Those living under the red-tiled roofs with tailored green landscapes appear content in the community Irv Statler calls his "Camelot." Statler and his wife, Renee have lived in the Cuernavaca neighborhood for about 30 years.
Homes were still under construction when the Statler family decided to move to the Mountain View neighborhood in August 1988. To him, they could not have chosen a better place to live.
"We didn't realize how wonderful it would be," Irv said. "I've seen it grow for more than 30 years. We didn't realize at the time the perfect retirement home we have."
The development was completed in 1989 through five phases. It consists of 170 Spanish-style homes that rest on 30 acres of land. Homes vary in design and size with floor plan options ranging from 1,500 square feet to 2,500 square feet.
Located off Crestview Drive near the Sunnyvale border, the nearest hospital is less than half of a mile away. Grocery stores and restaurants are within walking distance. Just one block away from bustling El Camino Real, the Cuernavaca neighborhood is its own hamlet tucked away from the rest of the city. While Renee enjoys this element of solitude, what she likes most is the diversity of the community.
"That's the nice thing about it," Renee said. "There are families with small children; there are retirees like us and everyone gets along very, very well."
The neighborhood has two entrances so it is easy to feel like you are in your own world once inside. Said Irv on the design: "It's almost a gated community." There's a main circle with five cul-de-sacs stemming from the circle. Amenities include a playground, clubhouse, exercise room, spa, pool and tennis courts.
Access to main thoroughfares such as Interstate 280 and the community vibe are just two factors that attracted Peter Panfili to the neighborhood. He is president of the board of directors for the Cuernavaca Homeowners' Association. He and his wife, Natalie, have lived there since 1987.
"We're the original owners. What we like most is the sense of community," Peter said. "You really get to know your neighbors."
Opportunities to interact with neighbors come several times a year with the hosting of community events. One example is a Halloween party held for families in the neighborhood.
In addition to the perk of social interaction, the look of Cuernavaca was another draw for Peter. He said he liked that it was visually attractive and provided good proximity to schools and downtown Mountain View.
He remembers one of his neighbors commenting that the development reminded him of a village. Peter agrees with this observation.
"It's a lovely community. It's a neighborhood," he said. "It really is."
The Cuernavaca site was originally part of a cherry orchard and later the nine-hole Cherry Chase Golf Course and attendant swim club, according to the homeowners' association website. The course was eventually considered for redevelopment under a 1974 land-use plan.
CHILDCARE AND PRESCHOOLS: Western Montessori Day School, 323 Moorpark Way; St. Timothy's Nursery School, 2094 Grant Road; YMCA — Huff Kids' Place, 253 Martens Ave.
FIRE STATION: No. 2, 160 Cuesta Drive
LOCATION: off Crestview Drive, near El Camino Real and the Sunnyvale border
NEIGHBORHOOD ASSOCIATION: Cuernavaca Homeowners Association,Lisa Tenover, president; Lisa Lenoci, CMS property management, 408-559-1977, cuernavacahoa.com.
PARKS: Green belt on the property
POST OFFICE: Nob Hill Foods, 1250 Grant Road
PRIVATE SCHOOLS: St. Stephen Lutheran School, 320 Moorpark Way
PUBLIC SCHOOLS: Mountain View-Whisman School District — Huff Elementary School, Graham Middle School; Mountain View-Los Altos Union High School District — Mountain View High School
SHOPPING: Cala Center, 1111 W. El Camino Real in Sunnyvale; Grant Park Plaza, 1350 Grant Road, Mountain View
Previous Cuernavaca neighborhood profiles