Irvine, California

Suburban Master Plan

Looklyloo Score: 92

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Irvine Business Complex

Young Professionals

Irvine is not a thriving city for the youngsters so if living a walking distance from a really active social scene then try Costa Mesa. Assuming you want to be right next to work then look at the condo/apartment scene near the Irvine Business Complex. It’s boring but you don’t have to wrestle with a commute on the daily. Bella Terra is another option that adds a commute to most work options but you get shopping, malls and some local nightlife. It’s also driveable to downtown Huntington Beach which has much more of a scene.

  • Irvine Business Complex
  • Bella Terra



Northwood is a good neighborhood for a family to start their search. You get a nice blend of suburban Craftsman and Spanish Revival homes but also decent commercial experiences - restaurants, with some eclectic dining choices, and shopping at the big Town Center. The neighborhood also has some of the best elementary, middle and high schools in the city and amazing facilities for music training in the Conservatory, and classes, sports and general recreation at the Community Center.

A good alternative to check out is University Park. While it’s right next to UC-Irvine and Concordia University, it is not in the least a “college” neighborhood in terms of noise and bars, although you get the beautiful grounds bordering your blocks when you feel like walking through a nice campus. University Park also has some of the highest rated schools in the city and has three great parks and green spaces for hiking, biking, walking and playing with the kiddos when they aren’t learning at those great schools.

  • Northwood
  • University Park
  • Oak Creek

Laguna Woods


Irvine, like many California cities, is pricey for most retirees. If you can afford it then Irvine is a “pleasant” option - warm weather, extremely safe, and nice roomy homes. You’re also close to the rest of Orange County, San Diego and Los Angeles if you’re looking for more action. There are a number of large retirement communities just south of Irvine that are probably the best place to start your search if you prefer a planned community. Laguna Woods is a city entirely built around a retirement community and Casa Del Sol in Mission Viejo.

  • Laguna Woods
  • Casa Del Sol