A thriving beachfront community by the time it reached its 10th birthday in 1885, Santa Monica was scoring accolades all the way to the East Coast. During the following two decades, the town gained attention for its expansive entertainment pier and several popular hotels. Today, the City of Santa Monica is known for its unsurpassed beachfront location, nearly endless social, cultural and recreational opportunities, and its upscale, well-designed and ultra-hip downtown boasting a car-free promenade that is within strolling distance from the beach. More than one-quarter of its 90,000 or so residents hold graduate degrees and its Santa Monica-Malibu Unified School District is one of the best in California. In addition to its public schools, 10 private schools serve the city in addition to Santa Monica College, Frederick S. Pardee RAND Graduate School and The Art Institute of California — Los Angeles.
Housing runs the gamut, from modest and high-end condos and apartments, to single family bungalows and luxury homes. Its citizenry is eclectic as well. Prominent professionals, executives and celebrities mingle with students and surfers. With the Pacific Ocean as its front yard, Santa Monica shares its remaining borders with several LA neighborhoods, including Pacific Palisades, Brentwood, West Los Angeles, Mar Vista and Venice.
Culture and Recreation
Santa Monica enjoys a colorful and rich history, beginning with its original inhabitants, the Tongva people, and its subsequent discovery by explorer Gaspar de Portolàin in 1769, and on to it becoming a destination for the railroad and a major player in aircraft production during World War II.
The city’s many attractions include the historically-significant and wildly popular Santa Monica Pier, built in 1909; three museums; an equal number of shopping districts; music, film and stage venues; large and small parks and recreation facilities; and numerous special events including the Santa Monica International Film Festival.
- Santa Monica Canyon
- La Mesa Drive / North of San Vicente
- North of Montana Avenue
- Montana Avenue
- North of Wilshire
- Ocean Avenue
- Downtown Santa Monica
- Midtown Santa Monica
- Pico District
- Ocean Park Neighborhood
- Sunset Park
There is a significant amount of additional information about Santa Monica online, in the press, and in popular books and periodicals.
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