Nature-Loving, Trail-Seeking Couple Finds Great Life at Portola Springs

It’s “Happy Trails” for Pieter and Jeanta Wolfaardt, a young professional couple now preparing to discover both the rewards of homeownership and the delights of nature in and around their new hometown of Portola Springs® in the City of Irvine.

“Jeanta and I moved in two months ago and we are excited to have access to all of Portola Springs’ wonderful hiking trails practically right outside our front door,” said Pieter. “The community is so close to nature, and you can see the mountains and trees all around. With lots of surrounding open space, it feels a little removed from it all, yet we’ll be very close to shopping, entertainment and everything else we need.”

The Wolfaardts were renting elsewhere in Irvine while William Lyon Homes completed their new home at San Carlos in Portola Springs.

“Pieter and I hope to start a family in a couple of years, and Portola Springs feels like the perfect place to raise our children,” said Jeanta. “Having trails, parks, pools, and other recreation within walking distance of home is part of the overall community value.”

Married since 2004, the couple met in South Africa nine years ago and discovered Orange County when they came for a holiday visit with Jeanta’s parents, who were living in Tustin Ranch at the time.

“We liked the area a lot, and my parents encouraged Pieter and me to move here,” Jeanta said. “We came for college, then decided to make Orange County our permanent home. There’s so much more opportunity here for young people.”

The Wolfaardts both earned bachelor’s degrees in business from California State University, Fullerton. Jeanta currently works as an executive recruiter in Fountain Valley for the information technology industry, and Pieter is an engineering recruiter in Anaheim for the aerospace and defense industries. Portola Springs’ central location, close to major freeways, is a big plus for this active young couple.

“We love going to a movie and dinner at Irvine Spectrum Center® or The Market Place, both less than 10 minutes away,” said Pieter. “There’s easy access via the 133 Toll Road to Laguna Beach, which Jeanta and I visit almost every weekend.”

For young couples like the Wolfaardts, families and homebuyers at many other stages of life, Portola Springs offers the perfect combination of rural refuge and urban convenience. This new village is distinguished by diverse topography and a graceful flow between its developed and natural spaces, inviting residents to enjoy a best-of-both-worlds lifestyle.

Immediate access to the Jeffrey Open Space Trail and other popular pathways for walking, hiking and bicycling gives Portola Springs residents plenty of opportunity to explore their surroundings and stay in shape. Whether they’re inclined to take morning jogs or sunset bike rides, there are more than 20 miles of trails leading just about everywhere they want to go throughout the village.

Within its 1,200 rolling acres, Portola Springs will include 18 neighborhood parks and gathering centers, plus a 25-acre community park planned with lighted athletic fields, tot lots, picnic areas, basketball and tennis courts, and an 18,000-square-foot multipurpose building. Several parks already have made their debut, offering pools, poolside cabanas, grassy play areas, children’s climbing equipment, and picnic/barbecue areas for family fun and getting to know the neighbors.

“Portola Springs really has it all!” said Suzanne Maddalon, senior director of marketing and research for Irvine Community Development Company LLC, an affiliate of The Irvine Company LLC. “When you look at the selection of homes and neighborhoods, opportunities for an active outdoor lifestyle, all the outstanding community amenities, and proximity to everything you need, Portola Springs is one incredible community.”

Also part of the exceptional lifestyle for residents of Portola Springs, the village is located in the highly regarded Irvine Unified School District. The first of two proposed village elementary schools is expected to open next year. Just down the street is the brand new Woodbury Town Center, home to shops, restaurants, banks, and other services.

The village of Portola Springs is envisioned to have up to 4,500 homes in five distinctive enclaves. Currently, model homes are open and sales are underway in 10 neighborhoods within the village’s first two residential enclaves, priced from the low $400,000s to more than $1.3 million. These neighborhoods include:

VIENTOS: California Pacific Homes’ classic detached courtyard homes are sized from approximately 975 to 1,405 square feet, with up to three bedrooms and two and one-half baths.

SAN CARLOS: William Lyon Homes’ attached townhomes and condominiums feature up to three bedrooms and three baths in approximately 1,040 to 1,617 square feet.

SENDERO: John Laing Homes’ stylish two- and three-story townhomes feature up to three bedrooms and three and one-half baths in approximately 1,312 to 2,106 square feet.

DECADA: California Pacific Homes’ detached courtyard homes include up to three bedrooms and two and one-half baths in approximately 1,437 to 1,750 square feet.

BOUGAINVILLEA: KB Home’s two-story detached homes offer up to four bedrooms and two and one-half baths in approximately 1,670 to 2,260 square feet.

PALOMA: Brookfield Homes’ distinctive paired and detached homes are sized from approximately 1,723 to 2,530 square feet, with up to four bedrooms and four and one-half baths.

LOS ARBOLES: Taylor Woodrow Homes’ dynamic detached homes offer up to four bedrooms and three baths in approximately 2,003 to 2,382 square feet.

MANZANITA: Richmond American Homes’ detached residences offer approximately 2,202 to 2,829 square feet, with up to five bedrooms and four baths.

LAS COLINAS: Taylor Woodrow Homes’ beautiful detached homes feature up to five bedrooms and four and one-half baths in approximately 2,717 to 3,383 square feet.

SERRA: Standard Pacific Homes’ sumptuous detached homes include up to six bedrooms and five and one-half baths in approximately 3,431 to 4,379 square feet.

Portola Springs is traversed by Portola Parkway as it winds from SR 133 (Laguna Canyon Road) to the west, brushes the border of the Irvine Ranch Land Reserve® to the east, and ultimately links with the 241 Toll Road.

To visit the City of Irvine’s new village of Portola Springs, exit the I-5 Freeway (Santa Ana Freeway) at Sand Canyon Avenue and proceed inland. Turn right at Portola Parkway and follow the directional signs.

Homeshoppers can receive regular village updates by registering for the Portola Springs interest list on The Homefinding Center™ at Information also is available by contacting a Homefinding Center New Home Consultant at 888-820-0721.