The Rancho Santa Fe Covenant
The Rancho Santa Fe Covenant was originally a land grant made in 1845 to Juan Maria Osuna. The original adobe dwellings still stand preserved and restored, continuously occupied since Osuna built them almost 150 years ago. Over time, Rancho Santa Fe has become the home of country estates. What is it about Rancho Santa Fe that attracts the wealthiest Americans? Privacy, for one thing.
The Covenant's rural feel has been zealously guarded by a strict Protective Covenant and was one of the first planned communities in the United States. It was created to preserve the character of the area and rare landscape features, as well as uphold the quality of all future architecture and improvements. The Covenant encompasses approximately 6,200 acres with some 1,500 households just five miles from the Pacific Ocean and is laced with over 45 miles of hiking and riding trails and golf courses.
Designed by Architect Lillian Rice of San Diego, the Covenant's centerpiece is the Village, a picturesque downtown of just a few square blocks that includes fine restaurants and boutiques, the Rancho Santa Fe Community Center, Library, and Garden Club. The Covenant also has a riding club. The community was designed with condos and homes on small lots around the Village. Beyond this, the lots are two acres or more, and on the outer edges of the Covenant are still a number of large estate properties and horse farms. Weaving through the Covenant's acreage--sometimes along the roads, other times between homeowners' properties are 45 miles of hiking and riding trails.
Schools include the Rancho Santa Fe Elementary and Middle schools, located in the Village. Rancho Santa Fe is in the San Dieguito High School District, which gives families and students a choice of attending one of four nationally-ranked High Schools.