The Heritage Grove neighborhood in Los Gatos had an interesting beginning. An old apricot orchard used to line Blossom Hill Road between Union and Leigh Avenues until the 1990s. The former owners, Ralph and Sophie Heintz, lived there in their farmhouse until their deaths, at which time the property was willed to the University of California at Berkeley for eye research.
Sophie and Ralph were interesting people. He ran a small train on their property and was an inventor. She was a ham radio operator.
In 1998, the Heintz land (and house etc.) was sold to Summerhill Homes and a portion developed as housing by Summerhill. A few of the homes higher up in the neighborhood were built by different builders. That Los Gatos neighborhood is now called the Heritage Grove neighborhood.
A strip of trees was planted along Blossom Hill Road, reminiscent of the history of the area. A wonderfully large section of land was made a permanent open space, now known as the Heintz Open Space Preserve. This open space connects directly with Belgatos Park, which also connects with the Santa Rosa Open Space Preserve. So the network of trails is quite extensive. (Link to Town of Los Gatos page with pdf files of these three trail maps. Link to Google Maps map of Blossom Hill Trails, drawn by Jim Handy.)
In 2015, we did a video drive through of the Heritage Grove neighborhood. Please take a look:
The scenic Strathmore neighborhood of Los Gatos lies close to the foothills, including both Blossom Hill and the coastal range rising behind it. Homes here in east Los Gatos enjoy that very beautiful backdrop and access to the park and trails, but many other benefits too.
Enduring qualities that make this area highly favored include:
scenic area with close proximity to the foothills plus tree lined streets
community pool & nearby park
strong public schools
good location for commuting, shopping, and easy access to downtown Los Gatos
It’s a pedestrian friendly area with sidewalks and tree lined streets, so it is not uncommon to see people out enjoying a stroll, a jog, a bike ride or otherwise taking in the peaceful region.
Additionally, Strathmore residents share a community pool (or cabana) with a neighborhood swim team. As of 2022, dues for the HOA are approximately $400 per year.
One of the biggest draws of all is that on top of these features, kids in Strathmore get to attend highly rated public schools too. The profile on this neighborhood is overwhelmingly positive!
Alta Vista Elementary School 200 Blossom Valley Dr, Los Gatos, CA 95032
The Alta Vista neighborhood, which sits along the border of Los Gatos and the Cambrian Park district of San Jose, is very highly sought after and valued for many reasons. Real estate prices vary depending upon the precise location within the neighborhood as well as the size and condition of the home.
Major draws include these:
good schools that are in the immediate neighborhood
scenic area with many tree lined streets and close proximity of the hills
excellent commute access (Highway 85, Blossom Hill Road)
quick trip to downtown Los Gatos
Scenic, convenient Alta Vista neighborhood
Prior to being developed for housing, this spot at the base of Blossom Hill was once blanketed in orchards and was scenic enough that it was part of the “blossom tours” that used to take place at the height of the flowering. Hence, one large section of this neighborhood has street names that begin with “blossom”.
Most of the streets close to Alta Vista School are beautifully tree-lined, and from virtually everywhere in the neighborhood, you are close to Blossom Hill (that’s the name of the hill, not just the name of the road!). Homes are well kept, streets are wide enough, and except when there’s a school function, there really aren’t too many cars on the street. It is very scenic, pleasant and uncrowded feeling. Although you’re in the city or town, you feel close to the country there.
There are a few homes along Nimrick or Blossom Hill on large parcels, many of which enjoy beautiful valley views.
Additionally, many homebuyers select this area because the school scores are high and because it’s easy to get to the elementary and middle schools without crossing any major streets: that is a big plus! It is also a quick drive to highway 85, just a couple of miles to the Los Gatos shopping areas (at Los Gatos Blvd and Blossom Hill Road) or to Vasona Lake County Park. For many, it’s a way to be close to downtown Los Gatos.
Where is this neighborhood? What are the landmarks?
The neighborhood considered to be “Alta Vista” has three strong borders and one vague one. The three well defined edges are Blossom Hill Road, Union Avenue, and Los Gatos Almaden Road. The fourth boundary is approximately the edge of Ross Creek, which runs behind Westchester Drive, but perhaps some would argue that it goes a little further. The Westchester Manor area is highlighted on this website if you’d like to check it out.
Alta Vista neighborhood map
There are several landmarks in the neighborhood: (more…)
At the far eastern edge of Los Gatos sits a welcoming neighborhood with three contiguous subdivisions: Belwood of Los Gatos, Belgatos, and Surmont. Adjacent to them is the stunning Belgatos Park and connected to it an expansive network of trails for people on foot, bike, or horseback (the Heinz Open Space Preserve plus the Sierra Azule and Shannon Valley trails, also nearby). At Blossom Hill Road and Harwood there is a friendly Walgreen’s, a Starbucks, a Valero gas station and mechanic, and many other worthwhile destinations.
For many Los Gatans, all three of these east Los Gatos areas (and sometimes a broader one still) are generally referred to as “Belwood of Los Gatos” or “Belwood-Belgatos.” (The Los Gatos Monte Sereno Police cert map identifies the whole region plus the Strathmore neighborhood, which is across Blossom Hill Road, as “Belwood” generally.)
The terrain is nearly level, with very low, gentle hills over most of the area. With winding, mostly tree-lined roads and tidy houses, it’s a very attractive neighborhood overall. For those looking for an arduous climb on foot or bike, though, Harwood Road provides a nice challenge. At the top, you’ll see a fantastic view of downtown San Jose and Silicon Valley for your trouble. (There are some challenges to be found in the open space trails, too.)
Belgatos Park and the trails that connect to it are a big plus. It is located at 330 Belgatos Lane (at the end of Belgatos Road, off Blossom Hill Road) in east Los Gatos. It features a playground, hiking trails, open fields, picnic areas, fabulous views and restrooms.
Drive through of Belwood of Los Gatos, Belgatos, Surmont, and more
The Vista del Monte neighborhood is a gem within the town once known as The Gem City. It enjoys tremendous convenience as it’s close to town, but also is set back far enough that the area is quiet and tranquil. The hills are close in and the roads gently curve, are tree lined, and scenic.
Add to this the highly regarded Los Gatos schools, quick freeway access, and a nearby park and you can quickly see why this area has a big draw!
Many of the homes were built in the 1960s – 1980s. It’s not an historic neighborhood, and the architecture is mostly ranch style. There are a few others, though, such as Colonial, Mediterranean, and others.
Home prices in this corner of town have risen dramatically over the last year and generally are up about 20 – 30% from this time last year. This is all part of the COVID induced buyer frenzy to purchase larger homes with larger lots across the country (and around the world).
Are you interested in Los Gatos real estate and Los Gatos neighborhoods? Over on my Live in Los Gatos blog, I’ve been reworking articles about the various residential areas of town, digging into the county records for subdivision info, shooting video as I’m driven through various neighborhoods and adding MLS information. Today I completed a whole new article with video on the Vista del Monte neighborhood in east Los Gatos.
Clair and I enjoy getting to know the many neighborhoods here in town. The majority of our posts on the neighborhoods in LG can be found on our Live In Los Gatos Blog, so if you love the town and want more info, that’s the best resource.
Homes for sale & recently sold in the Vista del Monte neighborhood
This will give a sense of pricing, but as of this writing in early 2022, many homes are selling for 10 – 20% ore more over list price.
The Blossom Manor neighborhood in east Los Gatos is very popular as it is well located close to the highly regarded Los Gatos schools, great shopping and parks, such as Oak Meadow and Vasona Lake County Park. Further, Blossom Manor enjoys comfortably sized lots with room to grow if a home has not already been expanded from its original footprint.
Most of “the Manor” (originally Blossom Hill Manor, though seldom called that now) is currently unincorporated, meaning it’s not properly part of the Town of Los Gatos, but instead is a county pocket. As time goes by, the incorporated areas are likely to grow and the county areas shrink – a trend we are seeing throughout the Los Gatos area and Santa Clara County as a whole.
A couple of streets, Cherrystone Drive and part of Lilac Way, are incorporated and share features typically found in incorporated areas: sidewalks, curbs and gutters.
Part of the neighborhood can join as members of a pool club on Cherrystone Drive (the Stonehedge Swim Club).
The manor is almost exclusively single family homes (houses) but along Blossom Hill Road and also Camelia Terrace, there are a few duplexes.
What are houses like in Blossom Manor?
The vast majority of houses in the Manor began as small to medium sized ranch style homes. Over time, though, many of them have either been improved and expanded or fully torn down and rebuilt. The newer homes often are 2 stories, but not always.
Here’s a little slideshow to introduce you to the neighborhood. Want more info? Please call or email me today!
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A Los Gatos neighborhood which is “close to town” but feels further out is the highly sought after Surrey Farms area, located off Kennedy Road less than a mile from Los Gatos Boulevard, and less than 1.5 miles to all the local public schools: Van Meter or Blossom Hill Elementary, Fisher Middle, Los Gatos High. Adjacent to Surrey Farms is the independent Hillbrook School.
About Surrey Farms
There are about 70 single family homes or houses in Surrey Farms, most of them on quarter-acre to half-acre lots, but a handful are on over half an acre, and four are over one acre. The houses were mostly constructed from the mid 1950s into the mid 1960s, though development has continued since with over 30% of homes built between the 1970s and 2010s. Original construction was all done in the “ranch style” and consisted of about 2,000 to 3,000 SF in most cases. Today many have been remodeled, enlarged or even fully rebuilt, and the home sizes are bigger, currently with 50% of them over 3,000 SF and more than 15% over 4,000 SF. (more…)
There’s a lovely neighborhood in west Los Gatos which is set between the La Rinconada Golf Course and the Rinconada Hills gated community (near the corner of Pollard and Quito Roads). There are 3 distinct subdivisons: Rio Rinconada (where all the roads are named “Calle” something), Saratoga Highlands (More Avenue, Roxbury Ln, Prince St., Mattson Ave., and part of Wedgewood Av), and a third area which seems to have no specific name but which is said to have been built by Thrust 4 and includes bigger, younger, more expensive homes on larger lots – many with 3 car garages and views.
The La Rinconada Park is one of the major draws to the neighborhood. Another is the very close proximity of a shopping center which includes a good sized Safeway, and an elementary and middle school close by too.
211 Westhill Drive, Los Gatos is an updated, remodeled, and sunny home with gorgeous valley views!
Will be on the MLS as of Thursday, September 7th. First showings to be Saturday Sept 9th at the open house.
Offered at $2,280,000, this is an incredible opportunity to purchase a Los Gatos view home at an incredibly good price and value. There are fabulous vistas from all of the main living areas of this single story Los Gatos home as well as the large deck leading to the front door!
Christie's International Real Estate Sereno, Los Gatos, CA 95030 408 204-7673 Mary@PopeHandy.com License# 01153805
Clair Handy, Realtor
Christie's International Real Estate Sereno 214 Los Gatos-Saratoga Rd Los Gatos, CA 95030 ClairHandy@sereno.com License# 02153633
Mary & Clair sell homes throughout Silicon Valley: Santa Clara County, San Mateo County, and Santa Cruz County. with a special focus on: San Jose, Los Gatos, Saratoga, Campbell, Almaden Valley, Cambrian Park.
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