Portola Valley Ranch – The Peninsula’s Hidden Gem
Amazingly Distinctive Custom Homes Are Still Undervalued Amidst Market Chaos
Developed in the 1970s Portola Valley Ranch (PV Ranch), a planned community of approximately 205 homes located in Portola Valley off Alpine Road, is truly a hidden gem of a development which offers so much for so little on a comparative basis. Portola Valley Ranch community was designed to allow the natural landscape remain the main focus of the development. The emphasis and importance of living in harmony with nature has always been the priority with the design and implementation of this amazing neighborhood. In keeping with this theme of the 450 plus acres on which Portola Valley Ranch resides only 25% of the land has been developed into homes. The amount of open space, trees, shrubs, rolling hills, oak woodlands, peaceful meadows, streams and small ponds overwhelms the first-time visitor who may be too familiar seeing typical developments with homes covering 50% or more of the open land. Portola Valley Ranch has set a bar which very few developers have every come close to. Incredibly, PV Ranch won the Sunset Magazine & American Institute of Architects Home Award in 1977.
Portola Valley Ranch homeowner’s association directs, controls, and oversees all development and building approval to maintain the strict conformity with the neighborhood standards. Originally there were fourteen different models of homes constructed, many of which have been remodeled or added onto since originally constructed. All of the homes have exterior decking which takes advantage of the wonderful mountain environment. Importantly Portola Valley Ranch restricts owners from having lawns, private pools, fenced-in gardens, and perimeter fencing. Portola Valley Ranch homes must be painted earth tones to blend in with the environment’s natural backdrop. Only native plants are allowed for landscaping to help keep water conservation efficient. The restrictions imposed on owners are only to maintain the serenity and beauty that was originally designed and envisioned for the development.
Portola Valley Ranch is located 10 minutes east of Stanford University and Stanford Hospital along Alpine Road. The location allows an easy descent from the everyday grind of Silicon Valley. PV Ranch is a mere 30 minutes from San Jose and most of Silicon Valley to the south and 30 minutes to San Francisco to the north. An incredibly quaint but fully stocked Roberts Market on Alpine Road provides a gourmet grocery store within 5 minutes of PV Ranch. There are major shopping centers within a 15 minute radius at Stanford Shopping Center and Redwood City.
Portola Valley Ranch boasts two community swimming pools, tennis courts, a vineyard, PV Ranch’s own community winemaking efforts, a community garden, miles of hiking trails, and a community ranch house that serves as a hub of social activity. All of Portola Valley Ranch’s amenities are available to owners for a mere $260/month – which is a bargain in today’s HOA fees world.
The Portola Valley School District Is Highly Desirable
All school-aged children in PV Ranch enjoy the benefits of highly rated and successful Portola Valley School District. Portola Valley School District has student test scores as high as any other school district on the Peninsula and continues to improve with each passing year. Many people outside of Portola Valley try to get into the town to enjoy the benefits of such an amazing public school system. Portola Valley School District has an abundance of resources available to them that most school districts do not.
Portola Valley Ranch’s Location & Setting Make It a Hidden Gem Which Is Dramatically Undervalued in Today’s Marketplace
The Portola Valley Ranch community is an amazing well thought out development. Because of its short distance from Stanford University and Silicon Valley it is amazingly inexpensive when compared to properties in similar locations all within 10-15 minute radiuses. Price per square foot of these properties will soon escalate when other segments of the buying public, namely foreign investors, begin to realize the value that still exists in PV Ranch. Price per square foot of a typical home in Portola Valley Ranch is selling for $800-$900. Similar communities the average price per square foot can be as high as $1,100-$1,200. Presently PV Ranch is underappreciated to the buying public but eventually it is inevitable that these homes will be selling in the $1,000/sq. ft. range.
For real estate investors Portola Valley Ranch is truly something to look at. For years the development has been thought of as an “Empty Nester” development or an enclave of homes which couldn’t be added onto or dramatically improved. This couldn’t be further from the truth. Many children live at the Ranch. There are younger and younger families buying into the Ranch every year. The development has withstood the test of time and now it is beginning to be recognized by the buying public as a wonderful alternative to downtown or tight city living. Another great strategy would be to buy and hold a property in PV Ranch and hire a professional property manager to manage and be the caretaker of the property. Portola Valley Ranch is a gem which will grow in value and character each passing year going forward. It is an amazing development which only improves with time. Come see for yourself or contact me to learn more about Portola Valley Ranch.