Lakeview – Bakersfield, CA

Adjacent to downtown Bakersfield on its southeast side, Lakeview is a popular neighborhood wedged between California Avenue to the north and Highway 59 to the south. Lakeview is home to Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr Park, which features tennis courts and a community center. The business area of Lakeview is located along Brundage Lane, near the intersection with Union Avenue. Here, you'll find coffee shops, strip malls, restaurants, and other businesses.

Schools in Lakeview

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Restaurants & Nightlife

Lakeview hides away a few culinary gems within its confines, placed mostly on Union Avenue and Brundage. True to its residential nature, the options on tap trend towards more casual, family-friendly fare. That doesn't mean you can't find gourmet selections, however. Foodies should find a wealth of attractive options spread out through Lakeview. Farrah's Pizza has catered the Lakeview with cheesy confections for over 20 years now, and with good reason. Farrah's serves up classic takes on American medium-crust pizza, with a bounty of toppings and a several ways to eat. Order a meat-lover's pizza for layers upon layers of meaty goodness, and if you want to dine in the comfort of your own living quarters, change the order to a take-and-bake selection and fry the pie at home. Luigi's expands on the Italian palate of Farrah's with a full menu of classics, including minestrone, fresh-made sanguccis (sandwiches) and a host of pastas. Order the prosciutto sandwich at this Bakersfield classic, and bite into a delicate blend of thin-sliced meats, roasted peppers and vinaigrettes. Ask your waiter for a wine selection from Luigis' vast cellar. Saigon Restaurant, located on the far west reaches of the neighborhood, treats the city's Vietnamese cuisine fans to a true delight. The restaurant proudly touts its warm, friendly atmosphere, which is echoed by customers' love for the little eatery. Patrons love the special beef noodle pho, a traditional soup filled with hearty servings of prime bovine cuts. Add in an order of shrimp spring rolls to share if you bring along a dining companion. You may have to stray out of the confines of Lakeview to find any sort of entertainment or hangout after nightfall. The Casablanca Night Club, located to the north near downtown Bakersfield, smashes together live DJs, raucous dancing, decently-priced cocktails and a late closing time (2am, as opposed to most establishments' cutoff at 1:30am). Anyone looking for a live music venue ought to travel to Buck Owens' Crystal Palace, a down-home honky-tonk type of joint that belies its ostentatious name.

History & Culture

The Yokut Indians called the Bakersfield area home before the colonists occupied their land. Their way of life remained mostly undisturbed, due to the remoteness of the region, until the 1848 gold rush and 1865 oil rush brought a swath of new settlers, keen on seizing the land. Bakersfield grew out of the oil industry, named for the field of a certain Thomas Baker, a gold prospector. The city has grown as a hub for the South Valley, a region of mostly rural, agriculture-based towns. History buffs can visit the Kern County Museum, located in Bakersfield, for more archival evidence and accounts of the town's past. Art lovers should check out Free Fridays at the Bakersfield Museum of Art, every third Friday of the month, for a grand cross-section of Bakersfield's curatorial and artistic prowess.

Transportation

Most residents of Lakeview drive around the neighborhood. Lakeview can be traversed fairly quickly on foot, as the flat landscape and strict grid of streets facilitates walking, but many necessities lie outside of a walkable radius from the neighborhood. You can access Highway 59 in less than 10 minutes from anywhere in Lakeview, as it borders the neighborhood to the south. Highway 59 connects to Highway 99, and you can reach I-5 in about 25 minutes from Lakeview. Golden Empire Transit serves Bakersfield with bus lines around the greater Bakersfield area. Hailing a cab normally means calling a cab company in Bakersfield, and Uber services the area. Bakersfield provides some marked bike lanes, although many gaps in the system exist, making traveling an entire route in a marked lane difficult. Bikers ought to take caution in the Lakeview neighborhood, as the high speeds cars drive on and exit/enter on Highway 99 prove hazardous to cyclists.

Cost

Lakeview costs about 12 percent less than the rest of Bakersfield for everyday cost-of-living expenses. An average single bedroom rental in Lakeview costs around $690 per month, cheaper than the average apartment in Bakersfield. A beer costs about $3 in Lakeview, and gas prices run about 26 percent higher than the national average.

Shopping

Lakeview offers shopping around its edges, on Union and California Avenue. Lakeview contains mostly residencies in the heart of the neighborhood, so potential shoppers ought to stick to these main drags. As Bakersfield functions as a commerce hub for a much larger area in the South Valley, few high-value shopping options exist, and most shopping verges on the utilitarian, including several boutique home supply shops. Blue River Cabinetry offers a showroom and shop, located on Union Avenue, that showcases the remodeling company's bountiful design options. You can pick up plenty of supplies for your own homemaking project, as well as compare materials for a larger remodel or build. Anthony's Furniture boasts a range of home furnishing materials, for dining rooms, bedrooms, and everything in between. Stop by the sales floor and see if one of its sets would fit in your home decor. Several grocery stores service the Lakeview neighborhood, including FoodMaxx and Stop & Shop Supermarket, and a number of smaller markets specialize in Latin American ingredients, like Jalisco Market. The Bakersfield Certified Farmer's Market, located northeast of Lakeview, provide a venue for local vendors.

Parks

Doctor Martin Luther King Jr. Park, located in the northwest quadrant of Lakeview, welcomes the neighborhood with luscious green fields, a large multipurpose room, swimming pool, lighted tennis courts, and an indoor gym replete with a variety of equipment. Kids are welcome at the summer camps held in the park every year, and families with dogs can take their pets on a stroll on their leash throughout the park. The park costs nothing to visit, and you can reserve facilities for a fee. Every May through October, Bakersfield parkgoers gather in a spray park at MLK Park to beat the heat in a cool mist, free for everyone.
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