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Laguna Beach

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Learn more about Laguna Beach

Laguna Beach became a part of the United States after the Mexican-American War. Before that, it was inhabited by Paleo-Indians, the Tongva people and later on Mexicans. When local Indians lived in the area they named the freshwater Canyon lakes “Lagonas”. It was a thriving area with opulent coastal lands that drew people from near and far to travel through the canyons and make their way to the beach every summer. The first hotel was called Hotel Laguna and the area was particularly a favorite of artists.

 

One such artist was Norman St. Clair who started visiting Laguna Beach in 1903. He would return to his home in San Francisco to rave about his new found muse that inspired his landscape paintings and in a short time other artists followed and started to move into the area. Laguna Beach soon had a population of 300 people with about 150 of them being artists.

 

Later on, artist Edgar Payne opened an art gallery which became the Laguna Art Museum. He opened that gallery in 1918 and it is still operational to this day.

 

Laguna Beach was incorporated in 1927 and when the Depression hit in 1932, the art community had a hard time and staged the first Festival of Arts show in the downtown area in hopes that it would lure people who were in Los Angeles for the Los Angeles Olympic Games. At the time, Laguna was also getting noticed by Hollywood filmmakers and movie stars like Bette Davis, Judy Garland, Charlie Chaplain to name a few.

 

When servicemen who were stationed in the area were done serving during World War II, many of them made Laguna Beach their permanent home. In 1948, The Surf & Sand Resort opened and its restaurant was a hotspot for noteworthy people like Joe Namath and Billy Graham. Later on, in the 1960s, the boardwalk became an open beach park and opened up the area for other creative events that fuelled the artists in the area at the time.

 

Laguna Beach became an art colony in the 1960s and while it had its flare of ‘hippie’ culture, it was that same vibe that brought forth a new set of people who would ultimately put the town on the map. They were the White House Press Corps who would frequent the area as President Nixon would visit his home in San Clemente.

 

The press corps stayed at Surf & Sand Resort. This included the likes of Tom Brokaw, Dan Rather and Diane Sawyer. Many of their newscasts were done on the beach that lay out before Surf & Sand Resort.

 

The whole area that encompassed all the cities we now know to be a part of Orange County continued to grow and environmentalists sought to cultivate a Greenbelt of preserved land around Laguna Beach. Some of the land was donated from the Irvine Company and some of it was purchased. These days, Laguna Beach is tourist destination that draws in millions of people per year.

 

There’s a famous saying on a gate that was built in 1935. It states, “This gate hangs well and hinders none, refresh and rest, then travel on.It’s one of the best ways to summarize what one might feel after spending some time in Laguna Beach.

The lure of the beach, the majestic sunsets and tide pools continue to mesmerize people just as it did decades before.

 

The median household income is $121,474 as of 2019.

Population: Approximately 23,036 as of 2019

 

Well Known Places in Laguna Beach

Heisler Park

Crystal Cove State Park

Festival of Arts & Pageant of the Masters

Crescent Bay Point Park

 

Fact Sheet

Laguna Beach has 7 hotels/resorts on its beachfront, making it the city with the most beachfront lodging in California.

It is a marine life refuge and a bird sanctuary.

The city attracts over 3 million visitors per year.

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      Inside Laguna Beach

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      Laguna Beach Schools

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      schools
      phone
      type
      grades
      rating
      949-497-7790
      Public
      KG-5
      Not Available
      Private
      KG-8
      949-494-7388
      Private
      KG-3
      Not Available
      Private
      PK-TKG
      949-497-7790
      Public
      KG-5
      949-497-7785
      Public
      6-8
      Not Available
      Private
      KG-8
      949-494-7388
      Private
      KG-3
      949-497-7785
      Public
      6-8
      Not Available
      Private
      KG-8
      949-497-7750
      Public
      9-12

      The Best in Laguna Beach

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