7.3 out of 10

Old Mountain View

Ranked 1st best neighborhood in Mountain View
37.3889585171681 -122.077422751628
Great for
  • Shopping Options
  • Neighborly Spirit
  • Medical Facilities
  • Internet Access
  • Gym & Fitness
Not great for
  • Cost of Living
  • Peace & Quiet
Who lives here?
  • Professionals
  • Singles
  • Families with kids
  • Retirees
  • Students


3/5 rating details
  • Neighborly Spirit 3/5
  • Shopping Options 4/5

"Restaurant haven"

Nestled along US Route 85 and the Central Expressway, Old Mountain View is a lower middle to middle-class suburban area with a commercial strip and a close-knit community. It tends to have a evoke a modest living environment with its flat quarters and single-family houses. For prospective residents, homes share the same boxy looking, single-story house that doesn’t seem to escape the Mountain View community. But its main draw is Old Mountain View downtown, which offers a variety of interesting shops and dining options.

Old Mountain View’s residential terrain is nothing too exceptional. It provides a certain mid-1900’s aesthetic that only a central California community can. Many assume that it has retained its old character, while others just scoff at its outdated character. Houses tend to vary from boxy, Victorian farmhouses to a few pseudo-modern-looking, two-story homes. Each residence is issued a small patch of property, allotting room for only an even smaller grass yard (>20’ x 20’) with a narrow driveway. They afford one or two-car garages, or at times, just a thin, long driveway space. As a result, lots are usually tightly packed, and uncomfortably so, along residential streets. One thing to note is that nicer residences concentrate towards the eastern side of the district. As a whole, house values range from $600,000 to $1 million.

If you’re looking for cheaper accommodations, there are some elegant two-story condominiums that line View Street. Each has its own modern feel to it, with lots usually well-maintained and property managers acting quickly to keep communal spaces clean and neat. The median condominium price is listed around $650,000.

While not necessarily known for its residential ambiance, Old Mountain View’s nightlife and bars is the hotspot of the area. Its downtown quarters, located along the West El Camino Real commercial strip, maintain a somewhat historic ambiance with stores and restaurants for every budget and taste. You can also find a couple strip malls on the outskirts of the neighborhood (mostly along Castro Street), but it harbors the usually random suburban amenities with the exception of the Holiday Inn.

For commuters, the Mountain View Caltrain is located on the northern fringe of the neighborhood and conveniently connects residents up and down the San Francisco peninsula. Shoppers usually head to the Grant Park Plaza Shopping Center which provides a market, a Walgreens, a Rite Aid and a couple family-oriented restaurants. And let’s not forget about Mountain View’s Center for the Performing Arts, which showcasing live theatre and entertainment.
  • Cool Bars
  • Great Restaurants
  • Crowded
Recommended for
  • Professionals
  • Singles
  • Retirees
  • Trendy & Stylish
5/5 rating details
  • Neighborly Spirit 4/5
  • Safe & Sound 3/5
  • Clean & Green 3/5
  • Pest Free 4/5
  • Peace & Quiet 2/5
  • Eating Out 5/5
  • Nightlife 4/5
  • Parks & Recreation 3/5
  • Shopping Options 4/5
  • Gym & Fitness 5/5
  • Internet Access 5/5
  • Lack of Traffic 3/5
  • Parking 3/5
  • Cost of Living 2/5
  • Resale or Rental Value 5/5
  • Public Transport 4/5
  • Medical Facilities 5/5
  • Schools 4/5
  • Childcare 3/5

"And Over View of Word Cuisine"

Old Mountain View is definitely where it is at in Mountain View. The main drag in Old Mountain View is Castro Street. That’s where you will find all of the restaurants and cool spots. Here are my favorites:

--Chez TJ: Of course, you have to start with Chez TJ—the place to go for classy French food that will cost you almost as much as your monthly mortgage payment. And I don’t mean just an average person’s mortgage payment—I am talking a Mountain View size mortgage payment. Outstanding place. I’ve only been there once and don’t expect I will go again. Just don’t have that kind of money to burn these days.

--Scratch: Classy American cuisine. A really cool date spot for a first date. Dim lights, good food. What else could you ask for?

--Cascal: Another great date spot, this Tapas joint has high ceilings and cool blue candle sconces. Really cool.

--Sakoon: My favorite Indian place in Mountain View.

--Xahn: An Asian fusion place specializing in Vietnamese food. It’s one of a number of East Asian places in Mountain View but it is the best for my money.

--Vaso Azzuro—My favorite Italian place in Mountain View. Great service and live music as well. Can’t beat that.

--Shezan—Okay so I already have an Indian place on the list, but Shezan is technically a Pakistani place and is just about as good as Sakoon.

Ephesus—the best place for Mediterranean food.

There are also a handful of pretty good watering holes here:

--Mervyn’s Lounge-Which bills itself as dive bar but is really more of a cozy neighborhood bar.

--Molly MaGees and St. Stephen’s Green—2 Irish Pubs.

--Zen Lounge—with Japanese décor straight out of a Kurasawa movie, dancing and theme nights like Wayback Wednesdays and Reverse Happy Hour Thursdays, this is heart of cool. This is the kind of place that me and George Constanza can’t get into because of those hip musicians with their complicated shoes. (Not to worry, Alberto’s also has dancing.)

So, put simply, Old Mountain View is the center of the action in Mountain View. (And north of Mountain View too. I think of it as the last outpost of real fun for young people until you hit South San Francisco, probably. Certainly better than comparatively sleepy Palo Alto.)
  • Great Restaurants
  • Cool Bars
  • Good Houses
  • Overpriced
  • Crowded

"A Great Place to Live for Everyone!"

This is a great neighborhood. I come here about 4 or 5 times a month for meetings. The streets here are clean and organized, the is clean, and the people here are nice too! There are also a lot of shops and restaurants in this neighborhood. It has just the right amount of people and car in the streets, and the safety here is pretty good too. I've been here both during the day and night. Driving down one of the main streets at night here was really pretty too. There were many small lights and the street had an orange glow to it. I would love to live here if I had the money. Shopping is easy, and a bicycle is enough to travel around the neighborhood.
Recommended for
  • Professionals
  • Singles
  • Families with kids
  • Retirees

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Best Streets in Old Mountain View


Mercy St

"Sweet location!"
37.3890763635864 -122.078790094605

Unranked Streets in Old Mountain View

Bryant St

"Park here at night"
37.3929654166303 -122.080831716465

Calderon Ave

"One of the Better Mountain View Streets"
37.387586785522 -122.07412110481

Franklin St

"Downtown condos"
37.3923402166469 -122.082615847269

Jessie Ln

"Perfect place for nearly everything"
37.3863193741498 -122.076570680099

Villa St

"Nice Downtown Street"
37.3935728307379 -122.078374435172

West Dana St

"Nice Downtown Side Street"
37.3918665951972 -122.077974771099

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