Businesses in Silicon Valley
What can be done about malodorous smells generated in homes? This is a common issue that is raised by home buyers and sellers in Silicon Valley, where all kinds of situations can cause lingering fragrances deemed unpleasant by some home buyers. Those include sources from pets, smoking (cigarettes, pipes, marijuana, cigars), cooking, incense, candles, diapers, and so on. I had run into odor removal products in the past, but not something that would treat the whole home.
Recently I showed buyer of mine a condominium that smelled heavily of Indian cooking, which my client did not like. (it was not just in the kitchen, but in the bedrooms, too.) Apparently the sellers repainted, changed the carpet, and cleaned thoroughly – but the cooking aromas persisted. The listing agent pointed me in the direction of a website, OdorRemoval.com. I’ve been selling homes for 26 years and had never heard of this service, so was intrigued both for the unit I’d seen but also as a resource generally.
The odor removal company name is Rainbow Services, and I spoke with Joe there about their business. He explained that the smells are at the molecular level and they can get embedded in the drywall, curtains, carpet and carpet padding, the floor boards, etc. “It isn’t about cleanliness”, he said. All those locations harbor the odors, which “off gas” (just like a new car off gasses a plastic like smell that can actually fog up the inside of your windshield). In order to remove a stench from pets, cigarettes, cooking, and other heavy smells, it has to be addressed at the molecular level to stop the off gassing. The product they use is supposed to target those malodorous molecules and binds to them to neutralize them. Continue reading
Awhile back, I visited the Suddath Relocation Service’s warehouse in San Jose. Charles Canfield, my sales representative there, had invited me to come by and have a look. My direct experience with moving companies hadn’t included a behind-the-scenes visit to to their work and storage site, so I took him up on the kind offer and got a tour of a different sort. During my visit, Charles showed me how they get items labeled, organized and stored so that things are both secure and find-able when it’s time to take them out of storage and off to a new residence. What follows below are some photos of the visit, which I hope you find interesting.
When first approaching the warehouse, it’s no surprise to see some trucks by the bays to load or offload goods.
After seeing the lobby and conference room, Charles took me to the warehouse, which is (not surprisingly) climate controlled to protect the items being stored. There I saw as yet unmade boxes, paper for wrapping fragile items, sheets of what look like clear plastic wrap for bundling things together. I was amazed at the immensity of the whole thing – the room, the materials, the containers. It all struck me as vast.
Valentine’s Day, a day to celebrate the love you share in your life. Why not share it with the ones who frequently lavish us with unconditional love – our dogs!
Lazy Dog Restaurant and Bar is a chain with locations in a few western states, though primarily in California. I recently visited the Cupertino branch and was surprised to see how dog friendly the place was. The patio welcomed canine guests and even offered a small menu of dog meals. No stealing from my plate, Spot, you’ve got your own!
Menu items include classy and exotic renditions of comforting favorites, such as Sweet Potato Tater Tots, Bison Burgers, Teriyaki rice bowls, and a family size take on s’mores. With a vast range of options, there’s something for everyone (even your furry friend). And did I mention there’s a full bar? Open daily, Lazy Dog Cupertino also offers a weekend brunch menu, happy hour services, and a number of take-out options which you can even order online.
So store your chocolate somewhere safe and spend some quality time with your furry friend (or your human friends) this week. They deserve some Valentines love, too.
Please keep in mind that while your pooch and you are welcome together, all health regulations apply and must be followed strictly for the health and happiness of everyone. Don’t worry, the rules are simple and Lazy Dog has a cute infographic to make it easy to remember!
For more, please visit the Lazy Dog website: https://www.lazydogrestaurants.com/
Lazy Dog Restaurant & Bar
19359 Stevens Creek Blvd
Cupertino, CA 95014
What is the function of a title company or title insurance company in real estate purchases or refinances? In Silicon Valley, and the San Francisco Bay Area and northern California generally, title companies perform two specific services:
- provide title insurance for real estate being bought or borrowed against
- provide escrow services, acting as the neutral third party which takes in the deposit money and holds it during the escrow period, disbursing all funds when escrow closes and having someone go to the county recorder’s office to record the deeds to complete the sale
Title insurance companies research the title history, find out what recorded easements may exist,reveal any encumbrances (leins, clouds on title, etc.). An escrow officer from the title company is usually the professional with a notary’s license who will sign off home buyers and sellers on the final documents, too.
There are many other services that title companies provide. Many people wonder how to hold title, and while neither your Realtor nor your escrow officer can advise you on how to do so, the title companies all have a little 1 page handout explaining the major concepts for each option on how to hold title.
If you need to sign off on the final documents out of town or even out of the country, the escrow officer and her or his support staff will work with you to coordinate it. (It can be a little tricky if overseas and outside of the U.S.).
If you are selling your house or condo and discover that an old loan that you paid off is still showing up in the preliminary title report, the escrow officer at the title insurance company will work to get it resolved and removed.
The customer service department at title companies can research the chain of title, too. Sometimes it’s quite interesting as the chain brings you back to the time of patents and land grants, with hand written deeds in a style of cursive which is somewhat foreign to us today.
There are many other things that title companies do – big and small – and most of them are “behind the scenes” that few of us ever witness directly, but without which no one would be able to close out sales with the safety net of title insurance which we value so much.
Title insurance can be a confusing concept, but I wrote about it elsewhere on this site.
South County is rich with wineries! Recently my husband and I visited one of them, Guglielmo, when we were in Morgan Hill for some friends’ pool party. Jim hadn’t been to Guglielmo Winery in decades, and somehow I’d never been there before at all.
Set in a beautiful campus, the Guglielmo Winery is venerable as one of the older wineries around and begun in 1925. The Guglielmo website states that “Guglielmo Winery is the oldest, continuously operating, family owned winery in Santa Clara Valley.”
It has a nice mix of the “hark to yesteryear” items, both outside and in, with more contemporary decor and landscaping. It’s a very nice blend of old and new.
Inside, there’s a rustic, rambling set of rooms that serve as both 2 wine tasting stations and a really fun store full of kitschy, funny, and useful things. Close to the cash register was the area for white wines, and in the back was another for reds. We were at the former. The wine we tried was delicious and we came away with two bottles of the Tre and one of a sparkling wine.
In summer, the winery provides free music at its Vine and Vibes series on Wednesdays. There are other events too – check out the schedule at their site:
The winery is located at 1480 East Main Avenue, Morgan Hill, CA. There’s a small tasting fee of $5 per person as of this writing (July 2016), and the fee is refunded if you purchase $25 worth of wine or more. http://www.guglielmowinery.com/
Here are some images of the winery when we visited on July 2nd. Enjoy!
The Saratoga Foothill Club, designed by Julia Morgan, is a Silicon Valley architectural landmark. It is located in a residential neighborhood near the Big Basin Rd and Sunnyvale-Saratoga Rd intersection, a block away from the downtown area. If you’ve never been, it’s worth a trip! Go for a couple of hours and enjoy lunch in downtown Saratoga Village, too.
Saratoga Foothill Club
20399 Park Place
Saratoga CA 95070
Availability: Tuesday through Sunday, 9:30 AM – 10:00 PM (per this writing)
http://www.foothillclub.org/ (disclaimer: events listed on this page are from 2014 and earlier)
National Register of Historic Places – Registration Form
History of the Club
I’ll post a very detailed history below. Generally, though, this club was part of a trend of women getting involved in their communities to both improve the places where they lived but also to improve their influence. This took place before women were permitted to vote and can be seen as part of the broader, growing civic influence of women.
The Building and Grounds
The architect: Julia Morgan
Today what may be more compelling than the movement behind the building is perhaps the building itself. Fittingly, it was designed by the most prominent female architect in California, Julia Morgan, an graduate of the University of California (Berkeley – it was the only UC at the time) and the prestigious Ecole des Beaux Art in Paris. She was a sorority sister with Grace Fisher Richards, one of the founding members and the then-current president of the Club. She was also the first licensed female architect in the state. (She is best known for her gorgeous work at Hearst Castle.) This certainly was not lost on the women who hired her! Nor on many other clients – “Of the 480 Morgan projects listed in Boutelle’s Julia Morgan Architect, 1995, from 1896 to 1946, more than one third were for women clients or for women’s organizations…. Even more impressive is the fact that Morgan also hired-women professionals. By 1927, six of her fourteen employees were women, a remarkable number for an established business.” (Per the register)***
The Saratoga Foothill Club was built out of redwood (outside and in, though the floors are hardwood) with a wood shake roof in the Craftsman or Arts and Crafts style in 1915. As with many of her designs, it is simple, understated, and made ample use of natural materials. Julia Morgan was inspired by the local Bay Area School of design. The bungalow feel fits in nicely with the neighborhood.
The structure itself is a one story building that’s 74′ wide across the front and 60′ deep, plus some pop-out areas around the sides. Inside there’s redwood paneling (redwood is a soft wood), hardwood floors in most of the area (carpeting in the entry). The kitchen has sheet vinyl and paster walls – more practical. In addition to the kitchen there’s a main room measuring 33’9” x 40’3 and a dining room with an open fireplace – the last two are joined by two sets of accordion doors. There’s a storage room and also a projection room. And of course there are restrooms. The building is set on a 7409 SF lot, nearly level, with a beautiful courtyard and pergola. (More info below image gallery.)
Delicious French food and great service are the order of the day at Le Petit Bistro in Mountain View. Recently, my extended family and I celebrated a milestone birthday there for one of the relatives. Apparently this is not uncommon, as we heard two other tables sing Happy Birthday to You during our time there, also.
The restaurant is comfortable, on the small side and the service is personal. We found that our needs were promptly addressed for water, more bread, ordering, or anything else that we might need, but it was done in a very friendly and unhurried manner.
A good sized selection of foods and preparation styles were offered: fish, pork, beef, lamb and vegetarian entrees were available. There was something for everyone. Between us, we enjoyed soups, salads and mussels for the first course. The main courses that we ordered included beautifully presented lamb chops, pepper steak, and pork medallions. At our table, we savored a variety of desserts, too: a fruit crepe (inside had fresh fruit and whipped cream), chocoloate mousse, and apple pie. All of it was absolutely delicious.
By all means, I would go back, and not just to celebrate a birthday. For that reason, I’m happy to write about it here – go give it a try, if you haven’t been already! You will not be disappointed.
Le Petite Bistro
1405 W El Camino Real, Mountain View, CA 94040
(As always, there is no compensation for my endorsement of this or any other business which I might write about from time to time. The folks at this eatery don’t even know that this article is being written, and of course it was my idea to write it, not theirs.)