Alameda is the place I choose to call home with my wife Kristin and our Rhodesian Ridgeback, Nala.
This is also where I do the majority of my business. I wanted to take a moment and share with you why so many of my clients and I love this city!
Here is my list:
1. It's Flat
The fact that it’s flat may seem like a strange reason to love a city. Just hear me out. For starters, it’s really easy to get around her. You can walk, bike, jog or skateboard really anywhere you want. Getting to the store, Park St or out for some exercise is always possible here.
Aside from that, even the smallest yard is really usable. Unlike the Oakland and Berkeley hills, you can take advantage of your entire lot, even if it’s small. Most people create front or backyard sitting areas, vegetable gardens or play spaces for their kids and pets.
2. The speed limit is 25 MPH
As soon as you get on the island, you are forced to slow down because of the reduced speed limit. You will find that it’s 25 MPH across the entire thing. This really sets the tone for the pace of life we have here.
I wouldn’t say we are on “island time” around here but, you definitely feel a palpable reprieve from the fast pace of the Bay Area when you come here.
3. The food scene
Now, I’m not going to say that it rivals the “gourmet ghetto” in Berkeley or what you can find in Temiscal, Rockridge or downtown Oakland. If you really want to get that experience, you do have to leave the Island. However, if you are looking to stay local, there are a number of options available to you. Here are some of my favorites:
On/Near Park St.
- Town Tavern – Great cocktail program and growing menu. The brussel sprouts are simply amazing. The owner Stan, wanted to create a space on the island where people relocating from SF or other parts of the East Bay could get the upscale experience they were looking for. I think he nailed it!
- American Oak – This is a fabulous sit down style experience. They have a smaller menu and do it all well. Be prepared to come hungry because they don’t mess around here. If you only want cocktails, you can lounge on the plush sofas in the upstairs mezzanine level. You have to try that!
- Burma Superstar – This is one of three bay area locations and it’s always packed. Regardless of which one Ive gone to, Ive never had a bad experience. The tea leaf salad is always a hit and make sure you ask the server for recommendations. There are some menu items that don’t get the love they deserve.
There is one experience that you should have but I didn’t include in the video. Ill likely include it on a future one so keep your eyes peeled! Ill preview it for you here:
Now, I will warn you, this is not for the faint of heart. At the south end of park street is a bar called Lucky 13. It is a cash only bar that attracts all walks of life. They get some of the best and rarest beer in the East Bay. Just be prepared t be blasted with heavy metal music when you walk in. Before you do, pop in next door to Scolaries and order some Truffe Garlic Fries and Blue Cheese, Bacon and Blueberry burger. Take your number and sit down in Lucky 13. Get whatever looks amazing on tap and wait to be amazed. You can thank me later.
In South Shore Shopping Plaza:
- Traboco – This is a go to date night spot. This is amazing Italian cuisine. I normally don’t go out to Italian spots, but this one is special. Be prepared to meet Gusseppi, the owner and head chief. He will make you feel welcome and like you are part of the family. Truly. Order whatever suits you because you wont be disappointed.
On the West End:
- Neptunes – An amazing brunch spot in the former fosters dairy freeze building. Be prepared to see a flower on top of your french toast.
- Cafe Jole – A more traditional breakfast/brunch place that does it right!
- Wes Cafe – I pop in for lunch or cappuccino all the time. Their back patio is a perfect place to relax mid day.
- The Hunter – One of the best cocktail programs on the island. Plus they have a very laid back lounge atmosphere. You really feel like you are transported into another world here.
Even though we are on an island, it’s really easy to get on and off. There are four bridges and a tunnel that take you into Oakland.
You are only minutes from the Fruitvale BART station. If you plan to commute from here, be sure to get to the station before 7am otherwise, you likely wont get parking. If you don’t drive, it’s a 10-12 minute bike ride.
Being an island, water transportation is essential. In fact, there are two active ferry terminals that you can hop on and will have you at the SF Ferry Building in about 25 minutes. There is a third ferry station located at the West End in the former naval air station. As of this writing, it is not yet active.
In the event you don’t want to do either of those options, you can always catch the trans-bay bus. It makes a few stops in Alameda then heads straight to the downtown SF bus depot.
This one gets overlooked all the time though I consider it a huge asset. The proximity to the Oakland International Airport can’t be beat. It takes me about 7-9 minutes door to door. I can’t tell you how wonderful it is to not have to tack on an extra 45-60 minutes, driving to SFO, every time I want to fly.
5. It's Beautiful
It’s just really beautiful here. Between all the trees, flowers and amazing architecture, you wont get bored walking or driving around here.
I hope this overview helped you. If I can give you more context on this part of Alameda, please do not hesitate to reach out. My information is below.
Heres to all your success!