Berkeley is a spirited city that has evolved into a culinary and cultural destination. The city is known for diversity, environmental sensitivity, and is one of the most politically liberal cities in the nation. Located on the bay, Berkeley is surrounded by Albany, Oakland, and Emeryville. Berkeley is home to the oldest campus in the University of California system, the Lawrence Berkeley National Laboratory, and the beautiful Tilden Regional Park. Berkeley Hills Located on the east end of Berkeley, the hills have steep, narrow, and winding streets and spectacular views. The Berkeley Hills are just within reach of city life and directly next to Tilden Regional Park. Three beautiful neighborhoods make up the Berkeley Hills: La Loma Park or Nut Hill, Cragmont, and Southampton. La Loma Park features many unique architectural structures such as a reduced-scale replica cloister known as Hume Castle, the Temple of the Wings with Grecian columns, architect Bernard Maybeck's home, and Glendale-La Loma Park at the head of Codornices Creek, abutting the north boundary of the neighborhood. The Cragmont area of the Berkeley Hills is a residential district occupying most of the hill area north of Codornices Creek. Cragmont is family oriented and is set up for families who enjoy spending time outdoors with children. Indian Rock Park for rock climbing, an outdoor amphitheater at John Hinkel Park, and stone slides at Codornices Park and Dorothy Bolte Park are a few of the fun things to do in Cragmont. Cragmont homes, mostly mansions in the Mission style are known for their outstanding views of San Francisco Bay and the Golden Gate Bridge. The Southampton neighborhood has a variety of fun outdoor activities. Features of this neighborhood include Bernard Maybeck's Rose Walk, an outdoor theater at the Berkeley Rose Garden, the Lawrence Hall of Science, and Tilden Regional Park is directly east. Tilden Park has a gamut of fun activities such as a botanic garden, environmental education center, little farm, merry-go-round, a steam train, Lake Anza, a golf course, a native nursery, and many trails for hiking. Homes in the Southampton are a large variety from Spanish farmhouses and Tudor manors to Craftsman Bungalows and homes reminiscent of Italian villas. Central Berkeley Central Berkeley is a flat, grid configuration situated south of University and west of Martin Luther King, where the city offices are located. Interestingly, an area called Poets Corner in Central Berkeley names most of the streets after famous poets. The neighborhood is full of attractive pre-war period Bungalows and Victorians. These are often split inside for the large population of students from the nearby University. The area has quite a bit to offer in affordable food establishments and retail. Claremont / Uplands This grand neighborhood is set away in the wooded hills in the southeast corner of Berkeley. Residents of the upscale Uplands enjoy the many hidden walking paths surrounded by redwood trees and the specialty stores in the retail shopping areas. The Claremont Club and Spa is an iconic, historic, and architectural monument in the East Bay, and sits at the north end of the Uplands. The neighborhood is full of custom-designed residences, Italian and Spanish period revivals, English cottages, and Prairie style. These properties have beautifully manicured yards and gardens and often panoramic views of the East Bay. Elmwood Elmwood is a calm, tree-lined neighborhood that sits just south of the UC Berkeley campus. This neighborhood offers unique shops and restaurants and is the home to Alta Bates Hospital and the Judah L. Magnes Museum. Much of the architecture in Elmwood was designed by leading architects such as Julia Morgan and Bernard Maybeck including the Julia Morgan Center of the Arts and Maybeck High School. Spacious Craftsmans, Bungalows, cottages, Victorians, and small apartment buildings make up the majority of real estate in the area. Many of the homes have landscaped yards and gardens. Elmwood is considered one of the best commuter neighborhoods because of the ease of access to major areas. North Campus The North Campus neighborhood is located in North Berkeley and is known as the birthplace of California cuisine, farm-to-table and local food movements, and a district with amazing restaurants and more. The business district of the neighborhood is nicknamed the "Gourmet Ghetto" offering the best of the best in cuisine. Notable places such as the Cheese Board Collective, French Hotel Café, and Chez Panisse make this area truly special. North Campus is a popular neighborhood for professors and students who attend the science and engineering schools and the seminaries of Holy Hill, but is also close to two BART stations and attracts many visitors. The residential area of North Campus includes charming California Bungalows and Live Oak Park featuring picnic areas, basketball courts, volleyball courts, an art and garden center, and children's playgrounds. Northbrae This beautiful, family neighborhood is in the foothills in North Berkeley and touches the east end of Albany. The neighborhood's commercial hub is filled with fresh food markets. Other neighborhood features include the North Berkeley Library, whose dark Mission style was designed by Julia Morgan, the Fountain at The Circle, and Peralta Community Park and pond. Additionally, a jogging track pool, and more are open to the public at King Middle School. Most of the homes are Bungalows and period revival with views of both the San Francisco Bay and the Berkeley Hills. Panoramic Hill Panaramic Hill named "Berkeley's Most Romantic Neighborhood" is a residential neighborhood located at the eastern edge of Berkeley. The one-of-a-kind vernacular homes have been designed on the hill to offer glimpses of natural beauty and rustic architecture. Several of the homes are listed in the State Historic Resources Inventory and the neighborhood is frequently a part of architectural walking tours. Panaramic Hill features the architecture of Julia Morgan, Ernest Coxhead, John Hudson Thomas, Walter Ratcliff, William Wurster, Walter Steilberg, Frank Lloyd Wright, Mark Mack, Harwell Hamilton Harris, and Bernard Maybeck. Residents enjoy the well maintained walking paths, staircases, and fire trails that lead through the hill. Within walking distance from Panaramic Hill are Strawberry and Claremont Canyons. South Berkeley The South Berkeley neighborhood sits north of Emeryville and extends to West Berkeley. South Berkeley was originally the unincorporated town of Lorin, built on farmland creating wide streets and detailed architecture. South Berkeley is an expressive community with many creative outlets such as the art galleries of the Ashby Arts District and the theater groups Shotgun Players and the Black Repertory Theatre. The neighborhood has many green conscious community organizations such as Berkeley's Spiral Gardens, a community run plant nursery that offers classes on how to create organic home gardens and a Tool Lending Library. San Pablo Park on the west end of South Berkeley features tennis courts, basketball courts, a baseball field, playgrounds, and a community center. The home architecture varies of Victorians and Bungalows as well as large boxy apartment buildings. Thousand Oaks At the base of the Berkeley Hills lies the neighborhood of Thousand Oaks. The neighborhood also touches Kensington to the north and Albany to the west. Thousand Oaks is primarily residential and offers a variety of real estate including Tudor manors, squat Craftsmans, Colonials, Georgians, and apartment buildings. A unique attribute to Thousand Oaks is the attention to natural formations such as granite boulders and mature oak trees that are incorporated into backyards, driveways, and even interior home design. Other natural rock outcroppings were made into rock climbing parks within the neighborhood. The areas small shopping district offers a variety of dining options and specialty family-owned groceries. UC Berkeley / Southside The Southside sits beneath the UC Berkeley campus and was originally developed by the College of California (which is now the University of California, Berkeley). Inexpensive eateries, eclectic bookstores, and record shops are among the many businesses that cater to the dense population of students in the area. Residents enjoy the coffeehouse culture, which is undeniable by count of coffeehouses in the neighborhood. Restored Victorians, Neo-Colonial boxes, vernacular-style Bungalows, and shingled cottages reflect the influences of famed architects Julia Morgan and Bernard Maybeck along with other top architects from the area. Many of the homes in the Southside feature separate, self-contained units, which can provide additional income for homeowners, making it perfect to rent out to University students. West Berkeley West Berkeley is home to the Berkeley Marina and the Oceanview neighborhood. The Berkeley Marina sits beside the San Francisco Bay along with McLaughlin Eastshore State Park. There are several walking and bicycling paths as well as restaurants and a hotel and yacht club in this area. The West Berkeley neighborhood is producing popular shops, restaurants, and pubs that make for a fun and lively atmosphere. Real estate in West Berkeley are mostly single-family homes and some Victorian farmhouses, which were the area's original dwellings. On the north end of West Berkeley is the Oceanview neighborhood, the oldest enclave in Berkeley. Oceanview is an exciting mix of renovated and new housing and retail properties. Within Oceanview is a popular, upscale commercial area on Fourth Street with dozens of specialty boutiques, upscale shops, and unique cuisine. A whistle-stop Amtrack Station along with numerous busses and pedestrian bridges makes this neighborhood very transportation friendly. James Kenney Park offers midnight basketball, summer camps, tennis courts, a library, and a softball and soccer field. Homes in Oceanview are a variety of Victorians, Neo-Colonial houses, newer Craftsman Bungalows, and cottages. Westbrae The neighborhood of Westbrae sits beneath the west side of Albany. The area's tree lined streets are attractive and well maintained. A large portion of the residents of Westbrae are Cal grad students and young professors. among the many parks and gardens in this neighborhood, Cedar Rose Park offers a soccer field, basketball courts, tennis courts, and playgrounds. The neighborhood's real estate includes Craftsman Bungalows, Spanish Revival cottages, and post-war suburban-style homes, as well as a few remaining early Victorians and farmhouses from when the area was first settled.
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