Straddling both Lafayette and Walnut Creek, in an unincorporated part of the county, Saranap comes as a surprise to many. This diverse little hood, within walking distance to trails and downtown Walnut Creek, is a happy blend of longtime residents who remember the days of walnut orchards and young families with kids running from house to house. There is a surprising number of residents (aka Saranapans) that frequently walk the streets (yes, people actually walk in Saranap), spontaneous socials and holiday block parties. Today, you have a few fun spots in the Saranap neighborhood aside from the 7-11 slurpees such as Florali, Wish, Just Be Yoga , Dewing pool, Morucci’s, Walnut Creek Produce and Pizza Olivia. Many residents are hoping they can one day walk to the proposed Saranap Village by Hall Equities Group.
History of Saranap
“The community’s name comes from an early 20th-century inter-urban commuter rail system. The local station, located near the intersection of Tice Valley Boulevard and Olympic Way, was named after the railroad developer’s mother, Sara Napthaly. This developer promoted the railroad to enhance the value of land developments, a process that led to a development pattern similar to a trolley car suburb, although in fact the railroad was a conventional regional rail line.” – adapted from Wikipedia.org.
Around 1913, a primary land owner, Sam Naphtaly, decided to bridge his mother’s name, Sarah Naphtaly into, SARANAP. Ta –da!
Saranap was named after Sarah Naphtaly, who owned the majority of the land in the area during the early 1900’s. At that time, Saranap was a destination for those coming from San Francisco by train to escape the fog and go to the Walnut Festivals and summer homes. Today, Saranap is home to those wanting more land, warmer weather and laid back eclectic charm, all while having easy access to Lafayette, downtown Walnut Creek and Highways 24 and 680. Oh yeah, schools are great too! Unlike the rest of Walnut Creek, part of Saranap goes to Lafayette Schools and the other half falls within the Acalanes School District. Don’t miss the private, yet affordable The Meher Schools. Over the last couple of years, the little neighborhood of Saranap has been getting a lot of attention with the expansion of the Sufism Reoriented sanctuary, the proposed Saranap Village and annexing the Walnut Creek portion of Saranap into Lafayette. In our opinion, this adds to the Saranap charm showing a genuine interest in improving Saranap, creating walkability, yet striving to keep its original rural integrity that us Saranapans love.