Hermosa Beach calls itself “the Best Little Beach City”, and I will venture to say it
has one of the best beaches in the world. It may be only 1.43 square miles, but
Hermosa Beach is a great beach town that caters to singles and families.
Hermosa Beach is a beachfront city in Los Angeles County in the U.S. state of California, United States. Its population was 19,728 in 2020. The city is located in the South Bay region of the Greater Los Angeles area; it is one of the three Beach Cities. Hermosa Beach is bordered by the other two, Manhattan Beach<br />to the north and Redondo Beach to the south and east.
The city’s beach is popular for sunbathing, beach volleyball, surfing, paddleboarding, bars, cycling and running. The city itself extends only about 15 blocks from east to west and 40 blocks from north to south, with Pacific Coast Highway running down the middle. Situated on the Pacific Ocean, Hermosa’s average temperature is 70 °F (22 °C) in the summer and 55 °F (13 °C) in the winter. Westerly sea breezes lessen what can be high summertime temperatures in Los Angeles and elsewhere in the county and help keep the smog away 360 days of the year.
A paved path called The Strand runs along Hermosa’s beach from Torrance Beach in the south, approximately twenty miles north to Santa Monica. The Hermosa Beach Pier is at the end of Pier Avenue, which is one of the beach community’s main shopping, dining, and entertainment areas.
About Hermosa Beach
The Sand Section runs along the beachfront from the north to the south end. It’s bordered on the east by Valley Drive. Not surprisingly, the homes on The Strand are the most expensive real estate in Hermosa. These homes have unobstructed ocean views that typically span from PV to Santa Monica. Step out your back door, and you are on The Strand, and a few more steps put you on the beach. There’s no need for a backyard when you have the beach and ocean right outside your house.
The walk streets are certain streets in Hermosa that run perpendicular to the beach. They are closed off to cars; hence the name “walk street”. The typical lot size for these properties is 30’ x 95’.
At one time, there was a plan to put a train through Hermosa. When the land was converted to residential homes, these properties benefited from the wider lots specs that had been carved out to fit the train (usually from 38’-40’). And it’s also important to know that the city owns a portion of a Walk Street home’s front patio. The city grants an easement to the homeowners so that they make personal use of the space in front of their homes. All these patios are enclosed by the same style wall that divides The Strand from the beach.
Other common lot sizes are 30’x100’ and 30’x80’. There are also half lots and other deviations. You will notice that close to the beach, the lots are smaller, lending toward more vertical architecture. Homes are typically three stories, and more often than not, you will find your living space on the top floor to enjoy the ocean or city views.
This is the strip of Hermosa Beach between Valley Drive and Pacific Coast Highway. Its main feature is the “green belt” or “chip trail” that runs through it. This is a popular place for people to walk, jog, or run their dogs. The green belt starts at 190th St and makes its way all the way through Manhattan Beach, where it hits Sepulveda Blvd. Lots in this section of Hermosa typically range from 2,500 – 5,000 sq feet. You can also find some larger lots here. There is an incline up to Pacific Coast Highway that lends to ocean views for many properties.
Everything east of Pacific Coast Highway is part of Hermosa East, also popularly known as the Hermosa Hills. Because of the elevation, many homes enjoy ocean views. This neighborhood is a combination of single families and townhomes. Lot sizes are typically between 2,500 – 6,000 sq feet.
Hermosa Beach School District
The Hermosa Beach public school district consists of Hermosa View (K-2) and Hermosa Valley (3-8). Hermosa Residents currently have the choice of matriculating into either Redondo Union High School or Mira Costa High School (Manhattan Beach’s public high school). Hermosa schools are highly ranked. There has been an issue with population growth, but in the summer of 2016 Measure S was approved providing a $59 million bond which will rebuild North School and help to renovate Valley and View Elementary schools.
The downtown area of Hermosa Beach consists of Pier Avenue that runs east/west and ends at Hermosa Avenue and the Pier Plaza, and Hermosa Avenue which runs parallel to the beach. These streets and the Plaza are populated with bars, restaurants, and other shops that are extremely popular with locals and tourists. The Pier Plaza continues to evolve. The up and coming beachfront hotel is still a few years away, but it will undoubtedly reshape the downtown Hermosa area. There are still many classic Hermosa venues to visit. Bars like Sharkeez, Barnacles, and the Lighthouse are as popular as ever. Seymour Jewelers is a long standing business.
Some popular events in Hermosa include:
- The Hermosa Fiesta which comes twice a year on Memorial Day and Labor Day weekends. Vendors set up booths along Hermosa Ave and the Pier Plaza to sell their wares. There is a ton of food, rides, arts & crafts, live music.
- St Patrick’s Day Parade
- 4th of July Iron Man a relay of swimming, running, and chugging a six pack. (Who needs to ride a bike?)
- Christmas Tree Lighting at the Pier.
- Volleyball Tournaments (Hermosa is, after all, home to some of the greatest volleyball players ever.)
Hermosa has a residential profile that is made up of 60% renters and 40% owners. There is a mix of apartment buildings, condos, townhomes, and single family residences. Lot sizes get smaller as you get closer to the beach, and with that, homes get more vertical in order to maximize space and views.