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  • Deborah Kade

Manhattan Beach, California


Put the TV on this morning to get the weather report. I came across the Beach Body TV channel. Really????? Yes.....I definitely know I'm in California! The weather forecast said it will only be 78 degrees today. It is another beautiful sunny day with no clouds. Just perfect!

These rowers were out very early this morning.


Decided to take one of the hotel bikes and ride to Manhattan Beach. I can't remember the last time I was on a bike.

Manhattan Beach is a city in southwestern Los Angeles County, on the Pacific coast south of El Segundo, and north of Hermosa Beach. Manhattan Beach is one of the three Beach Cities (Redondo, Hermosa, Manhattan) that make up the South Bay. It has a population of 35,135.

In 1863, a Scottish immigrant, Sir Robert Burnett, purchased Rancho Sausal Redondo and Rancho Aguaje de la Centinela from Avila's heirs for $33,000. Ten years later in 1873, Burnett leased the ranch to a Canadian, Daniel Freeman (not the American Daniel Freeman, who was the first to file a claim under the Homestead Act of 1862). Burnett returned to Scotland. Freeman moved his wife and three children onto the ranch and started growing various crops. On May 4, 1885, Freeman bought the ranch from Burnett for $140,000.

George H. Peck owned a lot of the land that became part of the north section of Manhattan Beach. A coin flip decided the town's name. Around 1902, the beach suburb was named "Manhattan" after developer Stewart Merrill's home, the New York City borough of Manhattan. "Beach" was appended to the city's name in 1927 at the request of the postmaster.

A majority of the land in Manhattan Beach was once exposed sand dunes which now lie beneath the city's buildings and streets. The underlying dunes afford residents ocean views throughout western portions of the city. The tallest hill is 244 feet high and located in the city's southwest region. The only remaining exposed sand dune is at Sand Dune Park, where sand resembling the original landscape can also be found.

In the late 1920's and 1930's, Manhattan Beach excess sand was purchased by Hawaiian developers, who negotiated a deal with the Kuhn Brothers Construction Company to ship the sand across the Pacific Ocean from Manhattan Beach via Los Angeles Harbor to Waikiki Beach over a 10-year period. The sand was to be used in Hawaii to convert their reef and rock beach into a sandy beach.

The sand was also used to build the Los Angeles Coliseum and portions of the Pacific Coast Highway.

The beach is approximately 400 feet wide and 2.1 miles long. In the early part of the last century, the beach was narrow (approximately 150 feet) and sloping. From 1938 to 1989, it more than doubled in width when large quantities of sand were placed on beaches to the north during construction of the Hyperion Treatment Plant, Marina Del Rey, and Scattergood Power Plant. The sand was carried southward by the ocean's natural littoral flow and widened Manhattan Beach.

Every August, the city hosts the Manhattan Beach Open Volleyball Tournament and the International Surf Festival.

Manhattan Beach is known for its clean, wide, sandy beaches which attracts over 3.8 million visitors annually. Along the Strand at the eastern edge of the beach, a concrete bike path is reserved for bicycles. The bike way extends north to Santa Monica and south to Palos Verdes. A separate 2.1mile (3.4 km) walkway, reserved for pedestrians, runs alongside the bike path.

Restrooms and shower facilities are provided adjacent to the Strand paths. Beach volleyball, swimming, body boarding and surfing are popular activities among residents and visitors. Popular surf spots include the Pier and El Porto. Lifeguard stations are located along the entire length of the beach.



The beach is cleaned and groomed daily by crews from LA County Beaches and Harbors Department.



The Manhattan Beach Pier



Forbes ranked Manhattan Beach at #74 on its list of America's most expensive zip codes with a median home price of $2,815,327. According to a May 18, 2017 Property Shark study, the City of Manhattan Beach 90266 zip code ranked as the 32nd most expensive zip code in the United States.


Residential prices in Manhattan Beach are among the highest in the state of California. In 2016, the Dataquick study reported that more homes exceeding $1 million were sold in Manhattan Beach than any other city in California. Pacific Palisades, Beverly Hills, La Jolla, Malibu, Bel-Air, Orinda, Atherton, Montecito, and other high end cities in California ranked behind Manhattan Beach. The Higley 100 Census survey found that The Hill Section of Manhattan Beach is the second highest mean household income neighborhood in Los Angeles County, with Beverly Park ranking first and Beverly Hills (the 90210 section) ranking third, respectively. The current median residential home price is $2.2 million according to a Los Angeles Times article, and land values in Manhattan Beach rank among the highest per square foot in the nation. Land values on the Manhattan Beach "Strand" are routinely around $10 million for a 3,000 square foot piece of land.




Manhattan Beach is currently ranked as one of the best suburbs in Los Angeles Country for its high-earning and well educated residents. According to US Census data, Manhattan Beach holds the ranking as the second most educated city in Los Angeles County and the fifth most educated city in the state of California. Manhattan Beach's top performing school district is currently ranked as the third best in the state of California, and Forbes Magazine ranked the city's school district, MBUSD, as the sixth best school district in the United States. Mira Costa High School in Manhattan Beach is ranked in the top 1% of high schools nationally.

I stopped at Hermosa Beach, too.





Spent some time watching people play volleyball. There were lessons being conducted and 2 on 2 (men, women and mixed doubles). The participants take the matches very seriously!


Two seals moved onto the platform across from our room at the Portofino. They barked and barked at each other for quite a long time. It is amazing how much noise two seals can make. When they finally stopped barking, they decided to huddle together at the end of the dock. They must have had a disagreement and then made up.



Late afternoon, one decided to stay on the platform while the other decided to lay claim to a buoy. Nothing was going to get this seal to move.




Enjoyed the sunset from the room.






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