8.6 out of 10


37.7768514532784 -122.202224226965
Great for
  • Internet Access
  • Peace & Quiet
  • Cost of Living
  • Lack of Traffic
  • Neighborly Spirit
Not great for
  • Nightlife
Who lives here?
  • Professionals
  • Families with kids
  • Retirees


1/5 rating details
  • Neighborly Spirit 3/5
  • Safe & Sound 1/5
  • Clean & Green 2/5
  • Pest Free 3/5
  • Peace & Quiet 3/5
  • Eating Out 2/5
  • Nightlife 1/5
  • Parks & Recreation 3/5
  • Shopping Options 2/5
  • Gym & Fitness 2/5
  • Internet Access 3/5
  • Lack of Traffic 3/5
  • Parking 3/5
  • Cost of Living 4/5
  • Resale or Rental Value 1/5
  • Public Transport 3/5
  • Medical Facilities 3/5
  • Schools 3/5
  • Childcare 3/5

"The Cemetary's the Liveliest Spot"

California has at least three places involving the name Fairfax. There is a relatively well-known Fairfax down in the LA area. There is a Fairfax town up in Marin County. And there is also this Fairfax, a small, little known neighborhood in Oakland, California.

Fairfax, in Oakland, is a small working class neighborhood, a little bit to the east of Mills College. This is yet another of the neighborhoods in Oakland that we might call a bungalow city with the majority of the homes here being of that variety and dating to before the 1950’s.

The main feature of the northern part of the neighborhood is dominated by Home of Peace Cemetery—which I believe is a Jewish cemetery. This section of Fairfax is somewhat elevated and offers some okay views of the Oakland cityscape. Surrounding the cemetery are boxy apartment buildings—weather worn and ugly.

The bungalows that make up most of the rest of the neighborhood are okay but they are also a bit worn.

Crime in the area is also a bit of concern as there is about one murder in the neighborhood per year. Given there are less than three thousand residents here, this is definitely a concern anyone moving here should weigh.

In terms of the businesses in Fairfax, there isn’t much to write home about. There is an auto repair that I have never been to. There is also a cheap pizza place, Mama Rosa’s Pizza which has some pretty cheap though not very good pizza.

One positive of the neighborhood is the elementary school, Horace Mann. Although by nationwide standards it would be considered rather mediocre, it is actually one of the better elementaries in Oakland. I still would not recommend living here if can avoid it, however.
  • Affordable
  • Good Public Transportation
  • Okay School
  • Crime
  • Worn Out Older Buildings
  • Bad Restaurants/Nightlife
5/5 rating details
  • Neighborly Spirit 5/5
  • Safe & Sound 5/5
  • Clean & Green 5/5
  • Pest Free 5/5
  • Peace & Quiet 5/5
  • Eating Out 5/5
  • Nightlife 5/5
  • Parks & Recreation 5/5
  • Shopping Options 5/5
  • Gym & Fitness 5/5
  • Internet Access 5/5
  • Lack of Traffic 5/5
  • Cost of Living 5/5
  • Resale or Rental Value 5/5
  • Public Transport 5/5
  • Medical Facilities 5/5
  • Schools 5/5
  • Childcare 5/5

"Amazing Hippy Town"

Fairfax is where the hippies went to retire after making millions in the dot com boom. Fairfax is this sleepy little town just north of San Francisco.The amazing little town is bustling with rich pot smoking hippies, who only drink their organic coffee and eat raw foods. This adorable town of about 15,000 comes with a recently renovated movie theater, which now plays new movies, but still at a semi-discounted rate. There are tons of coffee shops, cafes and even a brewery. While the brewery isn't very good, there are plenty of amazing little places to grab a beer and a bite. Right outside of downtown is M&G Burger, which is a reason alone to go to Fairfax. Also outside downtown are the most adorable residential areas, with very expensive, but amazingly modest homes. Perfectly comfortable without being pretentious... and great little town.
Recommended for
  • Professionals
  • Families with kids
NightOwlnOrinda This review has apparently been misplaced. There is a Fairfax north of San Francisco which is a city (it is a bit west of San Anselmo) and that matches this description. This Fairfax here, however, is not a city but a tiny neighborhood in Oakland, to the east of SF. This Fairfax is not at all the same as that other Fairfax in terms of demographics or feel. See my forth coming review for this Fairfax.
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