Do you love fruit -- particularly berries? If you answered in the affirmative, you will love Lucas Valley-Marinwood, where all of the street names end in "berry" (case in point: Appleberry, Blackberry, Cedarberry, Danberry, and Elderberry streets).
Lucas Valley and Marinwood are both unincorporated areas of Marin County, California. The U.S. Census Bureau lumped them together for census purposes, making them one "census-designated place" of approximately 6,100 residents (in all, at last count). Combined, the area encompasses a 5.7-square-mile swath of fertile northern California earth.
Moving to Lucas Valley-Marinwood
Around these parts, the more you know, the better prepared you will be to find property rentals that suit your needs.
Fortunately, Lucas Valley-Marin does have affordable apartments for rent outside the elite and private Lucas Valley Road area. And if you've got a canine companion, you'll be happy to learn that the area like furry friends, as such, it has an abundance of pet-friendly apartments. Also, there's a surprisingly decent assortment of all-bills-paid apartments. So whether your inclination is to hunt for studio apartments for rent, one-bedroom apartments for rent, or palatial mansions for rent, you'll find what you need in Lucas Valley-Marinwood.
When you head out to look for your pad, just make sure to bring the requisites: first and last months' rent, security deposit, and pet deposit if applicable. Also be ready to provide your credit history and proof of employment.
Lucas Valley-Marinwood Neighborhoods
Here are a few promising areas to check out when you're rental hunting in the area:
Lucas Valley: An oasis in the valley surrounded by steep hillsides and impeccable modern architecture, neighbors in this Joe Eichler-built 'hood (aka Upper Lucas Valley) watch out for one another. Neighbors are proud of their picturesque surroundings and unimpeded beauty (think buried utility lines, HOA, low-profile homes and apartment buildings, and community barbeques with mountain views). The top-ranked Dixie School is a huge draw, as is the Lucas Valley Lightening competitive swim team. This neighborhood prefers mountains over berries, and it shows in the street names (Mt. Muir, Mt. Shasta, Oak Mountain, etc).
Marinwood: Also known as Lower Lucas Valley, this area was also developed by visionary Joe Eichler. This suburban neighborhood of modern homes on hilly lots boasts Spanish-style architecture and red-tiled roofs. A stone's throw from Highway 101, you can get to San Francisco in no time. (This is the neighborhood with the berry-named streets).
The Stone: Take a guess. What are these streets named after? (Flagstone, Heatherstone, Millstone). Like the aforementioned neighborhood, the mid-century modern builder Joe Eichler is the architect. Think low-profile, high-efficiency, and energy-efficient dwellings.
Living in Lucas Valley-Marinwood
Here's a crazy, ironic fact about Lucas Valley. In the late 1970s, renowned Hollywood film director George Lucas (think "Star Wars," "Indiana Jones," and "American Graffiti") began snapping up parcels of land (in all, more than 4,700 acres) that later would become Skywalker Ranch, his own personal movie-making mecca. The ranch is located on Lucas Valley Road, of course. Here's the ironic thing: the namesake of "Lucas Valley Road" is not owner and filmmaker George. It is an obscure 19th century rancher.
In Lucas Valley-Marinwood, you are never far from the ocean and all of its attractions. Beachcombing, fishing, surfing, boating, and nature-watching are all within a short drive of your new home. On a lazy Sunday afternoon, why not head to Stinson Beach or Point Reyes Natural Seashore and watch the elephant seals frolic in the chilly surf? If you are lucky, you may spot a pod of whales migrating through.
On those days that you'd rather stick close to home, barbeques, gardening, impromptu pickup sports games, and leisurely nature strolls rule the day. Stop by the Marinwood Shopping Center, where you'll find the Marinwood Market and the community's farmers market. You will also find delicious dining nearby, including Big Jim's BBQ and La Toscana in nearby San Rafael.