A Journey from New York to the Top of the World

Haran Schlamm at Upper Cielo

"As a Native New Yorker I lived a fast-paced life, surrounded by skyscrapers and buildings that kissed the clouds. I lived walking distance from the world’s best restaurants and retail shops; excitement was at every turn. However, I longed for a quieter life on the West Coast, even though it was thousands of miles away. In 2013, I took a leap of faith and sold my condo in New York and a home in the suburbs to live in a California West home at Upper Cielo in Rancho Santa Fe, California.

It was a two-year journey for me to find the perfect home in San Diego. I had traveled there for work often and always knew I wanted to buy a home in the area-- to be closer to my parents, and to fully experience life on the West Coast. Although the area had plenty of wonderful neighborhoods like La Jolla, Coronado and Carlsbad, it was Rancho Santa Fe that caught my attention and eventually captured my heart. Many bi-coastal flights later and with the help of my family, I was introduced to California West and the team at Upper Cielo. After seeing many model homes, the perfect location, sprawling residences and breathtaking views helped me make my final decision.

My new expansive residence had to have the proper amenities to compliment my surroundings. I worked closely with Lori at California West, a design specialist, to customize my Spanish Ranch style home. High ceilings, archways and big open windows characterize my stunning living spaces. All of my neighbors have their own distinctive homes, customized to fit their lifestyles. Pre-selected finishes in various rooms make it easy for me to preserve the style of my home. The design team at California West took care of my home’s entire design aesthetic, leaving me with more time to enjoy the outdoors or spend time with my dog Cooper, exploring our new neighborhood instead. When friends and family come to visit, my home is often described as a five-star resort—a far cry from my apartment in New York. As someone who has traveled around the world, for business and pleasure, there is no greater feeling than to come home to something much more comfortable than even the most luxurious hotel.

Even my work life as a physician and pharmaceutical consultant has improved since my days in New York. The commutes to my office have turned into picturesque drives, and walks with Cooper have become outdoor adventures in the hills surrounding my neighborhood.

Although my home and the amenities leave little to be desired, the sunsets are unreal and are my favorite part of the evening. Each day I find something new to love about my surroundings. Today, it’s no longer the tall buildings of New York that get to wander amongst the clouds, it’s the rooftops of my neighbors and the mountains I admire everyday. So when people ask if I miss life on the East Coast, I simply tell them it was nice while it lasted, but I’m never leaving my home at Upper Cielo."

-Haran Schlamm