A Maximus Guide to San Leandro, California

Nestled into the shore of East Bay lies San Leandro, a charming town known for its abundant cherry harvests and vibrant neighborhoods. The San Leandro experience encompasses everything from temperate days on the golf course to walking tours of quaint historic architecture. 

As the Bay Area booms with high-rises and tech neighborhoods, San Leandro stands as a slice of small-town charm with enduring community traditions such as the annual Cherry Festival and biweekly farmers’ markets — and is home to  Maximus’ tree-shaded Woodchase apartments, located minutes from Old San Leandro and Lake Chabot.  

In recent years, the multi-generational families of San Leandro have seen the town evolve with the introduction of more public art sculptures and transit options. As San Leandro has grown into itself over the past few years, community-grown businesses have entered the spotlight of town pride, from highly lauded Asian cuisine to line-out-the-door artisan bakeries.

For the quintessential California brewery experience, pay a visit to Drake’s Brewing Company, which has been the area’s premier brewery since 1989. Alternatively, for those in search of a more hip and urban tavern spot, check out Sons of Liberty Alehouse right off the 185. 

Photo: @sonsoflibertyalehouse

Popular restaurants range from the well-reviewed Top Hatters Kitchen and Bar on MacArthur Boulevard to the trendy, lively Papaito Rotisserie, which also hosts a spin-off cafe called Antigua Coffee Shop. While the Antigua register is more popular for quick breakfast bites, Papaito is the popular choice for lunch with colleagues and clients. Try out their signature rotisserie chicken, and top it off with a flavorful bite of their smoked corn salad or roasted brussel sprouts. 

Papaito Rotisserie’s signature dish. Photo: Benjamin Seto

Outside of drinks and dining, locals enjoy wide waterfront vistas on walks along the Marina and the Oyster Bay Regional Shoreline. San Leandro is home to several preserved wetlands and is bordered by the Bay and the Diablo range, a central location from which to take a number of exhilarating day trips—among them, vineyard tours in Livermore, hikes at Mount Tamalpais or scenic beach strolls in Half Moon Bay.

Papaito Rotisserie’s signature dish. Photo: Benjamin Seto

Within the city, the local government has been crafting its Transit-Oriented Development Strategy, targeting urban “smart growth” in relation to the BART and San Leandro Tech Campus. In the past few years, Maximus has reached out to neighbors, merchants, and community coalitions to explore the possibilities of a unified vision for San Leandro. 899 Alvarado, one of Maximus’ newest residential projects, is poised to deliver in-demand housing as well as commerce and cultural attractions to the area, including a vibrant art installation from Oakland-based sculptor Shawn HibmaCronan.

With the city council’s plans for urban growth combined with Maximus’ innovative visions for community-conscious development, there’s a lot in store for San Leandro’s marriage of historic charm with the Bay Area’s blossoming new cultural identity.