Alameda is often referred to as one of the Bay Area’s best-kept secrets. There is a long list of attributes supporting its ascent to one of the “best places to live” in America, according to Money Magazine. For starters, the island enjoys a “warm-summer Mediterranean climate” according to the Köppen climate classification. Add to this excellent air quality, an abundance of libraries and restaurants, plenty of parks, proximity to educational institutions, rich heritage and historic Victorian architecture, and you have a winning formula for a wonderful hometown.

Many structures in the Park Street Business District are on the National Register, including the Alameda Theater, an art deco movie house dating back to 1932. Notable for being one of the grandest movie palaces still in operation, it was restored to its former grandeur and reopened as a multiplex in 2008.

The canal between Alameda and Oakland was created in 1902, making Alameda an island community. It is one of 12 cities in the U.S. designated as a Coast Guard City and also housed a Naval Air Station from 1940 to 1997. The USS Hornet remains there as a museum. The sprawling 68-acre NAS property is now known as the Alameda Point Project with development plans to create a signature neighborhood complete with residential, commercial, retail and artisan businesses.