Highlands Ranch-Lone Tree – Highlands Ranch, CO

Ranchers and farmers occupied the areas of Highlands Ranch and Lone Tree for decades, and thanks to development of additional suburbs in the Denver area, the two cities have become popular places for families to live. The communities have access to quality health care services, multiple recreational opportunities and fine dining locations. Residents have close proximity to cultural events and venues in the greater Denver area and quality of life remains a top priority for residents of these communities. The population explosion over the last 30 years attests to the beauty and amenities of these areas.

Schools in Highlands Ranch-Lone Tree

School data provided by GreatSchools

Restaurants & Nightlife

Residents and visitors to the Highlands Ranch and Lone Tree areas have multiple choices in restaurants. For fantastic Italian food, the locals go to Cranelli’s in Lone Tree. Fresh garlic knots arrive at the table for diners to enjoy before their meal arrives. The option to order half-sized entrées makes it convenient for traveling diners, but even this portion size satisfies most appetites. The creamy lasagna entrée features a house-made béchamel sauce, and the chicken piccata comes with a lemon butter sauce, mushrooms and grilled asparagus. For musical entertainment with your meal, dine at Los Dos Potrillos on a Wednesday evening to hear a mariachi band. The music sets the mood for an authentic Mexican meal. Start with a local favorite of chile relleno nachos or fresh guacamole, prepared right in front of you at your table. The large menu may make it difficult to choose, but locals rave about the taquitos and the seafood enchiladas. Brunch lovers in Highlands Ranch love the make-your-own Bloody Mary bar at Urban Egg, A Daytime Eatery. Whether you’re hungry for stuffed French toast or eggs Benedict, all the dishes contain only the freshest, locally sourced, organic ingredients. The Tuscan Eggs Benedict features prosciutto, tomato, fresh basil and hollandaise with a balsamic drizzle. The blueberry streusel pancakes feature fresh, local blueberries with lemon-honey butter and maple-infused blueberry syrup, a perfect way to begin your day. The tasting room at Lone Tree Brewing offers beer enthusiasts a place to relax seven days a week and sample great microbrews crafted in house. Visitors can tour the brewery or bring in food and view the game on TV while enjoying the seasonal beers on tap. On nice days, the patio makes a great place to kick back with friends. Clock Tower Grill in Lone Tree caters to sports fans with 15 big-screen TVs to watch the game. Beer and cocktails run cheap, with an all-day happy hour on Thursdays, and diners can grab a burger, tacos or wings to go with their beverages.

History & Culture

Originally comprised of ranches, the Highlands Ranch area remained largely unsettled due to the lack of water in the area. In 1978, The Mission Viejo Company purchased land in the area with the intent of developing suburbs around Denver. Founded in 1981, the planned community of Highlands Ranch has a great quality of life for active residents. The city of Lone Tree incorporated in November 1995 and has continued to grow within the Park Meadows district. While residents of Highlands Ranch and Lone Tree have to travel to visit museums and art galleries, both communities host several festivals and events during the year. Rodeo in the Ranch and Highlands Ranch Days promote community spirit in Highlands Ranch. The Lone Tree Arts Center promotes local artists and productions throughout the year, and the community comes together for A Taste of Lone Tree Food and Art Festival.

Transportation

Residents easily walk within the residential areas to local green spaces, but when traveling to work, shopping or dining, many locals consider driving to be the easiest way to get around town. Public transportation options available to residents of Highlands Ranch and Lone Tree include the RTD bus system, as over 140 bus routes run through Denver and its suburbs. Light rail lines run through the southwest districts, and residents can stop at 70 park-and-ride locations when commuting to catch the bus. Bicycling can be an easy way to get around town, and bicyclists can take their bikes along when riding the bus or light rail as well. Grabbing a taxi can be difficult in the outlying suburbs of Denver, but Maverick Car Service has professional drivers who do pick-ups in Lone Tree or Highlands Ranch if you need a ride to the airport or anywhere else you need to go.

Cost

The overall cost of living in Lone Tree is 27.3 percent higher than the Colorado average and 34.6 percent higher than the national average, with the average rent for a one-bedroom apartment costing $1,200. A gallon of gas costs 1.9 percent lower than the national average, and a pint of beer runs approximately $4. The cost of living in Highlands Ranch may be less than Lone Tree, but it is still 17.5 percent higher than the rest of Colorado and 24.2 percent higher than the rest of the country. A one-bedroom apartment costs approximately $1,350, higher than those in Lone Tree, but a gallon of gas costs the same as in Lone Tree.

Shopping

A variety of trendy shops and malls dot the Highlands Ranch and Lone Tree areas, and the best modes of transportation are car or bus. A huge selection of wine, beer, and spirits from around the world can be found at Highlands Wine Seller in Highlands Ranch. Free wine tastings take place on Fridays and Saturdays, and an extremely knowledgeable staff can help you select the perfect wine for any occasion. For beautiful floral arrangements, Abloom in Highlands Ranch fits the bill. If you need flowers for a simple thank you or someone to supply all your wedding flowers, Abloom does a terrific job. Located in Lone Tree, Park Meadows Mall houses national retailers such as Dillard's, Nordstrom, and Macy's, as well as smaller shops and kiosks. Shoppers can grab a bite to eat at Brio Tuscan Grille, the Cheesecake Factory, or at the numerous other eateries located in the mall. The Highlands Ranch Farmers' and Street Market is held May through October on Sundays. Shoppers find home-baked breads, fresh flowers, fruits, and vegetables for sale from local growers -- they also discover a variety of bazaar-type items such as accessories, handbags, and garden accessories. Take a short trip to neighboring Parker to visit the Parker Farmers Market on Main Street, open on Sundays from 8 a.m. to 1 p.m. For groceries, residents head to Whole Foods Market in Highlands Ranch, which features a terrific meat department and knowledgeable fish mongers as well as a large variety of organic food options. Sprouts Farmers Market in Lone Tree, another organic option for locals, sells affordable produce and meats.

Parks

Residents can find numerous parks and recreational areas in the Lone Tree and Highlands Ranch areas to enjoy, with over 60 miles of hiking trails in Highlands Ranch alone. Bluffs Regional Park has 253 acres of land with hiking and biking trails that provide gorgeous views of the mountains and wildlife in the area. Visitors can find a covered picnic shelter for a beautiful spot for lunch. Sweetwater Park in Lone Tree has plenty of playground equipment for children and a baseball field available for teams. Dogs are welcome but must stay on a leash while in the park. Highlands Ranch has four dog parks where pets can exercise off leash, including Hound Hill at Highland Heritage Park and Rover’s Run at Redstone Park. The parks open at 7 a.m., and visitors can stay until sunset.
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