Cambridge Court, Irvine: A Community Near U.C. I.
A Brief History of Cambridge Court
Cambridge Court is the community that border Culver Drive to the east, California Avenue to the west, Harvard Avenue to the north and Campus Drive to the south. There are three models to choose from when considering to buy or lease within this University Town Center neighborhood.
As the new homes brochure stated quite eloquently back in 1981 when Cambridge Court was envisioned by the builder Broadmoor Homes: “There’s a new kind of urban community growing in Irvine. Here the cultural atmosphere of a major university blends with a maintenance-free style of living in tune with today’s needs. Shopping, schools, parks, and churches, a whole world of things to do are just steps or a bike ride from your front door.”
“This is Cambridge Court, a unique series of town homes just across the street from the University of California at Irvine. Cambridge Court is elegant urban living at its best. It recalls the vitality of the great university communities: Harvard, Columbia, Georgetown. Cambridge Court is a friendly, exciting place to live, with a real neighborhood feeling.” “Cambridge Court is part of the University Town Center: planned to be a special urban experience that combines homes, commercial shops and services, offices and parks to offer the convenience of city living within a master planned community. It’s a dynamic place, where the heritage of the past and the challenges of the future flow together in harmony.”
This describes the community back in 1981 and it is as fresh and as vital today as it was when it was first built. Indeed, one of the reasons that the community continues to thrive and evolve is due to its eclectic blend of people who participate in the dynamic mix that lends to the communities’ vitality and current focus. And although the Cambridge Court community was built in the difficult economic times associated with extremely high interest rates which ultimately saw the exit of the builder Broadmoor and the subsequent establishment and release of the newer phases of Cambridge Court by the builder Fieldstone, the quality of construction of these town homes and innovative floor plans won many an award and world-wide acclaim. Indeed, the floor plans of these town houses in Cambridge Court are as contemporary and sought after today, as they were when they were first built between 1981 and 1984.
Cambridge Court’s Floor Plans
Each of the three floor plans in the community of Cambridge Court is as unique and as modern as anything built today. The models were named after resident houses at Harvard University.
The Quincy is a single story two bedroom, two bath town home with a two-car attached garage. It has dramatic volume ceilings in the living, dining, and in each of the two bedrooms providing a light and airy feeling throughout. The wood or gas-burning fireplace separates the living from the formal dining room and provides a cozy cottage feeling to the environment. There is a skylight in the dining room and there is a French door that opens out into a private, enclosed atrium area through which one exits and enters to get to the 2-car garage.
The Quincy model has the distinction of being the only single story 2 bedroom model in the University Town Center with no one living above or below, two full bathrooms, and a two-car garage that is attached (but with no direct access). Access is through the French door in the kitchen to the atrium/patio and the into the garage. There is 1020 square feet according to the builder floor plan (the Assessor’s square footage will differ slightly from the builder’s square footage, so it is advisable to have it taped if this is a concern.
The Mather is a two-story, two master bedroom suites, with two and one-half baths, a formal dining room and a separate family room leading into a 2-car direct access garage. The two luxurious bedroom suites each have their own private bath. Each bath has its own skylight providing wonderful ambient lighting. There is a dramatic entry. The living room has volume ceilings and a wood or gas-burning fireplace. The formal dining room and the large private atrium offer plenty of space for entertaining or just comfortable living.
The Mather model is always located in the middle, and while the original brochure indicates “two master bedroom suites,” only one of the suites is truly a master suite. However, each bedroom does have its own private bathroom (the master has an enclosed shower stall–unless remodeled, while the secondary suite has a full bath (shower over tub enclosure).
The Winthrop is a two-story, 2 bedroom + den or three bedrooms with three baths. There is a main floor bedroom or den plus a shower down, and two bedroom suites each with their own private bath up with each bedroom having volume ceilings. Each bath has its own skylight, and there is an additional skylight on the stairway landing leading upstairs. In addition, there is a formal dining room and a separate family room that opens to a private enclosed atrium area for informal dining and entertaining. The living room has a wood or gas-burning fireplace and the family room has a door leading out to a private enclosed patio area and one leading to a direct access 2-car garage.
The Winthrop model is always located on the end and is the second largest of the three bedroom models (or 2 + Den) per square footage within the village of the University Town Center. There is a den or converted 3rd bedroom downstairs along with a 3/4 bath (commode, sink + shower enclosure. The living/dining room combination is quite large and is versatile enough to have flexible configurations depending upon your needs.
The laundry facilities for all three Cambridge Court models are located in the over sized 2-car garage.
Cambridge Court Homeowners Association
The Cambridge Court Homeowners Association, has a monthly fee. This monthly fee covers the roof, the exterior maintenance of the building including paint and termite coverage for the exterior fascia boards as well as the attic, fire insurance for the structure (homeowners have to pay for “walled in insurance” only), and for the maintenance of the greenbelts (excluding the homeowner’s atrium and front patio), and the maintenance of the interior streets and sidewalks within the Cambridge Court neighborhood.
The Board of Directors are voted into office by the homeowners within the Cambridge Court neighborhood and are the stewards of the H.O.A. monthly fees collected. Throughout the years, the neighborhood has continually been improved upon in in terms of its exterior upkeep and beautiful grounds. Recently the Cambridge Court H.O.A. has undertaken to improve the landscaping, lighting, and termite corrective work.
They have lobbied for parking regulations that improve upon the look and feel of the neighborhood–all while maintaining the dues at $250 per month for several years in a row and without any recent special levies or assessment.
The garage doors in the complex were changed to the more contemporary roll-up style a number of years ago, and the concrete tile roofs were changed throughout the complex as recently as a few years ago, as were the skylights, and leaders and gutters.
The Cambridge Court neighborhood has as diverse a demographic as one will find throughout the city of Irvine which makes for a dynamic, eclectic and charming neighborhood in which to live. Since Cambridge Court is located within a block or two of one of the most sought after high schools in Orange County (University High School), as well as having the top-rated elementary school (Turtle Rock elementary) and middle school (Rancho San Joaquin), it is an area that has kept its value and continues to be a go-to location for families relocating into the city of Irvine, as well as a great area for people of all ages and backgrounds due to its location near the University of California at Irvine and the businesses that are located in U. C. Irvine’s research park. It is also a great area to seek out a rental property in which to invest.
Many Association Amenities Within U.T.C.’s Cambridge Court
The community of Cambridge Court is built across from and on the outer area in which thecommunity of Columbia Square is located in the center. These two communities of town homes and condos share the Association’s pool, spa, sand volleyball, and basket ball courts, as well as tot lot, barbecues, and picnic areas, all located in Columbia Square Park. These two communities also share in the University Town Center’s additional facilities which include a Junior Olympic size swimming pool, spa, a large turf play field, and a set of tennis courts located in Cornell Commons directly behind the Campus Plaza.
These communities also have access to two additional pools and spas, parks, and tennis courts located a few blocks away on Stanford within Princeton and Stanford Parks.
Cambridge Court: An Eclectic Environment
Because they were built-in the early to mid ’80s, the area is lush with greenery, mature trees, and flowering bushes that offer a quiet respite to the hustle-bustle of today’s active lifestyle. Here you will find singles, roommates, college-age students, young families, and seniors living and enjoying the wonderful urban environment that Cambridge Court has to offer its residents.
Indeed, many people envision Cambridge Court as a haven for one age group only, i.e., college students. However, look beyond the surface and one will discover that there are many seniors living in the neighborhood who enjoy the youthful, eclectic environment that the University Town Center has to offer. On many occasions, you will find young and old carrying (or pushing in shopping carts) groceries from the local Albertsons supermarket. Indeed, they have even recently put up caution signs within a few blocks of Cambridge Court for motorists to slow down for the “senior citizen crossing”. And, of course, there are also housing specific to seniors, i.e. the assisted living residences of Regent’s Point, across the street from Cambridge Court town homes, at Harvard and California, and the Brookdale Inn at the Park, located a few blocks away at 10 Marquette, across from the University Center.
Near Campus Plaza & the University Center
Located across California Street, a short distance from Cambridge Court town homes, there are a variety of shops and services which have evolved over the years to include, of course, a Starbucks Coffee Shop, a necessary beginning to many a people’s day, and Koba Tofu Grill, an Asian inspired restaurant offering wonderful food (with large portions) and hours for late-night dining-out along with the convenience of a supermarket (Albertsons), a bank, and a myriad number of local retail establishments within the Campus Plaza shopping center.
A wide pedestrian promenade winds through the University Town Center, linking Cambridge Court’s townhouses with other adjacent neighborhoods, parks, and the community’s town square commercial center originally named the Market Place but renamed the University Center as to not be confused with the Market Place on the Tustin/Irvine border.
Award-Winning Schools Within Cambridge Court’s Neighborhood
One of the reasons for moving to the community of Cambridge Court is its locations within the award-winning Irvine Unified School District‘s Turtle Rock Elementary School, awarded a California Distinguished school in 2002 and highly sought entry for its high scores and special program for gifted children (GATE), for Rancho San Joaquin Middle School, also well rated in terms of school scores, and University High School, consistently ranked nationally as one of the best high schools in the country, and which boasts a large number of advanced placement classes, students awarded merit scholarships, and large class admission to the top University of California schools as well as the top private colleges and universities. University High School has been named both a California Distinguished School and a National Exemplary School.
In addition to great Irvine public schools, the community of Cambridge Court is located in close proximity to two Montessori preschools, the University Montessori School located on the U.C. Irvine campus and the Village Montessori School located in University Park, several church-related preschools, and additional private preschools, all within a few minutes commute.
Celebrate & Play in William R. Mason Regional Park
Also located across the street on Harvard, bordering Culver Drive and University Drive is William R. Mason Regional Park, well-known for its gathering of friends and family for the festive, annual celebration in the spring of the Persian New Year. Indeed, the regional park is host to many a company and family picnic as well as kite and model plane flying, model boat racing, jogging, biking, strolling or just plain relaxing around the duck pond.
Visit the University Center & the Barclay Theater
A few blocks toward the U. C. Irvine campus, one can see ones favorite art movie at the Edwards University Town Center in the University Center, or attend a live concert, dance program, or other venue at the Irvine Barclay Theatre. If exercising is your passion, but you prefer the indoors, there is a 24-hour Family Fitness center also located in the University Center to burn off those excess calories you put on eating an In-and-Out Burger close by.
Bike, Jog, Skateboard, Kayak Along the Upper Newport Bay
For those who enjoy a longer bike ride, jog, or stroll, one can pick up the trail from Harvard and University Drive along the Santa Ana river bed that will take you all along the Upper Newport Ecological Reserve where you will see an amazing array of migratory birds, as well as an occasional, coyote or raccoon, and flora and fauna native to the area.
This trail, if taken its length, will lead you past the U.C. Irvine crew clubhouse and toward the Newport Dunes where you can dine in a restaurant overlooking the bay or rent a kayak or rowboat for a fun-filled boating excursion. The Friends of the Newport Bay often host tours on the weekends throughout the year, if you would prefer something a bit more educational, and, of course, there are various charity marathons and walks in which you can participate that utilize these trails at different times of the year.
Cambridge Court is Freeway, Airport & Beach Close
As a resident of the Cambridge Court community, one is also close to major business and commercial centers and major shopping centers, such as the Irvine Business District, South Coast Plaza, and Fashion Island, as well as being in close proximity to freeway access (the 405, the 5, and the 55 Freeways, as well as the 73 and the 133 Toll Roads; John Wayne Airport (Orange County Airport) is within a ten minute drive, and the Upper Newport Ecological Reserve, is a bike ride, jog, stroll, skateboard, or short drive from all the town home communities within the University Town Center.
Robin Fenchel: Specializing in Cambridge Court Since 1986
In sum, the community of Cambridge Court, within the greater University Town Center,has much to offer. If Robin Fenchel can further elaborate on anything contained herein or if you have any questions regarding the neighborhood of Cambridge Court or any one of the other neighborhoods within the University Town Center including Princeton Townhomes, Columbia Square, or Oxford Court, please do not hesitate to e-mail Robin.
Robin Fenchel has been assisting buyers and sellers within the University Town Center’s community of Cambridge Court since 1986, and would delight in assisting in any way possible your move to the community.
Eric has been involved in the financial, business and investment side since 1979. Robin and Eric have raised two children in the local school district, and are actively involved in the community. Please feel free to e-mail Robin with any questions regarding real estate. Robin Fenchel would be delighted to assist in any way possible your move to the community in and around the University of California at Irvine.