Marin County, California, USA

Semi-Rural, Perfectly Ethereal

by Iyna Bort Caruso

Just north of San Francisco and south of California’s fabled wine country of Napa and Sonoma valleys lies Marin County, an area The New York Times called “ethereal” and “privileged.”

Marin is one of the most affluent counties in the state. Excellent schools, a moderate climate and plenty of open spaces give it a semi-rural feel despite its location just on the other side of the Golden Gate Bridge from San Francisco.

Huge swaths of acreage along the 70-mile ocean coastline as well as in the county’s interior are dedicated to parkland, farms and national protected areas like Muir Woods National Park and the Marin Islands National Wildlife Refuge. As a result, both commercial and residential development is limited, which serves to keep Marin County real estate prices stable and strong. A 40-mile bay shoreline is where some of the most exclusive neighborhoods are and where residents enjoy comfortable year-round sea breezes.

The hilly Tiburon Peninsula juts out in the waters of San Francisco Bay. Homes in the peninsula’s tiny city of Belvedere--less than one square mile in size--have one of the highest average per-square-foot prices. Belvedere means “beautiful view” in Italian and the name lives up to the vistas with exquisite views in every direction. The Golden Gate Bridge, Angel Island and Mount Tamalpais are all within sight. The adjacent community of Tiburon along the peninsula’s southern tip is a municipality of historical landmarks, groomed greenbelt trails and a lively main street dubbed “Ark Row” for the houseboat lifestyle that was prevalent a century ago.

Residences set high in the attractive Central Marin neighborhood of Greenbrae have views of Mount Tamalpais and San Francisco Bay. Proximity to the freeway makes for easy commuting to San Francisco. Ferry service to the city is also available. On the southern tip of Marin is the popular waterfront town of Sausalito, which supports a sizeable houseboat community. Young professionals, empty nesters and retirees gravitate to this charming enclave, reminiscent of a Mediterranean village.

Local contact

Golden Gate Sotheby's International Realty

10 Beach RoadBelvedere Tiburon, California 94920 United States

Golden Gate Sotheby's International Realty

500 Drakes Landing RoadGreenbrae, California 94904 United States

Golden Gate Sotheby's International Realty

189 Sir Francis Drake Blvd.Greenbrae, California 94904 United States

Golden Gate Sotheby's International Realty

100 Tiburon BlvdMill Valley, California 94941 United States

Golden Gate Sotheby's International Realty

438 Ignacio Blvd.Novato, California 94949 United States

Golden Gate Sotheby's International Realty

902 Irwin StreetSan Rafael, California 94901 United States

Golden Gate Sotheby's International Realty

211 2nd StreetSausalito, California 94965 United States

Golden Gate Sotheby's International Realty

3605 Shoreline Highway, PO Box 66Stinson Beach, California 94970 United States

Sotheby's International Realty - San Francisco Brokerage

117 Greenwich StreetSan Francisco, California 94111 United States