Living in Los Angeles: Things to Do and See in Los Angeles, California
Los Angeles, California—The City of Angels
It is astonishing to realize that Los Angeles, California—the City of Angels—only dates back to 1781, when it was founded as a dusty pueblo, far removed from civilization. Back then it was called El Pueblo de Nuestra Señora la Reina de los Ángeles del Río de Porciúncula. Today, it’s often simply “L.A.,” and the angels have most certainly smiled upon Los Angeles in myriad ways, blessing it with mostly sunny days and a climate to be envied by all. Its metropolitan area of some 18 million souls touches the Pacific on its southern edge and the blue-denim San Gabriel Mountains to the north, making it possible to go surfing in the morning and skiing in the afternoon at certain times of the year.
Perhaps because it is a young city, Los Angeles is equated with youthful enthusiasm and an urge to reinvent oneself, and many come here to do just that. It is the home of Hollywood and motion pictures, a hub of industry and technology, and a diverse magnet for all nationalities and cultures, with thriving enclaves of immigrant populations—from Koreatown to Little Tokyo to Little Armenia and Little Ethiopia and Chinatown. It has been home to many celebrated sports teams—the Dodgers, the Angels, the Lakers, the Clippers, and soon will welcome more, and it has famously hosted the Olympics twice.
Hollywood is just one aspect of L.A.’s claim to be the entertainment capital of the world. The region is the birthplace of the theme park (think of Disneyland, Knott’s Berry Farm, and Magic Mountain), and is the address of countless recreational landmarks, golf courses, horse racing venues, and bridle trails. It is a place for the fitness buff, the yoga practitioner, and the mountain biker. It is, indeed, a gathering place of astounding diversity.
Los Angeles is also a haven of luxury. Rodeo Drive in Beverly Hills is synonymous with high-end commerce, and the magnificent neighborhoods of Los Angeles bear witness to a luxury lifestyle that is second to none—and quintessentially Californian. Architectural styles abound, taking their cue from the many motion picture sets that once transformed Los Angeles into a virtual replica of everything from medieval England to classical Rome and feudal Spain. Adobe haciendas can be found next door to Moorish castles and Italianate villas and modernist midcentury glass-and-concrete masterpieces. Beverly Hills, Holmby Hills, Bel-Air, Hancock Park, Malibu, Pasadena, San Marino—these are neighborhoods and cities whose names are almost trademarks. Aerial views of these districts are distinguished by rows of turquoise swimming pools, green rectangles of tennis courts, and geometrically patterned lush gardens.
Los Angeles is an hour’s drive from virtually anything and everything, which has also made it a hub of car culture, where the automobile is king and almost indispensable. An hour or so in the car can take you to the best restaurants, the finest beaches, grand theatres and auditoriums, museums and libraries, aquariums and zoos, sporting arenas and parks, pine-scented forests, and the hot Mojave Desert. L.A. is a cultural melting pot where almost any cuisine can be enjoyed, and where any language can be heard. But most important for the reader who has come to this page, it is a place where Christie’s International Real Estate has affiliated with several outstanding firms with portfolios of luxury listings that cannot be equaled.
How Many People Live in Los Angeles?
Population: 19 million (greater metropolitan area)
What Languages Are Spoken in Los Angeles?
What is the Currency in Los Angeles?