While Northern California’s Bay Area typically refers to San Francisco, Oakland, and their big-name-neighbors in-between, one Nor-Cal hidden gem occupies that same bay: Point Richmond. Rich with history and overflowing with charm, Point Richmond offers a laid-back alternative to the bustle of San Francisco with many of the same advantages.
We chose this under-the-radar neighborhood as the site of our coliving home, Common Cottage, which offers private bedrooms in fully-furnished suites complete with laundry, regular professional cleanings, and WiFi — all starting at $1,104/month. Undoubtedly one of Northern California’s lesser known neighborhoods, there’s lots to discover in Point Richmond. Here’s five things you didn’t know (but should!) about Point Richmond.
As the name would suggest, the Bay Area is world-famous for its waterfronts. That fame, however, draws crowds, and towel-real estate at San Francisco beaches is growing increasingly scarce. Point Richmond’s Keller Beach, on the other hand, offers second-to-none scenery sans-crowds.
Just a few blocks from Common Cottage, Keller Beach Park is your Point Richmond spot for birdwatching, sunbathing, and enjoying breathtaking West Coast sunsets. Over summers, you can live the California dream by walking to the beach with picnic basket in-tow. Just be sure to pack some sunblock! You’ll want to soak up the sun all day long.
While Point Richmond is in the Bay Area, its coffee scene can put the Pacific Northwest to shame. The neighborhood is home to more than a handful of roasteries ranging from the funky hangouts like Kaleidoscope Coffee–where the coffee is good, and the vibe is even better–to the go-to grab-and-go’s like Catahoula Coffee Co. Needless to say, the coffee-crazed are in good hands in Point Richmond.
Established in 1905, this relatively young neighborhood has a surprisingly rich history. Once used as a shipyard due to its prime geography, much of Point Richmond’s early history can still be enjoyed today. The SS Red Oak Victory, for example, is a World War II ship turned-floating museum which is permanently docked in Point Richmond.
Fear not, land-lubbers, as the (non-floating) Richmond Museum of History boasts a treasure trove of antique photographs and relics from the town’s early days. Each day presents a new opportunity to make your own history in Point Richmond.
While San Francisco is lauded for its diverse and delicious food scene, Point Richmond, too, brings a lot to the (dinner) table. Spots like Great American Hamburger telegraph a different time with their unfussy atmosphere and better-than-homemade comfort food offerings, while Brezo innovates on classic Latin dishes using locally-sourced ingredients for cuisine that might just be some of the Bay Area’s best. For breakfast, lunch, or brunch, enjoy the ultimate small-town experience at Little Louie’s Café. Locals and tourists alike go for the perfect french toast, and keep coming back for the family-like atmosphere.
The great outdoors
Among Point Richmond’s many draws, one stands out as the most alluring: its sprawling outdoor spaces. From parks to trails, Point Richmond’s ample greenspaces have the ability to transport you from this quaint Bay Area neighborhood to a lush national forest. Point Pinole’s 2000 acres are perfect for any and all outdoor pursuits–from hiking, to biking, and everything in between. Pinole’s diverse terrain means you’ll likely encounter grassy meadows and eucalyptus woodlands in a single tour!
For those looking for more recreation, Miller Knox Regional Park is a popular Point Richmond destination for fishing, boating and swimming. The smaller Lucretia Edwards Shoreline Park, on the other hand, is undoubtedly the go-to if your definition of getting outside just means soaking up the sun (and savoring the sea breeze) on a manicured lawn atop a picnic blanket.
Ready for Point Richmond?
While it’s clear that Point Richmond is full of surprises, we’ve hardly scratched the surface of all the understated excellence that this Bay Area gem has to offer. The best way to get to know a new neighborhood or city is to experience it yourself, and Common’s flexible all-inclusive leases take much of the worry out of moving–making this Nor-Cal paradise well within reach.
Check out our Point Richmond home, Common Cottage, and see what life in the Bay Area’s best-kept secret could be like.