Westlake Village Real Estate

Written by Courtney Salinas
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Westlake Village is a beautiful community in Los Angeles County that provides residents an escape from the stress and worry of the big city of Los Angeles. This bedroom community is a family destination that provides the room and safety needed to raise children. Commuters have a direct trip into downtown Los Angeles via the Ventura Freeway.

Westlake Village of the Past

The Chumash Indians were the first residents of Westlake Village. Recent excavations tell us that the Chumash hunted rabbits and gathered acorns and grain in the area. The first Europeans thought to have reached Westlake Village were the Spanish. In 1770, Captain Gaspar de Portola and a band of explorers traveled north along a trail called El Camino Real. It is believed that they camped on the location of the future Westlake Village.

Over the next several hundred years, California changed hands from Mexico to the United States and the area of Westlake Village landed in the hands of Andrew Russell. Russell acquired the land by winning a race for the land. He purchased the land for $20 and named it Russell Ranch. In 1925, William Randolph Hearst bought the land, which he sold to Fred Albertson in 1943. The Albertson Company used the land as a movie ranch. Robin Hood, Laredo and King Rat were all filmed on Russell Ranch, as were episodes of Gunsmoke, Bonanza and Buck Rodgers.

The American-Hawaiian Steamship Company bought Russell Ranch for $32 million in 1963. The master planned community they built stretched over the county line into what is now the city of Thousand Oaks. Today residents view Thousand Oaks and Westlake Village as one community, despite the dividing county line.


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