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Fairbanks Highlands Real Estate + Neighborhood Guide

Fairbanks Highlands Real Estate

The North County neighborhood of Fairbanks Highlands is an affluent, gated community where homes have San Diego addresses and residents are served by the prestigious Poway Unified School District.

It is generally considered part of the Torrey Highlands neighborhood, and both of these communities are often referred to as part of Carmel Valley. However, this small neighborhood with 24-hour security guards is treated differently than Torrey Highlands in the Torrey Highlands Subarea Plan, which controls development in this section of the North City Future Urbanizing Area.

For example, while Torrey Highlands is limited to 2,600 housing units and is designated as Planned Urbanized, Fairbanks Highlands adds an additional, separate 93 housing units and is designated as a Future Urbanizing Area.

This upscale community of custom estate homes on large lots is located near Highway 56 between Interstate 5 and Interstate 15. This central location allows residents to easily enjoy a morning stroll on the beach, an afternoon of shopping in downtown San Diego, and an evening of fine dining at one of the many offerings in North County.


The planned community of Fairbanks Highlands was developed in 2002 by Taylor Woodrow Homes with the help of Robert Hidey Architects.

Historically, this area has been known as an agricultural area with nurseries and ranches.


Fairbanks Highlands is a gated community with 24-hour guard service and has 93 custom estate homes offering luxury, resort-style living. Homes in this neighborhood have three to six bedrooms, range in size from approximately 3,800 square feet to 6,200 square feet and are on large lots that range from just under an acre to about four acres, allowing for greater privacy and room to roam.

At the time of this writing, I could find just four homes on the market in Fairbanks Highlands, including:

  • A five bedroom, 6.5 bathroom, 6,200-square-foot home for $2,780,000
  • A five bedroom, 5.5 bathroom, 5,664-square-foot home on 1.28 acres for $2,490,000
  • A four bedroom, 4.5 bathroom, 4,429-square-foot home listed at $2,149,000
  • A three bedroom, 4.5 bathroom, 3,831-square-foot home on the market for $2,128,000

View of San Diego Neighborhoods from Black Mountain

Restaurants, Shopping & Entertainment

Residents can enjoy the convenience of a 7-Eleven, a salon, a spa and Uncle Vinnie’s Pizzeria on Carmel Valley Road, but most everyday essentials are just a bit farther from home. Just a few minutes away, locals and visitors can run errands or dine out at the options available at Torrey Highlands Village Center and Torrey Highlands Plaza.

Residents will find Fresco Pizza and Grill, Subway and the Prodigy Dance Company at Torrey Highlands Plaza, which is located at 13350 Camino Del Sur. At the 90,000-square-foot Torrey Highlands Village Center, folks will find Starbucks, Peet’s Coffee & Tea, Wells Fargo Bank, The UPS Store, Albertsons, Submarina, Pick Up Stix, Luna Grill, Earthwise Pet Supply, Rubio’s Mexican Grill, Villa Capri I, Hair Reaction, Carvel Ice Cream, Fast Frame, Kitchen Complete, Torrey’s Nail Salon, Golf Etc, Neu Look Med Spa & Skin Care and Vittorio’s.

The Rancho Penasquitos Town Center is located farther east via Highway 56 on Black Mountain Road. Here you will find expanded options, including Starbucks, Rite Aid Pharmacy, Bank of America, Vons, Chase Bank, Round Table Pizza, Kahoots Pet Store, Cotijas Mex Grill and Seafood, Jack In The Box, Jersey Mike’s Subs, Black Mountain Road Pet Clinic and O’Reilly Auto Parts. In this area, you will also find CVS Pharmacy, a Shell gas station and a post office.

Parks & Recreation

This centrally located community provides easy access for residents to enjoy a wide variety of North County attractions, as well as outdoor recreational opportunities and beaches located closer to downtown San Diego.

Golf courses can be found within a short drive at The Farms Golf Club, The Santaluz Club, Fairbanks Ranch Country Club and Del Mar Country Club.

The closest community park is the Torrey Del Mar Neighborhood Park, which is home to a walking path, a playground, picnic benches, a basketball court and a grass field. Also nearby is the Black Mountain Open Space Park, which offers 2,352 acres of open space with miles of hiking, biking and riding trails.

There are also two recreation centers close to Fairbanks Highland, including the Hilltop Recreation Center and Community Park and the Black Mountain Multipurpose Center, which is a facility shared with Black Mountain Middle School.

The beaches of Del Mar, Torrey Pines State Beach, Torrey Pines State Reserve, Del Mar Mesa Preserve, Adobe Bluffs Neighborhood Park, Los Peñasquitos Canyon Preserve and Ashley Falls Park are all within a short drive.

Hiking Sign


Public school students living in the Fairbanks Highlands neighborhood are served by the prestigious Poway Unified School District. Most attend Willow Grove Elementary, Black Mountain Middle School and Westview High School.

There are also many private schools serving this affluent area, including La Jolla Country Day School, Cathedral Catholic High School, The Bishop’s School, Cal Coast Academy, Maranatha Christian School, Diegueno Country School, Del Mar Pines School, The Nativity School, Notre Dame Academy, Good Shepherd Catholic School, Horizon Prep, San Diego Jewish Academy, Halstrom High School and Pacific Ridge School.


Fairbanks Highlands is located north of Carmel Valley Road and west of the junction of Carmel Valley Road and Camino Del Sur. It is both east and north of parts of Torrey Highlands and is often considered part of the Torrey Highlands neighborhood. It is south of Black Mountain Ranch, southeast of Fairbanks Ranch and west of Rancho Peñasquitos.

Additional Information

With only 93 custom homes in the entire community, there are rarely more than a handful of homes on the market. This means that home buyers interested in purchasing their dream home in this affluent community will need to keep an eye on the market and be ready to act fast when a property that interests them comes up for sale.

If you are interested in learning about nearby North County neighborhoods, check out these previous articles:


Photo Credits (in order of appearance): Fairbanks Highlands Community Association; Wikimedia Commons/Ocatecir (CC-BY-SA-3.0-MIGRATED; Licensed under the GFDL by the author; Released under the GNU Free Documentation License); morgueFile, arcturusangel

AJ Davis-Varela: AJ is a freelance writer and blogger at Articles by AJ specializing in travel, real estate, natural wellness and green living. She is a magazine columnist, a former San Diego newspaper columnist, has been published in a variety of print and online publications, and regularly contributes to several websites and blogs. You can connect with AJ on LinkedIn, Twitter or Google+