Before I depart for France and Italy in a few days, I thought I would tell you a bit about the community in which I live. It is called Laguna Woods Village and it is located in the Southern part of Orange County, California. We are a community of about 16,000 people in about 13,000 homes which range in price from the low 200,000s to well over a million but the average price is about in the upper 300,000s. Our village is limited to those age 55 and over and our average age is 78. I fit right in at age 79 and based on about 16 months living here, I am among the more active residents because I still work 2 days per week and drive a round trip to 200 miles to work and back! That’s Southern California for you, traffic, freeways, bumper to bumper but here in Laguna Woods things are quiet and sedate most of the time. I invite you to look at the description of our village on the 55places.com website and also at Lagunawoodsvillage.com where you will find everything pretty much that there is to know about my hometown. The village is set on 2100 acres in the Saddleback Valley just a short way from Disneyland, Knott’s Berry Farm and the wonderful beaches of Orange County including our nearby Laguna Beach but more about that later. I plan another blog post about Laguna Beach before I depart but for now, we will stick to Laguna Woods Village. We are surrounded by Laguna Hills, Mission Viejo, Lake Forest and Irvine. In addition to the homes, the Village has 7 clubhouses which support about every type of club or activity that one could want, to name just a few-sewing, woodworking, jewelry making, Bridge, painting, photography, ceramics, computers and for outdoor activities, a 36 hole golf course, five swimming pools, tennis and pickleball courts, bocce ball, lawn bowling, shuffleboard and horseshoes. We have our own equestrian center and an 814 seat Performing Arts Center in addition to our own library with over 140,000 volumes and several fitness centers! Many of my fellow residents are retired and partake much more fully of the plethora of clubs devoted to about every kind of interest one could imagine such as travel, religion, philosophy, art, music, Shakespeare and politics to name just a few. Currently, I participate in a Contract Bridge lesson and play Bridge as well as contributing to the Shakespeare Club. We are currently studying “As You Like It” with the help of an excellent Professor from UC Irvine. Oh yes, that photo of the Flaxleaf Paperbark Tree is in front of my condominium and the name is according to the Audubon Society of Australia! We are blessed with an abundance of fantastic trees, flowers and plants which makes our village really beautiful and lovely to walk in and enjoy the foliage.
The attached photos will give you a little idea of our Village but with 2100 acres it is really impossible to describe and demonstrate the depth and breadth of what is available here and yes, our community is Gate Guarded and very safe with no commercial development whatever. Just a short distance outside our walls are every kind of shopping one could imagine including movie theaters, restaurants, grocery stores, clothing stores and large shopping malls. And, oh yes, the climate is fantastic so all in all, one could hardly beat Laguna Woods Village for a fantastic retirement destination but for anyone 55 years old and up, retired or not, it is a fantastic place to live!