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Santa Monica

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Santa Monica, you are beautiful. This city has it all: the best restaurants, shops, art, homes, and beaches.

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Santa Monica manages to be a hybrid of big city glitz and glamour and small beach town charm and comfort. From the world famous Santa Monica Pier to the Third Street Promenade to the views of some of the city’s best hotels, Santa Monica is a favorite destination to locals and tourists alike.

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One thing I love is that nearly every street in town is lined with swaying palm trees. Even a day visit feels like you’re on a tropical vacation.

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Downtown Santa Monica offers some of the best shopping in the city. The Promenade acts as a sort of unifying hub for the town. It’s one of a very few car-free walkable enclaves in the city. From Babette to Fred Segal, there’s more than enough shopping for everyone.

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But Santa Monica is much more than the best in retail. There is also a thriving culture and arts scene. Some of the best and most cutting edge galleries in Los Angeles are located here: Artlab SalonJeanie Madsen Gallery, and RAWSTYLE are must-sees, to name only a few.

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Whether driving, on foot, or on your bike, you will love touring this city.

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One of our great city’s grandest hotels, Shutters on the Beach has spectacular views of the ocean. And, don’t worry, if you don’t have a room reservation, make sure to taste their terrific restaurants: Pico, Coast, and The Living Room. Coast has a wonderful beachfront Sunday brunch.

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Nearby is the hotspot Father’s Office, a perfect place for a burger and a beer. Really, their burgers are the best in town.

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Homes in Santa Monica vary from sleek, modern, and clean to lavish and luxe.

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As one of the most environmentally conscious neighborhoods in the city, many homes in Santa Monica today have been or are being outfitted with eco-friendly amenities, focusing on the efficient use of energy, water, and building materials.

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Whether spying a hundred-year-old restored craftsman, a mid-century modern, or an elegant new build, Santa Monica is one of my favorite neighborhoods to house-watch.

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Demographics

The 2010 United States Census reported that Santa Monica had a population of 89,736. The population density was 10,662.6 people per square mile (4,116.9/km²). The racial makeup of Santa Monica was 69,663 (77.6%) White (70.1% Non-Hispanic White), 3,526 (3.9%) African American, 338 (0.4%) Native American, 8,053 (9.0%) Asian, 124 (0.1%) Pacific Islander, 4,047 (4.5%) from other races, and 3,985 (4.4%) from two or more races. Hispanic or Latino of any race were 11,716 persons (13.1%). According to the 2010 United States Census, Santa Monica had a median household income of $73,649

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Schools

Elementary schools

  • Edison Language Academy
  • Franklin Elementary School
  • Grant Elementary School
  • John Muir Elementary School
  • McKinley Elementary School
  • Roosevelt Elementary School
  • Will Rogers Learning Community

Middle schools

  • John Adams Middle School
  • Lincoln Middle School.

High schools

  • Olympic High School
  • Santa Monica High School.

Private schools

  • Carlthorp School
  • Santa Monica Montessori School
  • Crossroads School
  • Saint Monica Catholic Elementary School
  • Concord High School
  • Pacifica Christian High School
  • St. Anne Catholic School[43]
  • Saint Monica Catholic High School
  • New Roads School
  • PS1 Pluralistic School

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Film History

Hundreds of movies have been shot or set in part within the city of Santa Monica. One of the oldest exterior shots in Santa Monica is Buster Keaton’s Spite Marriage (1929) which shows much of 2nd Street. The comedy It’s a Mad, Mad, Mad, Mad World (1963) included several scenes shot in Santa Monica, including those along the California Incline, which led to the movie’s treasure spot, “The Big W”. The Sylvester Stallone film Rocky III (1982) shows Rocky Balboa and Apollo Creed training to fight Clubber Lang by running on the Santa Monica Beach, and Stallone’s Demolition Man (1993) includes Santa Monica settings. Henry Jaglom’s indie Someone to Love (1987), the last film in which Orson Welles appeared, takes place in Santa Monica’s venerable Mayfair Theatre. Heathers (1989) used Santa Monica’s John Adams Middle School for many exterior shots. The Truth About Cats & Dogs (1996) is set entirely in Santa Monica, particularly the Palisades Park area, and features a radio station that resembles KCRW at Santa Monica College. 17 Again (2009) was shot atSamohi. Other films that show significant exterior shots Santa Monica include Fletch (1985), Species (1995),Get Shorty (1995), and Ocean’s Eleven (2001). Richard Rossi’s biopicAimee Semple McPherson opens and closes at the beach in Santa Monica. Iron Man features the Santa Monica pier and surrounding communities as Tony Stark tests his experimental flight suit.

The documentary Dogtown and Z-Boys (2001) and the related dramatic film Lords of Dogtown (2005) are both about the influential skateboarding culture of Santa Monica’s Ocean Park neighborhood in the 1970s.

The Santa Monica Pier is shown in many films, including They Shoot Horses, Don’t They? (1969), The Sting (1973), Ruthless People (1986), Beverly Hills Cop III (1994), Clean Slate (1994), Forrest Gump (1994), The Net(1995), Love Stinks (1999), Cellular (2004), The Cutting Edge: Going for the Gold (2006), Iron Man (2008) and Hannah Montana: The Movie (2009).

A number of television series have been set in Santa Monica, including Baywatch, Three’s Company, Pacific Blue, and Private Practice. The Santa Monica pier is shown in the main theme of CBS series NCIS: Los Angeles. In Buffy the Vampire Slayer, the main exterior set of the town of Sunnydale, including the infamous “sun sign”, was located in Santa Monica in a lot on Olympic Boulevard.

The film The Doors (1991) and Speed (1994) featured vehicles from Santa Monica’s Big Blue Bus line, relative to the eras depicted in the films.

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