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Saratoga Village
Downtown Saratoga California

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At Home in Saratoga Village

Saratoga Village, nestled in the heart of California, boasts a rich tapestry of history, culture, and community life. Its journey from a small planned settlement to a thriving hub of local businesses and events reflects the enduring spirit of its people.

The Foundations of Saratoga Village

Saratoga Village traces its roots back to 1852, making it one of the oldest planned communities in California, and indeed, the West Coast. Unlike most settlements which sprang up around gold strikes or crossroads, Saratoga Village was meticulously surveyed, platted and registered with Santa Clara County1.

“Saratoga Village is a unique village settlement in the history of California. Not only was it planned and developed as a community, it has survived as an economic entity for over 150 years.”

The First Residents

The pioneers of this village were Martin and Hannah McCarty. Martin, born in County Clare, Ireland, in 1825, emigrated around 18461. After serving in the Mexican American War, he ventured to California and struck gold in the mines, reportedly earning $20,000 in seven weeks.

He married Hannah Barry in San Jose around 1852, and together they filed for a 320-acre homestead claim in the West Valley, laying out the lots for a burgeoning town.

The Early Days of Saratoga Village

Despite a legal hiccup involving a land grant that forced the McCartys to buy some of the land they had already developed, the town grew steadily. The McCartys built and rented out several buildings, fostering a sense of community among the residents.

Their town, initially named McCartysville, was built into the side of a ravine overlooking the picturesque Saratoga Creek and consisted of two streets – Lumber Street and Oak Street1. It included all the essential businesses at the time, such as a post office, a bank, hotels, stores, real estate offices, churches, and a school.

Saratoga Village Today

Saratoga Village has retained its charm and small-town feel, even as it has developed and modernized over the years. The Village’s historic downtown district, located off Highway 9 on Big Basin Way, is a testament to this.

The Hub of Local Businesses

The Village today is a vibrant hub of unique shops and fine dining destinations. The village’s commitment to preserving its local ethos means that smaller, locally owned shops aren’t the exception – they’re the standard.

Events and Activities

Saratoga Village also hosts a range of events throughout the year, bringing the community together and attracting visitors from afar.  One such event is the Saratoga Holiday Wine Stroll Experience, held every year just after Thanksgiving.


The journey of Saratoga Village from a small planned settlement to a thriving hub is a testament to the enduring spirit of its residents. Its rich history, combined with its commitment to local businesses and community events, makes it a unique and charming place to visit or call home.

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