Adrian and I have lived in San Leandro for almost 19 years, and the old adage remains true: “There is no place like home.” With its historic neighborhoods, unique homes, up-and-coming downtown, and countless things to do…it has truly been an idyllic place to live and raise our children. Having been residents for so long, it is exciting to see all of the ways San Leandro is recently improving itself, adding new restaurants, and always setting the bar high at local events. When visitors or new home-owners ask us, “What do you like to do in San Leandro?” We ask them, “How long do you have?” Since the beginning, it has been a priority for Adrian and me to support our community, and to be big fans of local schools and businesses. Almost every day, we frequent our San Leandro CrossFit, pay a visit to one of our favorite coffee shops or restaurants, and have the distinct privilege of seeing many passers-by at our office on MacArthur Blvd. (Come say hi, our door is always open!)
Through this blog, I hope to share more in future posts, what we love most about San Leandro. Adrian and I are proud of the city we belong to, and the hardworking people who make it beautiful. I hope that as you visit some of our favorite places, you too will experience the bustle and charm that makes it special. Stay tuned for more blog posts about other places, activities, and events we love. Until then, here is a mini guide to San Leandro!
1. Start your day at Zocalo Coffeehouse. This locally owned, cheery cafe serves breakfast fare, salads, sandwiches, craft beer, wine, and delicious coffee. Their staff is friendly, their dining area is spacious and relaxing, and nothing beats their vanilla lattes (in my opinion!) Zocalo strikes that hard balance of being the coffeehouse you can both work and socialize in. We would be a LOT more tired without our regular Zocalo fix. (As an aside, keep an eye out for the Wheely’s Café cart around town. Also locally owned and serving Zocalo coffee! Check out their FB page here) Find more details about Zocalo here.
2. Catch up on emails and phone calls in Downtown San Leandro. Our downtown area is getting lovelier by the minute! With stringed lights, coffee shops, outdoor seating, and plenty of great places to relax – downtown is a great place to meet up with friends or get some work done! And thanks to the Lit San Leandro Project, much of Downtown has free wifi! More info about LitSanLeandro here.
3. Grab some pizza at Rubianos. I’m not exaggerating when I say that the pizza here will change your life! Another locally owned business, Adrian and I love coming here with friends to share a few pizzas, order some beers on tap, and enjoy the relaxed atmosphere. This is a great place for both a date and family time with the kids! Find more detail here.
4. Check out Marco Cochrane’s Truth Is Beauty installation at the nearby BART station. This 55-foot statue of a naked woman dancing is a new and fascinating addition to San Leandro’s community. Made with 33,000 pounds of steel mesh, Truth Is Beauty is just as stunning up close as she is driving by, and her message is even more intriguing. Truth Is Beauty is embodied by the question engraved in the statue’s base: “What would the world be like if women were safe?” Inspired by the abduction and rape of a neighborhood friend when he was a child, Cochrane says on his website that the project was intended to “de-objectify women and inspire men and women to take action to end violence against women, thus allowing both women and men to live fully and thrive.” This work of art is a must-see! Find more details here. Also, see how theTech Campus (home to Truth is Beauty) is partnering with Off the Grid food trucks for Truth Thursday’s here.
5. Enjoy dinner at Paradiso. If you have spent any extended time with Adrian and I, then you know how much we love Paradiso. Their menu boasts a wide selection of dishes, using only the finest ingredients. Being a “foodie” myself, it can sometimes feel like a risk to try a new restaurant, for fear of it disappointing. Paradiso never disappoints. It is impossible to pick a favorite on the menu, and we try to take as many people here as possible! Find more details here.
6. End the night with drinks at Sons of Liberty. There is a new alehouse in town, and it is at the heart of San Leandro! We love heading to Sons of Liberty after a hard day’s work, to order some drinks, enjoy the atmosphere, and share some small bites. With a creative and appetizing menu, plenty of indoor seating, and a patio area for warmer nights, Sons of Liberty is the perfect way to end the day! Have a cocktail for me! Find more details here.
What are YOUR favorite places to visit in San Leandro? I’d love to know! Share in the comments below.
Thanks for following along!