One of the great things about Orinda is the fantastic weather. However, if you are coming from out of state, it is important to remember that Orinda is in Northern California, which has a substantially distinct climate when compared to the more well-known and stereotypical "California weather", which is associated with infrequent rain, lots of sunshine, and mild seasons. That stereotypical weather is actually only common in Los Angeles, San Diego, and parts of Southern California. Despite the fact that Orinda doesn't have Southern California weather, the city still enjoys relatively mild seasons, especially when compared to the rest of the country.
If you are interested in renting an apartment in Orinda, it is important to visit the city first so that you can get a stronger understanding of which part of the city is best for you. Just as important, the types of rental homes and apartment complexes vary significantly in style and price depending on which part of Orinda you are in, so be sure to visit in person before making a final decision.
Finally, Orinda is a great place to get great value on rental homes. After the national 2008 real estate crash, Orinda, whose real estate prices are higher than many other parts of the country, experienced a significant dip in real estate values. Although the real estate market quickly stabilized, the market never fully recovered, making Orinda more affordable now than it has been since before the initial technology boom in the 1990s.
Orinda is broken up into four different neighborhoods, each of which roughly breaks the city up into North, East, South, and West sections. Although Orinda certainly has a unified community feel, each neighborhood still has its own quirks and idiosyncrasies.
City Center: This neighborhood is in the Southern part of Orinda, and contains some of the oldest buildings. Many of the homes and businesses in this neighborhood were built between 1940 and 1970, although there was a great deal of residential growth from 1970 until the turn of the century when the technology boom finally crashed. The majority of residences in this area are large, typically 3 bedroom apartments or larger, or are high-rise apartment complexes.
Miner Road: Miner Road occupies the Northern part of Orinda, and is similar in many ways to City Center. Many of the homes in this neighborhood were built in the mid-20th century, and tend to be larger single-family residences.
Orinda Village: Orinda Village is on the western-most part of the city, and is directly adjacent to the Wildcat Canyon Regional Park, Tilden Regional Park, and just south of the San Pablo and Briones Reservoirs. Orinda Village is less densely populated than either Minder Road or City Center, however, there are still plenty of low-rise apartment buildings and smaller single-family homes to choose from. Orinda Village also benefits from being just East of Berkeley, which offers countless cultural opportunities and dining options.
Overhill Road: Overhill Road consists of the East part of Orinda, and is directly adjacent to the Lafayette Reservoir Recreation Area, which is a great place to enjoy sunshine and nature. Although still expensive, Overhill Road has some of the best deals in Orinda, as it was the neighborhood with the most lingering effects of the 2008 real estate crash.
Orinda's close proximity to Berkeley and San Francisco means that there are countless thousands of unique and exciting activities just a short trip away. San Francisco is world-renowned for their cuisine, and residents get the benefit of enjoying that food without needing to deal with the often-crowded streets of San Francisco on a day-to-day basis. However, Orinda itself still has a vibrant culture with plenty to do without leaving the city limits.
Orinda is known for their world-renowned Shakespearean theater, known as the California Shakespeare Theater. The theater performs from June to October each year at the Bruns Memorial Amphitheater, which provides cultural programs for children and adults the remainder of the year.
Although Orinda is a fairly expensive place to live, there is still value to be found if you are willing to take the time to look. In addition, if you can find a place that suits your needs, you will find that residents of Orinda enjoy many of the benefits of living in close proximity to San Francisco and the Greater Silicon Valley without needing to deal with some of the problems that can sometimes be associated with those regions. If you are considering a move to Northern California, Orinda should absolutely be on your list of places to consider.