Welcome to San Anselmo
Tucked away in central Marin, San Anselmo is known as a family friendly town that is ideally situated away from the hustle and bustle, yet offers so many amenities that one feels perfectly fine sticking close to home.
Why buy San Anselmo real estate?
San Anselmo is chock-full of quaint neighborhoods providing a wide assortment of San Anselmo homes for sale from which to choose. Devoid of cookie cutter architecture, those looking for San Anselmo property can find something to fit their style and personality, from small, cozy cottages to sprawling homes and everything in between.
The top quality schools here are a big draw for those shopping for homes for sale in San Anselmo. The Ross Valley School District operates four K-5 elementary schools – three in San Anselmo and one in Fairfax, and one middle school for students in grades 6-8. The local high school falls under Tamalpais High School (HS 1327). All area schools rate 8 or higher on GreatSchools.org.
Dining and shopping in San Anselmo brings to mind a small town feeling, with a plethora of options along downtown’s San Anselmo Avenue as well as Sir Francis Drake Boulevard. The Creek Park plaza in downtown San Anselmo offers an ideal outdoor spot to picnic and meet up with friends and neighbors. There’s also coffee shops, specialty boutiques, hair salons, bookstores, art galleries and more.
The town hosts a number of events for its residents, ranging from its annual Country Day festival to holiday events such as the Goblin Spooktacular, breakfast with Santa and annual holiday tree lighting ceremony. It is also in the process of renovating the entire Creek Park area to mitigate flood risk and uplevel the entire park area into a vibrant new recreational and environmentally sound space.
Fun Facts & Statistics
In the late 1800s, San Anselmo was originally known as “Junction” due to the railways that passed through the town connecting other areas of the county from north to south and west. Although the tracks and stations have since disappeared, there are still signs, parks and other locations throughout the town paying homage to the its railroad history.
The town’s most prominent resident is George Lucas, renowned filmmaker of the Star Wars and Indiana Jones franchises. Lucas’ original office and creative studio was located in downtown San Anselmo. Imagination Park, which features a large fountain with Yoda and Indiana Jones statues, was built on land donated by Lucas himself.
In 1963, a cast iron statue of a deer, affectionately known to locals as “Sugarfoot,” was donated to the town by Joseph Dondero and erected in front of Town Hall and the town library. The statue still stands today, and children enjoy sitting on its back.
Sleepy Hollow, a popular, hilly residential area of San Anselmo, derived its name from the Hotaling family who built a lavish mansion at the end of the two-mile road, and named it "Sleepy Hollow" in honor of The Legend of Sleepy Hollow, a famous short story written by their friend, author Washington Irving. Today, Sleepy Hollow consists of larger homes, many of them on expansive parcels. Sleepy Hollow’s Home Association operates a community center and members-only pool.
San Anselmo Nature & Geography
Memorial Park, located adjacent to Red Hill Shopping Center, is a popular spot for outdoor fun, with several baseball fields, a skate park and expansive play structure built by the community.
Sorich Ranch Park and the Terra Linda-Sleepy Hollow Divide Northern Preserve are just two open space preserves in the area that offer an entertaining maze of hiking trails popular with locals, and on clear days, amazing views of the county.
San Anselmo Creek, a branch of Corte Madera Creek, winds through the entire area. Two of San Anselmo’s creek tributaries, Sleepy Hollow Creek and Sorich Creek, also flow through the town, as do East Fork Creek and West Fork Creek, Sorich Creek’s two tributaries.
The town’s natural skyline is dominated by the hills of Ross Valley, and Mt. Tamalpais can be seen in the distance.
A Perfect Day in San Anselmo
There are myriad ways to enjoy your time with family and friends in the area once you’ve found your perfect San Anselmo home for sale.
To kick off your day, start with a freshly made bagel at Barton’s Bagels, or pop into Hilda’s Café for an nostalgic diner-style breakfast.
Stroll over to Memorial Park and let the kids climb the enormous dinosaur and play on the treehouse-style play structure. Older kids can catch some air at the ramps in the skate park.
Take a lunch break to nosh on a famous Chinese chicken salad at Comforts, conveniently pre-packaged in a to-go style container so you can either eat it on the restaurant patio or while people-watching on a bench in Imagination Park.
After lunch, marvel at the variety of home designs by strolling through San Anselmo’s many walkable neighborhoods or visiting the nearby San Francisco Theological Seminary, whose architectural design is reminiscent of a small private East Coast college.
Visit the town’s historical museum to learn about the San Anselmo’s rich railroad history, or take a downtown tour led by a volunteer docent from the town’s historical society. Pop into Town Books, run by volunteers for the local library, to find a deal on a gently used book.
Grab dinner at the popular Creekside Pizza & Taproom or chic Cucina in downtown, or award winning establishments Madcap or Insalata’s. For dessert, stop by San Anselmo Gelato to try locally themed flavors Wookie Cookie or Darth Vader chocolate. Or imbibe in a post-dinner drink at the Dugout Bar, a nondescript local hangout in Memorial Park open only in the evening hours.
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