The wife of a major developer, Charles Wright, named this beautiful area for the lupine she found there, mistakenly identifying it as Larkspur.
The downtown / Magnolia Avenue area is listed in the National Register of Historic Places as an irreplaceable American "turn of the century home town."
Larkspur residents have been quite successful in preserving the small-town ambience. A medley of specialty shops, boutiques, Queen Anne Victorians, cafes and first-class restaurants can be enjoyed by taking a relaxing stroll down Magnolia Avenue. Not to be missed is the Escalle Winery, built in the 1890's by the young Frenchman, Jean Escalle, who planted the northern hillsides of Larkspur with wine grapes; and the exquisite Murphy mansion, constructed in 1888 and now home to the world famous restaurant, the Lark Creek Inn. Larkspur extends north to the unincorporated area of Greenbrae, home to the Bon Air Shopping Center, which offers boutiques, restaurants and gift shops. Greenbrae is well known for its tastefully landscaped custom homes, many of which have views of the bay, Corte Madera Creek and lowlands, and Mt. Tamalpais. A special effort was made during the development of this area to preserve the hundreds of majestic oak trees that grace the hillsides. Greenbrae residents enjoy a one minute drive to the freeway and two minutes to the Larkspur Landing Ferry Terminal.