The city of Aloha, Oregon, according to local legend, may have gotten its exotic Hawaiian name from a clerical mix-up. But for now, aloha Aloha!
When you think about Aloha Oregon, the first thing that probably comes to your mind is "Why would anyone name an Oregon town after a Hawaiian salutation?" In actual fact, it was all a mistake. According to at least one local legend, it was supposed to be called "Aloah" after a resort in Wisconsin, but when the town's founders applied for a postal address, someone along the way made a typo. To make things even more entertaining, locals still insist on pronouncing it "Aloah" (or, phonetically, "Ah-LO-wa") so there goes the Hawaii connection. In spite of this early logistical mishap, Aloha is a cheerful, friendly town that's only about 14 miles (and a million miles, figuratively) from the big metropolis of Portland. With a population of 49,425 as of the 2010 Census, Aloha somehow maintains a sophisticated, charming small town vibe, in spite of the presence of heavy corporate hitters such as Intel and Columbia Sportswear Company. The fact is, everything in Aloha is so darned pretty, that even the fast food restaurants are photo worthy. It's small town America all dressed up and ready for the prom, with the bright lights of the big city just 20 minutes away.
Moving to Aloha
If you're looking for a rental apartment or townhouses for rent in Aloha, you won't have any trouble finding something to suit your lifestyle. Aloha is a rental property mecca, with an abundance of apartment complex properties and condos. You'll also have no trouble finding an attractive home or duplex for rent. Oregon isn't the cheapest place in the world, but rentals do come at a wide variety of price points. Be prepared to pay first and last month's rent, as well as a security deposit of several hundred dollars. If you're lucky, you might get a simpatico landlord who will waive that last month's down payment. Having the right documents ready, such as copies of your ID, bank statement, references from previous landlords, and proof that you can afford rent, may tip the scales further in your favor.
What's the best way to find an apartment or house rental? Drive, drive, drive. By exploring the different neighborhoods, you'll be able to narrow your search down to your favorites; otherwise, it can get overwhelming, even in a town this size. The good news is that there's no real renter's season here, so prices and availability stay pretty consistent throughout the year.
Neighborhoods in Aloha
Aloha is home a number of attractive neighborhoods and subdivisions, including rental-heavy areas like Southwest Aloha that boast a large number of apartments, condos and rental homes. Here are some great places to start your search:
Southwest Aloha: Neighborhoods such as 170th Avenue, 204th Avenue, Shaw Street and Cambridge Drive are popular residential spots where you'll find rental homes at a variety of sizes, styles and price points. You'll also find a number of apartments, condos and townhouses for rent here, so it's a great place to start your search.
184th Terrace: Also in the southwest section of town, this neighborhood has a number of attractive apartment complexes that are conveniently close to city amenities.
Sheffield Avenue: In the northwest area of Sheffield Avenue, you'll find a number of townhouses and apartments for rent, including many units that are pet-friendly.
Cross Creek: This is a lovely residential subdivision that boasts homes in a variety of styles, as well as amenities such as a pool and recreation center.
Living in Aloha
You probably never thought you'd end up in a town called Aloha, did you? The fact is, once you get your mind around the name thing, living in Aloha is easy. The climate is surprisingly mild, thanks to the fact that Aloha only gets about two inches of snow a year. Winter highs hover around freezing, with lows around 20, but summertime makes up for it, with July highs around 79. Even though this is Oregon, there's just under 40 inches of rain a year, which is about three inches below the national average.
Thanks to the regional TriMet transportation system, Aloha has a super efficient bus service that will take you everywhere, including all the way to Portland and back, even during evening hours. It helps to have your own wheels, however, especially since there's no light rail system until you get into Portland.
With its proximity to Beaverton (six minutes) and Portland (20 minutes), you'll never be lacking for things to do in the Aloha area, whether you're into shopping, bar hopping or outdoor adventure thrill-seeking. If you're into the great outdoors, just next door in Beaverton you'll find one of the area's most exquisite natural habitats, Cooper Mountain Nature Park, which features stunning hiking and biking trails and state-of-the-art aquatic facilities. While you're there, check in at the Cooper Mountain Nature House, which offers year-round exhibitions and nature programs. If you're looking for a great off-leash dog park for your four-legged buddy, visit Hazeldale Park, a lush local mecca for dog owners.
If you're a fan of fresh veggies, fresh fruit and fresh air, drive next door to Beaverton for the farmers market during May through October, where you can stock up on just-picked produce from local growers. If indoor shopping is more your thing, check out Cedar Hills Crossing, a 750,000-square foot retail center featuring nationally known retailers, restaurants and cinemas.
For golfers, Aloha is a destination town, thanks to the splendid 18-hole, par-72 courses and there are two of them at The Reserve Vineyards and Golf Club. Designed by Bob Cupp, the North Course features mounds of native grass and coastal dunes, while the South Course, which was designed by John Fought, features rolling terrain and towering Oregon pines.
Aloha has a great selection of locally owned restaurants either in town or just around the corner in Beaverton. If you're in the mood for pasta, you'll love Nonna Amelia's, a low-key, casual dining eatery that serves superb tortellini, as well as specialties such as chicken marsala and veal scaloppini. For something completely different, check out Newport Bay, where you'll find specialties such as teriyaki salmon and parmesan-crusted Oregon sole.
Oregon may not have its own football or baseball teams, but it still has plenty of sports fans, many of whom flock to Buddies Sports Bar and Grill, a popular locally owned watering hole with plenty of TV screens and great drink specials. There's also the brilliantly named Dr. Feelgood's Pub, where you'll find a convivial atmosphere and a great selection of beers. Speaking of beer, Oregon is something of a destination for fans of handcrafted brews, and Golden Valley Brewery doesn't disappoint, thanks to its menu of luscious artisan ales, including a wheat beer to die for.
Aloha's small-town vibe is so strong, you'll forget that this is a city of nearly 50,000. There's a genuine friendliness here, but there's also a savvy sophistication that seems to be something of an epidemic in Oregon cities. You'll love telling your friends that you found your paradise in a place called Aloha.