Saad S. Hallak

East County's Premier Real Estate Broker!

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Direct: 619.672.8888
Office: 619.592.4663

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250 E. Chase Ave Ste 107
El Cajon, CA

See what El Cajon has in store for the coming months! 

(From Monica Zech, Public Information Officer for the City of El Cajon)


Opening Night For the Cajon Classic Cruise Car Shows Tonight!

It’s back!  See all the amazing classic vehicles during the 2014 Season of “Cajon Classic Cruise Car Shows,” beginning tonight and every Wednesday night through October 29.  Tonight’s event does involve a full street closure of East Main Street between Magnolia and Claydelle Avenues, from 5:00 to 8:00 p.m.  These popular car shows are held in the area of the Prescott Promenade in the heart of Downtown El Cajon and are hosted by the Downtown El Cajon Business Partners. For more information, please visit or call (619) 334-3000.

This Weekend Is National Prescription Drug Take-Back Day

This coming Saturday, April 26, from 10:00 a.m. to 2:00 p.m. the El Cajon Police Department will be hosting a prescription drug drop off site in the parking lot of their police station, located at 100 Civic Center Way. The National Prescription Drug Take-Back Day aims to provide a safe, convenient, and responsible means of disposing of prescription drugs, while also educating the general public about the potential for abuse of medications. Working in conjunction with the Drug Enforcement Administration, this effort is designed to prevent pill abuse and theft by getting rid of potentially dangerous, expired, unused or unwanted prescription drugs in a safe manner. Studies show that most teens who have abused prescription drugs get them from their own homes, or from their friends’ homes. So, bring your outdated, unused or unwanted prescription pills, ointments, or liquids.  Go to and click “Got Drugs?” for more drop off locations.

Special City Event - America on Main Street – Coming In June

Join us for a family-friendly community festival called, “America on Main Street.” The event will be on Saturday, June 14, in Downtown El Cajon.  This patriotic event is planned to coincide with the nationally recognized Flag Day and celebrate the American spirit through appreciation and respect of the many diverse, ethnic, and historical groups in the community.  Additionally, there will be a special “Red, White & Blue” area saluting our military! Highlights also include two stages with live entertainment, American and ethnic food booths, a Ferris wheel, rides, arts, crafts, display booths, a petting zoo, a rock wall, and so much more. It promises to be a day of fun and appreciation! This event will be located on East Main Street and Rea Avenue, between Magnolia and Claydelle Avenues, from 10:00 a.m. to 10:00 p.m.

*Consider being a volunteer or community sponsor for this inaugural event.  To learn more, please call (619) 441-1762.

Rotary’s 23rd Annual Charity Auction Is Friday

This Friday, April 25, is the Rotary Club of El Cajon's Annual Charity Auction! This fun event will be held at Toyota of El Cajon, 956 Arnele Avenue, from 6:00 to 9:00 p.m.  Festivities include great silent and live auction items, as well as foods from all over the world! Tickets are $80 per person or $600 for a table of eight.  For more information, visit    

East County Garden Tour Is Saturday

Friends of East County Arts, Inc. presents its 19th Annual Garden Tour on Saturday,April 26, 2014, from 9:00 a.m. to 3:00 p.m. Six spectacular gardens will offer an amazing variety of settings and each garden is lovingly planted and cared for by its owner.  Included in this year’s tour are recreated gardens of succulents and water-wise settings, gardens of colorful plants, nature habitats, peaceful respites, unique “corners” and beautiful views, an African-themed explosion of colorful characters and drought-tolerant plants, St. Madeleine Sophie’s Organic Garden and nursery, and “Applecrate” vendors offering delightful crafts and garden creations for purchase.

Friends of East County Arts, Inc. is a non-profit, philanthropic organization focused on further development and growth of the performing and fine arts in the Greater East County. To date, Friends of East County Arts, Inc. has contributed more than $600,000.00 to art-based programs in the community. Tickets for the 19th Annual Garden Tour are $15.00 in advance or $18.00 at any garden site the day of the tour. For advance tickets please call (619) 442-8515, or visit their website at

The Coyote Music Festival Is This Saturday, April 26

Cuyamaca College invites you to join them at their sixth annual “Coyote Music Festival” which will take place on the campus’ Grand Lawn on Saturday, April 26, from 12:00 to 4:00 p.m. The festival features seven bands of up-and-coming local talent that will showcase all-original music compositions. These home-grown singer songwriters will perform a variety of genres, including acoustic, rock, folk and pop.  Listen to some great music while relaxing under the sun at this casual, park-like setting. The event is free and open to the public andthere is plenty of free parking. Visit or for more information.

Friday Night “Dinner & a Concert” Series Begins May 2

Don’t miss the 2014 season of “Dinner & a Concert” at the Prescott Promenade!   Enjoy great music and dancing Friday nights, 6:00 to 8:00 p.m., starting May 2 through September 26.  With the exceptions of June 13 and July 4, when concerts will be held on Thursday, June 12 & July 3 with the Farmers’ Market.  Arrive early to dine at one of the many great restaurants downtown, or bring your picnic and lawn chairs.  These free concerts are located at 201 E. Main Street and are brought to you by the Downtown El Cajon Business Partners. See the full line-up of bands at, or call (619) 334-3000.

Register Now For The IRC Resident Leadership Academy

Now is the time to lead! The International Rescue Committee (IRC) in El Cajon is offering a free Leadership Academy beginning May 6, 2014.  The IRC can help you learn the skills you need to become a leader in your community. Classes are taught in English and cover topics including advocacy, healthy food systems, safe communities, and more.  You must be 18 years of age or older and an El Cajon resident to enroll. If you are interested in enrolling, please contact Chris Williams at  

Gearing Up For Bike to Work Day - May 16


May is Bike to Work Month and registration is now open for “Bike to Work Day!” Join thousands of San Diegans and cycle to work on Friday, May 16. Biking to work is a great way to save money, get fit, and be environmentally friendly.  Register for Bike to Work Day and log your bike trips to be automatically entered to win one of many great prizes.  In addition, every time you bike to work and log your trips in May, you will be entered into weekly prize drawings throughout Bike to Work Month. Stop by one of more than 90 pit stops conveniently located throughout the county on Bike to Work Day to pick up your FREE t-shirt, snacks, and plenty of encouragement.  In the City of El Cajon, the “Pit Stop” will be located at the Prescott Promenade, 201 E. Main Street, in the heart of downtown. Visit the Bike to Work website for more pit stop updates and to find all the pit stops on your commute route.  For information about Bike to Work Day, visit or call 511 and say "iCommute."

19th Annual HAWAIIANAIRES Golf Tournament In May  

Register now and help support El Cajon's finest by playing a round of golf on Friday, May 16.  The HAWAIIANAIRES Golf event benefits the El Cajon Police Officers’ Memorial Fund and is sponsored by the El Cajon Police Officers’ Association. The tournament takes place at Cottonwood @ Rancho San Diego Golf Course, located at 3121 Willow Glen Road, in El Cajon. The entry Fee is $100 per person. The entry fee includes: green fees, beverage carts, lunch, golf cart, door prizes, range balls, and a Carne Asada and Chicken Fajitas dinner.  Registration begins at 11:00 a.m., with a shotgun start at 12:00 p.m. This event is limited to the first 144 people – first come, first served.  Immediately following the tournament, proceed to the clubhouse for dinner, awards, an opportunity drawing and more. Dinner guests are more than welcome at $20 per guest. Please have fees paid and forms in by May 2, 2014, to guarantee your reservation. Please send checks payable to: ECPOA, 1163 Broadway #106, El Cajon, CA 92021, Attn: Officer Tom Winslow. For more information please call (858) 692-5298.

Around The World Is The Theme For The Cajon Valley Jamboree In May

Mark your calendar for Holy Trinity’s Cajon Valley Jamboree being held on Friday, May 16, from 5:00 - 10:00 p.m., Saturday, May 17, from 9:00 a.m. - 10:00 p.m., and Sunday, May 18, from 9:00 a.m. - 5:00 p.m.  Their theme, Around The World, promises to be a weekend of adventure as they explore cultures from around the world. Experience customs, food, clothes and activities from many foreign lands for a spectacular multi-cultural event! Additionally, there will be local merchants, live music, auctions, raffles, games, rides, food and more! For over 50 years the Jamboree has been a recognized event throughout our community, attended by over 10,000 people from all over San Diego County. Holy Trinity Church is located at 405 Ballard Street in El Cajon, between Washington Avenue and East Main Street. For more information please call (619) 444-7529 or visit

El Cajon Valley Lions Club Presents Their Annual Gunsmoke Casino Night

The El Cajon Valley Host Lions Club will combine their fundraising efforts this year with the Winchester Widows, who will help them present their 4th Annual Casino Night on May 17th at 6:00 p.m. at the Ronald Reagan Community Center, 195 East Douglas Avenue, in El Cajon. Enjoy an old western saloon, complete with Western Music, food, and the Winchester Widows. “Gunsmoke IV” will feature a variety of gaming tables, a silent auction, and a 50/50 drawing.

Entry tickets are $65 each or 2 for $120. Sponsorships are available starting at $100 for a Bronze, which includes one ticket, then to Silver for $250 and 2 tickets. The next step up is to Gold for $500 and 3 tickets and finally Platinum for $1000 and 5 tickets. Included in the ticket price are $200 in chips, heavy hors d’oeuvres and complimentary beverage.  Proceeds will be used to fund the Lions Club student eye glass program that provides free eye tests to needy students in the East County, and free glasses if they need them. Proceeds will also support the Challenge Ranch, which is a ten acre ranch in Dehesa Valley that provides opportunities for under-privileged children through horseback riding. For more information, please contact Chairperson Mercy Walters at (619) 465-6258.

Take A Fascinating Trip To The Famous Knox House Museum

Take a trip back in history and stop by the Knox House Museum. See how settlers lived in El Cajon during the years 1895-1912. It will be open every Saturday in April, from 11:00 a.m. to 2:00 p.m.  The Knox House Museum, with free admission, is located at 280 N. Magnolia Avenue, in El Cajon. For more information, including scheduling a private tour for your group or school, or becoming a member of the El Cajon Historical Society, visit   

Don’t Miss A Special Art Exhibit At The Olaf Wieghorst Museum  

Please join the Wieghorst Museum as they present a beautiful art exhibit featuring the artwork of Chuck McPherson, James Kermott, Rod Lindgren and Denise Rich, on Friday, May 2, from 5:00 to 7:00 p.m., at the Wieghorst Museum, 131 Rea Avenue in Downtown El Cajon.  While there, don’t miss the Olaf Wieghorst Museum and Western Heritage Center. The museum honors accomplished artist Olaf Wieghorst, who lived in our community for over 40 years.  Olaf was well-known for his magnificent art portrayals of the nineteenth century American West. You will also find his restored home next to the Center.  Hours are Tuesday through Saturday, from 10:00 a.m. to 3:00 p.m. For more information, visit, or call (619) 590-3431.

Pet Condos Up For Bid At Barkitecture 2014 At Parkway Plaza Mall

Join us for the 2nd Annual Barkitecture Auction Event, benefitting the ACES Foundation and the El Cajon Animal Shelter, on Sunday, June 1, 2014, from 5:00 to 7:00 p.m. at the Parkway Plaza Mall in El Cajon.  

Design and build a home fit for a dog, cat, or other household pet to be displayed with others in the 2nd Annual Barkitecture competition. The registration deadline is May 15 and limited to the first 20 entries. Register online and bring your creation to Parkway Plaza in El Cajon on Friday, May 23, 2014.  

Entries will be judged by a panel of judges and by the public.  Barkitecture Animal Houses will be up for auction and you are invited to bid on a house for your pet!  

This fun event will be located at O's American Kitchen, at 375 Parkway Plaza in El Cajon.  Several V.I.P. guests have constructed a dog or cat house for this benefit, including El Cajon Police Chief Jim Redman and Heartland Fire & Rescue Chief Rick Sitta.  These pet condos will be up for viewing from May 23rd through June 1st at the Parkway Plaza Mall, so stop by and vote for your favorite. Tickets for the event are $25, which includes an auction number, appetizers, and beverages.  Additionally, you can register to build an entry by May 15.  To register or purchase tickets, visit and click on “Barkitecture.”  Tickets will also be available at the door. For more information, please call (619) 561-3277.

Space Still Available For FREE Disaster Preparedness Classes For 2014

There has been an increase in earthquake activity - now is the time to prepare!  Whether it’s an earthquake or wildfire fire register now for a free 2014 East County Community Emergency Response Team (CERT) disaster preparedness academy.  Visit the website at for the full 2014 CERT schedule. Academies are scheduled to begin on June 28 and September 20. Each academy consists of six classes. Once the academy begins, classes are held every other Saturday, from 8:30 a.m. to 12:30 p.m.  Space is still available if you would like to register for either academy. Please call (619) 441-1737, and leave your name and best contact phone number.

DMV Office In El Cajon To Close For Remodel This Friday

The El Cajon field office will close at 12:00 p.m. this Friday, April 25, 2014. The office is scheduled to reopen October 13, 2014. Customers are advised to visit the San Diego, San Diego Clairemont, Poway, Chula Vista, or San Ysidro field offices for any of their DMV inquiries, or visit



Stop By The El Cajon Farmers’ Market On Thursday!

The El Cajon Farmers’ Market is every Thursday at the Prescott Promenade, located at 201 E. Main Street.  Hours are from 3:00 to 7:00 p.m. - rain or shine! The Farmers’ Market offers a wide variety of fresh, locally-grown fruits and vegetables, and fresh baked breads.  Also, there are several vendors, an art show, and live music! For more information, please visit

April 25 and May 9 & 23 - Alternate Friday closures for El Cajon City offices. Please go to for a full calendar of hours for City offices during 2014.

May 13 & 27 - The El Cajon City Council Meetings are at 3:00 p.m., and 7:00 p.m., as needed. Council meetings are held in the Council Chambers at 200 Civic Center Way. For more information, and to view the full agenda online, please visit

May 26 – City offices will be closed in observance of Memorial Day.

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I have listed a new property at 2672 Poinsettia in San Diego.
Do not miss this unique opportunity to own a piece of history. This 3 level Spanish gem has 5 bedrooms, a basketball court, picturesque Bay views, and is in one of the best areas of San Diego. This is a historic home and it gets special tax treatment as well. Please ask for details. The charm of this fabulous home will impress as the delicate balance between old and new meet in this tastefully updated home.
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Interior designers shape environments for a variety of situations. They design apartments, townhomes, mid-size homes, and mansions for singles, couples, and families. But what happens when there is an unoccupied house with no client to represent? How can a designer develop a home with personality and style identity with no one to interview? LeAnne Bunnell of elle design in Calgary, Alberta, came up with a clever solution to this challenge. When elle design was asked to style the interior of a local builder’s showcase home, Bunnell simply invented her client. “We felt that the home and neighborhood were appropriate for a family, so we created a couple with a child,” says Bunnell. “We actually assigned names to them.” Her staff chose occupations, hobbies, likes, and dislikes, and used these details to create a showcase home with individual character.

This 2,075-square-foot house with three bedrooms and two-and-one-half baths, is located in Calgary but the “owners” love the outdoors and wanted their home to resemble the so-called cabin cottages in the scenic countryside of Muskoka, Ontario. The imaginary homeowners tended toward a softened contemporary style with traditional aspects combined with an essence of nature. The original house had smart use of available space, according to Bunnell. “It was not ‘over grand,’ but rather well laid out and reasonable in size. We kept a neutral canvas of black and white, and then added touches of nature, history, and a little whimsy,” she says. “This new construction had a modern flair, using contemporary and family-friendly elements and modern finishes for a more carefree home. We needed to humanize it and add some depth and personality.”
The kitchen, although interior, is kept bright and airy by light cabinets, stainless steel appliances, and a crackled glass-tile backsplash. “Our ‘owner’ is an avid baker, so we added a dark wood bake center,” says Bunnell. “It grounds the room with a traditional feel, yet, because of the open shelf, it doesn’t block the flow of the area visually.” The kitchen opens to a dining area and living room where mirrors reflect the light of the large living room windows. A light, birch-pattern wallpaper introduces a touch of nature to the dining space. And a natural wood bench, delicately scaled modern seating, and a simple serving piece keep the airy, light feel.
 In the living room, the fireplace surround is a neutral stone. “We used texture and pattern to add interest and a sense of structure and order,” says Bunnell. “Stripes are very architectural. We introduced them in the rustic flat-weave wool rug and decorative pillows.” The classic Hudson Bay blanket adds a touch of history and an outdoorsy Canadian feel to the space. A brightly colored cork lampshade and vibrant pillows add a soft splash of color against the neutral chairs.The media room also has a neutral foundation. “We found chairs upholstered in a fabric with Old World Latin sayings to add a subtle pattern to the room without overpowering it,” explains Bunnell. “Heirloom film reels lend an interesting and appropriate history to the space; vintage items always add character to a home.” Bunnell’s vintage touches can be seen throughout and make a new construction house look more lived in. Accessories such as old snowshoes on the wall of the stairway and a basket of classic paperbacks in the living room, give the home a feeling of humanity and add a comfortable warmth.

 Pieces of nature appear all over the house. Gatherings of stones, framed collections of butterflies, vases with bunches of leaves or flowers, small statues of animals traditionally found in the Canadian wild, driftwood, charger plates that are actually slices of real logs, and, of course, the delicately patterned birch wallpaper, are there to remind the “owners” of the countrified land they love. The master bedroom repeats the soft neutral tones. Striped plush bedsheets are subtle against an upholstered box and cream coverlet. A multistripe Hudson Bay blanket adds a punch of color as does the whimsical bright yellow papier-mâché deer head that hangs above the headboard. The “son,” Max’s room features more punches of color with blues and yellows. The basic room is neutral to blend with the rest of the house, but Max’s name in cutout blue letters on top of the rustic cabinet and the blue headboard keep the room youthful, yet not overdone. The walls are adorned with a playful puzzle moose head and animal artwork by a Vancouver, BC artist. Bunnell looked to the “owners” as if they were real clients. “We established what they would like and what furniture and decor would actually work for their family,” she explains. Real owners might consider following the same steps when redesigning their own homes. Analyze your family, lifestyle, work, hobbies, likes, and dislikes, and use this information to create an environment that fits exactly who you are, and a place you can grow into for the future. 

As Featured in Home By Design 
Information deemed reliable but not guaranteed.
All measurements are approximate.
Copyright 2014 Network Communications Inc.
All rights reserved.

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I have listed a new property at 121 Washington in El Cajon.
Family run grocery store/check cashing for over 25 years. Little Caesers in the same center. Sale does not include property. 3800SF includes full line grocery, produce, meat, check cashing(w/computer system), beer, wine, western union, money orders, EBT, and the list goes on. Purchase price includes restaurant space with separate entrance that grosses $25,000-$30,000/month. Can be used for anything other than Pizza or Mexican Food.
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I have sold a property at 8295 Churchill in El Cajon.
Don't miss the chance to live in this beautiful spanish hacienda! 2 acre PRIVATE and GATED property. Rent includes - water, sewer, trash, sdge, wifi, pool service, grounds maintenance, orange grove with all the oranges you can eat, and much more. Home offers 4BR/4BA, and over 3100sf! High ceilings, Spanish tile, and NEW carpet as you enter through the dramatic double door entrance. All appliances are included, double door brand new refrigerator, washer dryer, and a brick fireplace/oven.
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When homeowners in Kingsway, just west of  Toronto, Ontario, tired of the current look of their home’s main living areas, they desperately wanted a makeover without the hefty price tag of a renovation. Dark, wood paneling coupled with furniture and accents with heavy finishes, were no longer a reflection of the homeowners’ extroverted personalities and entertaining styles. So they enlisted Mississauga, Ontario-based interior designer Elizabeth Metcalfe to maintain the integrity of the building, and modernize the interiors on a budget.
To achieve this transformation from heavy and dark to bright and elegant, Metcalfe looked to a color palette of bold colors—deep teals and rich corals—with an ivory backdrop complemented by a handful of neutral accent pieces to keep the look balanced and refreshing.
Metcalfe started with the dining room, which had been unofficially designated the “forgotten room.” Although the homeowners are avid entertainers, the decor didn’t quite fit with their personalities, and they eventually lost interest in the space. “The dining room felt disconnected from the rest of the home,” says Metcalfe. “We wanted to take the warm coral color from the living room and use it in a much bolder way to really make it something special.” 

To breathe new life into the space, Metcalfe opted to forgo the traditional dark walnut finish on the table, for example, and instead applied an ivory lacquered finish, which immediately brightened the space. To keep the room light and airy, Metcalfe also added an antique mirrored buffet, which adds sparkle and, she says, a beautiful lift to the once dark room. Complementing the rich coral wall color are velvet diamond-tufted chairs in the same color palette, which look dramatic against the ivory trim and molding.

To create interest, the designer added a large-scale, neutral-tone wall covering with crystal detailing. Similarly, stunning custom-made dining room chairs by Metcalfe’s company, Elizabeth Metcalfe Interiors & Design, in a striking coral and two chairs featuring a large-scale cut velvet motif on the backs and a pale-taupe tufted front, bring in a subtle warmth to the vibrant room. The vintage chandelier—the homeowners’ sentimental keepsake—and the transitional crystal cube sconces shed a soft glow against the coral walls, making the room ideal for entertaining day or night.
Now complete, the dining room seamlessly transitions into the living room, yet another space that needed updating. “There wasn’t an exact inspiration for this room,” explains Metcalfe. “It was more about giving the home a complete transformation. . . . We had to find the perfect marriage between the strong accent colors and our design aesthetic of refined elegance.” Metcalfe struck this delicate balance by incorporating neutral tones and fabrics throughout both the living and dining rooms. “When you use a lot of strong bold colors it is just as important to use neutrals to balance the visual weight and impact.”

To achieve this seamless balance, each piece was strategically placed throughout the rooms to form a cohesive, well thought-out plan; a necessity when planning an interior, as every piece contributes to the design. “Beauty results when balance, form, shape, color, texture, contrast, scale, and proportion come together in a state of harmony,” says Metcalfe. “Every piece has a role to play.” The feather headdress above the fireplace that was sourced from Snob in Toronto, does just that as the round shape plays off the linear molding details and the feathery texture against the wool, silk, and velvet textures in the room. The custom area rug is yet another accessory carefully selected as a soft contrast to the bold colors. It works well because it has “a pattern strong enough to balance the weight of the room,” says Metcalfe.

In the end, the designer proved that the homeowners never needed to renovate their home after all. Some tweaking and an overhaul of the aesthetic invigorated the two entertaining spaces with new life sans knocking down walls and building up new ones. “The homeowners were very open to change,” says Metcalfe. And change—at its best—is exactly what they got. 

As featured in Home By Design

Information deemed reliable but not guaranteed.
All measurements are approximate.
Copyright 2014 Network Communications Inc.
All rights reserved
Read full post