National Publication Ranks Pasadena's Bungalow Heaven Third Best Neighborhood in America

Published : Friday, March 1, 2019 | 5:43 AM

Bungalow Heaven in Pasadena is America’s third best neighborhood, according to a ranking published by Thrillist, a national online publication that covers food, drink, travel and entertainment.

The ranking listed America’s top 10 most beautiful neighborhoods, “whose curbside appeal is undeniable,” the publication said.

Pasadena’s Bungalow Heaven, bordered by Orange Grove and Washington boulevards and Lake and Hill streets, contains approximately 800 bungalows and exemplifies the early 20th century’s Arts and Crafts architectural movement, the publication said.

“This style reverberates not only in the area’s grand, timeless houses, but in the unified, verdant atmosphere of the neighborhood itself, with shade blanketing its streets thanks to the trees that line them, and immaculately manicured lawns throughout,” the description read.

The Bungalow Heaven Historic District was listed by the U.S. Department of the Interior in the National Register of Historic Places on April 10, 2008. As a result of the listing, Bungalow Heaven has also been listed in the California Register of Historical Resources.

“The quiet tree-lined streets and lovely gardens of Bungalow Heaven are more than just a pretty neighborhood. The 16-block area… is a historic gem set in the midst of Pasadena,” according to a description on Bungalow Heaven’s website, maintained by the Bungalow Heaven Neighborhood Association.

In 1989, the Bungalow Heaven neighborhood became Pasadena’s first historic Landmark District, mostly through the efforts of dedicated residents who saw the historic significance of the homes there and worked to ensure their preservation.

In 2009, the American Planning Association (APA) designated the Bungalow Heaven Landmark District as one of the 10 great places in America. The group cited the large number of significantly important historic homes in the neighborhood as well as collaborative efforts between residents and the city of Pasadena for restoring, protecting and maintaining Bungalow Heaven’s unique character and sense of place.

“Bungalow Heaven is truly remarkable in that there are more than a thousand historic homes in the neighborhood,” APA Chief Executive Officer Paul Farmer said then.  “Residents and the city are rightfully proud of this architectural legacy, and we applaud them for their ongoing commitment through planning and planning follow-through to protect and enhance their neighborhood’s unique sense of place.”

Topping the Thrillist ranking of the best neighborhoods in America was Beacon Hill in Boston, Massachusetts.

“Between the red brick sidewalks, the classic Georgian architecture, and the gaslights casting their amber glow down the narrow streets, this gorgeous colonial ‘hood stands out from the rest of Beantown like a… well, like the most beautiful neighborhood in America,” Thrillist wrote in the description for Beacon Hill.

The Central Park West Historic District in New York City, a “chunk of Manhattan’s UWS is packed to the gills with landmarks, including some of the earliest apartment buildings in the city,” was listed as second in the Thrillist ranking.

The other California neighborhood listed in the top 10 is San Francisco’s Sea Cliff neighborhood, which offers views of the Golden Gate, at No. 6.

For more information about Bungalow Heaven, visit

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