on Friday as we did.

Lafayette-Holiday-Event-2015-collage-2

A special thank-you goes out to the many individuals and local groups who donated time and energy to make this Lafayette holiday tradition such a success this year. 

Lafayette-Holiday-Event-2015-collage-5

I was particularly pleased to see so many of our local youth of all ages actively engaged as volunteers (Troop 204 and NCL) and performers (Stanley Middle School, Lafayette Nursery School, the Contra Costa Children’s Chorus, Lamorinda Theatre Academy, Town Hall Theatre Kids, and Bradley School of Music).

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 Lafayette-Holiday-Event-2015-collage-4

I hope you agree – it truly is a wonderful life in Lafayette!

Happy holidays.

Dana Green is an award winning Realtor. Born and raised in Lafayette, CA, she continues to live in Lafayette with her husband and children. This blog focuses on topics of interest to people who live in Lafayette and its neighboring cities -- from real estate to lifestyle. Please... join the conversation!

We welcome your comments, questions and opinions. If you'd like to talk more privately with Dana, you can reach her at
Dana@DanaGreenTeam
(925) 339-1918