Located along the waterfront of the Port of Oakland, West Oakland has something of a colorful past.
Once deeded in the early 1800s to Spanish Army soldier Luis Maria Peralta in what would go down as one of the largest land grants in history, by mid-century, men who had been leasing the land began illegally selling off farm plots. Among these squatters was none other than Horace Carpentier, who would become Oakland’s first mayor.
Near the turn of the century, West Oakland swelled in population as people from across the United States, Mexico, Asia, and Europe began to make their homes here. By the late 1800s, the area — complete with its own baseball team, the Oakland Oaks — would begin a cycle of upheaval and renewal that spanned the twentieth century and continues to this day.
In a Few Words
On the rise
The Bay Area is known for its exceptional cuisine, and when it comes to good eating, West Oakland holds its own:
- Zella’s Soulful Kitchen and 10th & Wood are two not-to-be-missed hot spots for those looking for down-home comfort food.
- Ethic choices abound in West Oakland as well, and include delicious send ups from The Whole Tortilla, Venga Paella, and FuseBox, among many others.
- And when you’re looking for something sweet, Starter Bakery, Kilovolt Coffee, and The Bread Project don’t disappoint.
For a time, Jack London made his home in West Oakland. His novel, Valley of the Moon, is set here.
Why West Oakland?
Many are attracted to West Oakland due to its close proximity to San Francisco and the variety of public transportation options this city offers. Those looking for affordable rental and housing prices are also drawn here and are happy to call West Oakland home.