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Orchard Hills Overview

Jun 10th, 2014 by Karen 

After many years of waiting, Orchard Hills finally debuted 12 new sets of models this weekend.  The neighborhood is split into two parts Orchard Hills and a gated community known as The Groves at Orchard Hills.  This week, I will present an overview of the non-gated side, located within the Culver Drive/Orchard Hills Drive loop.  Over the coming weeks, I will present the five sets of models within this neighborhood, as well as an overview of The Groves and the seven sets of models on that side.

There are five collections on the non-gated side of Orchard Hills.  The smallest, Entrata, is a combination of townhomes and flats.  The next smallest, Vista Scena, are all townhomes.  The remaining three collections – Corte Bella, Terrazza, and Strada – are all single family residences.  All five collections were built by Irvine Pacific.  Each collection has three basic floorplans, though some have one or two additional variations on one of the plans.  Every home in these five collections has a two car garage.  Here is a quick rundown of the collections, from smallest to biggest:

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What’s Happening with Orangetree Estate?

Mar 6th, 2012 by Sylvia Walker 

Previously, I took a look at the condition of the real estate market in Irvine’s most expensive housing market, Shady Canyon. That was the highs; today it’s the lows. In other words, today I will write about one of Irvine’s most inexpensive housing markets, Orangetree.

Orangetree is in the 92618 ZIP code. This contains the Oak Creek, Stonegate, and Portola Springs neighborhoods as well as the planned Great Park neighborhoods. Therefore, the price of homes in this ZIP code varies greatly. Orangetree is the most affordable neighborhood in this ZIP as well as in much of Irvine. In spite of being one of Irvine’s most affordable communities, Irvine’s most recent housing element grades the condition of housing in this area with an A. The housing element concludes that this may be due to the existence of the homeowner’s association, which has fees range from approximately $200 to $350. Orangetree is located near Irvine Valley College, Irvine Spectrum, the Irvine Metro train station, and Oak Creek Golf Course as well as the Orange County Great Park.

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The Neighborhood of University Hills

Feb 22nd, 2012 by nilam 

University Hills is the University of California, Irvine's campus housing community for individuals holding full time employement at UCI.  Seeing some of the homes in University HIlls from Bonita Canyon makes me want to get a job at UCI.  Part of the appeal is that it's kind of exclusive.  It's not like other parts of Irvine where (as long as you have enough money), you can buy or rent in any neighborhood.  The other draw is that the homes are so said to be much more affordable than their equivalents down the street in other parts of Irvine. 

According to the Irvine Campus Housing Authority website, "University generally regarded as the most successful on-campus housing program of its kind in the country."  It is an academic community in residence to provide affordable housing to eligible full time employees of the University of California, Irvine. University HIlls is located on the South end of campus, and is bordered by Anteater Drive, Los Trancos Drive, Gabrielino Drive, Vista Bonita Drive and California Avenue. 

Community Map

Note: Information from

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The Village of Rancho San Joaquin

Feb 8th, 2012 by zovall 

zovall: The post below is written by Michelle Jones

The village of Rancho San Joaquin is a quiet community that provides a nice escape from the nearby commercial area.  It is surrounded by Culver Drive, Michelson Drive, University Drive, and Harvard Avenue.  It is right around the corner from the Culver/405 interchange.

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The Village of Woodbridge

Jan 23rd, 2012 by Wendy Larson 

Wendy Larson has lived in Irvine for over twelve years. She graduated from Woodbridge High School, took some courses at Irvine Valley College and eventually graduated from Penn State University as the Student Marshal with Highest Distinction. After graduation, Wendy was awarded a teaching assistantship in the South of France. After a year of working abroad Wendy moved back to Irvine. She is currently a Senior Operational Trainer at a health care company in Costa Mesa. Wendy spends her free time writing, public speaking and mentoring individuals looking to improve their speaking skills.

Located in one of the most picturesque areas of Irvine, Woodbridge Village offers distinct housing communities, charming views and an atmosphere that appeals to families, couples and singles alike. Nestled between the major streets of Jeffrey and Culver, and intersected by Barranca Parkway (North Lake) and Alton (South Lake), Woodbridge Village is situated around two gorgeous lakes and is convenient to all community amenities.

The residential communities consist of a mixture between single family residences, condos and apartments. Take a drive on East Yale Loop and West Yale Loop to get a scope of the residential neighborhoods within Woodbridge Village. This area is intrinsically unique in look and feel from the rest of Irvine. Much of the community is maintained by the Woodbridge Village Association, to which residents must pay homeowner’s association dues. The Association owns and operates 41 recreational facilities and does a great job ensuring these facilities are clean and well landscaped for all to enjoy.

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The Village of Turtle Ridge

Jan 9th, 2012 by nilam 

Note by zovall: This post is written by my wife, Nilam.  She took some pictures around Turtle Ridge and provided some thoughts on the area.  We'd love to hear your comments on Turtle Ridge as well as her first post.

Located on the southernmost border of Irvine, Turtle Ridge is one of the city's few hillside villages.  Unlike most areas of Irvine, Turtle Ridge does not have a commercial shopping center, nor does it have any office or industrial buildings.  It is almost exclusively residential, with a few exceptions.  Turtle Ridge's borders are Bonita Canyon Dr. and Shady Canyon to the north, the 73 Freeway to the south, and Bommer Canyon to the east.  It neighbors University Hills, Turtle Rock, and Newport Coast, which means it has close access to UCI, Fashion Island and the beach.

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Irvine’s Rancho San Joaquin

Jul 1st, 2007 by IrvineRenter 

Rancho San Joaquin is a small Irvine Village comprised mostly of high density residential housing. What makes this Village unique is the abundance of recreational activities.

Rancho San Joaquin is bounded by Culver Drive, Michelson Drive, University Drive, and Harvard Avenue. It forms a buffer area between residential developments to the east and the commercial area on Jamboree and the Newport Bay wash to the west.

The Irvine Historical Museum is located here. Did you even know it existed?

There is an active senior center.

The Racquet Club of Irvine calls Rancho San Joaquin home.

Clubhouse at the racquet club.

The Rancho San Joaquin Golf Course is here.

The property has nice views of the Airport area developments.

The course is open to the public and receives a great deal of play.

Par 3 # 13. Don't be short or right.

One of my favorite places in (or near) Rancho San Joaquin is Boomers.

The local kids play castle.

Speed climbing wall.

Laser tag.

Batting cages.

Go carts for small kids.

Carnival rides for all ages.

Go carts for older kids and the young at heart.

Landscaped mini-golf.

Bumper boats.

The high density housing includes Rancho San Joaquin Apartments. Some have nice golf course views.

There is an internal waterway winding through the community.

The Villas townhome community.

There are a variety of condos.

The architecture is nice, but not award winning.

Most of the properties are very well kept.

Rancho San Joaquin is a relatively affordable Irvine neighborhood with an abundance of recreational activities, and it is conveniently located near the Culver / 405 interchange. If you work hard and play hard, this is the Village for you.

Irvine's Rancho San Joaquin: A great place to live.

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