The Los Rios Historic District in San Juan Capistrano, California was featured in the March/ April issue of Westways Magazine. Goin Native's home is Los Rios Park, where our Garden Angels care for the beautiful plants you see. Original Article
Los Rios Historic District
By Beth Fahner | Photographs by Rob Andrew
San Juan Capistrano might be best known for its eponymous California mission, which is the only such mission in Orange County and is also known as the “Jewel of the Missions.” However, the city has another gem worthy of discovery—the area known as the Los Rios Historic District. Established in 1794, the district consists of 31 historic structures of various architectural styles that span two centuries. Placed on the National Register of Historic Places in 1983, the Los Rios Historic District is one of the state’s oldest neighborhoods, and today, the area, which still retains an Old West aura, is a mix of private residences and cottages that have been converted into shops and restaurants. A visit to this quaint neighborhood is just a train ride away; it’s located across Los Rios Street from a Metrolink station.
Stroll through picturesque Los Rios Park, which features native California plants, an original adobe structure, a children’s play area, and black-and-white photographic plaques along the Historic Depiction Program wall. 31747 Los Rios Street.
Nest, a charming boutique, offers an eclectic selection of locally crafted jewelry, women’s clothing, handmade soaps, cards, candles, kitchen items, and more. 31711 Los Rios Street. 1-949-661-1395.
Authentic furnishings inside the O’Neil Museum provide a glimpse into life around town 100 years ago. Built between 1870 and 1880, the former Victorian-style Garcia-Pryor residence now houses the San Juan Capistrano Historical Society, and the property includes a restored Craftsman house and an original adobe house. 31831 Los Rios Street. 1-949-493-8444.
Shop an array of whimsical garden supplies and gifts for the home at Cottage Home and Garden. Aspiring green thumbs can take classes in creating fairy gardens and succulent wreaths. 31720 Los Rios Street. 1-949-493-3920.
Browse the wares of more than 30 local artists at The Cottage Gallery; rotating bimonthly exhibits highlight paintings, sculpture, blown glass, jewelry, and ceramics. 31701 Los Rios Street. 1-949-340-6693.
Chef-owner John Q.’s seasonal menu at Ramos House Cafe changes weekly and features organic, locally sourced produce; sustainable seafood; and cage-free chicken. Made from scratch, breakfast and lunch fare includes dishes such as the delectable blueberry-basil pain perdu (French toast) with lemon curd. If they’re available, order the apple-cinnamon beignets. 31752 Los Rios Street. 1-949-443-1342.
The tree-shaded patio of Hidden House Coffee is an ideal place for indulging in a flavored espresso or iced coffee. Treats such as cinnamon rolls, carrot cupcakes, and cookies complement the microroasted brews. 31791 Los Rios Street. 1-949-240-0200.
By the numbers
3 million Visitors welcomed to Zoomars Petting Zoo in the past 30 years.
1896 Year that the San Juan Capistrano jail cell was built. It once served as a holding cell for the Orange County jail.
40 Adobe structures built on Los Rios Street in 1794. Only three of the original adobe houses remain.
21 Spanish missions established in California. Mission San Juan Capistrano was founded in 1776.