In Los Angeles when you mention that you live in “the Valley,” people automatically assume you are speaking of the San Fernando Valley (which includes Burbank, Sherman Oaks, Encino, Tarzana, Woodland Hills, Calabasas… You get the point).
But today I’m talking about a very different valley — The Conejo Valley. Bordered by Calabasas to the East and Malibu to the South, as soon as you crest the Agoura Hills it’s pretty clear why so many celebrities, sports figures, entertainment executives, and other professionals have decided (and as players for the Rams are proving, continuing to decide) to call The Conejo Valley home.
Four main communities that make up the area: Agoura Hills, Oak Park, Thousand Oaks, and (the crown jewel of the area) Westlake Village. (There are also the areas of these cities, such as Lake Sherwood, Hidden Valley and North Ranch.) Each of the cities is known for top-rated schools, larger lots, larger homes, lower population density and incredible livability. For example:
Unlike the scorching Hades-esque temperatures for which the San Fernando Valley is known, Westlake temperatures are more in-line with those of Brentwood, thanks to cool ocean breezes courtesy of Malibu (which is about 20 minutes away).
Traffic is so much lighter, parking is so much easier and the people in the Conejo Valley are so much nicer… I know it sounds like a BS claim, but when I bring clients out here for the first time they feel like they’ve been transported to a kinder and gentler era (one client summed it up best when he said, “The Starbucks barista didn’t try to correct me that they don’t have a medium.” He and his family bought a home in Westlake two months later).
Since I mentioned traffic, I want to mention the commute to LA. Whether it’s to Santa Monica, Beverly Hills, Hollywood, or Burbank, I have gotten to each of these places faster (around 45 minutes as an average) than it usually takes me to go from one side of the 405 to the other in the middle of the day (and especially at rush hour).
The schools are academically top-rated, well funded and offer the type of school experience that’s more like “Sweet Valley High,” than the reality one meets when they live further south on the 101.
As for dining, the quality and choice of restaurants rivals any area of LA: Rustico, Tuscany, Pearl District, Olio Limone, Stonehaus Wine Bar, Mediteraneo, Las Agaves… I think you’re getting the point — we have a lot of great restaurants. (Oh, and for those seeking a guilty pleasure, the In n Out Burger hardly ever has a line.)
And as I said before, when you need to get down to LA, or Malibu, or Santa Monica, you’re usually no more than 45 minutes away from where you need to be (though rush hour traffic is pretty much like anywhere else in the area). But when it’s time to come home, whether you’re coming over the Hill on the 101 or taking a canyon off PCH, you’ll instantly remember why you moved here.