Belvedere, which translates in Italian to 'beautiful view' is renowned for its spectacular views of the Bay Area, Angel Island, San Francisco, Sausalito, the Golden Gate Bridge and Mount Tamalpais. The first settlers arrived in the late 1800s, then the railroad came and Tiburon was the last stop for passengers and cargo heading to San Francisco and beyond.
The first post office opened in 1897. The City Hall, formerly a Presbyterian Church, was moved to its present location on San Rafael Avenue in 1949. Originally a fishing based community, Belvedere has grown into a sailing community where the San Francisco Yacht Club is located. Belvedere celebrated its 100th year as a city in 1996.
Belvedere is a treasure trove of different architectural styles; from the tremendous Queen Anne and Mission Revival homes of the late 1800's to more modern Japanese-style and Mediterranean villas. The two elementary schools and one middle school in the local Reed Union School District are rated in the top one percent among California schools.
No restaurants or stores are allowed in Belvedere, and the city enforces strict rules regarding house design and setbacks in order to preserve trees, views, and the town's spacious, wooded character. The adjacent town of Tiburon, however, is home to a wide range of services, shops, and eateries.